Ari Lennox, age / sex / location
A week after sharing her surprise five-track EP Away Message, R&B singer-songwriter Ari Lennox returns with the main event. age / sex / location is Lennox's second studio album following 2019's hit debut Shea Butter Baby. In 2019, she was nominated for Best Rap Album at the Grammys for her contributions to Revenge of the Dreamers III, a compilation featuring fellow artists signed to Dreamville.
Sudan Archives, Natural Brown Prom Queen
The songs Brittney Parks has shared from Natural Brown Prom Queen, her sophomore project as Sudan Archives, have been some of the most personal she's ever released, but aren't without a strong sense of play and confidence in each sonic world she chooses to inhabit. Before today's release, we heard "Home Maker," "Selfish Soul," "NBQP (Topless)," and "OMG BRITT." She broke down the album in July for an episode of The FADER Interview.
Badge Époque Ensemble, Clouds of Joy
Badge Époque Ensemble underwent a significant vibe shift for their latest full-length project, inspired by the impending fatherhood of bandleader Maximilian ‘Twig’ Turnbull. Members of the 13-piece group include collaborators and bandmates of acts like U.S. Girls, The Weather Station, and Andy Shauf.
Jockstrap, I Love You Jennifer B
A perpetually shapeshifting experimental pop act from London, Jockstrap continue to surprise and beguile on their long-awaited debut album I Love You Jennifer B. The project was announced with the beautiful folktronica single "Glasgow" and the swirling avant-soul of "Concrete Over Water."
Oliver Sim, Hideous Bastard
Hideous Bastard is the debut solo album from Oliver Sim, one-third of the pioneering electro-pop group The xx. "Early on in the making of my record," Sim said in a statement, I realised that I was writing a lot about fear and shame... I haven’t written the record to dwell, but rather to free myself of some of the shame and fear that I’ve felt for a long time." The album was preceded by the single "Romance With A Memory," "Fruit," "Hideous," "GMT," and "Run The Credits."
Sampa the Great, As Above, So Below
In 2019, Zambian rapper and artist Sampa The Great shared her debut album The Return to much acclaim. The new project was revealed in June with "Never Forget," a song that paid tribute to Zamrock, a musical movement from the '70s combining psychedelic rock and Zambian folk music.
If you enjoy the work of an independent pop artist that pulls from different genres, you can thank Santigold and her self-titled 2008 album for helping pave the way, especially for women of color. Spirituals is her fourth full-length project: "It’s an album about the process of creating," she says, "a testament to the spiritual quality of creation and its deliverance.”
Benny The Butcher & Black Soprano Family, Long Live DJ Shay
Griselda's Benny The Butcher brings together his other clique Black Soprano Family for a tribute to DJ Shay, the producer and DJ who passed away in 2020. Features include Westside Gunn, Conway The Machine, Boldy James, Stove God Cooks, Armani Caesar, DJ Premier, The Alchemist, and more.
Miya Folick, 2007
The road to 2007, Miya Folick's follow-up to her 2018 debut Premonitions, wasn't an easy one for the indie-pop singer-songwriter. The breakdown of a relationship, a death in the family, and internal personal tumult were some of the obstacles Folick had to overcome to release her new six-song project.
Coby Sey, Conduit
The debut album from Coby Sey comes after the London producer made a name for himself collaborating with artists like Tirzah, Mica Levi, Klein, and many more. “Conduit is a statement of intent," Sey writes in a press release, "reaffirming my dedication to transcend the tangible through music – it’s my way to continue and contribute to the musical lineage laid by those before me, locally and worldwide." Its frosty trip-hop single "Permeated Secrets" was playlisted on Songs You Need in June.
Greentea Peng, Greenzone 108
Based in London, Greentea Peng makes neo-soul that swathes you like a comforting fog. Her new mixtape Greenzone 108 arrives after last year's debut album Man Made, a project recorded at 432 Hz in order to "vibrate healing energy." Greenzone 108's most recent single "Look To Him" was a Song You Need just last week.
George Riley, Running In Waves
London-based George Riley follows up her 2021 debut Interest Rates, A Tape with an album made with regular collaborator, and PLZ Make It Ruins label boss, Vegyn. Riley's immaculate R&B vocals are paired with a sonic backdrop that floats between electronic glitches and more straight ahead pop. Riley writes about establishing boundaries and becoming her own woman across Running In Waves, arguably landing on a manifesto for life on "Time" when she sings: "good guys, nice food, happy weed and Camper shoes." A reminder that life can be simple, if you let it.