Australia’s @Spenda_C brings you the unique hip hop-infused “Release” featuring @CultShotta

SPENDA C featuring CULT SHØTTA, “Release”

People often forget how innovative the Australian dance music scene is, and that sometimes when new music arrives on North American or European shores, it’s treated as odd… and then becomes the next big thing six months later.  Spenda C is well-established in his homeland but puts a unique hip hop-infused spin on EDM with “Release”, featuring fellow Aussie, rapper/singer Cult Shøtta.  “Release” gives us an awful lot to digest in its 3:32 length.  There’s a terrific uncredited female vocal to give it a familiar EDM lift, but then Cult Shøtta’s vocal arrives, alternates between rapping and singing – fans who like everyone from Fetty Wap to Big Sean to Kranium will appreciate this diversity 🙂  And the song develops this infectious, dizzying buzz that keeps going, which you will simply love.  Check out “Release” at the link above.  This is a grower that could find its way as a surprise summer breakout.

Published in: on March 24, 2017 at 10:12 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCSTop30 #505 – March 20/17

This 505th edition of the BILLCS Top 30 is brought to you once again by The Chainsmokers, except this time they share the #1 spot with Coldplay on “Something Just Like This”.  This is a song that appeals to the good nature of everyone, and gets The Chainsmokers their third number one on this chart, while Coldplay gets their first (both “Talk” and “Clocks” got to #2).  Can’t wait to hear more from The Chainsmokers’ upcoming album Memories…Do Not Open.  These guys have not stopped and 2017 will continue to be huge for them.

Our Top 10 continues to seem like a revolving door as recent favourites depart to the lower parts of the Top 30.

The Rest of the Busy Songs on the Rise

  • In a chart where there were no songs by The Chainsmokers, Germany’s Koni and US vocalist Danelle would be at #1 with the effervescent “Mad About You”, which climbs to #2, bypassing The Chainsmokers’ “Paris” which dips 1-3.  “Mad About You” is one of those songs guaranteed to put a smile on your face, particularly if you happen to be someone crazy over someone else.  With Callum McBride, Koni has also done a great job on a remix edit of Ed Sheeran’s “Galway Girl”, injecting just a tad of tropical flavour – give a listen below and download it for free.
  • Another German producer and American vocalist soar into the Top 5 from outside of the Top 10.  It’s Levi featuring Victor Perry on the timeless and effortless “Sail”, which vaults 13-4 and is the Fastest Riser on the chart for a second time in a row.
  • A song I simply cannot get out of my head is “Be My Love” by Mahalo featuring Cat Lewis, so much so that even in its 8th appearance on the chart it still moves upward, bounding 9-5.  The pair also have a second song taking off further down.  “WTFYWF” climbs 22-15 (both below).
  • Toronto’s Loud Luxury pairs up with Ryan Shepherd on “Something To Say”, the deep house redux-in-disguise of Craig David’s “Fill Me In”, which flies into the Top 10 15-8.
  • If there weren’t as many songs as strong as DNCE’s “Naked” the song would be much higher on the chart but not as high as the #2 placing of “Cake By The Ocean” in late 2015.  Nonetheless, DNCE reach the Top 10 a second time as “Naked” moves up 11-9.

  • The last debut in the Top 10 belongs to the currently-touring Justin Taylor Phillips, aka Crywolf, who I will see in concert on March 25.  The waltz-like epic “Windswept” jumps 14-10.
  • One of the most unique songs of the year is “Manifest”, the progressive soul/hip hop flavoured song by Brandyn Burnette from his third EP Feature Films.  “Manifest” rises 20-13.

5 Debuts (all with featured vocalists)

  • I think young Dutch producer WRLD will become another Tiesto if song choices like “Stranded” keep coming his way.  Paired up with American producers SMLE, the song benefits immensely from an outstanding, soaring vocal by Kiddo AI and bows at #21.  It’s one-of-a-kind dance music for your ears and feet!  It’s also currently available as a free download 🙂

  • Right behind at #22 is “Stay” by Zedd featuring Alessia Cara.  “Stay” is Zedd’s fourth appearance on the chart, but first in three years, and Alessia’s chart debut.  Zedd is a refreshing change of electronic style for Zedd, and Canadian singer Alessia Cara to me gives her best vocal to date (she also is one of the song’s co-writers).  All of Zedd’s three songs to hit the chart have made the Top 5, including a #1 with “Spectrum” (featuring Matthew Koma) in 2012.  Will “Stay” follow suit?  I think there’s a strong possibility!

