Tonight, Devonté Hynes will lead his project, Blood Orange, in the second show of a stand at Harlem’s legendary Apollo Theater with several guests, in charitable performances for Opus 118 Harlem School of Music. Along with the matinee performance this afternoon, Hynes’ two shows at the Apollo were highly anticipated and, as such, sold out almost as quickly as a Bruce Springsteen concert. For the latter, timelessness is an accepted standard; for the former, critical acclaim has become his typical accompaniment, and the Apollo shows should stand to be something of a turning point for Hynes in terms of popular recognition, even in the face of his highly-touted collaboration with Carly Rae Jepsen earlier this year, “All That,” which he co-wrote, and the Saturday Night Live appearance which followed.
Before you go jettisoning yourself into superstardom at the Apollo, however, you must prepare yourself for the endeavor. On Thursday night, in a secret show at Baby’s All Right in Brooklyn, Hynes did just that, with an exclamation point.
We here at TwH are not in the business of declaring something as THE Song of the Summer – there are a ton of other places for that. We’re just here to guide you to some songs you might want to add to your Spotify, Tidal or that little upstart with its own live, actual radio station, for the summer. We’ll give you updates as the summer progresses.
It’s the middle of the summer, and temperatures have risen to the point where it’s either barely bearable or torturous. Basketball is out, the U.S. Women’s National Team brought us a World Cup, and now we’re just left with the slow burn of baseball’s languorous pace. We’re nearing the dog days, but the music churned out since Memorial Day has been anything but a slow roll. Here are some tracks to keep you cool in the unforgiving broil of the mid-summer sizzle.
Spacebomb founders Dean Christesen, Jesse Medaries and Matthew E. White (Courtesy of Ash Daniel)
Like Berry Gordy’s Motown, Matthew E. White’s vision started in a house – the attic, to be specific. His vision was a modern update of Gordy’s pragmatism: music would be recorded efficiently, economically and communally with a house band made up of academically-trained musicians living in Richmond, Virginia. The name of this outline was Spacebomb, and its first result was White’s 2012 release Big Inner, a surprise critical darling that originated as a sort of advertisement for the label. Now, with the label’s release of Natalie Prass’ eponymous debut and his follow-up, Fresh Blood, Spacebomb is having a moment reminiscent of Memphis in the ’60s and Philadelphia in the ’70s.