Song You Need to Know

Fiona Apple has been pretty elusive in the music world for the past seven years, aside from a few live performances and Tumblr posts. Though her contribution is more source material and harmonies here, there’s something satisfying about hearing the venerable singer-songwriter team with young newcomer and fan King Princess for a cover of Apple’s […]

Bubblegum bridges don’t typically offer dissertation-worthy sociological commentary, but that’s what you’ll find in “Capacity,” the brand-new single from Brooklyn-based indie pop-rock band Charly Bliss. “I was raised an East Coast witch/Like doing nothing’s sacrilegious,” Eva Hendricks sings, condensing a generation of over-scheduled middle-class upbringing into a few short pop hooks. “Triple overtime ambitious/Sentimental, anxious […]

When Phoebe Bridgers and Conor Oberst conceived their debut album as , they tried to avoid, as Oberst put it, anything “too tender and folky.” One good way to do that: Sing about living in a private hell and showering at the Bates Motel over rollicking, gold-dusted jangle, as they do on the album’s first […]

“Rare Beauty,” a standout track from Joe Lovano’s new album Trio Tapestry, starts with a deep, resonant tom-tom rumble from drummer Carmen Castaldi. Lovano’s tenor saxophone and Marilyn Crispell’s piano enter with a snaking, up-and-down line, which Castaldi accompanies and answers. The way the instruments swirl together, intuitively tracing out the chant-like theme without settling […]

Yebba Smith’s gospel roots bleed through her single “Evergreen,” a slow-burning ballad full of mettle and longing. It’s over a year old now, but very worth revisiting — especially as Smith gets ready to contend at the 2019 Grammy Awards for another song, her PJ Morton collaboration “How Deep Is Your Love,” which is up […]

Last year, Crudo Means Raw reached Number One on Spotify’s viral chart in Colombia with “La Mitad De La Mitad.” The track’s appeal was immediate — a slippery, live-sounding bass line rubbed against sharp, terse raps — and widespread: When Crudo Means Raw posted a screenshot of Spotify’s chart on Instagram, J Balvin was among […]

It is generally bad news whenever a pop star decides to bless us with an earthy, strummed version of their new club anthem. So here’s a surprise: Rita Ora’s electropop song “Let You Love Me” set to acoustic guitar is a delight. Without all the clutter, it’s a folk-pop song about the bittersweetness of following […]

The day after he won Best Urban Album at the Latin Grammys, J Balvin released what might be his fiercest single of the year: “Reggaeton,” on which he honors many of the artists from reggaeton’s first wave of crossover over a decade ago. It helps that Balvin now works regularly with the producer Tainy, who […]

Break-up songs rarely make it to the fifth stage of grief. Our recovery processes live in the stages of denial and anger, while our greatest art simmers in the space between anger and bargaining. If art is therapy, and acceptance is the stage that indicates the therapy has been successful, then that explains why so […]

The opening, lilting guitars of “Roseate,” the first single from Greek-American singer Ioanna Gika’s upcoming debut solo LP of the same name, may make you wonder why she’s on tour with beloved indie metal group Deafheaven. “Goodbye / In waves the message rang through the sea,” Gika sings in a half-coo, half-lament. “The pelicans froze in […]

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