August 2012

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Old School, New School: A Hip-Hop Back to School Playlist

Tomorrow, it’s officially September, which means one thing: Back to school. Whether you’re going back to your old school or starting at a new school, you’re going to need a killer playlist, so we thought, “Why not appeal to both?”

The playlist above comes in pairs of two: an old school hip-hop classic, followed by a new school hip-hop artist who continued their tradition. Talk about backpack rap!

∞  August 31, 2012 — 10:00AM


Preview Sondre Lerche’s New Live Album, Bootlegs, Only on Rdio

Sondre Lerche - Bootlegs

Through the years, Norwegian singer-songwriter Sondre Lerche has gleefully swapped genres: folk-pop, lounge, rock, and jazz. On his new live album, Bootlegs, Lerche takes a breather and looks back on all the territory he’s covered, playing songs like “Two Way Monologue,” “Phantom Punch,” and “Modern Nature.”

The live album drops next week, but Bootlegs is on Rdio right now, a week before its official release. Turn the house lights down and the stage lights up, then press play:

MusicNew Music Weekly

New Music Tuesday - August 28, 2012


There’s a distinct hip-hop flavor to this week’s new releases — Philly rap vet Beanie Sigel and Detroit supergroup Slaughterhouse both have new albums for you to hear. Of course, there’s more: Fleet Foxes offshoot Poor Moon and party-starting DJ Dan Deacon both have new ones, too, and the Jackson 5 have released a compilation of rarities for the completist in you.

For more, listen to the weekly New Music Tuesday playlist and the rest of this week’s new albums in the Rdio New Releases. Consult our playlist notes below for highlights.

Playlist Notes

  • Wild Nothing - Nocturne
    The fey indie-poppers bring more muscle to their melodies on their second album, but that doesn’t mean they’ve sacrificed their ‘80s atmosphere and mystique.

  • Divine Fits - A Thing Called Divine Fits
    The frontmen of Spoon and Wolf Parade are now Divine Fits, and it’s the best of both worlds. This is an indie supergroup not to miss.

  • Matthew Dear - Beams
    The electronic mastermind returns with Beams, his fourth full-length, a more laid back and sunny effort compared to his usual cerebral oeuvre.

  • Minus the Bear - Infinity Overhead
    The rhythm-shifting indie rock troupe’s new one is their most accessible yet, effortlessly meshing their synth-y prog leanings with straightforward rock songs.

  • Circa Survive - Violent Waves
    Screamo outfit Circa Survive has long been renowned as a killer live band, so they set out to capture that explosive sound on their new album.

∞  August 28, 2012 — 10:00AM


Rdio Exclusive: Get a sneak peek of Chamberlin’s New EP a Week Early


Early this year, Rdio users got a sneak peek into the origins of folk band Chamberlin via their Cabin Covers EP, which included covers of Passion Pit, Foster the People, and Vampire Weekend. With the release of his new EP of originals, Look What I’ve Become, you’ll get a taste of where the band’s sound is going next.

Don’t want to wait that long? Listen to the entire Look What I’ve Become EP now, only on Rdio, and let it soothe your troubled soul:


Festival Watch: LIVE at Squamish

Live at squamish

For a festival that balances music with breathtaking closeness to nature, the choice can only be LIVE at Squamish. This year, the three-day, two-stage festival, held annually in British Columbia’s beautiful Squamish Valley, will run from August 24-26. The line-up is chock full of talent from Canada and abroad: The Tragically Hip, City and Colour, The Sheepdogs, Chromeo, Mother Mother, The Airbourne Toxic Event, Kathleen Edwards, and more.

LIVE at Squamish has put together an official LIVE at Squamish 2012 playlist, perfect for blasting on your way to the show or from your backyard — as long as you’re in the great outdoors!

Influencer Spotlights

Rdio Influencer: Follow Soundway Records


If you’ve ever had your mind blown by a Soundway Records release, you know just how founder Miles Cleret felt ten years ago in Ghana, when he heard a local DJ spinning African funk, soul and blues. He was inspired to start Soundway, and since then, the label has released albums and compilations featuring genres from all over the world: afro-beat, funk, highlife, ethio-jazz, molam, calypso, cumbia, champeta, biguine, and latin-jazz.

The label has traditionally been known as the go-to for reissues of out-of-print albums that, in some cases, were never released outside of their native countries, and has focused on modern DJ culture and dance-music. 2012 finds Soundway in a new frame of mind, shifting from exclusively reissuing albums of the past to pushing music into the future. New albums like Ondatropica, on which modern DJ Quantic and veteran Colombian musician Mario Galeano collaborated, demonstrate the kind of forward-thinking releases that the label is pursuing this year.

