Don’t Sleep Vol. 1 | Music Videos

[Cover image shot by Cam Robert]

This past week has definitely been another one for the books. Amidst albums from Kali UchisSaba, and ODIE just to name a few, many W&V favorites also shared new sets of visuals for us to enjoy. To help sift through all the dope stuff that dropped, below are five music videos you should definitely peep.


Duckwrth – “TAMAGOTCHI”

Duckwrth is a natural bundle of energy that’s well on his way to getting the recognition he deserves. In the Lino Asana-directed video, the purveyor of funkwave whips through the Mojave flexing his control of the rap game in the latest set of visuals from his XTRA UUGLY mixtape. “Tamagotchi” is perfect for both open road cruising and no holds barred mosh pits.


Sylvan LaCue – “Empathy” (ft. BJRNCK)

Sylvan LaCue is a well-seasoned warrior in the rap game. Earlier this year, the Miami-raised artist unveiled his Apologies In Advance album, guiding listeners through a spectrum of emotions through his skills on the mic and on the boards. “Empathy” is another snapshot from the story brought to life by his right-hand director Jonathan Benavente. Topped off with silky vocals with BJRNCK, this is another beautifully crafted video from the WiseUp crew.


Little Simz – “Morning” (ft. Swooping Duck)

From touring with Gorillaz to her own headlining tour next month, Little Simz has kept busy spreading good vibes all around. King Simbi gives us a peak at tour life in “Morning,” which features her venting over jazzy rhythms from Australia’s own Swooping Duck. Directors Versetti and Jeremy Cole, If you haven’t already, be sure to peep the deluxe version of Stillness In Wonderland.


Ciscero – “Function” (ft. GoldLink, April George, Cheakity)

With his Devil’s Pie EP on the way, Ciscero is back with the latest visuals from the project. Director Michael Bregenzer gives “Function” a truly cinematic feel that captures the harsh truth of the DMV streets when a seemingly fun night turns sour. Ciscero, April George, and Cheakity highlight their sonic chemistry over production from Supah Mario. Also be sure to check out the original track featuring a verse from GoldLink.


Gallant – “Gentleman”

Gallant has been fairly quiet in terms of releases since his stellar Ology album dropped back in 2016, but the Los Angeles crooner returns with another spine-chilling release. “Gentleman” is equal parts sensual and alluring that we love from Gallant, oozing with unfiltered passion. Director Sasha Samsonova paints Gallant in a steel blue hue as he delivers an echoing falsetto that’s sure to have you grooving along.

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Here Are 10 Essential Tracks From 2017 You Need To Hear

As with every year, 2017 saw the rise of an innumerable amount of talented artists. From the explosive return of SZA to sweet debuts from GoldLink, Smino, and Sabrina Claudio, many received their well-deserved shine.

To help sift through the sea of newcomers and veterans alike, here are a few of our favorites from the past year:

Andy: While more commonly recognized for his production for artists including A$AP RockyRick Ross, and FutureChildish Major is continuing to climb the charts for his vocal work as well. I first came across the Atlanta artist when he teamed up with SZA and Isaiah Rashad on “Happy Birthday,” a track that would serve as one the lead singles from his recent WOO$AH project. “I Like You” pairs his fleeting verses with verses from 6LACK and DRAM, topped off with woozy production from Supah Mario.

Andy: As a member of the creative empire known as MSFTSrep¿Téo? weaves between bellowing croons and crisp verses. “Uno Dos” with Jaden Smith plays like an ominous Amélie soundtrack B-side with a fresh rap twist. Subtle guitar riffs and a steady pocket from Teo Halm carry the track forward as ¿Téo? and Jaden trade swift verses. Needless to say, this is one I’ve had on repeat for a while now and leaves me looking forward to more music from the MSFTSrep crew. – Andy

Jonah: IDK‘s IWASVERYBAD boasts a routinely self-reflective tone, delving into IDK’s life as he discusses love, youth, his relationship with his mother, and more; the Maryland rapper offers himself for examination as a microcosm of the industry that changed his life, challenging the voyeuristic obsession with the American “gangbanger.” These themes come to head in “Black Sheep, White Dove,” a glowing ode to IDK’s late mother that is a testament to his musical, lyrical, and emotional progression. Boasting a painfully melancholy hook, the track undergoes several evolutions that work in tandem with IDK’s ongoing reckoning with the past, searching within himself for acceptance and absolution. IDK poised on the edge, penning a powerful eulogy and proving himself a complex artist and person that does not fit within the two-dimensional chalk lines he refutes. – Jonah

Jonah: BROCKHAMPTON haven’t been out of the headlines since dropping the first Saturation. Three albums later, BROCKHAMPTON have attracted an ardent fan base and released some of the year’s finest music. Saturation III represents the culmination of the series, tying together themes and demonstrating the group’s growth over the course of the three installments. “BLEACH” stands as one of the album’s few unexpected collaborations; Ryan Beatty’s chorus is a bittersweet R&B falsetto that tinges the song with a mournful flavor as the Brockhampton boys combine with characteristic coordination. Each verse is very much a part of those surrounding it, gradually spiraling into the pitched murmurings that carry it towards its close and invite listeners to get lost in the track just as its creators did. – Jonah

