It's hard to play favorites with a week of new releases, but we would be kidding ourselves if we didn't point out that this week's highlight came in the form of Kaytranada quietly uploading not one not two but three superlative beats to his SoundCloud. It goes to show why he's a contender for the most hype producer of the year; even his instrumental experiments are a musical event.
But there was plenty more to love this week. St. Vincent roared back with the second single from her just-announced MASSEDUCTION, Syd unveiled a surprise EP full of gems, Lunice delivered a track featuring Le1f and SOPHIE that is almost too good for words and Charlotte Gainsbourg appeared out of no where with a track we never knew we needed so badly.
All of those and more make our picks for the Best Tracks of the Week.
Charlotte Gainsbourg --- “Rest”
Sometimes an artist comes through with a track you had no idea you needed desperately. Today, that’s Charlotte Gainsbourg’s “Rest.” Co-written with Daft Punk’s Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo, the soothing keys and synths along with Gainsbourg’s poetic lyrics are the sonic equivalent of a candlelit bubblebath.
dvsn --- “mood”
The most mysterious signees to Drake’s OVO Sound have returned with “mood,” the first single from their highly-anticipated follow-up to last year’s debut, Sept. 5th. And while it was cute that they shared it on September 5th to call back their first record, their latest indicates that things are going to be even darker and moodier on this outing.
Kaytranada --- “38”
The insanely talented Kaytranada graciously bestowed a trio fresh beats upon us this week. Choosing the best of the three is like trying to choose a favorite child, but if we have to, it’s “38” - its bouncy funk will be the soundtrack to us strutting the leaf-filled sidewalks this fall.
Kelela --- “Frontline”
Kelela served up another slice of sublime R&B this week with “Frontline,” a woozy banger of a ballad with luxurious synth lines and revved-up bass courtesy of producer Jam City, with waves of the the singer’s voice coming to the listener at every angle, like a motorcycle wrapped in silk.
Lunice --- “Drop Down” ft. Le1f and SOPHIE
Lunice’s debut album CCCLX dropped today, but we’re still completely obsessed with the vogue-inflicted vibes of the previously-released “Drop Down.” With Le1f’s sassy bars and incredible as always production from SOPHIE, this one has us ready to do a death drop in the middle of the office.
Miguel --- “Shockandawe”
“Sky Walker” is a jam with a capital J-A-M, complete with a Travis Scott-assisted hook for maximum groove. Yet a vocal faction of Miguel’s fans were displeased with such a strong foray back into mainstream R&B/pop, a departure from the sprawling, rock-oriented sound of his 2015 album Wildheart. Those fans can rest easy, “Shockandawe” proves we’re getting the best of both worlds with his next full-length.
Rachel Foxx --- “Happen To Me”
The radiant Rachel Foxx, a formidable up-and-comer hailing from East London, released the funk-filled “Happen To Me” a couple days back, and we simply cannot get enough of it. We’ve been captivated by the singer-songwriter ever since she stepped up to the mic for COLORS Berlin, and we can’t wait to see what she has in store for us next.
St. Vincent --- “Los Ageless”
While first single “New York” was a devastatingly poignant ballad to love and loss in the big city, “Los Ageless” (subtle misspelling intended) is the exact opposite; a big, brash look at love and loss that is full of barely-suppressed rage. We were already pretty hyped for St. Vincent’s new album MASSEDUCTION, but now we’re as bouncy with excitement as the burbled beats that open this track.
Syd --- "On The Road"
The mysterious Always Never Home turned out to be a quietly-powerful new EP from the ever-restless Syd, arriving just months after her polished debut album. The previously-released “Bad Dream/No Looking Back” was (and is) still a beauty, but “On the Road” is another clear standout, gliding along on a flowing chorus that simply implores “love it, love it.”
SZA --- “Quicksand”
Can SZA do any wrong this year? We think not. The TDE chanteuse continues to deliver hit after hit after the June release of her stellar debut album CTRL. Even a one-off song written for the soundtrack to an HBO dramedy equates to musical perfection.
In case you missed it, check out the best songs and albums of August right here.