This week was a no brainer. New music was released on Monday and our Sesac homie Rico Love had the pick of the bunch. His album “Turn The Lights On” is the best RnB album of the year and it will be difficult for anyone to change that for the rest of 2015.
Rico, for those that don’t know, is a huge songwriter/producer. He’s written hits for superstars like Beyonce, Usher, Kelly Rowland and Trey Songz. This album, while a slight departure from the songs he’s written for said artists, is on par with his body of work as a writer. The music is current but has a classic vibe to it which sets it up to last the test of time. Vocal melodies are on point, you’ll be singing along after a listen or two, without them being predictable. His ability to shuffle between rapping and singing keeps things interesting but this album is all about the songs, they’re dope. That’s not to take away from his skills as an artist, if anything it sheds more light on them. When the songs feel real, the delivery has to be perfect and with “Turn The Lights On”, Rico delivers.
Go ahead and check it out and Rico if you’re reading this we salute you!
We’re a little sleepy after the Sesac awards last night but bring you New Music Tuesday, back by popular demand..
This week we’re giving our girl Ciara a shout out for her new album ‘Jackie’.
Ciara has been quiet for a while now but she’s back strong as ever with this record and is a testament to just staying on your grind and not following the crowd. She bided her time and the music world needed her again, the lane she occupies is completely empty right now with a lot of artists who do similar music either falling off the map or moving over to other genres to get traction on radio. The album also features production from Polow Da Don, a favorite of ours who has been flying under the radar recently.
Anyways go ahead and have a listen on the streaming service of your choice and check out the lead single “I Bet” above.
That time of the week again folks. Our pick is Flo Rida’s “My House”. He’s gone for a more hip hop/pop vibe as opposed to the faster dance stuff he’s been doing of late.
Flo Rida is someone we’ve been trying to get with for a while but for one reason or another the timing hasn’t been right. What we mean by that is there can be situations where as a producer/writer you present a song to the label and they say it would be a great fit for their artist only for it to not work with the rest of the songs on the project. They won’t pay for studio time to record the song unless they know they’re going to use it so you end up having to wait (unless you have a relationship with the artist already). Then when the next project roles around either your song is dated or still doesn’t fit where the artist is heading. A similar situation that is all too familiar to us is that the label loves a song that doesn’t fit the project but off the back of it want you involved. You go back and forth with them to meet their briefs but then when you finally nail it, it’s too late. Usually by the time you hear about a project they only need one or two more songs so it’s really easy to miss the cut off date.
Anyways, enough about us, go ahead and check the song out!
There were a ton of new releases today from high profile artists including Madonna, Sam Smith, Mumford & Sons, Luke Bryan, Jason Derulo, Ludacris, Snoop Dogg and Van Morrison.
We really like Mumford & Sons’ single “Believe”. It has a haunting feel and really catchy hook (there are bound to be a ton of dance remixes to this). About 2 minutes in a big beat comes out of nowhere that you can’t help but nod your head to.
Mumford & Sons are all about the music, which is a big reason they’re so popular. Unless you’re a big fan, you’d be hard pressed to pick them out of a line up but could identify their songs pretty easily. Rather embarrassingly we got talking to Ben from M&S at a party, he was a really nice and humble guy and just said he was in a band when we were asking what he did (of course with both he and Paolo being from England they MUST know eachother too..). We thought nothing of it and finished our chat before sitting down at our table. About 30 minutes later he was introduced to present Daniel Glass an award, we felt like absolute idiots for not knowing who he was but it says a lot when people love your music and don’t know who you are. That means they’re invested in your music and truly enjoy it without having any bias because they like who you are. That’s a good thing!
This Tuesday saw a few singles dropping by artists like Kanye West and Carly Rae Jepson. Kelly Clarkson also released a new album, but the standout for us is Rixton’s debut LP “Let The Road”. Rixton are a British band that got noticed online by doing cover songs.
Scooter Braun then signed them under his management team (Scooter doesn’t play around so it was only a matter of time before they blew up). What we like about Rixton is that they are really grinding and not just resting on their label to do the legwork for them. You have to be proactive as artists otherwise you best believe the label will shelf you and you’ll never release anything. Rixton have been touring, putting in work on social media and doing traditional media all over the world. We respect that.
We’ll leave you with a video of their single “Wait On Me”, our favorite off the album. Go check it out.
We’ll start with an apology today for not doing a ‘new music tuesday’. We know how much you enjoy those (!) but frankly there was nothing released worth mentioning which kinda leads us to today’s topic.
We were in the studio last night with Bryan Terrell Clark working on a huge song called “Heaven” (no hype, it really is that good). Bryan was singing his ass off and we were working some crazy vocal arrangements. As incredible as it’s all going to sound when we’re done with it, in the back of our minds we’re just waiting for the moment we have to strip it all back and simplify it for mass consumption. It’s pretty depressing when you create something you’re really excited about only to have to scale it back and make it sound like everything else that’s out.
It happened recently with a single we did for someone. Manny from 3AM Tokyo laid down some ridiculous drum fills that we had in the first mix but we ended up having to take most of it out because the song is for Top 40 radio and you just can’t have that much going on in those types of tracks, which sucks!
It’s a bit of a catch 22, you can’t blame the labels because they have data (sales figures, radio spins etc) that directs the music they choose to put out. On the flip side you can’t really blame listeners either because they can only consume what they are provided with in the marketplace. The vicious cycle just continues. It’s all comes down to taking risks. Someone has to take a risk with the music they put out and the audience needs to take a risk by opening their minds and ears to something a little different. We always take risks with the music we make because it’s otherwise boring and uninspiring. At the same time we want to get paid and for our music to be heard so if we are asked to scale back the arrangements of songs for mass consumption we do it.
The goal is to be in a position where as a producer or songwriter you call the shots. We did that with the 3AM Tokyo record which was why it was so fun to create. Hopefully when it comes time for distribution our risks will pay off.
Just keep this in the back of your mind next time you bemoan the music that’s being released these days. Support the artist you like that do take risks and things will change. Labels are led by financials, you can’t expect them to release a product that they don’t make money off. If we as consumers can show them the kind of music we want to hear, they will listen.
It feels like Tuesdays are coming around real quick these days and here we are with new music to check out!
This week our pick is Imagine Dragon’s latest offering ‘Smoke and Mirrors’. Confession: we haven’t listened to it yet BUT are big fans of the band so know it will be good 😉
Imagine Dragons have a great way of mixing genres together and coming up with their own sounds- big drums, lush instrumentation and hard rock are just some of the things we love about them. Shout out to producer Alex Da Kid for helping shape this sound of theirs.
Here’s a quick sampler of the album from the band’s YouTube channel
Enjoy and check us out on Instagram- Heatseekerz_Muzic
Ok, we may be a little biased in our choice today as Fancy Reagan are friends and collaborators of ours but this song is actually worthy of getting the HeatSeekerz Choice on New Music Tuesday Award (is there a more prestigious, terribly named award…?).
“Knock Me Out” is featured on recently released “Now That’s What I Call Music 53” (who knew they still made those?!). The song is Fancy Reagan’s debut single on Universal’s Republic Records and we love it. We got a chance to hear it at the studio last year and were instantly big fans, that hook is undeniable!
Lead singer Sean is an incredible vocalist, as you can tell. Rather amusingly, for a couple of demos we did for him we both had to sing an octave down from where he sings, dude can hit some ridiculously high notes! The band are all fantastic writers and musicians and this song showcases that big time.
We wish the guys the best of luck with this release and hope you get to hear what we’ve done with them soon. Go ahead and check it out and buy/listen at your preferred digital retailer/streaming service.