1) Dillon Francis – Say Less ft G-Eazy
While Dillon Francis is without a doubt the funniest celeb to follow on snapchat, he’s also pretty damn good at producing music too. His latest offering sees him team up with Canadian rapper G-Eazy for his rambunctious new single ‘Say Less’, which serves as the follow up to 2016’s ‘Anywhere’ ft Will Heard. A collaboration a long time in the making, G-Eazy goes in bar after bar with his slick flows and sharp lyrics, even giving Gerald the Piñata a shout out. Mix that with Dillon’s bouncy, bass-riddled trap production and you have one epic track. ‘Say Less’ is available via Dillon’s own IDGAFOS imprint (I don’t give a fuck or shit) – a term which originated from his 2011 song of the same name and was later expanded into his successful merch collection. Having recently completed Coachella Festival, upcoming dates for Francis include a string of Las Vegas performances including Surrender, Intrigue and Encore Beach Club. G-Eazy fans can catch him at Open’er Festival in Poland (June 28- July 1) and Splash! Festival in Germany (July 6-9).
2) Blaenavon – Lonely Side
Indie trio Blaenavon (Ben Gregory, Frank Wright and Harris McMillan) shared their new track ‘Lonely Side‘. The single is taken from their debut album That’s Your Lot and premiered as MistaJam’s Hottest Record on Radio 1. ‘Lonely Side’ is quite a personal track and serves up a glistening slice of indie pop with its smooth guitar riffs and flourishing synths. Currently on a sold out headline tour, upcoming dates for the Hampshire trio include O2 London (June 16) and Reading & Leeds Festival (Aug 25-27)
3) Shy FX – We Just Don’t Care ft Shingai Shoniwa
UK Producer Shy FX (Andre Williams) dropped his latest single ‘We Just Don’t Care’ featuring the incredible vocals of Shingai Shoniwa (Noisettes). The Jungle and bass producer showcases his diverse and eclectic range, effortlessly blending tribal, percussive beats and bass heavy vibes. The innovative producer has always championed new sounds, having previously joined forces with Chase & Status, David Rodigan and MC Rage in 2014 to form soundsystem Rebel Sound, and ultimately winning the Red Bull Culture Clash. Having recently signed to Insanity Records, upcoming dates for Shy FX include Reading & Leeds Festival (Aug 25-27)
4) The xx – A Violent Noise (Four Tet Remix)
Four Tet (Kieran Hebden) dropped a new remix of ‘A Violent Noise’, taken from The xx’s third studio album ‘I See You’. While the original offered up a much sparser track, Four Tet has once again worked his production skills serving up a more house-driven dynamic that’s double the length. The blissful track is taken to new euphoric heights with its swelling synths and rolling percussion. Four Tet is a long time collaborator with The xx, having previously taken on remix duties for ‘VCR’, ‘Angels’ and ‘Seesaw’. Four Tet recently performed at Coachella Festival. No word yet on UK dates, but stay tuned.
5) I Win – Lethal Bizzle ft Skepta
Lethal Bizzle unveiled his new single ‘I Win’ featuring fellow Grime MC, Skepta. Produced by Skepta himself, the Grime duo serve up a hard-hitting banger filled with intense horns and a fast pace energy. With plenty of bravado from their respective verses, the Grime heavyweights trade bars and deliver plenty of energy throughout. ‘I Win’ is taken from Bizzle’s forthcoming project titled ‘You’ll Never Make a Million From Grime’. The EP is set to feature collaborations with Donaeo, Mostack, and Melissa Steel. Upcoming performances for Bizzle include Reading & Leeds (Aug 25-27) and O2 Academy Oxford (Oct 19), while Skepta is set to perform at London’s Wireless Festival (July 7-9)
6) Gorillaz – Ascension ft Vince Staples (Nic Fanciulli Remix)
Klaxon Alert!!! Grammy-nominated producer Nic Fanciulli has taken on remix duties for Gorillaz ‘Ascension’, taking the track to epic new heights. Having received critical acclaim for his collection of memorable remixes over the years, including last year’s reworking of Jamie xx’s ‘See Saw, ‘Ascension’ sees Fanciulli deliver an acidic slice of rhythmic tech-house, bursting with energy. Upcoming dates for Fanciulli include a Thursday night residency in Hï Ibiza, alongside Luciano, Steve Lawler, Joris Voorn & Kölsch! (June 8-Sept 28).
7) Gorillaz – Saturnz Barz ft Popcaan (Banx and Ranx Remix)
Ok, while we’re on the topic of Gorillaz, we might as well continue with another remix. I featured the original song in last month’s selections, taken from their fifth studio album Humanz, but couldn’t resist adding this incredible remix from Montreal-based production duo Banx & Ranx. Known for their reggae inspired music, the duo deliver a mellow dancehall takeover, extending upon the original and infusing tropical vibes throughout.
8) Leftfield – Open Up (Skream Remix)
Leftfield, originally made up of progressive house duo Neil Barnes and Paul Delaney, were highly influential in the 90’s with their evolution of dance music. Since going solo, Barnes has taken his Leftfield DJ set around the world and is reissuing his first album Leftism after 22 years, along with a host of reworks from the likes of Zomby,Voiski, Hodge & Peverelist and Skream. Sampling the original vocals of John Lydon on ‘Open Up’, electronic music producer, Skream, of pioneering dubstep duo Skream and Benga, delivers a haunting reworking of the track filled with surging synth lines, propelling the track to exciting new heights. While Leftfield is set to head out on tour with Leftism from May 11-May 26, Skream is set to perform at Parklife (June 10-11) and Glastonbury (June 21-25). The reissue of ‘Leftism is set for release May 5, while Skream’s remix is available now via Hard Hands.
