Dope Aural: The August Underground

If you’re reading this, I’m willing to bet that you are somewhat social media-savvy and have heard all about the controversial antics surrounding the roll-out of Nicki Minaj’s latest album Queen.   We are still vibing to tracks from Drake’s album Scorpion that continues to control the airwaves and streaming spins.  The rest of August’s music landscape has been smothered by huge album releases from Ariana Grande, Travis Scott, and other artists.

With all of this month’s commotion, it’s not that easy for newer or lesser-known artists to get some shine on their new projects. So while Nicki is busy comparing herself to Harriet Tubman, I would like to introduce 15 albums and EP’s that seemed to go underground this month. Just click the album art and take a listen to find your new fave.

H.E.R. – I Used To Know Her: The Prelude (EP)
Blood Orange – Negro Swan
VanJess – Silk Canvas
Santigold – I Don’t Want: The Gold Fire Sessions
The New Respects – Before the Sun Goes Down
Leon Thomas – Genesis
Camille Thurman – Waiting for the Sunrise
Diana Gordon (formerly Wynter Gordon) – Pure (EP)
Traci Braxton – On Earth
Queen Naija – Queen Naija (EP)
Bobby Brackins – To Kill For
Bas – Milky Way
Stefflon Don – SECURE
Baka Not Nice – 4Milli

Don’t forget to check out August’s playlist Love, Light & Lemondrops and follow me on Spotify here for access to more music mixes.


Trey Payadue is a contributing blogger and curator of music for The Black Unicorn Project. He was raised on the west bank of the New Orleans Metropolitan Area in the small town of Marrero, Louisiana. Brought up in the Black Catholic church, Trey was completely immersed in New Orleans music and Black culture through local fairs and famous celebrations like Mardi Gras, New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, and the Essence Fest. He was also exposed to various styles of music, such as gospel, pop, rock, funk, hip-hop, bounce and his first love, rhythm & blues, at a young age. His inherent love and appreciation, paired with his exposure to New Orleans Culture and events, ignited an infectious passion for music. Trey quickly became known as “The Music Man”, amateur house party DJ and the mixtape go-to guy for new music. Currently, Trey juggles a 9-5 while moonlighting as a curator of good music, a patron of popular music and Black culture, and a student of where all three intersect. Follow him on Instagram & Twitter @SumthinSevere and get access to shared playlists on Spotify.

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