Episode 39: Sayonara, 2016

Another year, another meticulously curated best of music play list. Sure, sure – every one ELSE has moved on to 2017 and are feverishly beginning to mark down what new jams take their fancy, but here at the Lighthouse? Well, we move at our own pace and deliver only the best product to give back you….the people.

In this episode, the lads sit down and go through Cubosa’s Top 116 of 2016 playlist; singling out delicious highlights, egregious omissions and reminiscing on all the quality music that came out in the year of the Monkey. We may hate a little too much, but it’s because we care.

1. NxWorries – Suede
2. Phony PPL – Why ii Love The Moon
3. A$AP Twelvvy – L.Y.B.B. (Resolution)
4. Schoolboy Q – That Part (Feat. Kanye West)
5. Brodinski – Us (Feat. Bloody Jay)
6. Rihanna – Kiss It Better
7. Amine – Caroline
8. Mac Miller – Dang! (Feat. Anderson .Paak)
9. GoldLink – Fall In Love (Feat. Ciscero, Kaytranada & BADBADNOTGOOD)
10. Kaytranada – Lite Spots
11. The Avalanches – Because I’m Me
12. Majid Jordan – Make It Work
13. Barei – Say Yay! (Spain – Eurovision Entry)
14. Gryffin – Heading Home (Feat. Josef Salvat)
15. Flume – Tiny Cities (Feat. Beck)
16. ANOHNI – 4 Degrees
17. The Smith Street Band – History Eraser (Like a Version Cover)
18. Sioux Falls – Copy Paste
19. Isaiah Rashad – 4r Da Squaw
20. Frank Ocean – Nikes
21. Roy Woods – She Knows About Me
22. Drake – Too Good (Feat. Rihanna)
24. HOME – Decay
25. Flume – Free
26. Crystal Castles – Their Kindess Is Charade
27. Khalid – Let’s Go
28. Childish Gambino – Redbone
29. DJ Quik & Problem – You Are Everything
30. Nas – Nas Album Done
31. Fat Joe & Remy Ma – All The Way Up (Feat. French Montana)
32. Young Thug – Webbie (Feat. Duke)
33. Curren$y – Mallory Knox
34. French Montana – Lockjaw (Feat. Kodak Black)
35. Madeintoyo – Uber Everywhere
36. Post Malone – Deja Vu (Feat. Justin Bieber)
37. Wale – It’s Too Late
38. How To Dress Well – The Speed Dial
39. Anderson .Paak – Room In Here (Feat. The Game & Sonyae Elise)
40. Rihanna – Consideration (Feat. SZA)
41. GoldLink – Rough Soul (Feat. April George)
42. Isaiah Rashad – Free Lunch
43. A Tribe Called Quest – The Space Program
44. Schoolboy Q – By Any Means
45. Future – Low Life (Feat. The Weeknd)
46. Flatbush Zombies – Bounce
47. Lil Uzi Vert – Money Longer
48. Joe Budden – Three
49. Danny Brown – When It Rain
50. Crystal Castle – Fleece
51. Julian Winding – The Demon Dance
52. Negative Gemini – Body Work
53. Drake – Feel No Ways
54. Shura – Tounge Tied
55. Bat For Lashes – Sunday Love
56. Blood Orange – Hands Up
57. David Bowie – I Can’t Give Everything Away
58. How To Dress Well – Salt Song
59. Frightened Rabbit – Woke Up Hurting
60. DIIV – Loose Ends
61. Frank Ocean – Ivy
62. Frans – If I Were Sorry (Sweden Eurovision Entry)
63. The Cardboard Swords – Cardigan
64. Aaron West & The Roaring Twenties – ’67 Cherry Red
65. Sioux Falls – 3 Fast
66. FEWS – 100 Goosebumps
67. White Lung – Kiss Me When I Bleed
68. PUP – Sleep in The Heat
69. The Smith Street Band – Death To The Lads
70. Pinegrove – Old Friends
71. DMA’s – Delete
72. Frightened Rabbit – I Wish I Was Sober
73. Anderson .Paak – Put Me Thru
74. Elzhi – Hello!!!!!
75. Joe Budden – I Wanna Know
76. A Tribe Called Quest – Whatever Will Be (Feat. Consequence)
77. Solange – Cranes In The Sky (Kaytranada Edit)
78. Miguel – Come Through & Chill
79. Roy Woods – SKRT (Remix)
80. Dave – Wanna Know
81. Drake – U With Me?
82. Rihanna – Needed Me
83. Majid Jordan – Something About You
84. Mickey Kojak – Move Too Fast
85. Janet Jackson – If (Kaytranada Remix)
86. Kaytranada – You’re The One (Feat. Syd)
87. Drake – One Dance (feat. Wizkid & Kyla)
88. Vybz Kartel – Fever
89. D.R.A.M. – Broccoli (Feat. Lil Yatchy)
90. Domo Genesis – DAPPER (Feat. Anderson .Paak)
91. Anderson .Paak – Am I Wrong (Feat. Schoolboy Q)
92. Chance The Rapper – All Night (Feat. Knox Fortune)
93. Kaytranada – Together (Feat. AlunaGeorge & GoldLink)
94. Teedra Moses – Be Your Girl (Kaytranada Edit)
95. Carly Rae Jepsen – Body Language
96. Era Istrefi – Bonbon
97. Rihanna – Sex With Me
98. Roy Woods – You Love It
99. Mac Miller – Stay
100. King – The Greatest
101. Gallant – Bourbon
102. NAO – Girlfriend
103. dvsn – Hallucinations
104. Maxwell – 1990x
105. Khalid – Location
106. Frank Ocean – Nights
107. Pearl – Private Party
108. PARTYNEXTDOOR – Come and See Me (Feat. Drake)
109. Drake – Fire & Desire
110. BADBADNOTGOOD – In Your Eyes (Feat. Charlotte Day Wilson)
111. Kamasi Washington – The Rhythm Changes
112. Mac Miller – God Is Fair, Sexy, Nasty (Feat. Kendrick Lamar)
113. Bon Iver – 29 #Strafford APTS
114. Dreamboy – Endings
115. Sioux Falls – If You Let It
116. Apologies, I Have None – Crooked Teeth (Acoustic)