Keenan: To say that Brent Faiyaz has had an incredible year would be an understatement. Besides singing one of the catchiest hooks I’ve ever heard on a Grammy nominated single, his Sonder (alongside producers Dpat and Atu) released their stellar project Into. To cap it all off, Faiyaz dropped his intensely personal debut album Sonder Son, perhaps my favorite album of the year. “Gang Over Luv” is one of my favorite cuts off the album, invoking a vivid youthful nostalgia. – Keenan

Keenan: For years now Sángo has made a name for himself by taking samples of Brazilian “baile funk” or “funk carioca,” flipping them with his own unique spin. “Conte a Todos” is Sángo at his best, combining hard hitting drums with an infectious melody impossible to stay still to. 2017 was the year I dove into the wave that Sángo has created in Brazil and beyong with “Conte a Todos” standing as one of the songs that dragged me in headfirst. – Keenan

Camille: With its mellow beat, bright keys, and smooth harmonies, Rejjie Snow‘s “PURPLE TUESDAY” featuring Joey Bada$$ and Jesse Boykins III presents a call for unity in the face of modern day struggles. – Camille

Camille: Produced by H.E.R. and MNEK, “2” illustrates a twisted tale of love, cheating, and revenge. The self-titled album was intended to allow “women to really feel how honest and vulnerable [she is] and to understand that they are not alone and that these are all human emotions.” – Camille

Andy: Ciscero has been killing it all year. From teaming with GoldLink on “Fall In Love” to the JULiA LEWiS-produced “Potential,” the DMV rep is steadily building his resume. j.robb flips the Mick Jenkins and BADBADNOTGOOD cover of “On The Map,” allowing Ciscero, Jay Prince, and Foggieraw to swoop in and create the perfect soundtrack for whipping around town. – Andy

Andy: Rayana Jay has an alluring voice and aura that allows her to reel in listeners with ease. As one of the true standouts from her Morning After EP, “Magic” recruits producer ROMderful for a disco- and funk-filled joyride. She shines over a whipping bassline with a classic call and response that culminates in an effortless jam that’s sure to have you grooving along. – Andy

If you haven’t already, be sure to check out our Don’t Sleep playlist on Spotify.

 

Ciscero Connects With April George, Rocket & Joe Smokes For “Go!”

Ciscero keeps on shining with his golden releases. Following one of my favorite tracks from this year titled “Rio” with Jay Prince and FOGGIERAW, the DMV rep returns with “Go!” His latest offering takes a more soulful route akin to “Pressure,” tapping frequent collaborators April GeorgeRocket, and Joe Smokes. Warm keys from Dre Rodner and additional production from MisterNeek creates a soothing collab that oozes with passion.

Keep a close eye on Ciscero and stream “Go!” below.

Ciscero’s “Rio” Is A Golden Summertime Anthem

W&V favorite Ciscero continues to shine with each release. His latest outing, titled “Rio,” is a star-studded collab featuring fellow emcees Jay Prince and FOGGIERAW. Also along for the ride are producers j. robb and MisterNeek, who work their magic to flip Mick Jenkins and BADBADNOTGOOD‘s iconic cover of “On The Map.” While FOGGIERAW holds it down on the hook, Ciscero and Jay Prince trade hard-hitting verses to tie the track together to create the perfect summertime anthem.

Stream “Rio” below.

Ciscero Taps Matt McGhee & April George For “Pressure”

The first time I stumbled upon Ciscero was back when he teamed with King Rosè for “Who I Am,” an exhibition of their relentless flows and rap game prowess. Since then, Ciscero has kept the momentum going with tracks like “Fall In Love” with GoldLink and “Write About” with Obii Say, leading to the release of his latest cut titled “Pressure.” Produced by Supah Mario, this stacked tune recruits fellow DMV artists Matt McGhee and April George (of April + Vista) for a soulful collab. Swift piano rolls coupled with their verses and a easy riding hook create a thoroughly smooth listen.

Stream “Pressure” below.

GoldLink & Ciscero Share Retro Visuals For “Fall In Love”

Earlier this year, GoldLink and Ciscero teamed up for a stacked collab titled “Fall In Love.” The Kaytranada– and BADBADNOTGOOD-produced cut recently received a visual treatment. Alongside social icons Lean Squad and the Hyphy Hoochies, the video follows GoldLink and Ciscero around a ’70s-inspired dance party. The proper throwback is filled with energy, sure to have you wanting to join in on the fun.

Check out the video below and revisit GoldLink’s recent collab with Isaiah Rashad, “Untitled.”

GoldLink & Ciscero Trade Verses On “Fall In Love”

[Cover image by Vicky Grout]

GoldLink is having one hell of a year. Back in February, the DMV frontman delivered his And After That, We Didn’t Talk project to Australia and the States with SángoMaségo, and more, and has since kept the momentum going with a slew of festival dates.

While his collection of AATWDT remixes are holding us down, GoldLink has dropped off a new track to close out the season. The confident emcee passes the mic with fellow 3-o-whop resident Ciscero, fully backed with a production team made in heaven, Kaytranda and BADBADNOTGOOD. With an infectious groove and feel-good vibe, this mega collab offers a refreshing take the bouts with love many of us know all too well.

Stream “Fall In Love” below and grab your copy via iTunes. Also, be sure to catch GoldLink tearing up the stage in his city this weekend at Trillectro, alongside Rae SremmurdESTA, and more.