Going Steady: New Singles 1-10-20 – 1-16-20 Reviewed

Written by | January 12, 2020 4:30 am | No Comments

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Guilty Conscience – 070 Shake – As rap moves away from speech and closer to singing, 070 Shake is becoming a major player on this soulful and melodic track – B+

Broken Sleep – Agnes Obel -lectronic, mood classical vibes and dreamy sounds but with a goth vibe  – B

Normalization Blues – AJJ –  The former Andrew Jackson Jihad have had this rumbling, Americana, folk acoustic bluesy masterwork for awhile but finally releases it, and it is as stirring a piece of resistance and agit-prop as you have ever heard, debatably the best piece of anti-Trump rebel rousing you will ever hear as it as he notes “this is the golden age of dickory” – SINGLE OF THE WEEK – A

We Can’t Be Found – Algiers – typical post-punk as written – B-

Underdog – Alicia Keys – Not unpleasant, piano and hip hop production soul track – C+

Pretty Bird – Aoife O’Donovan – every thing she sings sounds like “Amazing Grace” – C+

Under The Supermoon – Artists For Peace – Jackson Browne on backing vocals, Jenny Lewis’s song, and Mali singer Habib Koite steals the song – B+

READY TO GO (Original Mix) – Baauer, Channel Tres – strong house track from the “Harlem Shake” guy and the “Brilliant Nigga” guy, so good opening for Robyn last year – B

Afterparty – Baby Goth – You’ve heard of Baby Yoda? Well, the connection is Baby Yoda isn’t Yoda and Baby Goth isn’t Goth, she is a rap type mood arranger – B

Stiff – Beach Slang – Surf guitars, swamp rock, classicism if classic rock reached its height in the early 1980s, hardly surprisingly, given the inclusion of Tommy Stinson, the bass holds the hook  – B+

Salt Of The Earth – Bill Fay – piano based, slow ache of a song by the UK singer-songwriter, he sings as though he’s crying – B-

The Roving – Bonny Light Horseman – From the writer of the dreaded “Hadestown,” some folkiness – C+

Feel The Way I Want – Caroline Rose – She was behind an epic track from two years ago, “Bikini,” and here she is mining a pop soul vibe – B-

Circles On Circles – Caspian – Low key Americana strummer – B

Stop The Flame – Celeste – UK soul singer with a tremendous voice, just won BBC Music’s Sound of 2020. If the BBC mean that Celeste sound will influence, or be indicative, of 2020, I sincerely doubt it as “Stop This Flame” could have been released , really, any year since the mid-1970s –  B

The Story – Conan Grey – Sad song singer songwriter – C+

Reckless Love – Cory Asbury, Tori Kelly – Bethel Music Christian contemporary, vastly better when Tory is singing – C+

The Man Who Sold The World – David Bowie – A 90s, acoustic version recorded for Changes2Bowie but only now released – B

Cue Synthesizer – Destroyer – Heavy duty, computer savvy, accessible wall of sounds pop – C+

Daily Routine – Disq – Latest Saddle Creek signing meet somewhere between indie rock and post-punk folk – C+

Dread Rebirth –  Earth Rot – gnarly mood metal from the bowels of hell – C+

Hardhead – End It –  metal rave up – B+

Your Reply – Francis Quinlan – The Hopalong singer’s  third single off her upcoming solo album, is a strummy, melodic beauty and the keeper of the bunch – B+

Life Is Good – Future, Drake – Drake and Future have been making noise about their first collaboration since 2015, and the first result is here and it is first rate, “Life Is Good” opens with great Drake sing sung verses and continues with Future he sounds like he has just taken a hit of cough syrup (in other words awesome –  A-

Where Did The Night Go – Gil Scott-Heron, Makaya McCraven – Jazz guy Makaya adds flutes to the song – B –

Deleter – Grouplove – good little classic rocker – B

Volcano – Guided By Voices – Shouldn’t these guys have broken up by now? – MUST TO AVOID – D+

You Should Be Sad – Halsey – I invited a teen niece to go see Halsey with me at Pier 17 and she said she’d prefer Post Malone, still the acoustic smackdown (“I’m so glad I never had a baby with you”… ouch) is Halsey’s best work in three years and the break is glorious  – B+

Empire – Hollywood Undead – By the numbers superstar metal – C-

Ice Cream Sundae – Inhaler – Typical UK rock – C

Car – It Looks sad. – Generation S: everything makes the kids today sad and out of step with themselves – B-

Morado – J Balvin – His first song since the Bad Bunny album, and still nailing bangers – B

Go Away – Jeff Parker -A member of the experimental Tortoise adds jazz frills (via stand up bass) to the sound – B

Conversations In The Dark – John Legend – Tedious piano ballad – C

In Heaven Making Love – Jonathan Wilson – The Americana producer finds a middle ground between SoCal, country, and Jim Steinman on an odd one that veers from big rock bombast to a fiddle break – B

Half Your Age – Joywave – synthy alt – C

Wherever You Are – Kodaline – singer songwriter slow one Irish rock – C-

Eleven – Khalid – a stinker from the soulful post-teen – C-

Crack of Doom (feat. Troy Sanders) – Kvelertak, Troy Sanders – Finland metal adds Mastadon’s Troy on a fresh as a daisy mix of screamo and metal – B

