Before I head off to get a water based disease/sunstroke at Glastonbury here’s a few dozen of the finest musical delights freshly plundered over the last week (ish…more like two).
Theres a Whyd playlist below or Soundcloud here if you prefer. While you’re at it download Whyd’s brand new iPhone app and have the musical selections of some of the coolest music aficionados around (and me) with you at all times (not to mention creating your own playlists).


What piece of music do you wake up to? Something energetic to get the blood pumping for the day ahead? Personally I’m caressed from my slumber by The Clubcasa Chamber Orchestra’s cover of Kendrick Lamar’s “Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe”, the gorgeousness of which doesn’t so much wake me as carry me down the hallway on a bed of pillows and place me gently in a bath it’s run just for me. Actually their Drake cover would probably work to – Drake always needed extra Sax, Flute, Clarinet, and Flugalhorn.

Anyway back to Strawberry Jam. The identity of the duo isn’t officially known but the fact the tune popped up on Saxophonist and Club Casa producer Sly 5thAve’s Soundcloud page was enough to get me listening. It’s also said to feature someone from Prince’s band – which would make sense given Sly5thAve’s place in that group. Other clues online point to Denita from Brooklyn R&B duo Denita and Sene (check out their lovely “Divided”)

Whoever’s behind it, “Lot More Livin” is sublime with a sprinkling of Prince like production coupled to the ghost of Timmy Thomas’s tick tocking “Why Can’t We Live Together”. Denita’s vocals are a delight, recalling Jill Scott and then there’s those swelling brass sounds from 5thAve. Have I sold it yet? It’s free download to so what have you got to lose.


This blogs love for Benin City goes back to the Naughties and “Bus” from their new “Midnight Malarky” EP certainly won’t break that spell. New vocalist Shanaz Dorsett lends the song a slightly popper sound than their all conquering Fires In The Park LP but having a singalong chorus about the N38 night bus that has taken me back home to Walthamstow on many an occasion is certainly no bad thing.
Having caught Benin City live last week at the end of a three week residency at The Social, everything that makes the group stand out from the melee of competing sounds is still present. Upfront Josh made light of a hobbled voice that restricted him to a mute hug when bumping into him pre-gig and as a lyricist he has few rivals with his peculiarly English (Malarky, n38 buses etc) gift for words. Alongside him Tom Leaper’s Sax is an equal partner and a core of the entire genre hopping Benin City sound. The band are starting work on LP number 2 very soon with Shanaz set to feature too.


The musical dream team of former Ruthless Rap Assassin & Black Grape’er Kermit along with dance music legend Greg Wilson only reached my ears thanks to a fortuitous wander around Walthamstow’s annual E17 Art Trail. Crammed as the Stow is with remarkable talent we visited illustrator Dominic Mandrell’s musical Aladdin’s cave of a home to find a who’s who of musical legends. Work for The Stone Roses, Rodigan and a variety of projects with Greg Wilson of which Blind Arcade was one. Thanks go to Dominic for introducing me to this incredible work!
Here’s Greg talking about the mixtape which is available on his Soundcloud page as a free download:
It’s nothing less than remarkable that, given the depths he’d plunged to as a heroin addict, so nearly losing his life in the process, Kermit has not only made an inspired return, but managed to summon such a positive statement from his once troubled soul, spreading the love and sharing the vibes in a way that is so relevant to now – it feels like the stars are aligned and we’re dropping this mixtape at exactly the right moment“.
Download the mixtape for free here.

Its also worth heading to Wilson’s blog to read an introduction to his new label Super Weird Substance that reads more like a musical history of the last 25 years. He seems to be mining a particularly rich musical seem right now with a Dee-Lite-esque track with Merseyside singers Katherine & Carmel Reynolds also out on his Schooled in Classics imprint.

Also on Super Weird Substance Howard marks read Kermit’s poem “Lies and other fools” and of course check out the reason for this blog post in the first place, the life affirming “Damn it feels good to be alive” below.


Fuck you for fucking me when I was Seventeen

Never has such a blunt chorus been so sweetly sung, Maja Milner – front woman of Swedish garage rock band Makthaverskan – follows up with the threat “Your time will come, my friend”. Their sound unashamedly jangles back to the 80’s, it could be Peter Hook playing that bass and a Go-Go’s era Belinda Carlisle on vocals


Despite a few pop corkers (Fireworks, Roar, Teenage Dream etc) Katy Perry hasn’t featured on this blog often enough. Unfortunatly Katy doesn’t feature much on this disco stormer of a remix by DFA’s Holy Ghost. Glorious fist pumping pogo jumping 80’s disco pop that demands a rewind even though it clocks in at almost eight minutes.


Lyrics, lyrics, lyrics…Just when you think Open Mike Eagle can’t get any better he outdoes himself with yet more understated genius. Mike and his poverty stricken superhero friends featured last month with “Qualifiers” but also from the Dark Comedy album comes this tongue in cheek declaration of a golden age for hip hop.
You can use Facebook to learn gang signs
And creepers can stalk all their exes at the same time
And if your rap career ain’t hitting
You can rap over videos of kittens, it’s the golden age!

And nobody ever has to pay for anything
Which is pretty cool cause everybody’s unemployed!


“Can’t Do Without You” is one hell of a calling card for “Our Love” Caribou’s forthcoming sixth studio album. It takes a while to build but could just be this summers windows wound down stereo pumping anthem.


Taken from Awon and Dephlow’s pay what you like Deprecation project “Lights Off” is a tale of the struggle of life balancing being an MC and not being able to afford to take “Nights off”. There’s an absolutely killer “ooo woo” female vocal sample here..anyone know where its from?  


This weeks post is becoming something of a Hellfyre club tribute with Busdriver, Open Mike Eagle and now this oldie but goldie from Milo.  Scroobius Pip played this wonderfully melancholic gem on his Sony Award winning Beatdown Radio show last week.


We started this roundup on the N38 bus with Benin City and end it on the A406 with Real Lies. Kev Kharas told Quitus he’s more influenced by that road than any band in the last 5 years:
You go through the rich areas like Golder’s Green, there’s Hoo Hing, that massive Chinese food depot, the closed down Irish Times place, Wembley Stadium over here, A-Road pubs, the pub where the bikers congregate every Saturday and Sunday. There’s a weird plastic surgery/dentist place on the Hanger Lane Gyratory

It’s a decade since The Streets “A Grand Don’t Come For Free” but North Circular with it’s London references, house beat and half spoken half rapped lyrics could easily pass for Skinner in his pomp.

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