Tuesday, 23 April 2013
Single of the Week: Thundercat - "Heartbreaks + Setbacks"
For many music fans (myself included, admittedly) this week's singles release schedule are dominated by two things: Record Store Day exclusives and the official (single edit) of Daft Punk's "Get Lucky". Thundercat, a.k.a. the Brainfeeder affiliated bassist, singer and composer Stephen Bruner resembles those more overt choices for a potential Single of the Week entry only in the sense that he is one) exclusively paving out a career of neo-soul that is equally influenced by the jazz fusion of artists such as Herbie Hancock and 80s television themes like the one he shares his moniker with, and two) unafraid of bringing some serious funk back into the field he associates himself with. "Heartbreaks + Setbacks" was produced by Flying Lotus and the often-overlooked Mono/Poly and together the three of them have put together a song richer in texture than even anything from Thundercat's first album The Golden Age Of Apocalypse: a lush arrangement of acoustic and electronic sounds including live (sounding, at least) drums and spacious, spacey synth patterns. However the two outlying qualities of the song are Bruner's soft, confident vocal and the dexterous notes coming from his bass guitar, mixed just high enough for it to be appreciated without taking over the song completely. If Daft Punk had instead released a single as fantastic as this last weekend there'd be twice as many people interested.