With countless new songs dropping every week, it can be hard to pick just ten to bring you. This week, for instance, was especially difficult, as there were some jams that were shoo-ins for the final cut but also some tracks whose inclusion required extra deliberation. However, the following batch should hold up well, with summer-happy cuts from Passion Pit and Superchunk as well as sturdy rap bangers from the likes of Maybach Music and Detroit newcomer FowL. As per always, enjoy, and we’ll see ya back here next week.
The Alchemist feat. Danny Brown & ScHoolboy Q – “Flight Confirmation”
California producer/MC The Alchemist is set to release Russian Roulette July 17th on Decon, and the album is chock full of big names from the indie rap world. Two of the biggest make appearances on the title track, as Detroit’s Danny Brown and L.A.’s ScHoolboy Q drop in for some verses, including Q quoting ODB and Brown . The real star of the show, though, may be Alchemist’s swanky horn and string sample. -Adam Kivel
Dusted – “Pale Light”
As Dusted, the team of Brian Borcherdt (of Holy Fuck) and producer Leon Taheny move in a decidedly less electronic world from the former’s other project, and more similar to the latter’s time working on Final Fantasy records. The second cut from their debut full-length, Total Dust (July 10th, via Polyvinyl/Hand Drawn Dracula), “Pale Light” is a lonely bit of rough-hewn languish, Borcherdt’s voice distorted and moaning over a choppy guitar. Swinging, diving violins add to the sense of pain, the whole thing fuzzy and mirroring lyrics about an attempt to “break the surface.” -Adam Kivel
FowL – “Spark Up”
On the strength of perfectly mixed drums and cyclical guitar loops that evoke Freddie Gibbs’ “For My Niggas”, “Spark Up” is the best candidate thus far to put Detroit rapper FowL on a broader map. One look at the title and it should be obvious what the song is basically about, but while there are weed references here, FowL also adds some doses of straight-up Midwestern confidence, courtesy of his coarse yet supple technical skills: “Every breath I take, I take it like the last one/ So I’ma son yo’ ass in case I never have one.” Produced by Clockwork Muzik (Chip Tha Ripper, Gibbs, Ray Cash), it’s off FowL’s forthcoming Tall Tale LP. -Mike Madden