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Going Steady: New Singles, 1-8-20 – 1-14 – 20 Reviewed

 

SUFFER AND SWALLOW – Alice Glass – The former Crystal Castles singer who claimed sexual abuse from her partner and went solo, is readying her first solo album and here has a goth like electronica mood music – B

Smoke From Fire (with The Hics) – Bas, The Hics – You would expect Dreamsville’s Bas to be heavy on the afrobeats, but this old school and addictive rap pop is pretty good rap and r&b as usual  – B

Candle – Buck Meek – co-written with Adrianne Lenker, can’t say I’m crazy about the slide guitar – C+

Mother – David Bowie – always wonderful to hear unreleased stuff from Bowie – this was part of of a  Lennon tribute collection that never happened in 1998.  It isn’t bad but it isn’t right, the problem is that Bowie wasn’t an Oedipal guy like Lennon (or me, for that matter), so something about his overwrung take while understandable isn’t, like his “Let’s spend The Night Together” (or much of Pin-Ups for that matter), doesn’t have the ring of truth and while singing Jagger is one thing, Lennon has such an overwhelming presence and voice that Bowie can’t add to it with ease at all and is forced to over do it  – B

Tryin’ To Get To Heaven – David Bowie – “I went to sugar town, I shook the sugar down” is a line for all great rockers and Bowie savors Dylan’s words just a year after Bob released it on his umptenth comeback  the timeless Time Out Of Mind. It works as a coda  after 2016’s Blackstar, the haunted, baleful, atheist last words, and finally the last of the last words… let him in – A

Five Years – Duran Duran – it’s hard to go wrong, of course, and Simon doesn’t come close on the classic Ziggy track, though there is a certain thinness to the effort – B

Use Somebody – dvsn – Toronto r&b duo usually bore me, Drake’s opinion notwithstanding, and not here -a lovely , slow and incendiary vision – B

Dandelion – Galantis, JVKE – remember Miike snow? Half of them are here on an EDM pop track with an insistent house beat – B

Los Bo – Jhay Cortez, Myke Towers – pure Latin Trap from Puerto Rico – B

Girl Like Me (feat. H.E.R.) – Jazmine Sullivan, H.E.R. – that entire neo-r&b scene that has been taking over since Solange in 2016, reaches yet another height with the return of the soulful Jazmine, joined by the glorious voiced H.E.R. on a strong, hip hop production valued, r&b triumph that promises exceedingly well for the Sullivan’s album dropping tomorrow

Alive After Death – John Carpenter – from his upcoming album, the horror auteur can do these sort of theme music with ease – C+

Weeping In The Promised Land – John Fogerty -hellish Americana, piano based protest – C

Animal – Maria Becerra, Cazzu – Cazzu and Rosalia are both contenders for Bad Bunny’s crown, though only Rosalia stands a chance, Maria like Cazzu is Argentina and both of them are huge there and this banger will do nothing to hurt their standings – B+

Flames (feat. Avril Lavigne) – MOD SUN, Avril Lavigne – Avril is to Joan Jett what Gerard Way is to David Bowie (that’s an insult)  and Mod Sun is completely unlistenable electronic rock… kill me now – MUST TO AVOID – D+

Gotta Be You – NERVO, Carla Monroe – Aussie chick DJ songwriters with a house dog – C

I Bet You Wanna Know – Priscilla Block – boring country chick but the guitar lick is a goodie when it appears – C+

This Mess We’re In – Demo – PJ Harvey – The original, with Thom Yorke on Harvey’s last great album, the 2000, New York City centric Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea, is one of her best songs of all time. This acoustic demo, with PJ overdubbing herself on the parts Thom sang, is damn near the equal – A

Garden of Despair – Portrayal of Guilt – thundering, bass heavy as fuck, somethingcore – B

UGLY (feat. Lil Baby) – Russ, Lil Baby – Russ past his prime, Lil Baby nothing special, the hook works after a coupla spins on the burning up horns – B-

Best Friend (feat. Doja Cat) – Saweetie, Doja Cat – so, wait a second, Doja Cat ISN’T cancelled? – C+

Get Out My Head – Shane Codd – House pop via Dublin, it might do some business in the UK – C+

Everything I Had – Sun June – This is the song for 2021 (so far), it is a snapshot of life during wartime from Austin, Texas, from a first rate indie pop-folk, etc, band in a dream state fugue of close downs and dead ends – SINGLE OF THE WEEK – A-

Charming Mess – The Black Crowes –  From 1990, yet to be released, it sounds like the Faces – B+

Heavy Covenant – The Hold Steady – it sounds precisely like the Hold Steady and while a lot of that has to do with the sing speak (which makes indelible tunes ten times more difficult), the ringing guitar and shuddering drums and while Craig Finn said ““The song came out of two different music pieces that THS piano/keyboardist Franz Nicolay brought in,” it takes three minutes to get to that place – B

Atlantic – The Weather Station – indie rocker via Canada – B

Natural’s Not in It – Tom Morello, Serj Tankian, Gang Of Four – Tom gets his teeth into post-punk with admirable results – B

Hit Em Up – YG, D3szn, Day Sulan – natually, I hoped it was the 2Pac song but what it is is an all out banger  from YG, who has been in the ascendency at least since “Fuck Donald Trump” – B

Vibez – ZAYN – breaking up with the band, refusing to tour behind his solo album, disappearing into married life, and now back again, Zayn’s electronic, 808 tithered “Vibez” is a good return, a little downbeat but better than anything anyone but Harry has released – B+

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