London artist BLISS WILLIAMS‘ new single, ‘A Thousand Times Before’, sees him reflecting on growing up in a small town and not quite knowing whether to miss it or not. Propelled by drums from Ben Gordelier of the Paul Weller band, this is a wistful disco-infused number that’s perfect for those summer days ahead.
‘A Thousand Times Before’ follows Bliss’ previous releases ‘Tearaway’ and ‘Make Time For Mourning’, which were championed by John Kennedy on Radio X and Gary Crowley at BBC Radio London respectively.
‘A Thousand Times Before’ was released last Friday (10th June) on Paul Weller bassist Andy Crofts’ label, Colorama Records.
Leeds-based and of British-Ghanaian-Danish descent, rising rapper ATO (pronounced: atu) follows his recent Flohio remix of 2021 Side A’s introspective banger ‘no caroline’ with his latest offering ‘COLD’ via MCMXCV. Putting his identity as a northern rapper from Leeds front and centre, over an emotive yet ominous stevexcooper produced beat, ATO muses about the exclusive nature of the London scene and his everyday frustrations.
Dropping alongside the single today is an Untold Studios Production, Eve Mahoney directed video that compliments the fast pace energy of the song. Sporadic moments of luminar mish mash interspersed with performance shots of ATO mirror his stream of consciousness and according to ATO “gives weight to the feeling behind the bars”.
Speaking on the single, ATO says: “COLD is a stream of consciousness that addresses my everyday vexations. As an outsider from Leeds, I find the industry politics and exclusive nature of the London scene a bit weird. I wanted to express who I am against the backdrop of these frustrations.
I was working on some other music at the time but was feeling to get a few of these things off my chest, so I hit stevexcooper for something I could rap over… He sent a beat titled ‘reflections’ and the energy was perfect. I wrote the verses that night intended for a freestyle and then ended up adding the COLD hook later.”
Returning from a two-year hiatus as the anticipation for his long-awaited and highly anticipated third mixtape continues to intensify, UK rapper, songwriter and producer CHRIS BUDDEN is back with ‘Confessions’ – a glorious melodic rap track in his trademark ‘Trap Rockstar’ style, which sees the East London native in captivating introspective mode as he opens up about all the things that he feels he can only get off his chest through the music. The track was written by Budden and co-produced with Cee Figz, who has also worked with the likes of Popcaan, Wretch 32 and Fredo.
Whether it’s dealing with heartbreak and past relationships, or battling with addictive behaviour, or remembering his friend that he lost due to knife crime when he was only 14, or navigating the music industry, Chris Budden bares it all on his new single .
Speaking about ‘Confessions’, Chris Budden says, “The song ‘Confessions’ is me admitting to my wrongs, but still being too numb to them to change my bad habits. It’s like I’m going on a guilt trip, but still too proud to apologise. For the ‘Confessions’ video, it was set in a mansion, and if you notice, there’s not that many close angle shots as I like to have a mysterious slant to what I do. With this video, I want the viewer to feel my pain, but at the same time, go on a party trip with me”.
Since making his debut on UK rap icon Yungen’s 2016 single ‘Every Night Late Night’, Chris Budden has been on an upward trajectory with his unique ‘Trap Rockstar’ style that mixes his UK rap foundation with sensibilities from Atlanta’s rich hip-hop landscape that has inspired him over the years. With two mixtapes Wudnt Be and 13:33, over 40 songs, and co-signs from the likes of Tim Westwood, Wretch 32 and Wiz Khalifa under his belt, Chris Budden has been hard at work with producer Cee Figz on his upcoming comeback project, led by new single ‘Confessions’.
Check out the official video for the single below…
Hip hop artist, songwriter and producer CLASSIFIED (aka Luke Boyd) shares a look into his life growing up in a small neighbourhood in Enfield, Nova Scotia with his latest acoustic version and video for ‘Day Doesn’t Die (Retrospected)’, the second release from the anticipated RETROSPECTED, his forthcoming hip-hop acoustic album due out later this spring.
With appearances from Classified’s parents, his grandfather’s best friend and mention of his friends and neighbours, ‘Day Doesn’t Die (Retrospected)’ offers viewers an intimate and emotional look at the subdivision where Classified grew up, while at the same time sharing the message that even though time has passed and things have changed, what remains (for life) are the memories and impact the community has had on his life.
About the song, Classified shares, “To me, the DNA for Day Doesn’t Die is about learning how to forgive people. A lesson I’ve learned is that holding grudges for so long isn’t healthy and we do need to let go to grow as individuals. While writing this song I wanted to dig deeply into my emotional side, and I think the chorus really helps get across the hope that I want this song to be for people. I’m not saying that we forget past wrongs, but I think the activity of reflecting and letting go is a much healthier state of being.”
Canadian rapper PYANO‘s first release of the year, ‘Way I See It’ is driven by a vibrant and energetic groove, taking a peek into his journey of finding his sound as an artist.
“I’m always somewhere between the motivational, hardcore rap that I grew up on versus the more melodic stuff that I listen to today,” says Pyano. “On this track, specifically, I find a good balance between the two which as a result enables me to celebrate the milestones of success in my life in spite of this whole pandemic thing. Despite the challenges and obstacles over the last couple years, I’m exactly where I planned to be, and further, which is why this track is a good representation of all the lessons I learned through all that.”
Born in Amman, Jordan but currently living in Ottawa, Canada, Pyano has mastered the art of bringing charged vibes on records, ranging from lyrically conscious to catchy melodic anthems. His music transcends borders between hip hop subgenres using witty yet motivational lyrics and a bouncy cadence to give his smooth signature style over an infectious piano laced beat.
Pyano released three singles in 2021, ‘Closed Off’, ‘Pineapple Juice’ and ‘From the Beginning’, his biggest single so far, and continues to make his introduction to the rap game known with his latest single, ‘Way I See It’ while teasing his first EP which will be out later this year.
Check out the official video for Pyano’s ‘Way I See It’…