  • Dutch duo The Him are back after finding their way to #2 last year with “Balance” (featuring Oktavian) and opening on The Chainsmokers’ European tour.  But “I Wonder” is far different from the deep house of “Balance”.  It’s got a bright summery melody in stark contrast to a divine but forlorn vocal by singer LissA – and it all works beautifully.  “I Wonder” arrives at #24.  I will be checking out The Him’s own show on March 31.
  • NYC duo The Knocks make their fifth entry on the chart with “Worship”, featuring UK singer MNEK, about whom I’ve written a number of times, and who first appeared on the chart in 2015 with Zara Larsson on “Never Forget You” (#17).  I saw The Knocks on March 17 in concert and as usual they put on a dance party that you didn’t want to see end.  Their new EP is Testify, and “Worship” is the Gospel-flavoured ear-ringer which debuts at #25.  All of The Knocks’ previous entries have reached the Top 10, including a #1 last year with “Kiss The Sky”, featuring Wyclef Jean.
  • Our final debut is also the third one from The Netherlands (a fourth Dutch entry is at #11, “Light” by San Holo).  Lulleaux makes his song “Sinner” a winner featuring a top notch vocal by SVM, and it premieres at #27, the first entry for Florida’s Tipsy Records.

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here, and be sure to click on the photos to hear all of the songs.

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify: BILLCS Top 30 Songs

Listen for me on http://www.planetradio.ca on Tuesday evenings (returning on March 28), and with my Pick of the Week segment returning on March 27, aired throughout the week at 2:20 6:20 10:20 AM/PM EST 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bluesy jam: “Drinkin'” by @iamJMSN

JMSN, “Drinkin'”

“Drinkin'” is an essential rocking bluesy jam that’s going to sound fabulous in concert by L.A.-based singer JMSN.  He’ll release his fourth album Whatever Makes You Happy on April 28 and is touring in North America to support it.  After a moody pair of albums, It Is and JMSN (aka the Blue Album), and working with folks like Kendrick Lamar, Kaytranada, J. Cole, and Tyga over the past few years, JMSN’s commanding vocal takes control here with a blistering vocal that reminds you of why you got interested in the first place back about five years ago with his solo debut album †Priscilla†.  With JMSN still producing and engineering “Drinkin'”, and self-releasing his records, props here must also go to the bass work by Yuki “Lin” Hayashi which captures a deep groove that helps bring the song home.  The focus now seems to be more on real instruments and musicians than electronics.  Give “Drinkin'” a listen at the link above.

Published in: on March 18, 2017 at 8:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Goes down easy: “Irreplaceable” by Philadelphia duo @Nights_official

NIGHTS, “Irreplaceable” (free DL)

Nights is a new male duo out of Philadelphia who’ve just released their debut single “Irreplaceable”.  The style is a smooth mix of EDM, R&B and Hip Hop, more likely to appeal to fans of Chance The Rapper, Bryson Tiller or Anderson.Paak than say The Chainsmokers or Tiësto.  What I like particularly about “Irreplaceable” is the positive message that’s wrapped up in a vibe that will catch your attention when you don’t expect it.  The understated vocal is in a dreamy zone that totally suits the song.  “Irreplaceable” is a great start for Nights – folks who also enjoy RKCB and Opia will be pleased.  Get it for free at the link above.

Published in: on March 18, 2017 at 8:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Rain”is a singalong highlight of @CallMeKarizma’s new EP Emo, featuring #ErikAstle

CALL ME KARIZMA featuring ERIK ASTLE, “Rain”

The prolific Minnesota rapper/songwriter Call Me Karizma brings us his most recent EP Emo, following the single “Disconnected”, where he showed off his equally fine singing voice.  Emo sticks to Riz’s trademark downbeat rap style, which always has a lot to say, expressed often in amazingly simple words.  Such is the case with “Rain”, a singalong in which he duets with lower-voiced Erik Astle, after a few past ones with women such as Cass on “F U Till I F U”.  So in “Rain” the guys mope away while recalling past relationships wanting those old feelings to ‘wash away’.  It’s very much like bored kids just sitting by the window watching it rain, and perhaps that’s why Riz samples the voices of children, including what sounds like one from the classic Little Rascals movie series.  Nonetheless, it’s no mean feat to right simple-sounding songs, and few people get it right, but more often than not Call Me Karizma always finds the right words in the songs on Emo, including his tip of the hat to those who have experienced mental illness in “Zombie”.  Check out “Rain” and the Emo EP on Spotify.