Bonus #1 – Migos – Bad & Boujee (Feat. Lil Uzi Vert)
Bonus #2 – The Avanlaches – Bad Day (Feat. Freddie Gibbs)
Bonus #3 – Kranium – Rumours

Listen to the episode:

Clairmont The Second

With all the love the OVO camp got at the Apple WWDC, I thought it apt to keep the momentum of 6ix love going and discover who else in the city deserves some attention. The plan was to write one of those “guide to who’s rising in the north” type posts.

I started my search on the major outlets. Noisey, Complex, Pigeons and Planes, HipHopDX, 2DopeBoyz etc… You know the list. Unfortunately their rosters were virtual carbon copies of each other. Mind you, by no means am I throwing shade on any of the artists, they’re talented individuals and I’ve added several of them to my list this month. But a few of the blogs mentioned a name that intrigued me immediately so I added him to my follow-up list. Then I drilled down a bit further and hit the forums. His name started showing up much more frequently. I downloaded a copy of his latest project and sat down for a listen.

Clairmont The Second — Project II

Project II

I decided quickly to ditch my “best of Toronto” list and focus on Clairmont The Second. It was the opening bar on track two, “Accident”, that peaked my interest.

I’m an idiot for not going to sleep
Then complaining about being tired the next day

It’s a sentiment so simple yet one that I instantly dug. A lesson I too can’t seem to learn with age. But what I truly appreciated about this was that I knew he was speaking his truth rather than pantomiming the played out content the genre seems to be dogged with. I related to him.

As a whole the project is tight, honest and well thought out. The subtlety in production is refreshing and his delivery is a refined sound that has been perfected during the aforementioned nights.

But this post isn’t about critiquing his work.

Who is Clairmont the Second?

Full name Clairmont II Humphrey, he really is a true artist both producing and then rapping on top of his beats. A Toronto native and still in his teens, Project II is … his second project to date. His first being Becoming A GentlemIIn released in 2013.

Mr. Humphrey belongs to a family of talented musicians: his father hosts a gospel and spoken word network while his older brother Cola is the drummer for The OBGMs, a punk rock act who recently got some Budweiser love.

Twenty Fifteen seems to be his year, landing a spot at Canadian Music Week opening up for XXL Freshman Goldlink. Besides preforming more prominent shows, it also seems to be the year press is starting to pay attention to him. I’d be lying if I didn’t include myself in this list.

