Currents- Eisley

Eisley’s fourth album “Currents” was released today. I consider them one of my favorite bands since high school even though I haven’t kept up with their albums since the first one, “Room Noises.” Now that I have Spotify, I can easily be mesmerized again by their vocals and instruments as I rediscover the two albums before this one.

Friends Forever — Vitamin C

This is dedicated to all the the UMBC 2013 graduates. Do you guys remember when this used to be THE song when we were about to graduate Middle School?

I remember listening to this in Middle School and thought how scary and sad it was to grow up and graduate! I wonder what ever happened to Vitamin C…

Pharrell Williams – Happy

I loved the music Pharrell helped produce for the first movie and he is once again contributing his efforts for the sequel. Here is “Happy,” one of his three original songs on the soundtrack. Despicable Me 2 is coming to a theater near you on July 3, 2013! Let’s go watch it!

Now if this song doesn’t make you feel happyyyyyyyy

Rock The Bells 2013

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Rock The Bells! I’ve been able to attend this music festival twice in the past and they have both been a blast, even in the muggy, hot weather. The heavily anticipated lineup for this year’s annual hip hop festival has been revealed and there are some surprises, including hologram virtual performances by Eazy-E and Ol’ Dirty Bastard. Whaaaaat?!

The festival has been held consistently in California, the birthplace of the festival, and the NJ/NY area. From 2008-2010, the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD has hosted the event. However, the past two years has left DMV area out of the loop. Luckily, this year RFK Stadium in DC is hosting and I’m super excited to see some of my favorite hip hop artists, such as Big K.R.I.T., the Black Hippy crew, Bone Thugs (if they perform Tha Crossroads…no they have to…I will go ballistic!), and Danny Brown!

Are you going to RTB? Maybe I’ll see you there!

The Uncluded – Teleprompters

I am beautiful I am powerful I am strong and I am loveable

The Uncluded is the odd couple of alternative rapper Aesop Rock and singer-songwriter folkstress Kimya Dawson (of The Moldy Peaches). These two have collaborated a number of times before releasing their debut album, Hokey Fright, earlier this month, and I have been diggin’ the material they have released.

I’m streaming the album at work and it’s a refreshing listen. The juxtaposition of Aesop’s intricate, wordy verses and Kimya’s soft, sing-song delivery simply works. Wow…I’m just amazed at how good this album is.

On the tender-hearted track, Teleprompters (my instant favorite off the album), Kimya sings of the messages she sends to her audience from the Teleprompters “on the backs of [her] two eyelids”; however, she also needs to have those same messages reciprocated back to her:

I preach self-love I know it’s true
It’s easier to say than do
I sing these messages to you
But now I need to hear them too

During Aesop’s verses, he shares some personal stories from of his childhood. It’s rare for me to hear him rap about his more intimate moments: “Last on the kickball team draft pick-list // First to the King Kullen practicing his kickflips // I’d like to say it’s ‘cause I was a rebel //Truthfully it’s easier to say ‘oh hell’ instead of ‘hello.'” I also loved the line: “Learned heartbreak on a Zelda-1 sub screen.”

This is already one of my favorite albums I’ve listened to this year!