Freeloader Friday: Finale, Blank Realm & More

Finale Odds & EndsThis edition of Freeloader Friday is particularly exciting because today, everyone’s a freeloader! No work, no worries, and plenty of BBQ, burgers and beer. As you celebrate America’s birthday with day parties, dance parties, into-the-next-day parties… and a three day weekend, you may want to refer to this gang of great new tracks to keep your patriotic plans exciting. Here we go!

If you’re tired tired of auto-tuned trap and want some real-deal Rap, you need to check out Detroit’s own Finale. This guy spits it straight forward, and his new record is completely produced by the one and only Oddisee. You know if Oddisee‘s got his finger prints on it, it’s going to be good. Finale has only released a single off of his upcoming sophomore effort Odds & Ends, but it’s already clear that this record is going to be unforgiving, unforgettable and untouchable.


Succumb to Pete Rock’s Soulful Sequel, “Petestrumentals 2″

pete-rock-cosmic-slop-mp3Pete Rock, the steadfast staple in the history of East Coast Hip-Hop, is officially back, and he’s brought the beats of his new record, Petestrumentals 2. In a mixture of smooth samples and head-rocking rhythms that make any New Yorker feel at home, the lyric-less LP accentuates the prolific producer’s sound that can only be described by his history.

Born in the Bronx, Rock‘s childhood revolved around music. His father, a DJ, worked using an extensive Jazz album collection. The young Rock would often accompany him to DJ gigs, engraining the complex elements of Jazz music in his creative psyche forever. After being introduced to New York’s Hip-Hop underground by his cousin Heavy D, Rock’s talents caught attention as he was taken in by the equally everlasting Marley Marl at age 16.


Welcome, Melissa!

MelissaGonzalezIntroducing Melissa Gonzalez, Coordinator, Compilations Label Relations

My name is Melissa Gonzalez and I am the new Compilations Label Relations Coordinator.  I recently received my doctorate in music with a specialization in ethnomusicology at Columbia University. Over the last five years, I have taught courses in Latin American and Middle Eastern folkloric and popular music, as well as general survey courses in Western Art music, World music, Hip Hop, and Rock at Hunter College, Hofstra University and Montclair State University.


Introducing: Vinyl Tuesday, A Physical Music Initiative

vinyltuesdaysmallIn the wake of global Friday release dates, another initiative, Vinyl Tuesday, is starting up as a way to offer physical retailers new titles to sell and promote during the week. Launched by the Record Store Day organization, the weekly Tuesday physical street date will encourage artists, labels and distributors to put out several different types of releases:

  • New release vinyl that could not be released at the same time as their CD / digital counterparts
  • Reissue and catalog vinyl
  • New release vinyl in advance of the CD/digital counterparts
  • Promotional releases
  • Indie-store exclusives


360-Degree Video Brings Virtual Reality to YouTube

YouTube has a growing history of being a platform where new forms of media and content are created and shared to international audiences. Whether it be vlogs for niche hobbies, how-to videos for just about anything, or let’s-play streams for video-games, YouTube has cemented itself as a hub for content creators to create and distribute new genres of entertainment.

Earlier this year, YouTube rolled out support for 360-degree video and more recently announced that the same support for 360-degree video would be available for Google Cardboard. If you are unfamiliar with Google Cardboard (pictured), it is a virtual reality system that has separated itself from other virtual reality headsets like Oculus Rift by utilizing the technology that most who are interested in virtual reality already have: smartphones.