Khalid

Rolling Stone magazine named Khalid’s album ‘American Teen’ as one the best albums of 2017, putting it on nr 6 of its top 50 rating. Their motivation:

His conversational vocals staked out a new kind of R&B: laid-back but charged with wide-open emotional struggle, as well as hooks that stuck. He sang about kids who didn’t have money or cars; who still lived with their parents (and worried about coming home smelling of weed); who longed for human contact to go along with a love stirred by subtweets and texts. Hits like “Location” and “Young, Dumb & Broke” were alive with fresh possibilities – including the possibility of combating outmoded stereotypes. “I’m an African-American man with an Afro, who isn’t your typical athlete – who wasn’t as masculine as other guys,” Khalid told Rolling Stone. “And now people are looking at me like, this is ‘The American Teen.'” J.L.

Even though this is just his first album, you can already see there is more good stuff to come. His music is consistently good and his lyrics inspired.

khalid

Take his song Location, which is melodic, breezy and laid back. It’s the kind of music that goes well with any occasion.

It’s hard toe believe he’s only just turned 20.

RF18 official website pumps up the festival goers by telling us the following:

It has made major media outlets like the New York Times and Rolling Stone unanimously declare Khalid the biggest breakout artist of the year.

As an Army brat Khalid shuffled between stops in Georgia, Kentucky, six years in Germany and settling in Texas for his senior year of high school. This self-taught wunderkind began recording music on his own to combat the loneliness of always being the new kid.

Khalid has sold out every single venue on his American Dream tour in the US, and almost copied the feat in Europe in early 2018. And he wins over new hearts every day. Let him win over your heart as well when he plays Roskilde Festival 2018.

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First Aid Kit

They were on my wishlist for last year but were touring the US then… But 2018 just got a whole lot cooler!

There is already so much to get excited over for 2018 but the announcement of First Aid Kit coming to Roskilde Festival in 2018 definitely brought a smile to my face. Their music has brought generations together, bringing the sound of “our parents’ time” into the 21st century.

In a statement about their melancholic song Fireworks, Johanna and Klara Söderberg said the following:

We’re so excited to finally share “Fireworks.” It’s a track that we put a lot of emotions into. We love the arrangement we created for it with our producer Tucker Martine, borrowing from classic ‘50s ballads and mixing it with Twin Peaks guitars and synths. It’s a song about the ideals you set for yourself in life and how they can break you down, leaving you all alone at the end.

 

One of my personal favorites of theirs is Wolf, which I had on constant re-play when I first discovered it.

As a fan, I have to admit I have a slight preference for their more upbeat, folk-based work, above the melancholic Americana-sound from the new album, Ruins. As its title reveals, the new album carries the weight of their struggle with love, fame and loneliness. But of course, as with everything they do, this talented duo has managed to turn their inner anguish  into something harmoniously beautiful.

No better catharsis than feeling the love at Roskilde Festival. Welcome, Klara and Johanna!

Cardi B

Cardi B is a force to be reckoned with. A phenomenon that worked her prominent ass off to earn herself a place in the spotlight. Contrary to superstars a-la Beyonce, who let you believe their stamina and killer bodies were passed down to them through their alien heritage, Cardi B is quite outspoken about how she got to the top: work, work, work. And as Vox puts it:

And the fact that Cardi is so insistent on working, working, working is fundamental to her appeal. When you watch her work, you’re watching a hustler in action — and, as Cardi will be the first to tell you, it’s a little inspiring.

Cardi B’s debut single, Bodak Yellow, came out in the summer of 2017 and reached number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart.

And the world is full of coincidences, because one of Cardi B’s most recent collaborations is with Bruno Mars, who will also be playing at RF18. Maybe they can work on their global footprint reduction, and share a plane together…?

Gorillaz

You are now tuned into the tomb of Jehova
Play my tunes loud enough to shake the room, what’s the hold up?
Heard the world is ending soon I assumed that they told ya
They tryna dinosaur us
So now it’s time to go up

These words are some of the first you hear when you listen to Gorillaz’ new album, “Humanz”. The words do not come from the mouth of lead vocalist Damon Albarn however (not even virtually), but from hip-hop artist Vince Staples (who “concidentally” will also be performing at RF18!).

gorillaz-humanz-album-cover-art.jpg
“Humanz” album cover

 

Besides Staples, the new album features fellow rappers such as D.R.A.M., De La Soul and Pusha T. Other artists include Rag n Bone Man, Popcaan, Grace Jones and Anthony Hamilton. A star studded album, taking us across a broad array of styles but sewn together by a general feeling of dystopian gloom. A dark cloud that has always been present in Gorillaz songs; or as Pitchfork’s Jason Greene puts it:

Post-9/11 panic? Great Recession malaise? Trumpian discontent? Gorillaz have a song for that somewhere.

One of my personal favorite songs on the album is “Let me out”, feat Mavis Staples and Pusha T. Compared to some of the other songs on the album, this song is easy on the ear and reminds me of the Gorillaz sound I enjoy the most.

The award for the grooviest Humanz song has got to go to Strobelite, feat  Peven Everett.

 

Eminem

May I have your attention please? May I have your attention please? Will the real Slim Shady please stand up?

It turns out he will be doing just that, at RF18! Not only is it a first for the festival, but for Denmark as a whole.

