The Code’s Music Ninja Mix [TMN EXCLUSIVE]

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The Code
The Code's Music Ninja Mix

Although The Code‘s residency here at The Music Ninja might be over, the mysterious duo were still kind enough to drop off another little surprise for all their fans. While their own music is generally steeped in a darker, edgier soundscape, here they’ve cooked together a sultry mix of upbeat R&B and pop jams for your enjoyment. As you can see from the tracklist below, the mix features a diverse selection of artists, meaning there’s something for just about everyone here. It also makes for a perfect listen any time of the day, from the moment you wake up to the moment you decide to rest your head back down on your pillow–and everything in between. Why not hit play and kick your Saturday off the right way? We promise your toes will be tapping before you even realize what’s happening.

TRACKLIST

Daniel Johns – Aerial Love (Memeb Remix)

Set Mo – Chasing Forever ft. ALPHAMAMA (Jafunk Remix)

AlunaGeorge – I’m In Control

Jessica Sutta – Forever

Kygo – Stay (ft. Maty Noyes)

Years & Years – Shine

Zayn Malik – Like I Would

Disclosure – Omen (Dillon Francis Remix)

Justin Bieber – Been You

Majid Jordan – Something About You

Rudimental – Rumour Mill ft. Anne-Marie & Will Heard

Tinie Tempah – Girls Like ft. Zara Larsson

Pia Mia – Touch

Jeremih – Oui

Bryson Tiller – Self Righteous

Drake – How About Now

Phazz – About Her

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Saturday Selection Vol. 3

Saturday Selection

This has already been a tough year for music lovers, and April is just wrapping up. We’ve lost some major icons who were trailblazers in not only their music, but also social and cultural shifts. We’ll miss them constantly, but there’s a bright side. We’ll always have their legacies through their discography, and, even more luckily, we get new and amazing music to enjoy every day. We can at least smile about that. Let’s explore.


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Monogem – Take It Slow

Monogem holds an inherent magnetism throughout her material. “Take It Slow” certainly is one of those pop songs that will make you want to fall in love under the right circumstances, and, even with the atomospheric production swirling back and forth, her crystal clear voice cuts through with a surprising and engaging strength. Get caught up in mediocre pop music can be easy if you aren’t careful, but there’s no trace of that when it comes to Monogem. Even with only a handful of tracks currently out, she has a little something for everyone.


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Matthew Riley – YEARS

Finding the first track an artist posts on SoundCloud is always exciting, and we’re very glad to have Matthew Riley join up. “YEARS” is awash with reverb and gentle, faint synths that float together with his short verses in simple and serene harmony. He’s crafted a fine balance between ambient, pop, and electronic music that manages to provide feelings of both relaxation and reflection. Sometimes that is exactly what you need on a slow morning, and we definitely hope to hear more Matthew Riley in the near future.


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The Kount – Only Human

There’s no contest here. The Kount is a student of the groove. He might even be a teacher of it after hearing this one. If you aren’t somehow feverishly bobbing your head after 20 seconds into “Only Human,” we’re not exactly sure what to tell you. It’s instrumentals like these that stand on their own. No need for bars, verses, or choruses. There’s enough substance and space that allow the instrumentation to speak for itself in the absence of lyrics. It’s a pretty great thing to find when you need a break from constant narration. His style is constantly shifting, so check out the rest of his material when you can.


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Robokid – 23

Nothing predictable comes to mind when discussing Robokid, and that’s great. Being a co-founder of Moving Castle will have that effect on you. On this new tune, which you may recognize from the Coachella LIVE video, there is an entirely different side of Robokid put on display. Shedding his more upbeat style, he opts for a little more sullen and slow approach on “23.” There’s an air of hope matched with escapism that isn’t weighed down with too many elements. It’s wonderful for a myriad of settings, and might just be one of his best creations yet. That’s a bold statement, but “23” is a force all its own.


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Bo Rocha – Hold My Gaze

We’d like to apologize for Bo Rocha managing to fly under our radar for this long. The London native has an undeniable command of her sound as evident from “Hold My Gaze,” and, as she flips from her mighty chorus to double-time verses, she knows her power. Between songwriting and production, Bo Rocha covers it all, and her hypnotic voice complements the ebbs and flows of this sweltering song perfectly. “Hold My Gaze” is such a strong follow up to her Even Green EP from a year ago, and we absolutely hope another project is the works soon that will build upon this radiant single.


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[Soul/Hip-Hop] Hiatus Kaiyote – Laputa (Taylor McFerrin Remix) Feat. Anderson .Paak

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Hiatus Kaiyote
Laputa (Taylor McFerrin Remix feat. Anderson .Paak)

The current era of music has seen a shift in which risk-taking is rewarded. Those who have pushed genres into the forefront, or combined technical aspects across previously uncrossed planes have been showered with praises of ‘breakthrough’ and ‘genius’.

