OVO Sound (tracking) the Summer

“Listen up boy you’re better off eavesdroppin’/ We already got spring 2015 poppin’/ PND droppin’, OB droppin’, Majid Jordan droppin’, not to mention me droppin.”

October’s Very Own head honcho Drake teased a big year for his label in June on new track ‘0-100/The Catch Up’ and it appears he is now delivering on his promise.

Today marks the official release (they were leaked) of PARTYNEXTDOOR’s first full length LP Two and singer/producer duo Majid Jordan’s A Place Like This EP. Both talents caused an stir in the Alternative R&B scene with their initial releases: Afterhours (MJ) and PARTYNEXTDOOR along with the show stealing features on Drake’s Nothing Was The Same last year.

Majid Jordan’s A Place Like This EP is a 5 track masterclass in Summer hedonism. Beginning with the euphoric dance floor grooves of opening  ‘Forever’ and closing with the regretful James Blake tinged ‘A Place Like This’ (with many goosebump inducing moments inbetween) it sonically encapsulates a night out until sun up in spectacular genre bending clarity. It feels fully formed and complete and leaves me twitching to press play again as soon as it finishes.

If OVO top dogs Drake and Noah “40” Shebib weren’t rubbing their hands together already, PARTYNEXTDOOR has equally delivered on his early promise. ‘Two’ is as shapeshifting and forward thinking an R&B record you are likely to hear this year. It sets him aside from contemporaries like The Weeknd and Ty Dolla $ign, breathing new life into the genre. It also expands on the aesthetic of his mixtape, broading his production pallet  (At 21, he’s handling most of the production himself). Tracks like the storming ‘East Liberty’ and Drake featuring ‘Recognize’ should be enough to propel him into the big leagues but the album shimmers with gems (listen out for the subtle Disclosuse sample in ‘Sex On The Beach’)

Drake and Shebib’s roster is stacked full of young up and coming artists and producers like Mike Zombie who produced the infectious beat for ‘Started From The Bottom‘. OB O’Brien looks next to get the promotional push though and recently unleashed two new tracks online…

And lets not forget the boss himself. No slouch since the release of Nothing Was The Same, Drake’s dropped a host of new tracks including the Hit Boy produced ‘Trophies’ and is reportedly hard at work  on album number four. For now his troops are making sure sure the Summer’s covered. Working hard and succeeding to make R&B an exciting prospect again; 2014 belongs to OVO.

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