Sum 2 Prove – Lil Baby – Trap 101 – B-

Nightfall – Little Big Town – Third single is a goodie, a very pretty song that manages a very good break and a tinge of Eagles in the guitar – B

blow – Luke James – soulful plus falsetto – B-

Good News – Mac Miller – they say you shouldn’t speak bad of the dead though it seems to me as the dead is the first things you should speak bad of, Mac Miller was never my first choice (or second), “Good News” is an r&b sing speak, not bad, not good, very dead -C+

Beautiful Stranger – Marcus King – what a dreary, fucking horror – D+

Ziggy Stardust – Maya Beiser, Bowie Symphonic Ensemble – Jazz woman adds strings to the classic – B+

Page Of Cups – Maria McKee – no longer country, now alt-folk with a tremendous vocal – B-

Diamonds – Megan Thee Stallion, Normani – a song off the upcoming movie “Birds Of Prey” and it is nothing much, even Megan sounds a little distracted and the “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend” sampling means they expect the song will snap up the charts… maybe – B-

Fucking Speed And Darkness – Midnight – Screamo with the best song name of the week and a crafted racket that lives up to it – B

Bobby, Don’t You Think They Know – Morrissey – Featuring Thelma Houston who blends very well with Moz on this odd song about… what it means to be a popular singer? – B+

Shades Of You – Moses Boyd, Poppy Ajudha – Jazz with strong woman singer and rock drums: aka fusion – C+

Me in 20 Years – Moses Sumney – A top vocal from the art popper on one of his most accessible songs, a surprisingly great, different sound – A-

Teenage Headache Dreams (with Ellie Rowsell) – Mura Masa, Ellie Rowsell, Wolf Alice – Mura Masa is a UK DJ, Ellie is the lead singer of Wolf Alice, and the song is indie rock goes glitchy and covertly arranged tech… doesn’t live up to its name, maybe because Mura isn’t a teenager anymore – B

So Much Love – Nada Surf – The best thing about the 90s alt grungers was that unique guitar sound… which no longer exists – C

Muevelo – Nicky Jam, Daddy Yankee – the duo Los Cangris united after TWENTY YEARS, with a classic reggaeton banger – B

The Movies – Nightly – clever teen romance plus tech wall of sound – B

You’ve Had Me Everywhere – Of Montreal – His best song in years is a better than average glam folk – B

Ordinary Man – Ozzy Osbourne, Elton John – self-portrait  featuring Elton John playing  a beautiful piano on the oh alright snoozer  B-

The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face – Rafiq Bhatia, Cécile McLorin Salvant,- First rate version by the art popper and a terrific soul singer – B

2 Hearts – Sam Feldt, Sigma, Gia Koka – Sigma does his usual smooth EDM production but the songs a nonstarter – C

Let’s Fight – Sarah Mary Chadwick – Americana mood rocker – C+

Original (from Doolittle) – Sia – She has come down from LSD and her first solo recording since, seriously, if you ignore the Christmas album, 2016, is the excellent pop plus beats though for an original it sounds an awful lot like Regina Spektor’s “Fidelity” – B+

Burn It Down – Silverstein – surely for their 20th anniversary they coulda done something more original than this punk by the numbers – C

Infinite – Silverstein – Better, the rumbing, tumbling drums are up for it – B

Mal – Slow Mass – Via Chicago, the third single off their upcoming album is another obtuse, post-punk thumper – B

Nervelevers – Squarepusher – drum n bass, not bad – B

Still Disappointed – Stormzy – The latest dis track in the war of words between Stormzy and the ace, original Grime star Wiley

When The Lord – Susanne Sundfor – Chamber folk wall of dreamscape sound – B

Lost In Yesterday – Tame Impala – As a nonbeliever in Kevin Parker, this low key study of nostalgia is the first decent single off his upcoming album – B

Famous For (I Believe) – Tauren Wells, Jenn Johnson – There are two good Christian songs here somewhere, this ain’t either – D+

Need Your Love – Tennis – bland out softcore dance pop – C+

Somewhere (feat. Octavian) – The Blaze, Octavian – Octavian is a soul singer who won 2019’s BBC  Sound, The Blaze a coupla DJs, the song indifferent EDM bop – C+

Iron Fist – Tha God Fahim – Sounds live a child of Wu with  whine in its voice and a threat in its step, kudos to DJ Muggs for a haunting and provocative backing track…  – A-

St. Francis and the Future – The Innocence Mission – American folkie Americana prettiness – B

Children All Over The World – The Men – Riff hard rock – C+

Space Samba (Disco Volador Theme) – The Orielles – A really strong, dance and pop but also alt vibe – B

The Motor – The Wants – Techno beats and post punk side eyes – C+

No Good To Anyone – Today Is The Day – Prog black metal sludginess – C+

Virgil Discount – T.R.U., 2 Chainz, Skooly – 2 Chainz new duo obsess over designer clothes – B-

Prime And Ready – Wire – It’s no “Mary Is A  Dyke” – C+

Eediyat Skengman 3 (Stormzy Send) – Wiley – The rap battle continues, it’s like watching a school yard fight – B-

Julia Take Your Man Home – Wolf Parade – “I’m singing about some other, worse version of myself. It’s not actually me” – C

Crab Cakes – Your Old Droog, Prodigy – Great to hear the late Mos Depp Prodigy on a track, and YOD, who released a Hanukkah album last month, always brings it. A violent rap track and a cooking recipe, 90s style – B+

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