Comparable to the way in which Tame Impala championed psychedelia and had universal success, Melburnian band Hiatus Kaiyote is still waiting to reap the same scale of appreciation for operating in their own niche of the musical landscape.

“Under appreciated” is usually not a phrase used to describe multiple Grammy-nominated bands, but HK is by no means as recognized as their talent would dictate. Leading the way in the future soul and nu-jazz realms, they have been immeasurably successful in outpacing their contemporaries since their formation and debut album release in 2012.

Following up with Choose Your Weapon in May of last year, HK has since slowly gained recognition for their structural aspects and skillful composition. Further demonstrating the versatility of their sound, the quartet released their newest EP, Recalibrations, Vol. 1, a collection of remixes which came out this past Friday.

With the collaborative efforts of solo artist Taylor McFerrin and up and coming producer / vocalist Anderson .Paak, listeners were graced with a remix to “Laputa,” which debuted on their 2015 album Choose Your Weapon. The original, a song praising the Hayao Miyazaki film by the same name, is a minimalistic track that relies heavily on the talented vocals of lead singer Nai Palm. The remix, put together by frequent collaborator Taylor McFerrin (see their previous work together here), is a perfect extension of what existed previously.

Injected with a dreamy, beatboxing style seen in his own solo works, McFerrin’s “Laputa” takes a turn towards a redeeming love song following a psychedelic-synth bridge at the 2:00 mark. Anderson .Paak, capitalizing on the success of his January release, Malibu, provides the finishing touches by smoothly and soulfully rapping to the conclusion of the song.

With Recalibrations, Vol. 1 available now on iTunes, Hiatus Kaiyote will be touring the world and making believers of their brand one city at a time; they will be playing Lollapalooza, Osheaga, and Outside Lands to name a few. Fans new and old can keep up with the latest releases on their Soundcloud page.

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Saturday Selection Vol. 2

Saturday Selection

As we continue to dig deeper throughout the internet for music, we can get blindsided (in a good way) by a sound or voice we’ve never heard before. Maybe it’s a new style of production or a groove you can’t quite figure out the finer details of. It could even be a remix that completely reshapes your initial feelings of a song. Whatever it may entail, that slight bit of confusion or excitement you feel is the exact moment you know when you’re on to something. It’s a wonderful revelation, and that’s what this playlist is all about. Time to explore!


Diveliner

Diveliner – Catwalk

It’s been a little over a year since we covered Diveliner last, and the wait was certainly worth it. Diveliner thrives in almost total anonymity, and his newest effort reflect his ability to cut through saturated sounds and build up his own monumental creation. The jarring and filtered vocals scatter across the shadowy production with a robotic flourish. It would almost be disconcerting if it wasn’t so well-made. If you’re looking for something conventional in Diveliner, you won’t find it. That’s exactly what makes his mystery his own. Luckily, he has an EP on the way, and “Catwalk” is an encouraging second addition to his upcoming project.


Kidswaste

Chet Porter – tbh ily (Kidswaste Remix)

Even as Moving Castle continues to explode in size and popularity, they’ve found their sound and stuck with it for a few years now. Recently, Kidswaste has hopped on board, and his first release with the label is a charming and melodic remix of Chet Porter. It reworks all of the best elements of Chet’s gorgeous original into a slightly more upbeat and orchestral tune, while simultaneously allowing the power and precision of Kidswaste’s talent shine through. It’s really just a nice listen and has an undeniable replay value. If you dig it, be sure to treat yourself to the free download also!


Limbic Void

Limbic Void – Little Boy

Some memories are nice. Other are not. Limbic Void constructs “Little Boy” around the latter. It’s really quite an interesting juxtaposition. Even with boisterous production, the lyrics paint a different picture entirely. He sings about a time he wasn’t proud of. That isn’t easy to do. He encapsulates a past pain into something beautiful, and it’s honestly made us do some reflecting of our own. Be on the lookout for his EP dropping on May 26th.


SiR

SiR – Tricky (Prod. Rascal)

Everything about this tune by SiR is phenomenal. From the slick production of Rascal, to the smooth delivery of every pining line, “Tricky” is a triumph. If you’re in need of an excellent late night song, stop right here and hit play. It’s the kind of track that provides an instant calm. Everything slows down and seems much less complicated. You begin to get caught up in the moment. It’s exceptional. End your day right with “Tricky” and absorb every subtle nuance of this sleek SiR invention.


Blancos

The Blancos – Wild Child

The Blancos are a wild bunch, as clearly stated by the name of their most recent release. Having premiered with Pigeons & Planes earlier this week, this duo continues the wonderful blurring of lines between genres that more and more artists have taken to applying. With a little bit of rock, alternative, and even a tinge of blues, The Blancos swagger can’t and won’t be stopped. “Wild Child” explores the feelings of an outcast with a grit that is oddly welcoming, and most people catch themselves relating to this sort of thought process at some point in their life. Why not enjoy a great song to soundtrack it with while you’re at it?


