We all know the Beyonce hit “Countdown,” even if we don’t listen to the radio. Today, though, we’re being introduced to a new version of the song. Norwegian artist Sondre Lerche has provided us with his own rendition of “Countdown,” which is not only ear-catching, but also quite humorous as well.
Typically, I reserve this feature for raucous, party jams for everybody to get down to after the whole Monday to Friday thang. But, today I’m gonna do something different. It’s more of a commemoration, really.
As most of the Internet knows by now, The Weeknd released the concluding mixtape to his trilogy earlier this week. If 2011 belonged to anybody, it was definitely Abel Tesfaye, the 21-year-old Canadian crooner that took the blogosphere by storm in March when Drake personally cosigned “Wicked Games” off his first tape, House of Balloons. Since then, it’s been a whirlwind of remixes, covers and two more mixtapes as Tesfaye has quickly ascended to the pinnacle of relevant music. So, in honor of the recent Echoes of Silence, I’m dedicating today’s Friday At Five to “Weeknd” music.
Believe me when I say that these were pretty fucking hard to choose. Good problems, right? In no particular order, here are 5 of my personally favs. What are yours?
P.S. Merry Christmahanakwanzika to everybody from Sunset. Enjoy some time off with fam, friends and of course, music.
1. “Coming Down”
2. “Rolling Stone”
3. “The Morning”
4. “Same Old Song”
In the spirit of the holidays, we’re doing a big sweepstakes! Seven winners will be chosen and they will receive a FREE Sunset t-shirt or sticker in the mail that is AUTOGRAPHED by one of the following artists:
- Hoodie Allen
- Sonny Shotz of The Dean’s List
- Brenton Duvall
This dropped sometime last week and I’ve been holding off on posting it for a few reasons.
- Because of the music world we live in, mixtapes drop all the time. With the frequency of mixtapes that drop, I like to take my time and listen to the project to see if I like it and if its worthy of a post.
- I wanted to figure out what I wanted to say about this.
This mixtape was almost an EP, but instead, dropped it to the masses for free. The production and features are on point. This shows us why nobody has given up on Asher because of his ability to rap.
And let’s not forget the features he’s got on here. With the likes of Pac Div, Chip Tha Ripper, GLC, Blu and a variety of people I’ve never heard of, as they provide the depth of the bench as Coach Asher gives each one of them a chance to shine. I will admit though, with some of the people I didn’t know, I would’ve much rather had more Asher.
If you like chill hip hop/jazzy type ish, this is made for you. Fortunately for me, I love this kind of hip hop, but I’m not saying this is perfect. It’s 16 tracks and some are just ehhh. But nonetheless, still a good effort.
Mixtape Rating: 7.5/10 – When you need a break from The Weeknd’s “Echoes of Silence,” Asher is ready.
Always celebrate the solstices.
Today, this marvelous Thursday, is the winter solstice. The solstices have been celebrated for millennia, and for good reason. It may not be the dead of winter yet, but tomorrow the sun hangs around for a little bit longer. And, by golly, that should be something to drink to! There’s something earthy and magical about solstices. And I’ll be the first one to admit, I love shit that’s earthy and magical.
Enough of that. I was cruising around reddit today, and I came across this holiday reunion photo of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air cast.
I was a little too young to watch it when it first aired, but I used to watch Fresh Prince re-runs a lllll the time on Nick at Nite. Loved it. One thing lead to another, and I ended up getting a greatest hits collection of of Dj Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince on eBay a bunch of years back. And if you’ll remember, Will Smith was Fresh Prince the rapper before he was the Fresh Prince of Bel Air. His music with DJ Jazzy Jeff has a super old school feel to it, but it can be really refreshing or, at the very least, put a happy smirk on my face. “Summertime” (1991) was one of the greatest hits, and it still feels awesome to play in the dead heat of summer (and the winter solstice, perhaps…):
Other awesome ones (ya gotta see the music videos too):
Finally, in the spirit of the new Men in Black movie about to come out, this video is hilarious. Will Smith in some German TV interview, busting out the MIB rap from the top of his head like 10 years after the original movie was made. Skip to 0:40 if you’re in a hurry:
Rumors have been buzzing around lately. There were whispers claiming that we would get our hands on the final piece of The Weeknd‘s trilogy, Echoes of Silence, sometime this week. Earlier tonight, Abel Tesfaye confirmed this himself when he tweeted, “please stay tuned.” When he finally posted a link to his site, the servers quickly crashed. Thankfully, he tweeted out the Hulkshare link a few minutes later. I’ll post an update with some tracks when I run through the tape a couple times. Until then…
UPDATE: Holy fuck. I’ve only listened to the first track so far, but The Weeknd may have just cemented himself as the best Canadian crooner right now (sorry Drizzy, Bieber) with this cover of “Dirty Diana.” I’d say it’s pretty damn hard to sonically fill the King of Pop’s shoes, but this ode to the late great Michael Jackson is spot on.
