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Samiyam: Nonchalant Days

"I don't try to let anything go to my head," says Sam Baker in an unassuming tone. Over the phone at least, the 23-year-old from Ann Arbor, MI sounds like a stoner kid who sits around all day surfing the internet and making hip-hop beats. Even his artist name, Samiyam, connotes pure slackerdom.


What Is It? Yacht Rock

It's music that's peaceful enough to make a dental drill feel like a mother's kiss on a bruise; or, some say, just another smiley face pinned over the dreadful malaise of Carter's America. For DJ Shaun Slaughter, yact rock was just a way to baffle drunken New York hipsters. Read more » 

Catalina Estrada: Spinfluences

It's half past midnight and Catalina Estrada has just strolled in the door from a long evening on the Ramblas. Long, sun-drenched days and wine-soaked nights are standard for this Barcelona-based illustrator, whose work takes life's love and light and amplifies it by thousands of watts.


François K: Echo Effects

One typically associates François Kevorkian with the soulful deep house of his Wave Music label or the eclectic disco and Afro-Latin sounds commonly heard at his long-running (but now defunct) Body & Soul event. But in the last year or two, the haunting, stripped-down soundscapes of UK dubstep have grabbed the attention of this NYC house torchbearer.


Aesop Rock: Daydream Nation

If you're not prepared to pay heed to rapper Aesop Rock's gravelly baritone, his complex lyrics can easily overwhelm. Reflexively branded one of hip-hop's most abstract wordsmiths, the Definitive Jux mainstay appears to operate on a different wavelength, his dense rhyme schemes relying on seemingly inscrutable verbal algorithms. But a close listen reveals a dedicated artist continually honing his craft, someone trying to convey strikingly detailed stories by way of eclectic and novel language. Read more » 

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