We hope you’re in the mood for some bangers, because this week’s best new songs are practically a banger bonanza. Bad Bunny delivering the summer anthem of Autumn 2018, complete with Drake singing in Spanish? Check. Quavo somehow linking up with Madonna to sing about champagne while also finding Cardi B along the way? Check.
Oh you thought we were done? Nope. THEY. recruiting Wiz Khalifa for a bop? Yep. Usher surprise dropping a record produced by Zaytoven with a track featuring Gunna? You betcha.
All those bangers and more make this round up of Best Tracks of the Week.
Bad Bunny – “Mia” ft. Drake
It’s been four long years since Drake, aka Champagne Papi, doled out lyrics in Spanish, and we’re thankful he’s back en Español with none other than Bad Bunny. A collaboration that has been in the works for at least a year, “Mia” is an absolute jam, one that instantly transports you to a good ol’ fashioned summer block party. With our mortal enemy climate change here to stay, we won’t be packing up our barbecues anytime soon; we’ll be blasting this one through the winter months by the looks of it. – B
Ellis – “Frostbite”
Most of us tend to look to Toronto as a well for breakout hip-hop and R&B talent, but DIY artists like Ellis (a.k.a. Linnea Siggelkow) are here to remind you that there’s so much more to the music scene if you’re willing to seek it out. Fall is the season where softcore grunge truly thrives and Ellis’ new tune certainly fits within the aesthetic despite falling under the dream pop category. You can feel the intensity behind Siggelkow’s soft voice as she poetically describes the painful experience of being stuck in an unstable and toxic relationship. Ellis’ debut EP THE FUZZ is due out on November 9. – S
Little Dragon – “Lover Chanting”
Little Dragon have always produced reliably wonderful electro-pop, but rarely have the put out something so decidedly house-inflected. “Lover Chanting,” the title track from a forthcoming EP, is downright effervescent across its five minute runtime, providing a groovy, meandering bit of neo-funk to get your feet shuffling whether you’re at home or on the dancefloor. – J
Mick Jenkins – “Understood”
Each track Mick Jenkins has released over the past few months continues to get better and better, which is no easy feat for an artist in any genre. “Understood,” taken from his upcoming sophomore album Pieces of a Man, is exemplary of his technical skills; “My fingers recently wrestled the evergreen/ Been 100 proof, the message is Everclear/ Speaking for the crew, I’m playing Miss Everdeen” is but one of many instance of his dextrous verbal abilities, and it heralds even more great things to come. – J
Quavo – “CHAMPAGNE ROSÉ” ft. Madonna & Cardi B
Just when you think the carousel of chaos that is 2018 can’t surprise you any more, something happens like Madonna singing the hook and dropping a guest verse on a Quavo club cut. The way that the Queen of Pop says ‘champagne’ is sultrier than anything we’ve heard all year, a delightful bonus to a track that already has a lot going for it, such as Cardi B referring to herself as ‘Big Mama’ and Quavo calling a girl who disappeared at night’s end a ‘David Blaine.’ This is the benchmark for how to do maximal rap correctly. – J
Ry X – “Untold”
Two years have passed since Ry Cuming has released a project under his Ry X moniker, but the time has come for him to make everyone swoon once more. His latest offering is tender to the touch, but emotionally gripping. Ry X maintains the minimalism in terms of the production which complements the whispering vocals that have a hit of sensuality. “Untold” is the lead single off his forthcoming sophomore album Unfurl which is slated to drop on February 15, 2019. – S
SASAMI – “Not The Time”
Rock and roll never died, but up until recently it’s felt a little stale. Luckily, women like Sasami Ashworth are reviving the scene and injecting it with a much-needed dose of indie goodness. The Los Angeles-based musician latest single is the kind of song that will give you an instant thrill as she delivers a blunt monologue about issues from the intimate relationships of her past behind groaning guitars. SASAMI is all you need as you watch the world as you once knew it turn into a giant dumpster fire. – S
slowthai – “Rainbow”
In hardly any time at all, slowthai has staked a claim as one of the most insightful MCs to emerge from the current British rap renaissance. “Rainbow” continues his excellent string of singles with a socially-conscious bent that never stray into overly preachy territory. This time around, slowthai manages to offer a nuanced critique of race relations, including addressing his own privilege and place in the conversation. And, of course, it helps that such weighty material is given a seriously slapping beat to match. – J
THEY. – “What I Know Now” ft. Wiz Khalifa
It seems completely insane to me that THEY. haven’t blown up yet, but I am confident their time will come. Case in point, their latest track featuring Wiz Khalifa, which manages to hit the sweet spot of pop-savvy hip-hop with just the right amount of emo. – B
Usher x Zaytoven – “Gift Shop” ft. Gunna
This week’s edition of surprise releases brings us an Usher album produced entirely by Zaytoven. A contains a mere eight tracks, but they all provide pretty effective “classic Usher brought into 2018″ vibes. “Gift Shop” is the most obvious “Usher trying to get down with the kids” song, but he completely pulls it off. He’s still doing his falsetto thing, interspersed with choppy raps reminiscent of rappers decades younger than him, notably Gunna, who comes through with a melodic verse. Also, shoutout to Zaytoven for that piano riff. Sublime. – B
Be sure to check out last week’s edition of our Best Tracks round up right here.
- Words: Jake Boyer, Bianca Giulione, Sydney Gore