Call Me Karizma is in the midst of a US tour also featuring Cosmos & Creature (and I’m sooo jealous as it isn’t coming anywhere near me).  Check out Call Me Karizma’s website for tour details.

Published in: on March 4, 2017 at 10:12 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCSTop30 #503 – February 20/17

The new music keeps coming and the last chart’s runner-up takes the pole position this time… but what will follow it in the coming weeks? The new music keeps coming and the last chart’s runner-up takes the pole position this time… but what will follow it in the coming weeks?
The Top 10

  • So much is happening for The Chainsmokers after their Grammy win for Best Dance/Electronic Song for “Don’t Let Me Down” (featuring Daya). An album is forthcoming and it will consist entirely of new music, which they apparently are previewing while in Europe. In the meantime, “Paris” has followed “Closer” to the top of this chart while official remixes of the song have arrived by Pegboard Nerds, VINAI, LOUDPVCK, Jewelz & Sparks, Party Thieves, and FKYA!
  • As another song featuring his wonderful voice lands on the chart, Victor Perry moves up 6-4 with his piano cover of Everything But The Girl’s “Missing”. In even better news, Tunecore, through its new label Wunder, has officially released the song, which was previously available as a free download. If you haven’t got it yet, buy it!
  • There’s so much buzz about The Netherlands’ San Holo on the EDM scene that he’s already landed spots in a number of American EDM festivals! In the meantime, his song “Light” continues to find new friends and advances 9-5.
  • Felix Cartal continues with two songs on this chart, the highest being “Drifting Away”, featuring Ofelia K., which is great for imagining a drive down one of the U.S. coasts. It climbs 8-6.
  • “Sleeping In”, that splendid new song by L.A.’s Phil Good is remixed by Sean Turk to reimage what else you might do when you claim you’re sleeping in on a Sunday morning. It moves up 12-8.
  • L.A.’s Mahalo climbs an important notch to #10 for “Be My Love” featuring a beautiful vocal by Cat Lewis.

Movin’ On Up

  • Continuing to delight us from her EP Now You See Me is Molly Moore with the atmospheric “Imaginary Friends”. As remixed by both Pluto and TELYKAST, it rises 14-11.
  • Right behind “Imaginary Friends”, as it has been for the last few charts, is Germany’s JPB featuring England’s Luke Cusato on vocal with the heartfelt “For You”, up 15-12.
  • The fastest riser on the chart belongs to another German performer, producer/guitarist Koni, who is one half of Saxity (at #7 with “Brothers”) and charted last year as a remixer of “Burn Fast” by Bryce Fox, which peaked at #15. Now with vocalist Danelle, Koni is at his best with the simple pop/dance mix of the engaging “Mad About You”, which soars 23-13.
  • “Memories Of You” is one of the most deliberately mysterious songs on the chart as brought to us by Miami’s Alyx Ander featuring a seductive vocal by Srey Davi. It glides 19-15.
  • All of the last chart’s debuts besides “Mad About You” are well on their way at #20, #21, and #22 respectively: “Windswept” the epic progressive EDM song by L.A.’s Crywolf (above), now on tour; another mysterious song by Toronto’s Blajk called “Lethal” (below); and the whimsical remix by Christofi of Elohim’s “Hallucinating” (also below).