UPDATE 2: After my first run through of the tape, here’s a couple standouts from EOS.
Well baby I’ve been alone for almost all my life, /
what makes you think that you could ever do me right? /
You’re the same old song
I’m at a loss for words. Mostly because my words have been sucked up by my laughter. Is it healthy that within 24 hours I’ve watched this at least 15 times? I just had to share it.
Some specific time frames for laughter: 37 seconds, 1:08, 1:20, 1:48, 2:15, and the very last second.
Thank god. Literally just last week I hit up these guys askin’ when we were gonna get new music and their response was “it’s comin! it’s comin!” Well, it has come. New catchy tune from RKSS called I Want It All. I’m hoping this means a mixtape in the future!
“With Christmas coming up we had to jump on a holiday classic for you to throw on at your holiday rager. Eggnog and strobe lights encouraged.”
Timeflies with another edition!
What I’m about to say might be a little embarrassing, but please, don’t judge. Back when Common’s Universal Mind Control came out back in 2008, I would sit in my room, listening to it while playing Pokemon Fire Red on my computer using a gameboy advance emulator. I was 15-16 years of age around then. You’re probably wondering: what in the hell is this kid doing playing Pokemon and what does it have to do with Common’s The Dreamer/The Believer? To be honest, it has nothing to do with it. I just like Pokemon. Who doesn’t want a Pikachu?
To sum up The Dreamer/The Believer in one sentence, it’s an album filled with classic Common with a hint of him experimenting with different sounds.
Universal Mind Control was considered a bust. Like a Kwame Brown (NBA player, for those who are unaware) type bust. Drafted really high with potential to be awesome, and turns out to be a role player for sub par teams. That was what UMC was. It was a sub par album that I wanted to be good, but it was just okay. Nothing special. He pushed his limits, and he learned from his mistakes.
When I say The Dreamer/The Believer is filled with classic Common with a hint of experimentation, I truly mean it. The hip-hop/soul that Common is so good at crafting is strongly felt as he teams up with long time friend No I.D. to bring us this project. At the same time, he pushes his limits with tracks like “Sweet” & “Ghetto Dreams.” On the ironically named “Sweet,” Common is a mad motherfucker and takes shots at Drake (can’t help but laugh at the lines). “Singing all around me man, la la la. You ain’t mothafucking Frank Sinatra. Uh, lil bitch.” On “Ghetto Dreams,” he teams up with Nas to give us a track for the streets.
One of the most important tracks, however, is the opening song, “The Dreamer,” featuring Maya Angelou. Common said in an interview that his view on an opener is that it’s important because it sets the stage for the rest of the album. As a result, Common put in that extra effort on this opener. Check it out for yourself.
Old Common is back. Fans rejoice. Hip hip hooray!
Album Rating: 8/10. And that’s being a hard critic. Could easily grow.
To end this on a good note so you don’t think i’m some loser who plays Pokemon, come get drunk with me on New Year’s, and we will celebrate the new year!
I think it was last year. I don’t even know because clearly I’ve repressed the memory. I humiliated myself. I don’t want to talk about what I did, but it was just a disaster. I felt like it was the end of the world. Instead of dealing with the problem at hand, I ignored it and buried it in the depths of my memory, while I worked on other things, trying to keep my mind off of the situation. It’s kind of what I do. I started a music blog, and one of the mixes I made on it was called nostalgia, ULTRA, named after Frank Ocean’s awesome mixtape. Anyway, I looked back on my iTunes and dug up some of the songs from that and stuck them on this mix. THE END OF THE WORLD is a rehashing of an embarrassing moment in my life. It contains both old and new songs and is super personal and dear to me. Be sure to download it and play it one year from tomorrow. Honestly, that was just a coincidence.
