New Music Tuesday
words by Erika Alvarez, Claire Chaney, & Jaycee Rockhold
Self // Noname
In the opening track of her new album, Chicago rapper Noname recites candid musings about listeners’ response to the songs within it. “Maybe this the album you listen to in your car,” she starts. Her imagination unravels against a smooth instrumental background that’s reminiscent of 90s jazz, providing a clean slate for her flowing rhymes. Although she obsesses over reception, she eventually admits: “Nah actually this is for me.”
WEIGHT // BROCKHAMPTON
We'd be remiss if we failed to mention the release of BROCKHAMPTON's Iridescence. They've captured the attention of so many fans, listeners, and music critics alike, especially with tracks like "WEIGHT." An emotional exploration of Kevin Abstract's sexual evolution, it's heartfelt and striking. Not exactly the "boyband" track we've come to associate them with -- but that's not a bad thing. It's a moment of pause. As the tempo picks up, Joba and Dom McLennon add their two cents on their rise to fame and all the changes that come with being in a group like this one. It's striking in its subtlety...hard for a boyband of 10+ members to accomplish.
Slow Wake Up Sunday Morning // Mountain Man
Mountain Man has just released Magic Ship - their first album in eight years. Amelia Meath (aka half of Sylvan Esso) and her former folk trio have rebanded for this stunning release. It's a far cry from the yell of a mountain man, rather, the whisper of soft melodies and harmonies carry each track fluidly to the next. "Slow Wake Up Sunday Morning" captures us, kind of like warm light pushing through the blinds on a lazy Sunday. It's delicate and strong. A sweet surprise for our release radar.
Big Lie // Joyce Manor
Grapefruit // Closing State ft. Meedium Unclee
I’m a huge fan of nostalgic pop, and Closing State is one of those nostalgic pop projects I’ve previously never heard of but I wish I had. After finding them on a bedroom pop Reddit thread, I’ve grown rather impartial to “Grapefruit”, a soothing, inventive track that opens with a strong bass line and closes with dreamily layered vocals and cymbals that remind me of waves crashing on the shoreline. It gives me a similar feeling to when I first listened to Teen Suicide or Elvis Depressedly, a sort of happy-sad that can only be satisfied by listening to more happy-sad songs.
The walker // Christine and the Queens
"The walker," a single off of Christine and the Queens' newest album, is a dreamy synth-pop reflection about desire and violence. The song, which opens with a heavy drum beat, is the english-language version of the album’s french song titled “La marcheuse.” In “The walker,” the singer aims to challenge the concept of gender roles as she admits: "this is how I chose to talk, with some violent hits." This beautiful track, with its flowing melody and soft-spoken bluntness, is only a small taste of Christine and the Queens’ extensive new album.