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House Playlist: Beastie Boys, Katy B, & Sade

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<em>House</em> Playlist: Beastie Boys, Katy B, & Sade

[Editor’s Note: House Playlist is a series dedicated to highlighting our favorite new singles, leaked songs, and album tracks. Found something we should hear? Let us know!]

Beastie Boys, “Make Some Noise.” “Make Some Noise” is your archetypal Beastie Boys tune, with the three MCs trading verses at a breakneck pace in their inimitable punchy style. The track also boasts their funkiest instrumental since the Check Your Head days, infusing The Mix-Up’s fuzzy jazz with some much-needed dynamism. Once again, it appears as though the Beasties are operating outside of hip-hop’s voguish trappings: no ridiculously muffled basslines, no ’80s synths, no topical buzzwords. “Make Some Noise” is three seasoned veterans waxing lyrical on everything and nothing with the energy and fervor of men half their age. Huw Jones

Katy B, “Hard to Get.” The closing song on Katy B’s fantastic On a Mission bears all the trademarks of a classic chill-out track: lounge-y keyboards, soothing synth pads, even crickets. And then the deep house beats kick in before the track dares to stretch its limber limbs even further back, with horn stabs straight out of the Salsoul Orchestra’s “Ooh, I Love It (Love Break).” “Hard to Get” dances dangerously close to dated (the album is filled with anything but the “next level ideas” the U.K. singer shouts out toward the end of the song), but instead plays like a breath of fresh air amid a rhetorical dance floor littered with Eurotrash. Sal Cinquemani

Sade featuring Jay-Z, “The Moon and the Sky.” Frequent Drake collaborator Noah “40” Shebib breathes new life into what was otherwise a forgettable album opener via a percussion-dominated beat where his trademark synths lay incidental. His decision to isolate the quick lyric “Ain’t gon’ let you go” and use it to bookend Sade’s verses proves crucial; by treating the line like a sample, Shebib removes all the smooth-jazz varnish that kept the original sounding too-slick. Though he’s more mogul than MC these days, Jay-Z turns in a fine verse, all wordplay about celestial bodies and parenthood. Still, it’s Shebib’s production married to Sade’s supple vocals that steals the light. Ross Scarano