9) Lana Del Ray – Lust For Life (Ft The Weeknd)
Lana Del Rey and The Weeknd have joined forces for ‘Lust For Life’, the title track from Lana’s forthcoming fifth studio album. This is the third time the pair have collaborated together, with Lana featuring on two tracks from his 2016’s Starboy album, and ‘Prisoners from The Weeknd’s 2015 album Beauty Behind the Madness. ‘Lust for Life’ premiered with MistaJam on Radio 1 and serves up a dreamy pop ballad, with Lana’s wistful vocals and Abel Tesfaye’s shimmering falsetto working in perfect harmony amidst a backdrop of swirling synths, keys and atmospheric production. No word yet on an album release date, but stay tuned for more details. Update: Lust For Life is set for release July 21 via Polydor. Upcoming dates for Lana include Lollapalooza in Paris (July 22) while The Weeknd is set to perform at London’s Wireless Festival (July 7-9)
10) MØ – Nights With You
I last featured MØ in my January selections for her collaboration with Snakehips on ‘Don’t Leave’. Now, the Danish popstar is back with her new single ‘Nights With You’, taken from her forthcoming untitled sophomore album and follow up to 2014’s No Mythologies. Co-written by pop heavyweights Ryan Tedder and Benny Blanco, ‘Nights With You’ perfectly captures MØ’s emotive vocals and rousing vocal hook. Upcoming dates for MØ include Pinkpop Festival in Netherlands (June 3-5)
11) Toddla T – Beast ft Andrea Martin & Stefflon Don
Producer/DJ and 1Xtra host Toddla T, unveiled his new single ‘Beast’, featuring R&B singer/songwriter Andrea Martin and rising MC Stefflon Don. Taken from his long-awaited LP titled Foreign Light , ‘Beast’ premiered as MistaJam’s Hottest Record. The single serves up the perfect balance between Andrea’s lush vocals and Stefflon Don’s commanding, killer verse, all working alongside Toddla’s slick production and infectious beats. The Sheffield-born producer and champion of bass, bounce and carnival vibes, is set to release Foreign Light July 28 via his new label ‘Steeze’. In the meantime, catch Toddla T every Thursday on his 1Xtra show and also performing at Parklife Festival (June 10-11) and Fabric (Aug 11)
12) Mason – Rhino
Dutch DJ and producer Iason Chronis, AKA Mason, unveiled his appropriately named beast of a track, ‘Rhino’. With its stomping brass, groovy house production and fierce vocals from Dyanna Fearon, Rhino packs a punch and delivers on all fronts. Rhino sees Mason partner up with Defected Records for his latest release and serves as the follow up to ‘Toucan’ and 2016’s Nite Rite series. ‘Rhino’ is available now and will no doubt be tearing up dancefloors this Summer.
13) Alex Metric – Freeek
London-based DJ Alex Metric, shared his latest track ‘Freeek’ ft Confessionals. The single is taken from HOWSLA’s forthcoming house-music compilation album, curated by Chris Lake and OWSLA boss Skrillex. The compilation showcases house music producers pushing boundaries and creating exciting, new music. Alex Metric, an already established name on the OWSLA label, delivers a stirring electro banger, with whirring synths and an infectious groove throughout. In the lead up to the album release on May 5th, OWSLA will also be holding weekly HOWSLA-themed parties at Le Jardin in Hollywood. In the meantime Freeek is available now.
14) London Grammar – Oh Woman Oh Man
Fresh from the success of recent singles ‘Big Picture’ and ‘Rooting For You’, London Grammar unveiled their latest single ‘Oh Woman Oh Man’ produced by Paul Epworth. Taken from their forthcoming sophomore album, Truth Is A Beautiful Thing, the single perfectly captures Hannah Reid’s lush vocals, Dan Rothman’s hazy guitars and Dot Major’s ethereal synth and percussive work. London Grammar have enlisted esteemed British film director, Tony Kaye, to capture the visual soundscape of Oh Woman Oh Man. Trust Is A Beautiful Thing is set for release June 9th via Metal & Dust/Ministry of Sound. Be sure to catch the trio on the Festival circuit this Summer (Parklife, Glastonbury, TRNSMT, as well as headline performances at London’s Eventim Apollo (Oct 21) O2 Academy Brixton (Oct 30).
15) Francis Novotny – Between The Lines
Francis Novotny, shared his new single ‘Between The Lines’. The Gothenburg (via Paris) singer/producer and multi-instrumentalist, serves up a brass-heavy, electro banger, showcasing a wide range of styles from R&B to electro soul and even glitch-hop. Mix that with soulful vocals, pulsing beats and swelling synths and it’s safe to say, Novotny is pushing down musical boundaries and creating something quite unique all together. With similarities being drawn to SOHN and Hudson Mohawke, this is definitely one artist to keep an eye on. ‘Between The Lines’ EP is available now via Black Butter Records and features previous singles ‘Friendzone’ and Hit & Run’.
16) Novo Amor – Carry You
So while the majority of my monthly selections this month have been quite ravy, I thought it best to end on a more mellow number and what a beauty this one is. Welsh singer, multi-instrumentalist and producer Ali Lacey, AKA Novo Amor, unveiled his stunning new single ‘Carry You’. The single is taken from Novo Amor’s forthcoming Bathing Beach EP, set for release May 26th via Believe Music and serves up an enchanting and achingly beautiful melody, perfectly complimented by layers of delicate instrumentation and Novo Amor’s emotive, falsetto vocals. In a recent Facebook post, Novo Amor commented that ‘Carry You’ is “an expression of nostalgia and a wistful nod to a certain period of time”. Upcoming dates for Novo Amor include Bitterzoet in Amsterdam (Sept 19)
Check out the full playlist below and here’s to another exciting month of music ahead!