Recently a couple of unique artists released new records. Santigold dropped 99¢ on February 26th, while Thao and The Get Down Stay Down uncorked Man Alive March 4th. They have their obvious differences stylistically, yet seem unified in pushing their own sound through the airwaves. Even though these women slice up genres in the creation of their art, they both have a keen comprehension on the landscape of contemporary music. Which is probably why their work stands apart, already ahead of the wave, like it or not.
Santigold is eye-catching and seems to posses an ability to craft danceable tracks that still offer a purposeful message. Highlights on this album include the single, "Can't Get Enough of Myself" and the eerily upbeat island jam, "Chasing Shadows." She fuses heavy doses of hip hop and NYC edginess into her accessible worldly sound. Santigold has an ear on America and hopefully America listens. 99¢ goes deeper than the title suggests, case in point, "Big Boss Big Time Business."
Santigold | "Can't Get Enough of Myself"
Thao on the other hand has constructed an album that is undeniably personal, especially in her lyrics. I'm not sure if psyche-folk is the proper moniker, but it somehow fits. The Get Down sound has grown a bit on this record—the swell of an organ, bass lines full of reverb, strings and hand clapping, all bound cohesively to her word-smithing. Past and the present coexist on, "Astonished Man," as the arrangements illicit eastern melodies tangled against the snap of trap-like drumming. Other tracks I'm grooving on are the rocker, "Nobody Dies" and the lyrically piercing, "Millionaire."
Thao & The Get Down Stay Down | "Nobody Dies"
You can catch both of these amazing women live in San Francisco. Santigold plays The Masonic on April 4th and Thao hits The Fillmore April 30th. Be there or be square.