Clairmont The Second Playing Piano

Speaking to Clairmont about his work and the ultimate goal with all his efforts, he’s looking to inspire his peers. For them to get up and get to it. Ultimately, if they just think, there is so much they can do and change. Change for the better.

– – –

There is something genuinely refreshing about him. At the pace he’s going I doubt it’ll last too long but he is currently offering $150 beats as per his Soundcloud page and besides being for hire, he’s also looking to upgrade his equipment. After all, every artist needs good tools to do great work.

Download his latest project →
Keep up with his music →
See what he’s up →
Show him some love →

Friday Round Up: What I’ve Been Too Busy to Blog About

I’ve been discovering a ton of music and keep thinking to myself: I should blog about this. I’ll hear something and think here’s a story. Then I listen to something else and I find myself coming up with another angle to blog about the new thing. My brain is a little overwhelmed with it all so I’m going to vomit summaries of all the musical thoughts cluttering my dome.

Hardest in the game

A lot rappers like to think of themselves as tough … or at least claim they are. Boast about having abundant game. Bravado is served in ample doses. But last night I discovered an emcee who’s got some of the hardest game right now.

photo from @iamsiya's instagram.
photo from @iamsiya’s instagram.

In order to put my opinion in perspective, we first need to understand the concept of “Two-Spirit.” Native American culture often blends gender roles by seeing people as masculine man, feminine man, masculine woman, feminine woman. The prize of the Hip hop game usually consists of feminine women being acquired or dominated by masculine men.

Meet SIYA, a woman with very masculine energy. She rolls around with a dynamite crew of dames and holds nothing back in her rhymes. From what I’ve been able to discover, she showed up online 5 years ago in Atlanta but then went on a two year hiatus only to re-emerge 2 years later in Brooklyn. As she confirms in this Poundcake Freestyle, she skipped bailed and headed north to start over. Now she’s made it to the west coast and’ll be on the second season of Sisterhood of Hip-hop out June 9th.

Guys, we gotta step up our game.

Feeling love sick?

Kanye West has a genuine taste for music, just check out this list of songs he’s sampled. He also has an ability to discover up and comers. One of his latest finds is Allan Kingdom, featured on Kanye’s new effort All Day. I’m going to get a bit hipster here because turns out I’d known about him for a month before Kanye put out his new song. He is one of four individuals that comprise the act The Stand4rd. All members individually and as a group have been making serious waves online.

I would recommend checking out his latest EP Future Memoirs. Sonically nuanced and artistically crafted it mostly speaks to moments of heartbreak and struggles with those we desire.

For times when you’re looking to get introspective

Light a joint, have a puff and ponder life itself. The message: lets take life one breath at a time. I’m really digging this tape right now.

Love songs in a modern age

In an age of online porn, Rich Gang are crafters of modern day love songs. This is by no means my original opinion, but I think it is best exemplified in this video.

Mind cleared. Time to fill it up with something new.

Take a cool flight with Jetpack

Funky bassline. Check.
Effortless flow. Check.
Bobsled references. Well…

Missed opportunities to the infamous 1994 Disney movie aside, check out this smooth jam from Jetpack Jones “Cool Runnings”.

I gotta admit after listening to a few tracks on his soundcloud, I think this Cali MC has promise. Check out his Shades of Mary project especially if you dig what you’re hearing.

Fresh Talent: Goodbye Tomorrow

Stumbling through the muddy waters of soundcloud I came across these guys. While their sound is nothing groundbreaking, this Chicago duo are pretty fun and well – really put some effort into their MS-Dos themed website. Enjoy the track ‘100K’ below, which may I add has some great sampling of a bed squeaking.

Toronto Talent: Zane

Zane from Juice TorontoZane and I met in college. If hazy memories serves me correctly, it was because of his friendship with a gentleman who lived a few rooms down from me. Coming up in the Jazz program, he is part of a rather funky outfit called Juice. But recently when he released his first Hip-Hop track my interest was truly piqued. A few months later he offered his EP: 6ix Love.

The title really says it all. The love is strong in Toronto right now, the Raptors are on top and because it borrows heavily from a term popularized by Drake, it’d be easy to sweep up this effort in that tidal wave. However, I see this as more of an evolution of the idea. 6ix Love is less about the physical space and more about the people here. A diverse group of urban citizens collectively interested in creating and moving forward.

Hit play below to check out the triple track effort below.

You can catch Zane performing with Juice or spinning at 3030. Watch out for music videos in the future.