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Saturday Selection Vol. 1

Saturday Selection

We are VERY excited to be introducing a brand new segment here at The Music Ninja! Saturday Selection was created for multiple purposes. From hitting the high points of the releases from the week prior, to exploring an artist or label more in depth, we’re looking to fill your weekend with even more great music than before. There’s no genre hindrances. There’s no boundaries. It all starts with five songs. You won’t want to miss this. Let’s dive in!


NVDES – The Other Side

NVDES showed up out of nowhere about ten months ago, and it’s a great thing that they did. Incredibly upbeat indie can somewhat seem like a saturated sound, but this LA-based band keeps it just weird enough to find and own their unique voice. It’s about that time to enjoy the nice weather again, and you’ll want to have the newest by NVDES in your playlist rotation.


Midoca – Tell Me Your Lies (Feat. Dark Waves)

It’s such a relief to have Midoca back. He’s crafted his own sort of electronic pop that doesn’t shy away from brooding topics or heavy and dramatic production. There’s an understanding within his writing and music that resonates on an intangible level when dealing with the fact that everything isn’t meant to be super happy all of the time. And that’s a good thing. He capitalizes on emotion, and Dark Waves is a perfect complement for “Tell Me Your Lies” when it comes to demonstrating gravity in electronic music.


PUSHER – Clear (ft. Mothica)

With an upcoming EP on the way, PUSHER decided to grace us the first single off of the project that features the heavenly voice of Mothica along with his infectious and bright production. His history of remixes speaks for itself, and his originals reflect several influences from some of the best new names in bass music. “Clear” is quite the first taste of his new project, as he trades in some of his larger sounds for a tightened down creation that shows he can bend his novel approach into whatever he pleases.


Atlas Bound – Softer Still

These two are so ridiculously smooth. Atlas Bound‘s second helping off their debut EP continues their winning streak of laidback electronic soul that just feels good every time you hit play. “Softer Still” relies on a sublime balance of live instruments and electronic production chops that is slowly but surely becoming more common as many artists began to expand their sound. And that is a GREAT thing. Keep yours ear open for their EP and enjoy this slick new tune for a nice break during your afternoon.


Moon Bounce – Wingman

The latest addition to the Activia Benz Singles Club comes to us courtesy of Moon Bounce, and it is an absolute trip. There’s something addicting about this tune as it bounces all over the place with a jovial and carefree attitude, thumping drums, and an absurdly catchy groove that punches right through your speakers. It may be short, but it’s certainly sweet. The London-based Activia Benz never fails to show that they enjoy every song they release, and Moon Bounce certainly added more fun to their particularly boisterous mesh of club and pop music.


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[Funk/Soul] Charles Bradley – Good to Be Back Home

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Charles Bradley
Good to Be Back Home

Maybe you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but in the case of Charles Bradley, an old dog can certainly teach us a whole lot of stuff. Like how to release an album at the age of 67 that will bring a gaggle of millennials to their knees, and re-instill the power of funk and soul into a generation that needs it. I’m talking, of course, about Bradley’s latest Changes, and the song that epitomizes the power of Charles Bradley and funk in general, “Good to Be Back Home.”

Upon first listen we couldn’t believe our ears. From the first shout we had to convince ourselves that James Brown, the artist that Bradley largely credits his motivation to, hadn’t miraculously returned. But then you keep listening and get the essence of Bradley himself very quickly– an artist with power, passion and a voice whose tone alone speaks wisdom. This song is an epic return track that’s placed perfectly in the beginning of the album and serves as a doorway to the soul/funk journey ahead; and even better, it doesn’t just take us back down memory lane. It brings the lens of soul into a piece of modern music, and it’s so great that we’re able to experience the vantage point from a legend himself.

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[Indie/Soul] Kai Straw – Hurricane

Hurricane
Kai Straw
Hurricane

Kai Straw continues his string of pre-album single releases with “Hurricane,” the third single from his forthcoming Toothpick LP. We first encountered an indie tune, then moved to Kai’s more hip-hop centered sound with “The Business,” and now we get something different from either of those first two songs. “Hurricane” has Kai stretching his vocal abilities to deliver a soulful jam that may just be the song you need to throw on repeat and relax to.

Kai is one of the most dynamic musicians you will come across. This is clearly evident for anyone who’s been following his Toothpick releases, or have been a fan since his beginnings. “Hurricane” isn’t really like any song Kai has done before. Here we get a down-to-Earth record that as powerful as it is subtle. The minimalist tone is one of the song’s strengths, as is its organic sound that could easily be played in a live set up with a band. Kai has been unveiling something special one week at a time, and soon the full project will be out. We have one more single to share next week before the full release on April 12th. For now, stream “Hurricane” and if you haven’t checked the other tracks out, head over to the hyperlinked pages above.

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