Keeping up with new music releases can be a difficult task. Your Weekend Playlist offers a short introduction to a wide range of the hottest new tracks and emerging artists.

This week’s playlist includes a new song by Inuk throat singer Tanya Tagaq, a collaboration between Tiwa Savage and Brandy, and tracks from Cleo Sol, Wiki, and Mach-Hommy. Also, Star’s Manuela Vega shares her opinion on the new Mitski.

Click here to see the Spotify playlist.

Tanya Tagaq: Languages

The elimination of indigenous languages, especially through residential schools, was a key component of Canada’s colonial attempt to eliminate traditional worldviews and ways of life. Although devastating – dozens of languages ​​on Tortuga Island are currently in jeopardy – Canada’s project ultimately failed. Today, thanks to revitalization efforts and a growing population, indigenous languages ​​are emerging.

In her stunning new single “Tongues,” Inuk artist and writer Tanya Tagaq evokes the horror of colonial violence and the erasure of language, while offering a cry of resistance.

“They took our tongues / They tried to take our tongues,” Tagaq sings over a haunting and uneven track produced by experimental hip hop artist and poet Saul Williams. “Inuuvunga (I am an Inuk) / Tukisivunga (I understand),” he declares triumphantly, in Inuktitut, before turning to the traditional Inuit throat chant, known as katajjaq.

“Tongues” is a powerful and subversive artistic statement that seems to call for indigenous resurgence, not just reconciliation, at a time when the whole concept of reconciliation has, in many ways, become a hollow buzzword. Tagaq’s next album will be released on March 11, 2022.

Mitski: Working for the knife

It’s been three years since Mitski released “Be The Cowboy,” a smart and eclectic album about intimacy and loneliness that propelled the singer from indie status to being known as one of the best (if not the best) in the world. alternative rock. For two years after his tour, Mitski went on hiatus, even disappearing from social media. With this week’s release of the single, “Working for the Knife,” and the accompanying music video, fans are delighted at the prospect of tearfully singing heartwarming new songs.

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While the song is not about the heartbreak or confusion of relationships that Mitski is best known for articulating, it adds to her collection of existential hymns, this time with the understanding that making a career out of a passion can. not be all that is resolved. to be.

“It’s about going from being a child with a dream to an adult with a job and feeling that at some point you fell behind.” Mythical explained. “It is facing a world that does not seem to recognize its humanity and does not see any way out.”

Over sinister chords and a tense rhythm, she sings “I start the day high and it ends so low / Because I’m working for the knife.”

Cleo Sol: Sun

Cleopatra Nikolic, the English singer who performs under the nickname Cleo Sol, is the lead vocalist of the group known as Sault, a mysterious collective that offers an innovative mix of R&B, soul, jazz, funk – a little bit of everything, actually. . Often times, it is Cleo’s airy and spacious voices that provide coherence to the project.

His most recent solo album, “Mother,” is an exceptionally fluid collection of soul jazz music and reflections on fatherhood. Surrounded by tight but scaled-down instrumentation on tracks like “Sunshine,” it’s easy to soak up Cleo’s radiant charisma.

Tiwa Savage (with Brandy): Somebody’s Son

Throughout 2021, the budding romance between Nigerian and North American music has grown, and the sounds and artists of Lagos’s explosive scene increasingly intersect with mainstream hip hop and popular music. In recent weeks, the rapper Polo G got on a track with Burna Boy, Drake hooked up with Tems for a cut on “Certified Lover Boy” and Justin Bieber appeared for a late remix from Wizkid’s 2020 smash hit “Essence.”

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The results of these crossovers can seem mixed, especially those that make a clear attempt to please mainstream tastes (sorry Bieber). More interesting are the tracks where the established stars simply follow the lead of their Nigerian counterparts and embrace the unique rhythms and melodies of the region.

A good example is “Somebody’s Son,” a collaboration between veteran artist Tiwa Savage (aka First Lady of Nigeria) and R&B legend Brandy. Tiwa Savage leads the way, singing in English and Yoruba over a lush, cinematic production, before Brandy takes the stage, their distinct voices tangled in a common longing.

Wiki: the business

“Turn our blocks into amusement parks,” growls the Harlem rapper Wiki in this seething anthem against gentrification. “After all the school you did, don’t you know what community is?”

Titled “Half God,” the excellent new album by the Puerto Rican / Irish MC paints a stark portrait of life in New York City, characterized by a sense of realism and subtle political urgency. Produced by fellow New York rapper Navy Blue, who channels the spirit of J Dilla with a wide range of gorgeous samples and drum loops, the project also includes Earl Sweatshirt and MIGUEL, two fellow artists at the forefront of alternative / experimental hip hop.

Extra hint:

Mach-Hommy, JujJu Gotti: King Georgie

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