Debuts

  • Collaborating with Germany’s Levi, American singer/songwriter Victor Perry is on point with cool restraint on “Sail” which arrives at #24, to accompany #4 “Missing” on the chart.
  • Toronto’s rising Loud Luxury pairs up with fellow Torontonian Ryan Shepherd for “Something To Say”, which is a UK house-inspired redux of Craig David’s “Fill Me In” in disguise, and it is glorious, remixed by Tiësto no less!! It bows at #25.
  • I’m so excited about the arrival of this song that I wrote about recently that it lands on my chart a few days before official release. Brandyn Burnette’s adventurous progressive soul-meets-hip hop in “Manifest”, from the upcoming Feature Films EP, premieres at #29, just as “Plans” featuring Brandyn with Elephante leaves the chart after a mandatory 10 appearances.
    • The more you hear “Know Myself” by Denmark’s Owkey but featuring UK vocalist Ashdown, the more it will stick in your head. Everyone can relate to this song and its melody is quite memorable. It debuts at #30, accompanying another release by Heroic (“For You” by JPB at #12) on the chart.

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here, and be sure to click on the photos to hear all of the songs.

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify: BILLCS Top 30 Songs

Listen for me on http://www.planetradio.ca live on Tuesday evenings, and with my Pick of the Week segment throughout the week at 2:20 6:20 10:20 AM/PM EST 🙂

“Manifest” is direct hip hop/progressive soul from @BrandynBurnette’s “Feature Films”

BRANDYN BURNETTE, “Manifest”

Brandyn Burnette continues to find unique ways to deliver his contemporary progressive soul takes on important messages.  “Manifest”, the second dip into the upcoming “Feature Films” EP, is about trying to head off what are normally everyday problems before they start and ultimately fester, but what does that really mean in terms of living life in today’s world?  It’s one of Brandyn’s most philosophical offerings to date, this time featuring hip hop verses as well as spoken word, which also makes this particularly personal.  The song it reminds me most of what he’s released so far is the hip hop remix of “I Wanna Be (Free)”.  Brandyn continues to be one-of-a-kind, seemingly carrying his own flag, but if you listen much closer, that flag is for all of us.

The Evolution of @DiegoGomesmusic begins with “Understand Me”

DIEGO GOMES, “Understand Me”

Long a fan himself of hip hop, dance music and big trap beats, Toronto’s Diego Gomes begins his evolution with a foray into dark, emotional hip hop with “Understand Me”.  The need to be wanted and taken seriously in the lyrics is put into stark contrast with a beat-heavy, bleak melody, which is given context by the video, where the singer met the wrong kind of gal, is stuck in awful place, and seemingly has no way out.  While this is hardly anything new – obviously influenced by the classic likes of Eminem and Akon, but probably some newer young turks as well – it’s well done enough to gain some respect from fans of this style of hip hop.  It will be a stretch for the singer’s long-time Canadian fan base of his pop songs, but stick with Diego as he evolves because he has much more to offer coming up this year.  Check out the video for “Understand Me” above.

Published in: on January 30, 2017 at 10:30 pm  Comments (2)  
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#BILLCSTop30 #498 – December 12/16

The top of the chart becomes unzipped after a slew of long-lasting favourites give way, resulting in some huge moves, and other favourites depart, meaning that there are six debuts on the new chart, giving us a good sign of what’s in store for 2017 🙂

The Top 10

  • #1 and #2 duke it out and once again “Starboy” by The Weeknd featuring Daft Punk stays ahead of “Plans” by Elephante featuring Brandyn Burnette.  What a fine pair of songs to lead a very busy pack below!
  • The fastest riser on the chart belongs to Halifax’s Famba, whose fun and mainly narrated “Right Here Right Now” soars 16 to 3.  The song would make a good mix with 90’s hits “The Rockafeller Skank” by Fatboy Slim or “People Are Still Having Sex” by LaTour, to name two tunes that come to mind…
  • Amid the three songs that vault into the Top 10, “Just A Dream” by Molly Moore featuring Brandyn Burnette finds its way to #4, from Molly’s terrific Now You See Me EP.
  • Also sailing into the Top 5 from #17 is “D E E P In NY” by Bobby Nourmand featuring rappers DOC and Goodmorning.  “D E E P” is a unique record, originally a house instrumental that has been taken to another level with the hip hop vocals, and has found a place on Pete Tong’s renown show!  More to come I’m sure of it!
  • Pet Shop Boys look like they could be headed to the top with third single “Burn” from their album Super.  “Burn” ignites and rises 18-6.

  • Hey even Rihanna is in the picture – her gorgeous “Love On The Brain” moves 9-7.

