Kendrick Lamar has become such a big deal over the past year or so that any name associated with his automatically gets props. SZA is a young, up-and-coming artist from New Jersey and she recently signed to Kendrick’s label TDE (Top Dawg Entertainment). To say that this girl is "dope" or "talented" would be a gross understatement. She is a breath of fresh air in a pop culture universe that generally encourages women to be either half-naked and talented, or fully-naked and talentless before they start getting recognition. From what we’ve seen and heard of SZA she is a true musician, with her own unique style that she has held onto thus far (and she is neither half-naked or fully-naked). If she must be compared to anyone, she could be aligned with someone like Solange, and she’s got a voice reminiscent of Tweet (remember "Call Me"?) There’s even a little Corinne Bailey Rae in there too, and folks have even been comparing her to the great Frank Ocean.
Check out her latest video below for "Teen Spirit," which premiered on Vogue last month. And get to experience more of her music HERE. With the right backing — and maybe a feature or two from her label mate Kendrick — we’re hoping that SZA is the next big thing.
Getty/Roger KisbyInitially scheduled for release as far back as 2010, Sky Ferreira's debut album had been delayed so many times that it had almost taken on mythical status. Launched by her label as the next Britney, her electro pop-inspired first attempt instead dribbled out as an E.P. Despite releasing one of the finest singles of last year, "Everything Is Embarrassing," her second genre-hopping stab suffered the same fate. And even though her belated full-length first studio effort, Night Time, My Time finally hit iTunes last week, it still remains unavailable anywhere else.Thankfully for the 21-year-old, its twelve tracks prove that all the years of being stuck in development hell haven't been for nothing, even if the majority are likely to baffle the few who previously bought into her hipster-pop sound.Indeed, you have to wonder what the team who wanted to mould her into the next teen-pop starlet would make of "Omanko," a scuzzy slice of synth-punk named after a Japanese slang word for female genitalia, and the title track, a brilliantly creepy David Lynch-esque wave of ghostly vocals and doom-laden drones which opens with the line, "I'm useless and I know it."But that's not to say that Ferreira has entirely abandoned her pop sensibilities. "I Blame Myself" is an impressively self-aware piece of bubblegum electro which accepts that her career may have been hindered because of her sometimes questionable extra-curricular behavior. Lead single "You're Not The One" is a hook-laden gothic number which recalls The Cure at their 80s commercial peak, while "24 Hours" and "Love In Stereo" are the kind of swoonsome new wave numbers you'd expect to hear over the closing credits of a John Hughes Brat Pack movie.Following her party girl persona, string of modelling contracts and recent drugs bust, Ferreira was in danger of becoming more renowned for her lifestyle than her music. However, Night Time, My Time proves at last that there's some substance to her style.