Simon Vozick-Levinson
March 29, 2007 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Hot new traxx from Basement Jaxx and more

BASEMENT JAXX, ”Make Me Sweat”
”Hip-hop, soul, a little bit of punk/A little bit of crunk/A little bit of disco/Drum’n’bass, a little bit of house/A little bit electro/All of that!” Those are a few of the rhymes that ’80s rap legend Roxanne Shanté kicks on Basement Jaxx’s latest single; it’s also a fair summary of the eclectic sounds you’re likely to find crammed into a typical Jaxx track. Here, however, the London DJs are just as captivating going to work on a brutally simple house beat. (Buy it on iTunes)

These West Coast rockers haven’t changed very much since their 2001 debut: same leather jackets, same sneering attitude, same reverb-loaded garage chords. Luckily, the formula’s just as potent three albums later. This teaser track from their upcoming Baby 81 (due May 1) is a slow, bluesy stomp that ranks among their strongest material, with shades of Led Zeppelin’s ”When the Levee Breaks.” (Stream it on BRMC’s website)

HIEROGLYPHICS, ”It’s About Time”
Bay Area hip-hop has gotten a lot of press since mainstream critics discovered the ”hyphy” scene last year. But silly songs about ”going dumb” and ”ghost-riding the whip,” though often delightful, aren’t all the region has to offer, as Oakland’s Hieroglyphics crew attest. The underground collective, founded by Del tha Funkee Homosapien, has been making smart, fun music since the early 1990s, and this track, culled from their newly released rarities set Over Time, contains the catchiest critique of rap misogyny you’ll hear all week. (Buy it on iTunes)

PALEO, ”With Love”
Some songwriters are lucky to pen one or two great tunes in a lifetime; itinerant folkie David Strackany, a.k.a. Paleo, has spent the last year writing and recording ”one everyday song for every day of one year — Easter to tax day.” Naturally, they’re not all keepers, but he’s definitely come up with a few that transcend the gimmick of his ”Song Diary.” Strackany’s entry for Jan. 17 — available with all the others online for free — features wistful, impressionistic lyrics set to a perfectly lovely waltz. (Download it from Paleo’s website)

PAUL DUNCAN, ”Red Eagle”
This hip Brooklynite was born and raised below the Mason-Dixon line, which helps explain the pedal-steel twang of this excellent selection from his May-scheduled third album, Above the Trees. While the album boasts collaborations with members of Grizzly Bear, Tortoise, and other indie bands named after animals, Duncan’s smoky vocals make him the undeniable star of this one. (Download it from his label’s website)

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