Welcome to the weekend! More importantly, welcome to MTV Iggy’s Artist of the Week poll!
This is a round-up of five of the best global bands we found this week. You have until Monday night at 11:59 p.m. USA Eastern Standard Time to vote for your favorite new artist on MTV Iggy, using the bottom poll!
On Tuesday morning, the artist on top will be featured on the MTV Iggy homepage marquee along with a tell-all interview.
May the best band walk away with the victory!
French electro-soul producer DJ Cam has put in time. The trip hop pioneer born Laurent Daumail, has five albums, seventeen years, and an evolved sonic sensibility in between his latest LP, Seven, and his 1994 debut Underground Vibes. These days, DJ Cam’s music has advanced past those clearly delineated trip hop/jazz/hip hop underpinnings to a more amorphous soundscape that encompasses all three, as well elements of trance and soul. Seven (as in, his septimal album) is dramatic tableau of dreamy soundscapes and whooshing atmospherics. And whereas before the boom bap was the heartbeat of his compositions, nowadays DJ Cam’s piano riffs keep the blood flowing in his songs.
Benjamin Daures formerly of Creteens and Jack of Hearts has moved on to a much stranger project called Yussuf Jerusalem. And by “strange” I mean “unforgettable and bewitching.” The young denizen of the Paris suburbs is taking garage rock in the epic direction prefigured by Thomas Function and the more recent Black Lips albums and blending in a lot of psychedelic pop and folk and black metal. That’s right. He’s gathering a cult of admirers who praise his music, not for the odd choice of influences, but for the way they make total sense when filtered through the prism of his unconventional mind.
We started getting into South London grime emcee Lioness when we were compiling our list of the 12 Best New Female Emcees. Listen to her springy verbal ride over a burbling dubstep track on “Don’t Tell Me” and you’ll understand. Lioness grew up with grime and made her debut with the trio M.Y.T. (Mastermind Youth Team) before graduating to join Mastermind Trooperz alongside her brother and cousins. Since then, it seems like she’s been spitting on every grime radio show worth listening to and had a verse in every video worth watching. Her mixtapes display scads of depth, versatility, and sheer cussedness, in particular her recent Roarness tape.
The totally solo producer, Culttastic, is a true millenial pastiche: A Kiev-born, self-made MPC wielder with extremely global music tastes, spanning from Canada to London to Japan. Her handful of singles, covers, and remixes tell the story of a very eclectic pop connoisseur. She made blogosphere waves with her creepy, sexy, Crystal Castles-style cover of Cali Swag District’s “Teach Me How To Dougie,” which dropped dark, hipster-friendly ethereal overtones on the top 40 beats. Conversely, her single, “I’m The Night” has a pure candy pop flavor. Dance glitch, vocoder, and arpeggiated synth. Then on the opposite pole, there’s her stellar witch house mix of the single — a track with Purity Ring all over it.
Thieves Like Us
“Drugs In My Body,” a dreamy dance soundtrack to urban debauchery, broke out of a Maison Kitsuné compilation in 2007 and launched the boys of Thieves Like Us into something like underground fame. From Sydney to Seoul, we lost and forlorn youth of global late capitalism had our anthem for hooking up on penthouse balconies — born out of the heads of an American and two Swedes traumatized by the Berlin techno scene and looking for some disco healing. Just four years after their debut, they’re not friends with Kitsune anymore, which maybe isn’t a bad thing for a band trying to break out of hipper-than-thou purgatory.