Lil Uzi Vert, "New Patek"


Lil Uzi Vert "New Patek" Digital Single Easily one of most joyful songs of the year, the hyperactive, hypertalented Philadelphian returns with six (6!) electric minutes of swirling, tuneful hip-hop. Over Dolan Beats' glorious crystallized piano keys and tiptoeing hi-hats, Uzi goes the fuck in as only he can, slaloming through the beat Read more

Images & Words: How To Dress Well, "Nonkilling 6 | Hunger"


How to Dress Well "Nonkilling 6 | Hunger" The Anteroom (out 10.19 on Domino) Though it was a little bit buried on my "Favorite Songs of 2018, So Far.." list, I'm extremely excited about the experimental direction Tom Krell seems to be going in on his fifth LP. This stunning two-parter pairs Read more

Wild Pink, "Mount Erie"


Wild Pink “Lake Erie” Yolk in the Fur (out now on Tiny Engines) Though I’m about six months late to the NYC trio’s outstanding second LP, I’m extremely glad that I finally found it. While their AM Radio sound has been relentlessly compared to War on Drugs, frontman John Ross is such Read more

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

Images & Words

Images & Words: Miya Folick, “Stock Image”

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Miya Folick
“Stock Image”

Premonitions (out 10.26 on Terrible)
I’m late to the LA native’s quirky sound, but “Stock Image” is simply too strong of a pop song to pass up. Folick’s elastic vocal is the obvious star of the show, but the taut, sharp arrangement catapults that voice into captivating new heights. One to watch.

Images & Words: Lana Del Rey, “Venice Bitch”

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Lana Del Rey
“Venice Bitch”

Norman Fucking Rockwell (out this year)
Lana’s best new single in years, the freewheeling breeze of “Venice Bitch” is a welcome antidote to much of her dense, overcooked recent work. Paired with dusky, Laurel Canyon guitars, the 33 year-old delivers a low-key, yet stunning performance, dripping with all the old Hollywood nostalgia of her unassailable early material. At her best, she has this odd quality which makes clichés like “fresh out of fucks forever” and “nothing gold can stay” feel potent and poetic coming off her tongue. This is very much that.

Images & Words: How To Dress Well, “Nonkilling 6 | Hunger”

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How to Dress Well
“Nonkilling 6 | Hunger”

The Anteroom (out 10.19 on Domino)
Though it was a little bit buried on my “Favorite Songs of 2018, So Far..” list, I’m extremely excited about the experimental direction Tom Krell seems to be going in on his fifth LP. This stunning two-parter pairs his evocative falsetto with a rave-y backbeat and opaque, occasionally harsh instrumentation.

If you follow his social media, you’ll know that he is deep into uncompromising, blistering techno, and he does such a good job of marrying those influences with his love of heartfelt pop music on this track. His tender vocals immediately soften the rough edges and inject palpable humanity into the mix. Though it may not appeal to genre purists (I can hear the FACT writers sharpening their daggers), it’s an exciting, unique sound and a more natural home for Krell than the streamlined pop of his last album.

Images & Words: Phoebe Bridgers, “Scott Street”

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Phoebe Bridgers
“Scott Street”

Stranger In The Alps (out now on Dead Oceans)
The mopey Angelino’s debut album was my second favorite of last year, and I’ve found myself consistently coming back to it in 2018. One of its sweetest moments gets a lighthearted visual that captures the subtle humor and loneliness of the track. The 24 year-old begins the story walking through Echo Park, disassociated from herself and her surroundings. And the clip mirrors that odd feeling by casting a bunch of different Pheobes who all come together to ride an open-top bus through the city, bash her effigy into oblivion, and play trampoline dodgeball.

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.

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.

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.

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