5 For Friday: Denzel Curry, Skepta, Ari Lennox & More

When you sign-up for something, you know what you’re getting yourself into. With our 5 for Friday, you fortunately haven’t got to worry about any dodgy happenings. In fact we cut through a thick slew of music, some great and some bland, and put together words that (hopefully) will make you want to press that play button. We hope you embrace this week’s selection with open arms, ears and more importantly an open mind.

Jhené Aiko – Triggered

Out of the many words we use today, ‘triggered’ has become our go-to or reaction to bad-mouth memes and outlandish statements. Jhené Aiko gives us the sum total of the latter in her newest drop ‘Triggered’.

Nestled on the rocky terrain of a mountain at dusk, Jhené Aiko pulls from her magical reserve and pitches lush warbles. She switches up her tone seamlessly as the grand piano crosses over compassionate chords while feelings of resentment creep out of her mouth. In the midst of light wooden chimes swaying freely, wild thoughts are tamed into inhibited sneers and rhyming slang on a souled out freestyle.

Denzel Curry – Ricky

Coming down from the run of his third album ‘TA13OO’, Denzel Curry extended his body of work with a string of music visuals. Today, he drops his first new single, ‘Ricky’, a cut dedicated to his father and his roots in Florida’s infamous street fight circuit.

The warm hues that stain the frames of Denzel Curry’s latest visual bring you into the lively settings of Carol City, Florida. ‘Ricky’ knocks a propulsive current of deep-toned 808s, rampant rings and chimes that ruffle together like ingredients in a blender. Denzel Curry’s raps trigger nostalgia with descriptive lines that hark back to his formative years in the Raider Klan. Even going to the length of equating their sound to rap sets: Three 6 Mafia, Wu-Tang Clan mixed with Dipset. Treat your ears to the esteemed manifestation of Hip-Hop’s past with ‘Ricky’.

Ari Lennox – BMO

We we’re just one of the many ears waiting on Ari Lennox to follow through with her anticipated debut album. The songstress delivers her 12 track ‘Shea Butter Baby’ album, and a head-bopping track in the form of ‘BMO’.

Once the beat drops, your ear drums succumb to the groove of a bubbly production cooked up by a trio of producers, including label mate Omen. It’s contagious chorus plucks at La Belle-esque ad libs and dance floor aesthetics that’ll have even the most coy partygoer screaming along Lennox’s “ayys”. Lofty piano keys squeal against the bravado of the bass guitar, and Lennox articulates an enticing exchange; crafting lyrics that verge on the border of erotica.

169 – Crazy feat. Jaz Karis

This South London artist and producer is the brains behind some of your favourite records. 169 forged a foundation with a debut EP titled ‘Seasons’, and he continues to build up that bridge with a frank, soft-spoken vocal performance.

A hybrid with a special knack for making moody soundscapes and bringing them to life through his own tongue. 169 consciously takes a set where Drake once sat with ‘Take Care’, incanting woozy-sung lines atop a speckle of keys lightly dotting the sonic. On ‘Crazy’ he vocalises the woe of chasing his dreams while trying to test a commitment to a lover. Jaz Karis returns at arms length and croons gracefully over smoky saxophone trails. Her retort finds her solemn notes that are reaffirming, and gives us the whole picture from her perspective.

Skepta – Greaze Mode

Last night Skepta piqued the internet’s interest with the first single, ‘Bullet From A Gun’ from his forthcoming album ‘Ignorance Is Bliss’, following up with a collaborative effort entitled ‘Greaze Mode’ featuring Safe Smallz.

‘Greaze Mode’ is triggered by alternating sirens circulating at lofty heights. Cue in a percussive maelstrom made up of fleeting hi-hats and robust kick drums combinations that transition into poly synth patch. Skepta clear cut rhymes finds him live up to his big smoke tag, but assert his graft over distorted infrasounds. Nafe Smallz kicks a skippy melody and genre-defying flow into a compelling production.