Bars is Acclaim’s weekly wrap up of all the music we want you to get in on. Whether it’s new albums, mixtapes, tracks, or videos, we’re here wading through the noise to bring you only the finest happenings in the world of music.
Featuring: Jay Rock, Kali Uchis, Vic Mensa, Carnage, and more
01. Jay Rock (ft Future, Kendrick Lamar, & James Blake) – ‘Kings Dead’
Jay Rock’s new single is that of a nightmare. It’s dark, ominous tone and the constant beat change ups make for an anxiety driven, trunk knocking banger with performances from Jay Rock, Kendrick Lamar, James Blake, and Future bordering on terrifying. Jay Rock showcases his signature aggression, Kendrick explodes in a ‘DNA’-esque fashion, and Future delves into obscurity with a high-pitched flow. ‘Kings Dead’ encapsulates the feeling of your own completely abandoned carnival. Scary as hell, but a whole lot of fun.
02. Kali Uchis (ft. Tyler The Creator & Bootsy Collins) – 'After the Storm'
‘After The Storm’ embodies the feeling of exactly that. Its lush, relaxed tone is reminiscent of the sun coming out after hours darkness. Combining the production of BadBadNotGood with the vocals of Bootsy Collins and Tyler The Creator this new single reeks of vintage jazz and soul influence. There’s even a Mac Demarco-esque jangle. Kali’s voice is beautiful as usual, the chemistry with Tyler is as strong, and Bootsy’s adlibs top the song off with quirky catchy style. Kali’s been ready to truly breakout for a while now and ‘After The Storm’ signifies her climb to stardom is upon us.
03. Carnage (ft. Madeintyo & Mac Miller) – 'Learn How To Watch'
With each release, Carnage is solidifying himself as a go-to producer in the hip-hop game. ‘Learn How To Watch’ is no exception to that statement. The instrumental is massive, as Carnage layers synths, 808s and anthemic percussion. However, the real standout here is vocalists, as Madeintyo lays a catchy, energetic hook, and Mac Miller spits as if he’s ready to take over 2018. It’s big, it’s mean, it’s everything you want from this pairing.
04. Rich Brian (ft. Kris Wu, Joji, Bauuer, & Trippie Redd) – '18'
After a slew of huge singles in 2017 Rich Brian (fka Rich Chigga) is coming into the new year strong. On his new cut ‘18’, Brian enlists Kris Wu, Joji, and Trippie Redd as well a production from Baauer, to create a driving club anthem that switches into the somber sounds of R&B halfway through. Brian & Wu start off the track with aggressive bars while Trippie and Joji control the latter half of the track as they harmonize over melancholic keys. The track is incredibly ambitious from Brian ahead of his debut project dropping next month.
05. Frankie Cosmos - ‘Jesse’
If you’ve ever longed to hear a song about killing metaphorical scorpions, Frankie Cosmos’ new single is exactly that. Serving as the lead single from her upcoming Sub Pop release Next Thing, ‘Jesse’ is a somewhat somber, lo-fi guitar tune about the demise of a relationship. It’s slightly somber, and playful, but it’s incredibly catchy.
06. American Pleasure Club – 'Let’s Move To The Desert'
American Pleasure Club’s new single ‘Lets Move to the Desert’ signifies a new era for the band. Formerly going by the name Teen Suicide, the group have dropped their adolescent, emo sound for dreary, lo-fi dream pop with strong results. The instrumental vibe of the track creates feelings of isolation and loneliness, as Sam Ray’s croons flourish over flurries of eerie synth pads and dystopian vocal samples. It might be a left turn for the band but it’s in the right direction. Their new album A Whole Fucking Lifetime Of This is slated to drop this year and we’re eager to hear what’s next from the group.
07. Bruno Mars (ft. Cardi B) – 'Finesse' (Remix)
Bruno Mars’ new remix of his single ‘Finesse’ featuring Cardi B is a pure party anthem. Cardi’s catchy, playful verse channels the same ’80s vibe of Bruno’s original track and results in a fun, vintage fuelled banger.
08. VIc Mensa – 'We Could Be Free'
Linking up with Zane Lowe on Beats 1 Vic Mensa premiered the video for his strong, socially conscious track ‘We Could Be Free’. The song and video, feature Vince at his most raw as he ponders fear, freedom, and humanity. It’s the introspection of Vic that despite not being a banger, or bar heavy, makes this song particularly unique, and showcases why Vic is one of the most diverse and talented rappers in the game.