Puja Patel

writer

Biography
New York, NY

  • Shopping With Travi$ Scott / Photo by Krista Schlueter

    Shopping With Travi$ Scott: Houston Grills and Kanye Thrills

  • Mannie Fresh

    Q&A: Mannie Fresh Talks Bounce, Brass Bands, and Twerking for Pop

    When Mannie Fresh released his cheery 1989 single "Buck Jump Time" alongside his friend and rapper Gregory D, he didn't know it would later become known as the start of an entirely new musical movement in New Orleans. The song, a fusion of Miami bass' upbeat drums and the brassy horns that defined local street-band culture, is now commonly credited as one of the first "bounce" tracks. (It predated the genre's pick-up and popular use of the "Triggerman" beat taken from The Showboys' "Drag Rap.") With lyrics that shouted out New Orleans wards and projects and a call-and-response hook, the playful track became an iconic anthem to the then-teenager's hometown.Fresh's signature sound came from a youth influenced heavily by the sound of local jazz and school bands, an aesthetic that stayed with him even as his popularity grew.

  • Hudson Mohawke at Webster Hall, New York City, May 28, 2014 / Photo by Chad Kamenshine

    Hudson Mohawke Gets Surprise Visit From Antony Hegarty, Travi$ Scott in New York

  • Traxman

    Watch Traxman's CGI-Adorned Video for 'Ever and Always'

    In 2012 Chicago footwork innovator Traxman dropped his Da Mind of Traxman release; an album that was both a SPIN Essential and reminder that the producer was just as much of a force in the community as his Teklife brothers DJ Rashad and DJ Spinn. After a contribution to Lit City's Teklife series with The Architek, Traxman returns to Planet Mu with Da Mind of Traxman II. Out May 20, the album is a stunning sequel to its predecessor and includes highlight "Ever and Always," a track whose pulsing wall of synths coast alongside melodic horns and a signature skipping snare. Watch the CGI bombasted, Jonathan Toomey produced video for the track above.

  • King avriel

    King avriel Weaves Soulful R&B With Spoken-Word on 'Judgment Day'

    Los Angeles R&B crooner King avriel first broke out last year with her song "Freedom," a quietly bubbling track that sounded more like a manifesto. The video shows her singing softly from behind a mess of hair —"I'm still figuring out this thing called / Freedom, freedom, freedom"— as an instrumental percussion brewed underneath her words. With her newest release, "Judgment Day," due on her forthcoming, self-released album thesis, it's clear that the 23 year-old's music is inseparable from her socio-political exploration. The song comes with an outro entitled "Valley Idols" and unfolds in two parts: The first is an earnest acceptance of her specific reality while the second is a confident, spoken-word rebuttal. Listen to the song below.

  • Alabama Shakes

    Backstage Pass: Alabama Shakes' Intimate Performance at New Orleans' Preservation Hall

    In New Orleans, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band is an institution that's revered above all others. Founded in the early 1960s, the band takes their name from the tiny, legendary local venue that became a home to the city's jazz scene. The small club, located in the heart of the French Quarter, served as a meeting place and creative watering hole for local musicians who thrived through their music in an era where segregation and economic hardships ruled the deep South. In more recent years, Preservation Hall has become a place of tribute and worship, with the house band living by the same mission as they always have; to make their audience get up and dance.SPIN had the exciting opportunity to visit Preservation Hall during New Orleans' Jazz Fest as the venue hosted an intimate surprise performance with Alabama Shakes.

  • Crookers

    Hear Crookers' Wild, Churning House on 'Able To Maximize'

    Italian DJ duo Crookers whittled down from two house-loving producers to one back in 2012. Now the remaining member Francesco "Phra" Barbaglia creates aggressive, sample-heavy dance tracks for his own Ciao Records imprint. A few months ago the DJ released "Ghetto Guetta," a comical friendly jab at one of EDM's favorite superstar house DJs, and the humor remains on his newest one-off single. "Able To Maximize" is a clanky cluttering of samples —purring clicks, frantic whistles, and metalic keys— over a heavy, stomping house track. The track ping-pongs around a theme with the beat, taking on a new, slightly-altered form every few measures, as a voice looms above the chaos with the producer's driving message: "You want to be able to maximize."

  • Kelis in New York City, April 2014

    Q&A: Kelis Talks 'Milkshake,' Feminism, and Inspirational Love

    It's been difficult to peg down Kelis. In 1999, the singer and rapper entered a prospering, girl-pop R&B scene with a pink ‘fro and booty shorts, screaming "I hate you so much right now!" at a cheating ex on her first single, "Caught Out There." The song set the tone for her style; she was the girl-next-door that was not to be fucked with. Musically, her jazz-influenced, soulful rasp made her all the more relatable to a generation of urban radio listeners whose divas were singers or rappers, but hardly ever both. Kelis had a different approach. With songs like her chart-topping and coyly provocative "Milkshake," the sauntering cautionary tale "Trick Me," and bass-heavy, girl-power anthem "Bossy," she intentionally drawled her raps into melodic verse.

  • Kasper Bjørke

    Watch Kasper Bjørke's Slow-Burning Seduction Unfold on 'Rush'

    This isn't Copenhangen producer Kasper Bjørke's first time in the bedroom. The musician has released his sultry, slow-burning electronica on labels like Eskimo, Mirau, and Compost Black, a set of labels that showcase his versatility in late-night, dance-floor seduction. Here we have the video for "Rush," the first single off of his forthcoming, untitled release due this upcoming fall via hfn Records. The song is full of R&B-infected, synth-bolstered downtempo wiles. A wallowing, jazzy, lo-fi bass pushes singer Tobias Buch's soulful pleas to the front. Watch the lovelorn chemistry play out in the video above.

  • Future: The SPIN Cover Shoot

    Future: The SPIN Cover Shoot

    From the streets of Atlanta to The Wendy Williams Show, the Outkast-educated rap-and-R&B innovator Future has spent the past few years building an arsenal of hits. Now, with his sophomore LP, Honest, the man is finally reaching astronaut status. Here are photos from our SPIN cover story on the rapper, including interview excerpts compiled from the days we spent with him.

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