When Erykah Badu, Snoop Dogg, Suicidal Tendencies and Red Hot Chili Peppers need virtuoso bass lines for a tune or gig, they call Stephen Bruner. But the deep cosmic funk and astral soul bumps that Bruner hordes for his own releases are much more intriguing. His second album, co-produced by Flying Lotus and inspired in part by the death of Brainfeeder keyboardist Austin Peralta, takes Bruner’s handsome falsetto and dreamy songs into jazzier, more out-there terrain. In the midst of the trippy effects, hazy vocals and future-funk motifs, Bruner throws down some fascinating off-kilter pop songs. Both Oh Sheit It’s X and Heartbreaks + Setbacks tip the cap to Marvin Gaye and Frank Ocean, Bruner working his distinctive voice into the midst of soulful, harmonic hooks and sending the songs soaring to the sky. A bit of a winner.
Download: Oh Sheit It’s X, Heartbreaks + Setbacks