Mitski, "Two Slow Dancers"


Mitski "Two Slow Dancers" Be The Cowboy (out 08.17 on Matador) Every slow dance with someone you care about feels like a moment suspended in time. I mean, that's the point, right? Your hands are tied, your bodies are connected, and even your gaze is limited. Mitski, the fantastic New York songwriter, Read more

Future, "Hate the Real Me"


Future "Hate the Real Me" Beastmode 2 (out now on Epic) The peak of a quietly excellent year, Future goes super deep on his worthy follow-up to 2015's legendary "Beast Mode" tape. Of all its stirring moments, nothing emotionally hits harder than its last track, as Future pours his heart out over Read more

The Round-Up: The Best Songs of 2018 (So Far...)


Somehow, some fucking way, 2018 is more than half over. And though it might feel like I always say this, I think this was the toughest list I've had to make yet. There's been an overwhelming number of exciting, vital new voices popping up and plenty of fantastic follow-ups Read more

Images & Words: The 1975, "Give Yourself A Try"


The 1975 "Give Yourself A Try" A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships (out in October on Dirty Hit) Though it's been out for about two weeks, I've listened to the Manchester quartet's new single roughly two million times. Compositionally, it's totally unremarkable. Built around a repetitive, simplistic guitar riff and three chords, Read more

Images & Words: The Rhythm Method, "Chin Up"


The Rhythm Method "Chin Up" Digital Single Every two years*, I get afflicted with the same illness. It usually starts up a few weeks before every major international football tournament and lasts until somewhere around the quarterfinals. Who knows how long my believesthatEnglandcanwinthewholething-itis will last for this year, but I'm hoping that Read more

The 1975, “TooTimeTooTimeTooTime”

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The 1975
“TooTimeTooTimeTooTime”
A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships (out in October on Dirty Hit)
Though it lacks the drama of the stunning “Love It If We Made It” and the bite of “Give Yourself a Try,” the 1975’s weightless new single showcases the playful side that has been one of their core elements since the beginning. Slathered in auto-tune, frontman Matty Healy blithely details the games that we play in the early days of a relationship. The new record is meant to be all about modern romance, and this one is as relatable as they come.

Images & Words: City Girls, “Period (We Live)”

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City Girls
“Period (We Live)”

Period (out now on QC)
Though JT, one half of the exciting Miami duo, is behind bars on a minor fraud charge, City Girls aren’t planning on slowing down. This week, they dropped a video for the drumline-driven title track from their incredible debut. The clip highlights the rich South Florida culture that they represent and highlights the effortless charisma and endless bars that make them a good bet to outlast JT’s legal setback.

Mitski, “Two Slow Dancers”

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Mitski
“Two Slow Dancers”

Be The Cowboy (out 08.17 on Matador)
Every slow dance with someone you care about feels like a moment suspended in time. I mean, that’s the point, right? Your hands are tied, your bodies are connected, and even your gaze is limited. Mitski, the fantastic New York songwriter, captures the transportive moment of a last dance — the way it can silence even life’s cruelest realities for a few minutes. An absolutely magical ballad.

Images & Words: Ruston Kelly, “Faceplant”

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Ruston Kelly
“Faceplant”

Dying Star (out 09.07 Rounder)
If you’re like me and have a soft spot for early Ryan Adams (specifically, Whiskeytown), Ruston Kelly’s sadsack alt-country will locate it and stick its talons straight through it. “Faceplant,” the fourth single off his second big project, is an honest, unflinching look at a time in his life where he was getting fucked up and fucking up, delivered through dusty, languid acoustic guitars. Though it’s far from a new sound, Kelly is a quality storyteller and songwriter and has a rich, affecting voice.

Future: “Translator”

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Future
“Translator”

Digital Single
Fresh off one of his best projects, Fewtch is keeping the momentum going with a pair of tasty loose singles. Though “Scammalot” is a solid schemer’s anthem, the ultra-smooth “Translator” is the pick. The delirious vocal melodies recall a few of his classics — “Neva End” and “Magic” —  and this cut doesn’t nothing to dampen the feeling that the big man is well and truly back.

Images & Words: DJ Khaled, “No Brainer” (f/ Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance the Rapper)

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DJ Khaled
“No Brainer” (f/ Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance the Rapper)
Father of Asahd (out in 2018 on Epic)
Though the perennial Dad of the Year’s new star-studded single has been panned by some joyless outlets, “No Brainer” is the exact kind of breezy, summer blockbuster that Khaled and co. are so apt at cranking out. The Michael Bay of music, Khaled’s not going to be winning any gold statuettes with this one, but his A-list cast comes through with solid performances and enough easy charisma to keep his worldwide audience hooked. He really is THE BEST (at what he does).

Images & Words: Foxing, “Nearer My God”

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Foxing
“Nearer My God”

Nearer My God (out 08.10 on Triple Crown)
Though the St. Louis quartet has never hid their sonic ambitions, it feels like they’re REALLY shooting for the stars on their hyped third LP. First single, “Slapstick,” hinted at that, but the disc’s title track really underlines their widescreen ambitions. Vocalist Conor Murphy puts forth a sky-scraping vocal performance here, stretching his pained tenor right along with the ecstatic arrangement which wouldn’t sound out of place on an m83 record.

Images & Words: Blood Orange, “Jewelry” & “Charcoal Baby”

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Blood Orange
“Jewelry” / “Charcoal Baby”

Negro Swan (out 08.24 on Domino)
Devonté Hynes returns with the first two tracks from his upcoming fourth LP as Blood Orange. Both tracks are affecting slices of the unique sound that he’s crafted, which features pieces of soul, R&B, indie rock, jazz, and pop. Though I’m trying not to get too carried away at this stage, both tracks feel important and could be big pieces of a truly special collection.

Images & Words: Tyler, The Creator x A$AP Rocky, “Potato Salad”

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Tyler, The Creator x A$AP Rocky
“Potato Salad”
Digital Single
This super easy new single reminds me of two of my favorite videos: Odd Future’s freewheeling “Oldie” and A$AP Mob’s Pitchfork freestyle. Though both guys are capable of crafting thought-provoking music (especially, Tyler), they are both so potent when they’re having fun on toss-off tracks like this. I’d love to hear an entire project with the two of them going bar for bar.

070 Shake, “Accusations”

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070 Shake
“Accusations”

Digital Single (G.O.O.D. Music)
Kanye’s G.O.O.D. Music has been around for almost 15 years and has produced exactly one bona-fide star: Travis Scott. Aside from him, you’ve got perpetual nearly man Big Sean, professional mumbler Kid Cudi, and Teyana Taylor whose biggest musical moment involved dancing in a someone else’s music video. Not great, Kanye. Not great.

For that reason, I’ve been a little slow on the 070 Shake bandwagon. Sure, her performances on Kanye’s turgid new album were just about the only bright spots, but we’ve seen plenty of newcomers steal a track on a Kanye project then never get anywhere near that again (hi, Desiigner?). However, this moody, starry-eyed new single is starting to convince me to get on board. Something about her voice and delivery is convincing in a way that someone like Post Malone could never be, but her sing-song delivery scratches many of the same angsty itches that has made Post such a star. And that’s good news for G.O.O.D. Music.

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