- Passion Pit – Tonight, Tonight (Smashing Pumpkins Cover)
- Don Trip – Cheers (jj’s Save Our Souls Remix)
- Dan Mangan – The Indie Queens Are Waiting
- Oliver Tank – Beautiful (Snoop Dogg Cover) (ft. Fawn Myers)
- Common – The Believer (ft. John Legend)
- Shy Girls – Gonna Get My Name Back
- Jai Paul – BTSTU (Edit)
- recess – love in the streets of bklyn.
- Michael Cera’s Interlude
- Ed Sheeran – You Need Me
- The Killers – Mr. Brightside (Cry Wolf Remix)
- Moby – The Day (Yeasayer Remix)
- Foster the People – Miss You
- Electric Guest – Troubleman
- Grouplove – Tongue Tied
- Skizzy Mars – Shangri-La
- Fibes, Oh Fibes! – Cerahtonia
- 2AM Club – Tell Her Hi
- Macklemore and Ryan Lewis – The End
- Youth Lagoon – Goodbye Again (John Denver Cover)
- The Tallest Man On Earth – The Drying of the Lawns
- Wintersleep – Weighty Ghost
You whispered, “Don’t you love music? It’s such a gift, and I’ll give it to ya. But you gotta use it.”
Every now and then, we receive requests for guests posts on Sunset. I’m always open to letting others give it a swing, though I will say that there’s a screening process before it gets accepted. Basically I ask for a drug test, do a background check, pull a credit report, and call your grandmother. But on days when I’m not feeling like I have a stick up my ass, I let just about anybody send me a guest post.
This time, though, it’s a guest post from somebody who turns out to be a family friend, but when she got in touch with me, she hadn’t yet made the connection that I was the Lydia who lives down the street from her. She told me she had been following Sunset for years. Small world, huh? Anyway, here’s a post from The Wilder Things on 5 Forgotten Songs From 2005-2007.
It was the end of high school and beginning of college, a time when I was desperately trying to prove that I was cool and plugged into the music scene. A time when I was ready at a moment’s notice to provide unknown and mind-blowing songs to any potential crush who might be worthy of a mixed CD. Yes, friends, it was 2005-2007, an era I like to refer to as my Musical Awakening. I’ve picked 5 of the best songs from that time to bring back into the limelight for you Sunset readers. Enjoy.
Also, be sure to check out my site, www.thewilderthings.com, for daily posts about music, photography, and style.
1. MP3: “Purple Kush” – Living Legends, 2006
With its synth-driven melody and its steady beat, this song was perfect for driving around the suburbs of Boston looking for something to do. My friends and I would turn the bass up all the way in my Jeep and rap along with the song; it usually ended up being the best and most eventful part of the night.
2. MP3: “Forever For Her (Is Over For Me)” – The White Stripes, 2005
The White Stripes were the first “alternative” band I really loved. I remember when Get Behind Me Satan came out—I bought it on iTunes and listened to it on repeat for days. “Forever For Her” has a great rhythm; I love the build-ups of sound followed by sparse riffs. It makes me feel like Jack White is taking me along for a ride.
3. MP3: “Apricot Jam” – Filligar, 2006
This song reminds me of my first college years. My whole school was obsessed with this song because a student at the time grew up with the band in Chicago. Filligar came to play at a formal, and I believe I got up on stage with them and ended up free-styling about college as they played me a beat. But I digress—this song is a great jam with great lyrics that I dare you not to dance to.
4. MP3: “Why (What’s Goin’ On?)” – The Roots, 2005
I spent my summers in Maine growing up, and some of my best friends and I managed to rig up a stereo system on an electricity-less island off the coast using a car battery. We’d play this as loud as the thing would go underneath the black, star-studded sky.
5. MP3: “Traffic Jam” – Stephen Marley
I first heard this song on my way to go surfing for the first time. My friend ended up getting hit with a surfboard and suffered a concussion, we got caught in a downpour, and I haven’t been tried the sport since. But I did get this song out of it—a great beat-box infused track from the son of the reggae master.