All though it’s hard to imagine this man needs any introduction, I’ll give you a quick wikipedia-based runthrough:

Eminem is the best-selling artist of the 2000s in the United States. Throughout his career, he has had 10 number-one albums on the Billboard 200 and five number-one singles on the Billboard Hot 100. With 47.4 million albums sold in the US and 155 million records globally, he is among the world’s best-selling artists. Additionally, he is the only artist to have eight albums consecutively debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200. Rolling Stone ranked him 83rd on its list of 100 Greatest Artists of All Time, calling him the King of Hip Hop.

After his debut album Infinite (1996) and then Slim Shady EP (1997), Eminem signed with Dr. Dre’s Aftermath Entertainment and subsequently achieved mainstream popularity in 1999 with The Slim Shady LP, which earned him his first Grammy Award for Best Rap Album. His next two releases, 2000’s The Marshall Mathers LP and 2002’s The Eminem Show, were worldwide successes, with each being certified diamond in U.S. sales, and both winning Best Rap Album Grammy Awards—making Eminem the first artist to win the award for three consecutive LPs. They were followed by Encore in 2004, another critical and commercial success. Eminem went on hiatus after touring in 2005, releasing Relapse in 2009 and Recovery in 2010. Both won Grammy Awards and Recovery was the best-selling album of 2010 worldwide, the second time he had the international best-selling album of the year (after The Eminem Show). Eminem’s eighth album, 2013’s The Marshall Mathers LP 2, won two Grammy Awards, including Best Rap Album; it expanded his record for the most wins in that category and his Grammy total to 15. In 2017, he released his ninth studio album, Revival.

All though hardcore fans have had some trouble adjusting to his new album, especially for his collaborations with artists he used to criticize in his lyrics, everybody has been yearning for new material.

Eminem may have lost some of his anger, but his talent is still strong and present on the new album. As the RF official website says:

Revival is a new raw, honest and compelling record in Eminem’s discography. Another one that pulls us right into his evocative dramas. With Revival Eminem has set a new record: he is the first act to achieve eight consecutive album chart entries that debuted at no. 1 atop the Billboard tally.

When Eminem steps onto Orange Stage at Roskilde Festival, you will get a focused rapper on his toes like a boxer. Expect a bulging setlist full of hits and bangers, everything beefed up by a full backing band and an amazing production.

For me, Lose yourself, is still one of the most motivating songs ever and it will never disappear from my work out playlist.

Super stoked he will be at RF18!!!

Myrkur

Review below is quoted from NPR.org

“Yes, destroy evil with evil,” Amalie Bruun sings in her native Danish at the beginning of “Ulvinde,” her latest song as Myrkur. In the accompanying music video, Bruun crawls through mossy roots and stumbles over frigid rock outcroppings. Occasionally, she spits up blood.

It’s rough stuff, lyrically and visually, but Bruun’s singing voice is beautiful. Where most metal singers either croon or belt, she rings. Her delivery, full of sustaining notes that subtly decay, is reminiscent of choral music — with all the ritualism, religiosity and awe it entails. Bruun can scream, too, and the shots of her engaged in a commanding, full-throated shriek entangle with shots of her bloody mouth. The juxtaposition of those forces — Bruun’s two voices, distorted guitars and violent images — gives her work a vital charge.

“Inner/outer demons and mental/physical assault is something I’ve had experience with and this has caused me nightmares, which has led to this song and video,” Bruun tells NPR. She even named her upcoming second full-length album Mareridt, the Danish word for nightmare.

 

At times, the record makes for a harrowing listen. Bruun composes in minor keys with hummingbird-speed guitars, as many Scandinavian metal acts have before her — which isn’t to say that people who love black metal always love Myrkur. Bruun is a polarizing figure even though she follows many of the genre’s tropes to the letter, including its fetish for folklore and pristine landscapes.

Bruun’s music rejects the trappings of modern life in favor of a romanticized, pre-Christian European idyll. “‘Ulvinde’ is a song about escaping into the wilderness and the past,” she says. “The song is partly about longing for a place in nature in peace away from the ‘real’ world, a world that I often feel I cannot and was never meant to function in.” Bruun excels at this task in particular thanks to her voice, which at times recalls other European heritage-music popularizers like Loreena McKennitt.

At one point in the video Bruun stands accompanied by three young women representing the Norns, the three fate goddesses of Norse mythology. In “Ulvinde,” as elsewhere on Mareridt, Bruun is writing music about controlling her own fate. In another person’s hands, this song could be mythopoetic escapism. With Bruun’s voice it is a prescription:

Go into the wild, take an evil sound, bend it to a positive end.

 

Street Artist: Base 23

It’s not always easy to find information about street artists. Base 23’s page from Street Art Chennai helps us on our way in this case:

Base 23 lives and works in Berlin. For his graffiti, ink drawings and cardboard installations, he draws inspiration from a wide array of sources such as the psychedelic art of the 1960s, underground comics from the 1970s, Japanese robots and robot toy packaging, experiences from his stay in Hongkong, sources from typography as well as traditional fabrics from Tibet and some of the most innovative graffiti styles. Combining all these influences into his unique graphic style, Base23 displays his passion for detail in his large murals as well as in his delicate works on paper and canvas. Vibrant colors imbue his works with expression, intensity, and dynamism.

Check out the crazy cut out he brought to RF16!

Base23 @ RF16 |  Photo: Christian Birkebaek (@Streetcolors)13957987_1339784449373028_490265937228626733_o.jpg

See more of his stuff on his Instagram  or read his blog from his Roskilde experience in 2009.