Friday, June 16, 2017

Coldplay, Demi Lovato and the rest of the best of new music Friday

Obviously the new Lorde album is the only new release you need today, but here's a few other tracks worth checking out once you get bored of it on Wednesday afternoon.

1) Coldplay - All I Can Think About Is You
Coldplay are uncharacteristically mellow and muffled in this love song, taken from their new Kaleidoscope EP. It's hardly Chris Martin's finest lyric (he compares himself to a shoe), but Guy Berryman's sinewy, agile bassline is worth the price of admission alone.

2) Jax Jones - Instruction (ft Demi Lovato & Steflon Don)
"If you're the supreme, then I'm Diana Ross," is the best worst lyric since Selena Gomez and "like the battle of Troy, there's nothing subtle here". But this song has such a massive grin plastered all over it's face that it's easy to forgive.

Musically, it's practically a carbon copy of Jax Jones' previous single, You Don't Know Me (especially in the rap-sung prechorus) but why tweak a perfect formula? A strong contender for song of the summer.

3) Arcade Fire - Creature Comfort
I admit, I was really prepared to hate this... After five albums of whining about modern things, Win Butler's "instinct that something isn't right with the human condition" is starting to look less like concern and more like misanthropy.

This song, a sort of electro nursery rhyme about suicide, contains what seems to be a particularly self-serving line about a girl who "filled up the bathtub and put on our first record". But towards the end of the song, Win clarified: "It's not painless. She was a friend of mine, a friend of mine" - and, all of a sudden, my own cyncism was punctured.

I thought Arcade Fire might have lost the power to move me. Turns out I was wrong.

4) George Ezra - Don't Matter Now
A distinctly odd comeback from George Ezra, he of the deep voice and the album inspired by a Eurorail ticket.

It's all mariachi horns and big, dopey backing vocals - as George recites a mantra about switching off from the big, bad world that Arcade Fire live in and having a nice old shindig at his place.

Maybe, given the horrors of the last month, this is just the song we need - like an Agadoo for the Trump era.

5) DJ Khaled - Wild Thoughts (ft Rihanna)
"I know you want to see me naked," sings Rihanna, in a video where she appears with her baps right out. How thoughtful of her to consider our desires in such a forthright manner. I wonder if her next song will also contain the line, "I know you'd like me to put them away once in a while and get on with the job of making incredible pop music."

Because make no mistake, this is not incredible pop music. Sure, it wears the clothes of incredible pop music - the beat from Busta Rhymes' Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Could See, and the guitar riff from Santana's Maria Maria - but the garments are as threadbare as Rihanna's blouse in the video.

6) Tove Styrke - Say My Name (acoustic)
Still an absolute tune.

7) Calvin Harris - Feels (ft Pharrell and Katy Perry)
This probably won't give Katy Perry the number one she so desperately needs right now, but Calvin's bouncy brand of diet funk is always welcome around here.

8) Hey Violet - Break My Heart
This actually came out two months ago, but Hey Violet's album was released today and contains at least five totally brilliant pop song; including one gallantly called Fuqboi.

The young band have quite an interesting back story: They were once a punk-rock project called Cherri Bomb, before they ditched their singer and signing to 5 Seconds of Summer's record label. There, they started working with Julian Bunetta, who co-wrote and produced all the good One Direction songs, and "went pop".

You can read more about the transformation on Stereogum, or just forget all that nonsense and enjoy the music. Bands are whatever you want them to be, and that's why pop music is great.

9) Jorja Smith - Teenage Fantasy
This was actually out last week, during one of my increasingly frequent lapses in blogging, but the video came out on Monday, giving me the perfect excuse to wang the song into this week's round-up.

Simply a perfect summer soul jam.

10) Dizzee Rascal - Space
As grime emerges as a full-blooded force, Dizzee comes back into the fold with this sparse and tough rap track.

"Can't find enough time to dine on rappers, all of these MCs are looking like tapas," he chides the competition. "Ain't no point in playin' it safe." Well, quite.

There you go, then. And now it is time to go back to the Lorde album. See you next week...

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