  • Also new to the Top 10 is NYC singer Stefan Alexander with his pensive “Skeleton” climbing 15-9.
  • The 5th debut in the Top 10 belongs to Fabian Luttenberger whose laid back grower “Vague” climbs 11-10 in a Stan Sax remix.

What else could be movin’ up?

  • “The Thirst” is an infectious house track by Eric Sharp featuring vocalist Kenny Zhao that rises 20-14 with much thanks to some guitar effects which sound like Stardust’s classic “Music Sounds Better With You”.
  • “Brothers” by German duo Saxity featuring Norway’s Strøm on vocals is a sax-led dance track to warm your soul at this time of year.  It soars 25-16.

https://soundcloud.com/hellbergmusic/allthewayvip

  • “All The Way” by Hellberg continues to have long legs after premiering this past summer, climbing 26-19, and now the prominent Swedish producer has released a VIP mix to add to the fun.  Check it out above.

SIX Debuts

  • What a way to lead a fine group of debuts than with American pop/R&B singer Victor Perry’s beautiful rendition of Everything But The Girl’s “Missing”.  The piano-led cover bows at #23 and is available at Victor’s Soundcloud page above as a free download 🙂

  • It quickly scurried to #1 on Billboard’s Dance Club Play chart this past week, and like with its predecessor, the #1 “So Happy”, Tony Moran and Jason Walker have created another instantly memorable, fun, upbeat song with “Say Yes”, which arrives at #24.

  • Kid Cudi makes his debut on this chart with a somewhat provocative but good timey single “Surfin'”, featuring Pharrell Williams, and it premieres at #25, in advance of an album due next year.
  • I wrote about “Chemistry” by talented and affable young Dutchman Steve Void & No Mondays back in the Fall, but it has endured, and recently Epic Records picked it up for release!  After winning a remix contest, Syence presented their version this past week too.  “Chemistry”, featuring singer Clara Mae, bows at #26.  Listen to the original and remix above:)
  • L.A. producer Mahalo and vocalist Cat Lewis are quite the pair with a great song called “Be My Love”, which lands at #27 out of the gate.

https://soundcloud.com/felixcartal/drifting-away

  • After a great year of songs it seems only fitting that Canadian Felix Cartal should appear on the chart with the pop radio-worthy “Drifting Away”, featuring frequent vocal collaborator Ofelia K.  It debuts at #28.

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here, and be sure to click on the photos to hear all of the songs.

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify!  Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify:  BILLCS Top 30 Songs

Listen for me with my Pick of the Week at 2:20/6:20/10:20 AM/PM EST on http://www.planetradio.ca most days Monday through Sunday, and my flashbacks to a Toronto Top 10 of yesteryear this Wednesday (December 14) and next Tuesday (December 20) at 9pm EST! :)

Getting personal: “If I Had A Heart” by @CallMeKarizma featuring @AvalonYoung

CALL ME KARIZMA featuring AVALON YOUNG, “If I Had A Heart”

Minnesotan pop/hip hop vocalist, songwriter and producer Call Me Karizma has perhaps made his deepest most warmly personal song yet with “If I Had A Heart”, featuring pop/R&B singer Avalon Young.  ‘Riz has no problems laying out exactly what he feels in his songs whether it’s with humour or a wink (“u suck” and “F U Till I F U”) or cutting and to-to-the-point (his recent “Disconnected”).  “If I Had A Heart” is a bit more of an about face, turning to a more pop-oriented vibe and EDM flavour with poignant lyrics that share sentiments that most of us have felt more than once or twice.  Like with “Disconnected”, ‘Riz continues to show what a fine singing voice he has as well.  With every new song he creates, Call Me Karizma makes us think and go for a gut reaction, which is a great approach in finding out what his audience wants to hear.  And of course he continues to want to get to know his fans, so do reach out and chat with him 🙂 Even better, be sure to check out Call Me Karizma’s show when he comes to your town!  Listen to “If I Had A Heart” above and pick it up at your favourite online digital store.

Call Me Karizma and Avalon Young and friends play at Skully’s in Columbus, Ohio tonight, and then tomorrow at The Loft in Lansing, Michigan.

Published in: on December 10, 2016 at 2:21 pm  Leave a Comment  
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