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Going Steady: New Singles 7-23-21 – 7-29-21 Reviewed

Do You? – April Rose Gabrielli – That bridge makes two ace hooks on April’s second solo release, a show stopping rocket with a slight Americana edge that let’s the song speak for itself because the song has such a strong tune it needs exceedingly little more than skeletal piano to sell it. On stage (here and here), April and her band perform it with so much, to use Eileen Shapiro’s word, effervescence it stops the show and then solo (see above) to end the show  – Single Of The Week – A

I Like That – Bazzi – the hugely popular r&b pop guy with another ear candy pop drench plus orchestration – B+

edamame (feat. Rich Brian) – bbno$ – it’s a preparation of immature soybeans in the pod – i thought it was mostly just peas, the song is a catchy, fast and smooth pop rap – B

Better Believe – Belly, The Weeknd, Young Thug –  unassuming hip hop not overcome by the featured artists – B

Phoenix (feat. Fleet Foxes & Anaïs Mitchell) – Big Red Machine – more like The Band then The National – B

Too Late (Band Version) – Infidels Outtake – Bob Dylan – an early take on “Foot Of Pride” (which also didn’t make it on Infidels),  and while it is prettier, more melodic, and nearly the equal of the version Dylan went with, but what stops it is that “Foot Of Pride” says so much more… I’m happy we have both – A

Right on Time – Brandi Carlile – Brandi just reopened Forest Hills Stadium last week, and if this is the piano song she has chosen to come out of isolation, she chose a goodie – B+

La Pluma, Buena Vista Social Club – from the upcoming 25th year anniversary, the outtake is a lovely finger picked Spanish song – B+

Stay High – Childish Gambino Version – Brittany Howard – Motown-y take on the fine Alabama Shake reimagining of her debut album, Gambino sounds like a Temptation with that peak falsetto – B+

Don’t Go Yet – Camila Cabello – English language, hip hop flicked, Latin American track that pales into nothing much compared with “Havana” – B-

You Never Know What’s Coming to You – Cosmic Bull – a garage psychedelic meets r&b freakout that has a touch of George Clinton in it and topped by Mark’s always profound vocal skills – B+

Toa la Noche – CNCO – it took ten people, including reggaeton superstar Wisin, to write this bland slice of Latin pop – C+

Shoulders – Coheed and Cambria – get their Led Zep on – B

Coloratura – Coldplay – with the most useless intros known to man, it takes Max Martin two minutes to kick the band in gear though once he does it is better than anything on Everyday Life – if that means anything to you on the overblown and still depressive anthem – C+

Only a Woman – Irish Women In Harmony – MOR bland out – C

Time to Choose – Dee Snider – sounds more like Motorhead than Twisted Sister… that’s a compliment for the ace (of spades) song – B+

Ring The Alarm – DJ Snake, Malaa – bass house electronic EDM that is really M to M squared – B

Downtown – Jake Buggs – wasn’t he once a blues wunderkind? This is bad Americana – C-

Say What You Will – James Blake – the song is a bit dreary but the video is great (see below) – B

 

If I Didn’t Love You – Jason Aldean, Carrie Underwood – not a terrible country ballad duet but they overdo it half way through – C+

New Normal – Khalid – when Khalid, a pop r&b guy, first hit the charts with American Teen he was, briefly, a voice of his generation, now he is a beautiful voiced every man of 23 and “New Normal” -a lovely soul ballad-  premiered  during Virgin Galactic’s spaceflight launch at Spaceport America in New Mexico, a good song but the voice of Khalid not teen America – B

INDUSTRY BABY (feat. Jack Harlow) – Lil Nas X – sensitive to the impression impression that Lil Nas is a one hit wonder, he is actually a four hit wonder and this horn laden beauty makes five – B+

Know My Way Around – Lily Rose – country singer Lily has a lovely and easy going twang on a hook monster country rocker – B

On The Wrong Side – Lindsey Buckingham – AOR, smooth rocker – B-

Stoned at the Nail Salon – Lorde – not only this not half as good as “Solar Power,” it isn’t as good as anything else she’s done, a bland and subdued meh with dumb ass lyrics, but, if this is her worst, she must be one of the greats of 2021 – B-

Run (with Mariah Angeliq) – Latin Version – OneRepublic, Mariah Angeliq – when Mariah takes over lead it is pretty good Latin pop – C+

Over The Top (feat. Drake) – Smiley – From Toronto with love, Drake adds a coupla verses on a look at me goodie which might get Smiley a well deserved hit – B+

Okay – Porches – This is Aaron Maine’s finest song to date, an electronic, singer songwriter track with a tune that draws you in – B+

Hot Summer – Prince – a funky little workout by a man who used to funk, based around a drum pattern that keeps coming at you – B+

Seventeen Going Under – Sam Fender – Fender is a rarity in 2021, a UK rocker who lives up to the hype and should be breaking here any day now – B+

As You Are – Samia – as written sadgirl moment – B+

Popstar’s Daughters -Shaun Ryder – back at the Hacienda, Shaun still has some Happy Mondays left in him with a light disco beat under a pop track with a clever lyric – B

Freedom (You Bring Me) – Snakehips, Armand Van Helden – bass house goodie – B

Lifetime (with Ty Dolla $ign & 070 Shake) – Swedish House Mafia – overwrought and undersold.. with swishing synths and a house beat – B-

the lakes – original version – Taylor Swift – Jack Antonoff on the production that didn’t make it till now: “Taylor was like, ‘Eh, make it small.’ I had gotten lost in the string arrangements and all this stuff, and I took everything out” – A-

NOT SOBER (feat. Polo G & Stunna Gambino) – The Kid Laroi – a whole lotta autotune and not half as good as the one with Bieber – C+

Oh! – The Linda Lindas – pop punk heading for the charts – B-

I Can See The Future – Tinashe – Tinashe calls it rhythmic pop, I call it neo-R&B, and this is ordinary without being bad – B-

New Romeo Agent – Tropical Fuck Storm – electronic and also analog sounding slow fuse – C+

Strong – Will Young he won the UK’s Pop Idol back in the day and performs Take That boy-band-y soul songs to some effect but limited effect – B-

Enjoyment – Yemi Alade – last year the African popstar’s Empress was one of the year’s best, “Enjoyment” gives her a touch of dancehall in the mix – B+

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