Be sure to follow Soundway Records on Rdio to hear all of the label’s recent and forthcoming releases, including those by Batida, Edzayawa, and KonKoma, the latter of which can be heard below.


The Polaris Record Club returns to Rdio


The Polaris Music Prize is an annual award bestowed upon the Best Canadian album of the past year, from June to June, based on artistic merit alone. At the end of that period, an initial long list of 40 eligible albums is announced; in July, those 40 are pared down to just ten. The winner is decided by a panel of Canadian journalists, media figures, and musicians, and is chosen regardless of genre, sales, or record label.

Rdio has once again joined with the Polaris Music Prize to power a series of nominated album streams we call the Polaris Record Club. Starting today, August 21, the Polaris website will offer 24-hour full-album streams from the Short List, courtesy of Rdio. Every week, listeners can hear two new albums on the site, leading up to the Polaris Gala event on September 24 in Toronto.

But, you can listen anytime on Rdio to the nominated artists and albums, which include:

The award was established in 2006. Past winners have included Final Fantasy’s He Poos Clouds, Caribou’s Andorra, and Fucked Up’s The Chemistry of Common Life.

The first album of this year’s Polaris Record Club is Cadence Weapon’s Hope In Dirt City. The Edmonton, Alberta native is known for experimenting with the rap formula, using sparse, austere soundscapes and out-there electronic as beats for his unique flow and intelligent lyrics, but Hope is his most consistent album to date. The artist melds funk, soul, electronic, rock, and a myriad other genres to create a wholly unique album that represents the apex of an already formidable discography. Listen to it below:

The next album to be streamed is Cold Specks’ I Predict A Graceful Explosion, on August 23. We'll continue to preview the albums nominated for the Polaris Music Prize after that. For now, listen to Cadence Weapon and follow Polaris on Rdio, listen to their exclusive playlists, and be sure to check out for all award-related info.

∞  August 21, 2012 — 11:00AM

MusicNew Music Weekly

New Music Tuesday - August 21, 2012


Most New Music Tuesdays yield something good for lovers of every genre, and this one is no exception: electronic pop outfit Yeasayer, rap mogul Dj Khaled, soul-pop chanteuse Jessie Ware, retro-pop indie troupe Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti, and bluesman Ry Cooder all have new albums out this week.

Not your cup o’ joe? Listen to the weekly New Music Tuesday playlist and the rest of this week’s new albums in the Rdio New Releases, and consult our playlist notes below for more of the week’s new tunes.

Playlist Notes

  • Trey Songz - Chapter V
    The R&B songwriter’s fifth album features T.I., Lil Wayne, Young Jeezy, Rick Ross, and Meek Mill. Songz is a little older and wiser than he was on his last album — hear him wax soulful now.

  • Owl City - The Midsummer Station
    The fourth album by the synth-pop wunderkind expands his palette to include rock and trance sounds, among others.

  • The Darkness - Hot Cakes
    The fun-loving UK hair-metal outfit that believed in a thing called love try their hand at rock anthems and power-pop on their new album.

  • Bloc Party - Four
    The fourth album by the UK post-punk quartet finds them using synths and guitars in straightforward rock songs that go for emotion over the experimentation of their previous full-length.

  • David Guetta - “She Wolf (Falling to Pieces)”
    The house music impresario’s new single features the yearning vocals of Australian singer Sia, and builds to an explosive chorus.

∞  August 21, 2012 — 10:00AM


An Rdio Exclusive: Hear YouTube Sensation All About Maggie’s Debut a Week Early


Dundas, Ontario singer Maggie Szabo started posting videos of her singing on YouTube under the name All About Maggie just over a year ago. Now, after amassing over 2,500,000 views, she’s about to release her debut album, Now Hear Me Out.

The album features Szabo’s original songs, all sung in her peppery alto croon. It’s out next week, but you can hear it here and now, only on Rdio. Listen to All About Maggie’s debut below:


Hear an Rdio-only track on DJ Shadow’s MPC Era tracks


Revered producer and songwriter DJ Shadow’s newest project is something special. The MPC Era archival project is Shadow’s collection of beats and songs from the years surrounding 1996’s classic Endtroducing..., when he was using only an AKAI MPC-60 sampling drum machine, two turntables, and Pro Tools to make his music. MPC Era is available from but it's on Rdio now, featuring the Rdio-only bonus tune, “Bigger Beats.” You won’t find it anywhere else but below:

Follow DJ Shadow on Rdio to keep up with his Collection.