Find healing with ‘The Cure’
Drunken Tiger, Yoon Mi-rae, Bizzy
“The Cure” is the first album churned out by FeelGhood Music, a label founded by Drunken Tiger, including fellow hip-hop artists Yoon Mi-rae and Bizzy. Unlike the recent “dissing” mood in the current hip-hop scene, the trio have compiled an album filled with hope for a better future.
The album starts with “Beautiful Life,” a hip-hop and pop hybrid about realizing that life is beautiful despite any pain and hardship. The melody is catchy with smooth switches highlighting the differences in voice tone and sound among the trio.
Title track “The Cure” starts out with a simple acoustic guitar melody by YouTube sensation David Choi and Yoon Mi-rae’s sweet vocals. A djembe-based beat begins and Tiger JK’s reggae rapping comes into place. The song is about finding the light at the end of the tunnel and concludes with the infectious giggle of the rap couple’s son, Jordan.
Two songs previously released, “Sweet Dreams” and “BizzyTigerYoonmirae,” both feature a mix of electronic lines and dirty hip-hop beats.
“All in Together” is definitely a track for the dance floor featuring a heavy baseline and beat.
The last song of the nine-track album is the reggae version of “The Cure,” featuring the addition of organs, electric guitar and, a basic feature of any reggae song, the ska upstroke.
“Healing” is a theme thrown around a lot in Korea, but in the cutthroat world of hip-hop, maybe a little healing is due.
(firstname.lastname@example.org)The Weeknd flows nicely on ‘Kiss Land’
The Weeknd, who became a critical darling after releasing a trilogy of mix tapes in 2011 thanks to his eerie R&B sound, sticks to his guns on his official debut album, “Kiss Land.”
The 10-track set plays smoothly, and the singer’s falsetto weaves into the tracks nicely. “Wanderlust,” which samples Fox the Fox’s “Precious Little Diamond,” is the disc’s most adventurous song: The Michael Jackson-esque tune is energetic, beat-driven and could be a monster hit on the pop charts.
Most of “Kiss Land” isn’t as up-tempo, but the Canadian singer doesn’t disappoint as he stays true to his soulfully eclectic vibe and progressive R&B sound. The Weeknd’s mainly singing about relationships, and on the appealing “Belong to the World,” he sings, “But you taught me how to feel when nobody ever would.”
While “Kiss Land” is sonically enjoyable, some of the tracks sound too similar. Additional collaborators could probably help split up the sound. (AP)Rock sister trio Haim shines on debut
“Days Are Gone”
Siblings Este, Danielle and Alana Haim have been steadily gaining momentum with tour support slots for Mumford & Sons, Rihanna and Florence + the Machine. Their audience is mostly comprised of young girls who just want to rock out without giving up on their pop just yet.
“Days Are Gone,” the trio’s debut album, is slick and radio-friendly, thanks to producers Ariel Rechtshaid (Vampire Weekend, Usher) and James Ford (Florence + the Machine, Arctic Monkeys). The tracks are delivered with energy and confidence and catchy hooks are easy to come by. This album is instantly likable.
“Forever,” “Falling” and “Don’t Save Me” are upbeat jams laced with 1980s synth guitars, while “My Song 5” is gritty with its Muse-esque dark guitar licks and R&B vibe. “Let Me Go” is full of attitude, with the group showing off their perfect harmonies.
The album’s closing track, “Running If You Call My Name,” brings Haim’s anthemic pop-rock effort to a close with vulnerable lyrics and punchy vocals.
These L.A.-based sisters are newcomers, but they’ve made quite an impact with this stunning debut. (AP)