1.Triple F Life is Waka Flocka Flame's second album, or something like his 352nd if you count mixtapes. In this case, we probably should — 2010's Flockaveli was supposed to be a mixtape, too, until somebody on Team Waka convinced him it was retail-worthy. This was smart. Flockaveli was a great album because it felt like a mixtape — ragged, performatively surly, unconcerned with things like variety or themes or words or marketing-minded cameo-player recruitment. Only the pixelated oral-sex jam "No Hands," with Trey Songz Roscoe Dash droning the hook like a man exhorting a Svedka robot to override its gag-reflex circuit, betrayed an awareness of pop radio's existence.
The singer, occasional rapper, and eldest member of hip-hop angst collective Odd Future (OFWGKTA), Frank Ocean, released a song this past Friday, titled "Pyramids," from his highly anticipated debut album Channel Orange.
A few things about this song:
It's very clever. So clever, in fact, that all of the following are referenced, alluded to, or explicitly stated in the lyrics: Cleopatra, Mark Antony, the Pyramids, Samson, Isis, the skin complexion and controversial ancestral history of Egyptians, mummification, the Battle of Actium, Adam and Eve, Ra, The Luxor Las Vegas, pimps, prostitutes, and motel rooms with only VHS players.
There will be an unusual spike in births in about nine months. Am I saying this song might cause pregnancy? No. I'm saying this song definitely causes pregnancy.
This song is very good. Regardless of the genre, it's one of the better sung songs I've heard in quite some time.
All of these aspects of "Pyramids" are important as far as its staying power, but none of them are what stood out the most. What did?
For no particularly discernible reason, this morning saw the arrival of new tracks from three of the great long-running indie-rock acts working today: brooding sentimentalists The Walkmen, spooky droners Liars, and knotty harmonizers Dirty Projectors. And because we here at Grantland are all about streamlining your indie-rock consumption experience, we now present all three bangers, in one place.