I was very close to just making this post a track by track lauding of Billie Eilish’s new album WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP WHERE DO WE GO? because right at this second it’s all I want to listen to. But there is other music out this week so I’ll settle for three of my faovurite new songs (not including the thirteen second long album opener !!!!!!! which deserves it’s own post). I’ll make my case for her a little further on, but I wholeheartedly recommend you set aside 42 uninterrupted minutes of your day for the perfect musical experience that is listening to WWAFAWDWG? For a little context on Billie, I’d also like to recommend this interview with her from The Fader, which will make you understand why she is one of the coolest people in music right now.
There’s a lot of other wonderfully talented women on the playlist this week, including one I’ve cheated to include because her song came out over two months ago, but I’ve got a creeping suspicion it’ll make my year end lists so I wanted to shine a light on it now.
There are also one or two ‘sadder’ songs in there, and though my personal rule for music is to quietly put sad songs in a box for consumption at the rare, appropriate time, I’m happy to pour some praise on them here.
Alice Merton – I Don’t Hold A Grudge
It may be the last time I post about Merton (or ‘the Mint lady’ as my friends keep calling her when I speak to them about her) for a while, but I’ve had this on a lot since I saw her two fridays ago and I wanted to give it some due praise. I Don’t Hold A Grudge was the first of two encore songs she played that almost made me miss my train home, but was definitely worth sticking around for. I cannot get enough of the bassy guitar line. Think Kiss with a Fist by Florence + the Machine meets Allstars’ Things That Go Bump In The Night. So. Damn. Good.
Alle Farben + James Blunt – Walk Away
I really love James Blunt’s voice, and I think this edm-feature vocal easily outstrips that Robin Schulz track he featured on in 2017 that assaulted me at the gym this morning. Sure, it’s a foddery, lyrics-aren’t-at-all-important clubbing holiday track, but that ain’t no bad thing.
Aly & Aj – Church
Is this another one of those glittery sparkly echoey dancy pop songs that I post about on the regular? You betcha! They just make me wanna move around, y’know? “I do bad things for the sake of good times” is far from the most original lyric but it suckered me right in. Danceable, great bridge section, a very worthy pop song from one of pop’s finest long-serving duos.
Billie Eilish – bad guy
Eilish’s new album is the first album I’ve listened to from start to finish in forever but with such a strong (proper) opening track as bad man how could I not?! Everything about it is truly perfect – the bass heavy beat is so strong and present from the off, the flow, lyrics and delivery of the chorus are all incredible “I’m that bad type/Make your mama sad type/Make your girlfriend mad tight/Might seduce your dad type,” not to mention that final “duh” AND the final 45 seconds are so left field and yet so right?? I’m not even sure what it all means, but I know that I am l i v i n g for it. Her best ever. I’ll try not to rinse it too much too soon, although I’m not sure that’s possible.
Billie Eilish – all the good girls go to hell
The thing that I love the most about Eilish is how theatrical everything is – I’ve never been able to connect so viscerally to something I can’t see as I do with her music. All the little samples and soundbites create a chaotic atmosphere, it’s like a horror movie but for your ears and its truly compelling. all the good girls go to hell is a standout because it’s jaunty, stuttering, lyrically thoughtful: “all the good girls go to hell/because even God herself has enemies” and the final spoken “Haha! I cannot do this snowflake” reminds you that you’re listening to an actual person. A triumph.
Billie Eilish – my strange addiction
A song that samples the Threat Level Midnight episode of The Office US? Hearing Michael Scott, Jim Halpert, Kelly Kapoor and Kevin Malone speaking right into my ears? And it’s GOOD?! I’m yelling.
Ciara – Thinkin Bout You
This is so fuckin happy and danceable I cannot. AND IT’S CO-WRITTEN BY ESTER DEAN?! Superb. Inject this into my veins.
Gabrielle Aplin – Nothing Really Matters
This is such a simple, instantly-gratifying track. Like, I’m listening and I feel like I’ve been listening to it all my life, in… a good way? Aplin is such a safe pair of pop hands and Nothing Really Matters is a great reminder to me that I need to give her past two albums an actual listen.
Haley Reinhart – Some Way Some How
*WARNING: This is a sad song. It is also beautiful.* Til the day I die I will be shouting about Haley Reinhart. Everything about her voice is gorgeous, the delicate husk and the control she has over it, the soft finishes. I just love her. Some Way Some How is a perfect presentation of one of the greatest god-given human-honed voices in existence. Please tour this new album here soon.
Louise – Stretch
Did you know that Louise Redknapp, now 44, of famous-in-the-nineties girl band Eternal is coming back to music after a 16 year absence? Neither did I, but some blessed people on my timeline wouldn’t shut up about Stretch and you know what? Deserved. Sexy, revitalising and make me wanna move my body.
P!nk – Hustle
I am fully aware of how many cliché lyrics are in this song, how much this sounds like something Paloma Faith would put out, and how often she so -daringly- sings fuck, but I’ve not listened to it enough times to decide if these are things that I will be able to get past. What I do know is that melodically, at least, it slaps.
Richard Fairlie – Shelter
I’ve listened to this enough times that I feel compelled to put it in here because I can tell that it’s nice, but I’m struggling to say why. It reminds me in some ways of Ben Howard and José Gonzalez and in others of Coldplay and Bastille, so there’s something to be said for listening to it I think. The kind of song that you could put on repeat without realising.
The Veronicas – Think of Me
The electro-pop post-break up song to end all electro-pop post-break up songs. It’s catchy, danceable, and the lyrics are truly, beautifully brutal: “Bet you miss me in your sheets/Bet you miss me in your bed/The way we talk all night/The way I give you head/Do you think that she’s the one/Or do you just pretend?/And when she says it’s love/Will you think of me instead?” AND they’re (at least in part) about Ruby Rose. Scandalously good.
Zara Larsson – Don’t Worry Bout Me
Last and never by any means least, Zara Larsson’s latest single. There was a *lot* of hype for this song on my timeline, which very very nearly killed it for me, because I was expecting something not *more* just, different. So it took me a minute to get around that, and now that I am, I can confirm that this is absolutely spectacular. It’s immediately grabbing, beautifully loud, self-empowering, has a phenomenal build to a soft chorus, and I am desperate to go somewhere I can dance to it. Electrifying.