Great music can be a challenge to find these days.

 The radio bludgeons you with a short loop of successful monotony, popular music blogs revel in the esoteric, streaming music playlists are made by robots, and you're left wondering WHERE HAVE ALL THE GOOD TUNES GONE?!

Allow us to offer the road map to music that doesn't suck.

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Travis Mendes - 10 Years

Travis Mendes - 10 Years

- 10 years -

Now baby, don't you understand
I'm doing the best I can
But you don't give a damn
No, you don't give a damn

10 Years is the first of 3 tracks on Travis' latest EP Closure, and it grooves so hard! The track was produced by longtime collaborator Mylon Hayde, who is a master at creating engaging beats that keep you hooked for the whole duration, and this one is no different. The vocal distortion and the record hiss on the sample give 10 Years a layer of grime that really amplifies the emotion of the story. The turntables punctuate the track tastefully as if to break it up into chapters with scratch riffs and slowdowns. Of course the real star of this track is Travis' vocal performance. Even if the lyrics were in a language that was foreign to you, Travis' delivery would leave you feeling exactly the way you'd feel if it was your relationship that had ended after 10 years. The lyrics are potent and the performance couldn't fit them better.

At 2:30 This jam slips into an outro that serves as a perfect conclusion.

I'm tryna be your man
Just a king with a queen who left me with a heavy crown
Now I must proceed
Must proceed, must proceed

10 Years has been in regular rotation for me since it came out last month. The brevity of this EP is a cruel tease, but I'm sure we aren't too far off from a longer release from Travis Mendes.

 Travis Mendes -  Closure EP

Travis Mendes - Closure EP

-Travis Mendes-

Travis just wrapped up his second tour playing with fellow songwriter and collaborator Jon Bellion. The Human Condition Tour was such a success that they're doing it again starting in October. You can find those dates here. Before Bellion, Travis was the frontman for a band called Beyond This Point. Unfortunately it seems that their releases have mostly been scrubbed from the internet with the exception of their youtube channel which features this video. It's a damn shame because in 2010 they dropped a mixtape entitled This Is A Mixtape?! that was AWESOME. Fortunately most of those dudes are still making music together because they're in Jon Bellion's live band.

As a vocalist Travis is a powerhouse. As a songwriter he's had a hand in crafting a respectable number of ear worms, even if most of them are no longer available to the public. The Closure EP is sick, as are his collaborations with Jon Bellion, including the single Guillotine off The Human Condition album. Keep an eye out for the name Travis Mendes. This dude is going to be in your speakers a lot!

If you dig this tune check out:

Jon Bellion, Blaque Keyz, J Dilla, Anderson .PaakHiatus Kaiyote, and Sampha

(all links go to youtube videos that stand as the best representation of the artist so you don't have to go hunting for music that doesn't suck)

Alabama Shakes - Gimme All Your Love

Alabama Shakes - Gimme All Your Love

Tera Melos - Melody 3

Tera Melos - Melody 3