Santigold is a rediscovery. First heard a few, maybe five, years ago and re-entering my life via an unusual medium; the Gossip Girl soundtrack. It seems I have a weakness, not just for quality tunes, lagers and ladies, but also for trashy teen TV. (I WAS ILL OK! I was one step from Jeremy Fucking Kyle!)
Regardless, my earholes are grateful for the return of Santi and her shimmering electro-ness. She remains above genre, not quite hip hop, not quite dance, not quite pop. Santigold is on the edge of punk influenced electronic music, the kind that sits comfortably in any playlist which doesn’t include Mumford & Sons or Rumer. By that I mean, my mother would hate it. I love it. There’s hard edged half-rap vocals which manage remaining melodic and a slightly sleazy rhythm guitar. It’s kinda sexy.
So here is your opening Santigold number, “L.E.S. Artistes”. I would have included “Disparate Youth” but I don’t want you all running out to buy insurance you don’t need. Yeah, thanks for ruining that track Direct Line.
In honour of her appearance at Glastonbury this weekend (a full live set in The Rum Shack), here’s the brilliant Kate Tempest.
Tempest first made her name as a spoken word artist and poet, though according to her label she would describe herself as a rapper who writes. She’s pretty big in the poetry world, winning the prestigious Ted Hughes Prize for her play, Brand New Ancients, and generally being the poster girl for young British poetry. She’s released a single on Greco-Roman and been featured on numerous tracks with people like Bastille and Sinead O’Connor. After a few years of treading the edges of the mainstream, Tempest cemented her cross-over by signing to hip hop label Big Dada and releasing a full length album, Everybody Down, in May this year.
And it’s bloody good.
Blunt, witty lines race over hip hop beats as her stories of everyday people and London lives unfold. There’s little in the way of melodic vocal hooks, this is rap…with a lot of bass. Each of the twelve tracks on the album is a chapter, another story, with a mosaic of fully grown characters and rich drama.
Here’s your gateway track – The Beigeness.