Last night, Meek Mill finally clapped back at Drake with the diss track “Wanna Know”. No other music came out this past week that was as anticipated as Drake’s two tracks against Meek or Meek’s inevitable retaliation, but there were plenty of songs that presumably took longer to put together. Sure, Drake made it look easy with “Back to Back Freestyle”, but whether it’s the poetic touch of Craig Finn or Angel Haze or the intricate teamwork of Disclosure and Sam Smith, this week’s list has tracks that suggest creating great music is hardly an instant, automatic process.
10. Kylesa – “Lost and Confused”
Psychedelia is often resigned to the hazy corners of the music world, the nostalgic ’60s vibes where the worst things get is a little woozy. When Savannah, Georgia sludge metal trio Kylesa go psychedelic, though, it’s a decidedly bad trip. “Lost and Confused” lurches back and forth between tempos. Straight-ahead rhythmic chugging gives way to slow, eerie strolls, and then everything gets sewn together with brain-itching guitar riffage. Kylesa will release their upcoming album, Exhausting Fire, October 2nd on Season of Mist. –Adam Kivel
09. Big Awesome – “Wookie Blaylock”
For a while, we had to debate whether we were having an emo revival. Then we had to debate whether to use the phrase emo revival. Instead of fighting, can we all just agree that bands like Big Awesome are putting out rad tracks like “Wookie Blaylock” that share similarities with bands that embodied the best of emo decades ago? You’ll have Victor Villarreal flashbacks on some of the guitar wrinkles on this one, and the South Carolina trio play with a raw energy that gets you swept up in every shouted lyric. “There’s no punker punk band than Propagandhi,” a kid says in the party white noise closing the track, and songs like this bring back the youthful insistence and certainty that come with assessments like that. Big Awesome’s upcoming album, Party On, is due August 7th via Jetsam-Flotsam. –Adam Kivel