Photography by Eric Gyamfi
Everyone is still coming out of the holiday haze, recalibrating, making memes about war dub season and slowly forecasting what might be in store for the year ahead (in the music industry this means endless “ones to watch” lists – and yes, it is more than likely we’ll be adding to that noise).
There’s already so much to be excited about, music-wise – Celeste and her gorgeous vocals have been crowned BBC Sound of 2020, which we’re so happy to hear; the fact that Penn Badgely is a D’Angelo fan and has covered ‘Brown Sugar’ (???); also, crucially, both Moses Boyd and Moses Sumney have announced they have releases on the horizon, which brings me, at least, a whole lot of joy. With all that in mind, here’s your five on it.
Moses Boyd ft. Poppy Ajudha – ‘Shades of You’
Ahead of his debut album, Dark Matter (out on Valentine’s Day!), Catford jazz don Moses Boyd has released this gorgeously immersive track topped with Poppy Ajudha’s honeyed vocals. With squelchy bass and propulsive, skittering production, this is an exciting sign of the scope and ambition Moses seems set to bring on the full-length record.
Moses Sumney – ‘Me in 20 Years’
I am not ashamed to admit that Moses Sumney has made me cry every time I’ve seen him live, such is the sheer power and beauty of his work. Ahead of this next project, a double-album, græ, the first part of which also drops on Valentine’s Day (if you can’t tell, my water sign feelings are really gonna get wrecked that day), this track is slow-burning opulence that ebbs and flows like the sensation of falling in love.
Felukah – ‘Ms. Smooth’
A new track from this emerging Egyptian-American rapper-singer, it’s got all the warmth, smoothness and sweetness of a Noname bop and we’re here for it. With a video that seems to capture the joy of her NYC life with a soft and endearing sincerity, this has us hyped to see what’s coming next.
Yazmin Lacey – ‘Not Today Mate’
With her silky, smoky vocals and the slinky instrumentals, we’re delighted that Yazmin Lacey is back – and especially that she’s back and not having any nonsense. She described this new track on her Twitter, saying, “I wrote ‘Not Today Mate’ cause sometimes you just have to know your own power. The power of you. Not everyday victim sometimes just not having it fam!” – suffice it to say, we stan.
Megan Thee Stallion x Normani – ‘Diamonds’
Holy shit!! This is part of a soundtrack from the film Birds Of Prey, some kind of Suicide Squad spin-off with Harley Quinn. In truth, I didn’t know this film was coming, and while I’ll be honest that I do not especially care, this track makes me care! Hot Girl Meg and pop’s rising princess join forces to make a thrilling, catchy banger that sounds like something from Nelly Furtado x Timbaland collab era aka sign me up.
You can follow the Five on it playlist below: