A.M. SNiPER – “Run”
Following on from what was an exceptional 2018 that saw the rapper build over 1.5 million fans and over quarter of a million hours of streaming with his music, A.M. SNiPER returns with his first drop of 2019, brilliantly entitled “Run“.
With Ayo Beatz on production, the intoxicatingly melodic, instrumental loop is doused in layers of varying bass, which A.M. SNiPER uses to skilfully flirt with a mixture of flows as he delivers his raw, confident and playful lyricism. The heavy bassline and rhythmic drops create an ominous yet bouncy feel as he spits bold lyrics about success, focus and intentions.
The rapper has been steadily building a cult Hip-Hop following and it has been paying off majorly. Last years release “Supreme” garnered him some international acclaim with it currently sitting on 5 million streams and over 1.4 million YouTube hits. And it definitely helped that we went on tour with 6ix 9ine across Europe.
With a multi-track release scheduled for later this year and hints at a number of exciting features in the works, “Run” opens the doors on what is going to be another phenomenal year for A.M. SNiPER.
DIY HIFI + Donné – “Sunset”
A heat seeking act that needs to be on your radar is DIY HIFI. The brain child of Ian Bevis (of Bear Mountain), DIY HIFI is a record label and musical collective based out of Vancouver, Canada who are conjuring up special musical pieces and musical collaborations with a bevy of musical artists. No better example is their fresh new single “Sunset“.
The collective are acclaimed for their broad musical palette and genre-blending production style, often referencing dance music sub-genres and indie hooks. Much like this new cut, “Sunset” is a beautiful medley of different live instrumentation, leaning undeniably on the bhangra influence. Donné’s unmistakable vocals resonate in the hook and elevate the track to further heights.
Ian Bevis shared his sentiments, saying: “I wrote Sunset with my friend Donné. I always love the way her voice sounds. It has a certain magic about it. This was an important song for me. It emerged after the break up of my old band, and before my new one. I was in a space of calling on the muse to show me which way to go”
“The song is about calling in the new while letting go of the old. It’s about not necessarily knowing which way to go, but if you listen to your heart, you’ll be guided.”
Berna – “Litty”
One of most exciting talents to emerge from London as of late is Berna. With a host of hot releases to his name over the past year including big collaborations with the likes of Jevon, the man himself has released his latest single and his first ever video for “Litty“.
Produced by OBR Beats, the track was premiered by DJ Target of BBC 1Xtra. It comes littered with effortless punchlines and demonstrates Berna’s ability to hop from flow to flow, all while explaining his outlook on life. Not to mention Dijian Eccles on the visuals, who helps the video bring his braggadocio to life with a swift heist sequence, a decked out Tesla and some fireworks to top it all off.
If he’s not gaining accolades like being the second most viewed artist on cult freestyle platform [email protected] then the expert lyricist is modelling for Nike or hitting the 1xtra’s B-List when he actually drops music, like he did last December with “Jugg“, his collaboration with Deepee of Smoke Boyz. Keep tabs on this hot talent, he is definitely going places.
Jamie Lane + Naji – “Say It Again”
Australian artist Jamie Lane is starting the year with a bang! Not only can we expect his debut EP Minimal Haze very soon but we also have been given officially a first taste of what is to come with his brilliant brand new single “Say It Again” featuring vocal talent of American singer-songwriter NAJI.
A warm, dreamy atmosphere engulfs the track. It’s bubbly, ethereal in parts and is a sweet concoction of electro-R&B. Not to mention the low-lying groove that make it a perfect track for perfect weather. NAJI’s smooth vocal performance fuels the track while Lane’s intriguingly mixed voice adds contrast. But with all its pop, “Say It Again” is Jamie Lane’s powerful anthem of perseverance and overcoming.
“Although the track has easy going vibe it’s lyrically a fairly personal song. There are a few themes running through it but the main one is; trying to establish real confidence through drive & will, instead of through the validation from others, which always leads back to self-doubt & depression.”
“The main line being ‘too late to say it again’ refers to me refusing to continue telling myself I’m not good enough to make it, because I know now it’s not true, but an outdated pattern of thinking to push myself and to keep progressing.”
Rose Gray – “Blue”
Meet Rose Gray. An artist and a poet hailing from Walthamstow, she follows the release of her soulful debut “Good Life” with a powerful story of friendship and a loss of innocence growing up in London – succinctly titled “Blue“.
True to her form, “Blue” began life as a poem with no melody and over time developed into a fusion of orchestral strings, spacey ad libs and a driving hip hop beat. Rose’s retrospective story of harsh maturation is personal yet relatable. Her vocal performance tells a story as much as her poetic lyrics do.
Directed by Harris Dickinson, Rose’s new video brings her story to life. Filmed around her East London hometown as a home-style video, it’s inspired by her own childhood memories. We’re given a little insight into Rose’s life growing up portrayed by a younger Rose and friend.
Speaking on the track, Rose shared: “I feel like as we grow up, we get more and more broken, so I wanted to put out a song about that. I’m really proud of this song as it’s a true insight into my world… growing up and all the in-between stuff. I feel connected to everything I write but ‘Blue’ has an extra special place for me right now”
What’s next for Rose Gray? She recently announced details of her highly anticipated debut headline show at Mirth, Marvel and Maud in Walthamstow on March 28. Grab your tickets here now and keep your eyes peeled for her debut Blue, Lately EP coming this Spring.
Libby Knowlton – “Games”
Nothing gets me more than an amazing voice along with excellent songwriting, and that’s what we have here with New York City singer, songwriter and songwriter Libby Knowlton and her brand new single “Games“, which I absolutely adore! She describes her sound as alternative/indie but this song is purely acoustic and it will slot right in with your singer-songwriter music catalogue. In any case, it’s a winner!
Taken from her forthcoming sophomore EP, which is due later this year, the striking thing about “Games” is not just how rich Libby’s voice is on this track, but the songwriting immediately jumps out at you. From the opening line, “anyone can find you in a cliche cafe downtown and you’re reading a book you don’t understand“, you are already sucked in. The lyrics read like spoken word and if you know me, you know how much I love spoken word.
Speaking about her inspiration for “Games”, Libby says, “I wrote ‘Games’ about being confused as to why I was so in love with someone who was, for lack of better word, the worst. She was the most cliché human being on planet earth, constantly quoting literature she had just never read, and getting genuinely angry whenever someone wouldn’t ‘understand her’. Despite these poor qualities, I was still in love with her, which made me feel crazy, and I tried to capture that feeling in the song.
I wrote ‘Games’ in 10 minutes, as it was one fluid thought and I wanted to write it almost as an internal dialogue. It was a mix of every emotion I had felt throughout the relationship, but mostly the confusion of why I felt the way I did when there was honestly no reason to. ‘Games’ was a release of the constant questioning, and I finally just had an ‘AH HA’ moment where I said to myself, ‘you know what, she’s not worth it, I’m so done with her games’“.
Words by Ayo Adepoju and Jay Tijani.