November 7, 2012

Sound Bites: Charli XCX, LUST FOR YOUTH and the Weeknd

Charli XCX's The Super Ultra Mixtape

2012 Breakthrough Artist honoree Charli XCX has delivered on her promise from last week to give listeners her second free mixtape of the year with, er, The Super Ultra Mixtape. We've already heard the rap-infused cut "Love Aura," and now you can stream and download the 8-track mix (which boasts a redux of How to Dress Well's "Cold Nites") in its entirety. Of the mix, the black light-hued pop star shared the following notes about how this one came about:

"Making it was an intense experience for me coz I basically wrote the whole thing whilst I was driving around in a car in Poland. I was only there for two days so everything is totally raw. All the songs are about love. Sometimes it’s stupid love and sometimes it’s heartbreaking love. It’s about being confused. In particular, GLOW is a really emotional song for me. I think I had my first proper breakdown when I wrote that song. I cried a lot.

I cried a lot whilst making this mixtape, which is funny because some of the songs seem quite light-hearted and a bit… I dunno… Gangster. To me they’re all sad songs in some way though. Some songs were inspired by moments in movies – like DANCE 4 U was inspired by the opening scene of Planet Terror, where Rose McGowan does the pole dance. I think that’s a really sad and desperate scene. It makes me cry when I watch it.

I guess that’s all just personal shit though. I don’t want people to be sad when they listen to SUPER ULTA… I want them to be happy, and I want them to dance. No one dances in this town anymore."

Lust for Youth's "It's You"

AS isn't sure what the circumstances are between Italy's Avant! Records and NYC's Sacred Bones as far as work relationships go, but there is most definitely something going on behind closed doors between the two dark, lo-fi labels that ends up benefiting both sides of the globe. In the past, Avant! has provided Europe with releases by Sacred Bones favs Cult of Youth, and now Sacred Bones is reciprocating the favor by reissuing Growing Seeds. the great debut album from Sweden's LUST FOR YOUTH (which features VÅR's Loke Rahbek.) AwkwardSound debuted the track "Behind Curtains" Growing Seeds preceding its release on Avant! back in April, and now you can hear another gothy synth cut from the VAR in "It's You." The Sacred Bones repress of Growing Seeds comes out on November 13th.

The Weeknd's "Twenty Eight"

Upon releasing the non-album track "Enemy" a few weeks back, it was looking like listeners would have to wait until the official November 13th release date of the Weeknd's Trilogy to hear any of the three brand new songs set to to appear as an added bonus on the complete packaged physical release of the 2011 Breakthrough Artist's freebie mixtape series. Just one week shy of those albums finally becoming something tangible, Abel Tesfaye has finally let two of them slip out through BBC Radio 1's Zane Lowe with "Twenty Eight," a driving piano-based beat that's admittedly less sultry in the soundscape department, but still stylized with a flair for dramatic R&B love trouble, and "Valerie," a slow burner that showcases some outer space age production.

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