5 New Tracks You Need to Hear This Week: Frank Ocean, Blanck Mass


It’s Friday, which means we’ve come to the end of the single most barren week in the music industry’s release schedule. It’s like a snowy wasteland out there, kids! As such, we’re downscaling our regular list of 10 new tracks to hear — and, ideally, download — to five for this week, but at least they’re five good ‘uns: there’s a hitherto unreleased track from Frank Ocean (complete with an ALL CAPS lyric sheet from the man himself), along with the unexpected return of Blanck Mass, a taster from the new Low album, Dent May getting all “1999” on our collective asses, and a present from Pulp to the denizens of the good ship Coachella. Click through and get listening.

Frank Ocean – “Wiseman” The most notable track to drop this week was this unused outtake from the Django Unchained soundtrack from Frank Ocean — as per The Fader, where the track is streaming, Quentin Tarantino decided against using the song because “[Ocean] wrote a fantastic ballad that was truly lovely and poetic in every way, there just wasn’t a scene for it. I could have thrown it in quickly just to have it, but that’s not why he wrote it and not his intention. So I didn’t want to cheapen his effort.” You can stream the track right here. Also, if you’ve ever wondered what Frank Ocean’s desktop looks like, here’s your answer.

Blanck Mass — “Hellion Earth” Benjamin John Power’s album-long ode to ego death was one of the best records of last year, so we’re delighted to see that he’s still recording under the Blanck Mass moniker. This track is available for free download via Pitchfork — we’re not sure if it presages another full-length album, but we’re certainly hoping so.

Low — “Plastic Cup” Low have a new record due out in March, and it finds them working with Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy. It sounds very much like every other Low track we’ve ever heard, which is basically fine with us, although apparently — if Stereogum are to be believed, anyway — you can hear Tweedy’s imprint in “Mimi’s kick-drum sound.” If you say so, kids. Anyway, you can hear the track at NPR.

Dent May — “2099” In which Dent May sets aside his ukulele to record a 21st century answer to “1999” that’s part Marvin Gaye and part indie nerddom par excellence. It’s better than it sounds. Listen here.

Pulp — “After You” And finally, we directed your attention to this yesterday, but still, it’s worth mentioning again — mainly because we really rather liked Pulp’s oft-maligned final studio album We Love Life, and because this track dates from those sessions. The band exhumed the song on the SS Coachella last month, re-recording it with James Murphy and giving it away as a free download to all their, um, shipmates. You can hear it right here.