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Smino's Sophomore Album ‘Noir’ Is Finally Here

Smino is back with melodic and excentric flows. 

Poised to build on the promise he showed in his  2017 breakout debut blkswnSmino has kept the same energy going for his new album Noir. 

Released Thursday (Nov. 8), the album remains true to his ability to blend his melodic and excentric flows. The album, featuring in-house collaborators like Zero Fatigue member Monte Booker and fellow VIBE Next alumna Rayvn Lenae, includes the previously released singles "L.M.F." and "Klink."

"I'm not trying to be like anyone else's art," the St. Louis rapper said in a press release about his music. "I'm just trying to be the art that's coming out of me. It's just honest."

READ MORE: The Byproduct Of Smino’s Soul-Infused Rap Is The Inevitable Transfer Of Black Joy

Collaborating with producers like LBoogie, Sango, and Booker, Noir radiates good energy and intentional fun. "That's really what I was doing when I was making the record," adds Smino. "Just having fun and living off my own confidence."

The 18-track LP features labelmates Bari and Jay2 and well as Dreezy,  Lenae and G.O.O.D. Music's Valee.

Up next for Smino is his third-annual homecoming "Kribmas" show in St. Louis. Taking place at The Pageant on Dec. 14, this will be Smino's last show in the states before he tours abroad during the months of January and February.

Stream Noir below.

READ MORE: Smino Returns With New Music New Two-Track Set ‘4Sport’

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Elle Varner Taps Wale For "Pour Me" Single

Elle Varner brought in the New Year with the new single, "Pour Me" featuring Wale. Hitting streaming services on a lovely Friday morning (Jan. 18), the lovesick boozy bop piggybacks off the success of her September release, "Loving You Is Blind."

With an assist from Washington D.C.'s very own, the "Bad" emcee heads the single with his love-drunk rendition of sexual frustration, riding over the well-placed piano keys and 808s. Varner's voice dominates the track with the healthy mix of rasp she has become known for.

"Pour me one more One more, one more, one more/I'm thinkin' 'bout you, drinkin' 'bout you/All night for sure/Pour me one more/One more, one more, one more/I'm thinkin' 'bout you, been drinkin' 'bout you," she sings.

Speaking with RatedR&B in December 2018, the "Refill" songstress revealed her new single was a "double entendre about being a poor girl who's lost the love she wants. So, pour her another,” she continued. “It has that ’90s feel. It has these hard drums and chords that are just so tickling. It’s me on a thousand.”

Stream Elle Varner's new single "Pour Me" featuring Wale below.

 

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Future, Chief Keef, And More Friday Releases You Need To Hear

As the first month of 2019 winds down, a handful of hip-hop artists dropped new projects and singles. From Future to Chief Keef and Logic, we've compiled a list of Friday music releases you should be listening to.

Check out the full list below.

Future – The WZRD

Future's latest project The WZRD is finally here. The 20-track album features guest appearances from Young Thug, Travis Scott, and Gunna. It also serves as his seventh studio album.

Ahead of the album's release, Future dropped a documentary, entitled Future Hndrxx Presents: The Wizrd, which previewed the LP and discussed his views and artistry. It also included commentary from Andre 3000, DJ Khaled, Rico Wade, Metro Boomin, Southside and others.

Chief Keef – The Leek 7

Chief Keef has delivered the seventh installment of The Leek series with  The Leek, Vol. 7. The 12-song project features only one feature from Gucci Mane on the single "Jet Li."

Listen to The Leek 7 below.

Logic – "Keanu Reeves"

Logic is paying his respects to actor Keanu Reeves in his latest single. The Maryland artist dropped the track nearly nine months after he debuted it during the Movin' On Festival at Penn State University.

"Did you know I'm mixed like Obama?/It ain't a project if Logic ain't talkin' 'bout being biracial," he brags  on the track. "When them soccer moms pull up in they van while I rid/Like, ‘Oh my God, children, it's the 1-800 guy!"

Listen to the new song below.

Ariana Grande "7 Rings"

Ariana Grande’s Thank U, Next album turns a Broadway classic on its head with her latest single “7 Rings.” The resident princess of pop, Grande takes plunges into the world of hip-hop and R&B with a reworked sample of “My Favorite Things,” classicly sung by Julie Andrews from the musical, The Sound Of Music.

The 25-year-old pays homage to Lil Mama’s “Lip Gloss,” with a Soulja Boy-sized flow reminiscent of his “Pretty Boy Swag” days. A follow-up single to her smash hit “Thank U, Next,” Grande’s outer good girl gets replaced by her inner savage as she sings “Been through some bad sh*t, I should be a sad b***h/Who woulda thought it'd turn me to a savage?/Rather be tied up with cuffs and not strings/Write my own checks like I write what I sing.”

Instead of feeling like an inauthentic nosedive into edgier music, “7 Rings” fits Grande like a glove as a testament to her evolution.

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New Music: Billi Phene Drops 'Love Crimes' Off Of Forthcoming EP

Billi Phene started as a background singer for Rihanna, but since then, she has emerged as a solo entity who is read to take the world by storm on her own accord.

The Bronx-born singer and songwriter recently released her first single off of her forthcoming EP, which is expected to drop in the summer. "Birthed from the ashes of an explosive breakup, 'Love Crimes' is an unapologetic declaration," says a press release for the song, which became available on streaming services Friday, Jan. 11. "Envisioned as an interrogation room confession, it tells the story of emotional self sacrifice."

The artist, who cites her influences as David Bowie, Bjork, Beyonce and Lady Gaga as some of her influences, says that she's always trying to push the envelope. Her lyrics range from mysterious to dangerous to playing with the boundaries of sex.

“I’m always down for edgier soundscapes," she continues. "It’s the story of being nonconformist, and not fitting into any pigeon hole that seems to inform my lyrics and musical choices. It comes from my truest self. Maybe my music can encourage others to do the same...to be different, to be honest with themselves for once.”

Listen to "Love Crimes" below.

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