Launchpad: The perfect midweek alt R&B playlist
The Launchpad is a biweekly series showcasing hot new music hand selected by our staff. The tracks in these curated playlists come from both underground and mainstream artists that we love. If you’d like to see your music featured in the Launchpad, you can submit it for consideration here.
It’s been a big season for the alternative r&b scene with new releases coming in from the genre’s biggest names: Bon Iver, Solange Knowles, How to Dress Well, James Blake, SZA (reportedly) and even Frank Ocean‘s hotly anticipated sophomore LP Blonde. Much like these icons, the artists contained in the following playlist have a chilled out aesthetics with spare soundscapes and sexy, vocal hooks–perfect listening for your midweek commute or post work glass of wine.
Highlights: Heading up our roundup this week is Dimond Saints’ “IDGAF”. Despite its colloquial title, the track cuts to the heart of the genre’s influences with a trap inspired drumline and an intoxicatingly deep soundscape that envelopes a sultry, dark vocal turn from Yaarrohs.
Minnesota’s “Motley Crew” is a lateral take on Mind of a Genius freshmen THEY. with a killer electro synth lead. SRNO’s “No One Else” channels the genre’s ties to the dance floor with a groovy rolling drum while Kan Wakan’s “Molasses” taps into the genre’s experimental traits, using a moody trip hop soundscape to underscore a pleading vocal to compelling effect.
Rounding out the list is Tony Pops’ “Mine” with the kind of earnest lyrics that have come to define alternative r&b standouts and elegantly elegiac “Funeral” from Lolahiko.