We never intentionally set out to make our round up of the week's best new songs an eclectic spread, but that's, more often than not, how it goes. But even by our diverse curatorial standards, this week's bunch is a real musical smorgasbord.
We've got two primo dancefloor cuts thanks to new singles from Aphex Twin and Lindstrøm, we've got 'emo-licious' feelings from Ryan Hemsworth, incisive rap from Mick Jenkins and Good Gas, dancehall from Stefflon Don, and whatever the hell you want to categorize the supergroup Moors (featuring Atlanta's Lakeith Stanfield) as.
All those and more make this extremely eclectic edition of Best Tracks of the Week:
Aphex Twin - "T69 Collapse"
The music video accompanying the latest release from Aphex Twin comes with the addendum: "WARNING: CONTAINS STROBING." In its own way, that serves as an ideal description for the track itself. With three decades of revolutionizing electronic music under his belt, there is little left unsaid about the work of Richard D. James, but it is a delight to hear him plumb new depths of inspiration even now. The Collapse EP sounds like it will be promising. - J
ginla - "Crown II" feat. NAIMA
When we premiered this track, ginla explained how it's about learning how to let go of someone or something after shifting your perspective and fully observing a situation. The production on this tune is light and easy on the ears which complements NAIMA's angelic voice as it rises and falls into place with ginla. All in all, it's an absolute dream. - S
Good Gas - "How I Feel" ft. 2 Chainz, A$AP Ferg & FKi 1st
There is nothing quite like a good 2 Chainz verse. The Atlanta rapper has an idiosyncratic point of view that, when paired with his wildly imaginative vocabulary, delivers true poetry when paired with the right beat. Good Gas, the collaborative project engineered by FKi 1st, has provided him with just that on their latest. Where else are you going to hear such boasts as "walk in the mall, I'll buy all of ya'll?" - J
Lindstrøm - "Blinded By the LED's"
The Norwegian electronic artist's first release of the year is nothing short of a powerhouse. Across seven minutes, Lindstrøm crafts the sort of dance utopia most would spend seven hours in a club just to get a brief taste of. The title could not be more perfect; this is indeed the sonic equivalent of getting blinded in a daze, closed off on all sides by a sweaty crowd, and standing resolutely still, unable to do anything but let the walls of sound crash over you. - J
Mavi Phoenix - "Ibiza"
Austria's pop prodigy in chief gets embroiled in toxic relationships just like the rest of us; but none of ours made anything half as deliciously beat-driven as her new single "Ibiza." Ditching a lover who is "too wild" – just like the titular city – Mavi Phoenix's latest is an addictive slice of her signature pop-rap that will linger far longer than that deadbeat summer fling. - J
Mick Jenkins - "Bruce Banner"
Mick Jenkins is not playing around; "Honestly, can't nobody come for me 'cept Kendrick," he spits not even a minute into new single "Bruce Banner," before adding "and I hope you offended." It's a big boast, sure, but it takes on far more weight than you'd expect once you actually process how incredibly assured this track is – a simple, haunting beat is the canvas on which he spits a series of incredibly detailed, complex rhymes. If this is what Mick's Bruce Banner sounds like, we shudder to think of his Hulk. - J
Mitski - “Two Slow Dancers”
This track is a prime example of New Mitski sounding like Old Mitski, but in a good way. Even though the indie rock goddess insists that her forthcoming material is not meant to make us burst into tears on command, but this is one of those beautifully tragic songs that makes you want to embrace crying in public as you get nostalgic while thinking about reuniting with lovers from the past (because we've all been tempted by the fantasy). Oh, to be young and impressionable once again! - S
Moors - "Mango" ft. tUnE-yArDs
You would think there would be few musical collaborations left to truly shock us anymore, but then along comes something like Moors. The duo is comprised of actor Lakeith Stanfield (of Atlanta fame) and Hrishikesh Hirway (of the podcast Song Exploder fame), and their new single "Mango" features indie-rock act tUnE-yArDs (who scored the Stanfield-starring upcoming film Sorry to Bother You). It's a lot to process, which is not at all reflected in the song, which is quite simply, sublime. - J
Ryan Hemsworth- "Think About U" feat. Joji
Four years have flown by since your favorite Canadian producer released a new solo project, but he's been busy collaborating with other artists on their own material and running his independent label Secret Songs. Today, he officially returns with this emolicious (yes, I am coining this made-up word now) Joji-assisted sad song that will have listeners sinking deep into their feelings. "Think About U" is the lead single off Hemsworth's third album Elsewhere due out on September 21st via Secret Songs/Last Gang, and it could not get here sooner. - S
Stefflon Don - "Pretty Girl" ft. Tiggs Da Author
By any measure, this is Stefflon's year. As the first British rapper to be included among XXL's yearly Freshman Class (which, side note: how?! Did they just miss Skepta all these years, or?), all eyes are on her to deliver. And girl, is she delivering. New single "Pretty Girl," off her upcoming Secure mixtape, is pure, sassy dancehall goodness, an ideal late-summer treat. - J
Be sure to check out the previous edition of Best Tracks of the Week right here.