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Going Steady: New Singles 9-6-19 – 9-12-19 Reviewed

October – Alessia Cara – a little indifferent opening for fellow Canadian poptart Shawn Mendes last month, Alessia has a genuine earworm on a reverse “Sealed With A Kiss” – B

In The Middle – Alesso, SUMR CAMP – Stockholm go to DJ guy, keeps it closer to house on an EDM pop song with strong beats and disco vocals – C+

Buzzing – Audien, Nevve – Trance from Connecticut  DJ – C

This Letter – Belle & Sebastian – Part Broadway mood, part folk with a smidgin of smooth jazz – C+

I Really Wish I Hated You – blink-182 – So now the concept is clear, a grown-up “What’s My Age Again” proto-emo self referencing dream of time travel rock… hey it’s better than Angels And Airwaves – C+

Fire’t Up – Brantley Gilbert – a poor man’s Eric Church with electronic beats and blues country rock wail – C

Liar – Camila Cabello – Camila now has her schtick down, adding Latin horns to pop tracks – C+

Shameless – Camila Cabello – Adds acoustic guitar backing to a dance track that could have come from Fifth Harmony – C+

FOR YOUR EYES ONLY – Cashmere Cat – an arty pop soundscape which interrupts itself into EDM style bass thump and synthetic drum skeins – C+

February 2017 (feat. Clairo and Yaeji) – Charli XCX, Clairo, Yaeji – Six years after her breakthrough with Icona Pop, Charli XCX keeps throwing stuff at us and joining with arrays of modern pop folks, but the end always seems more or less like this: slice of nothing with artistic infringements plus wall of sound Clairo folk pop mediums – C+

Deranged for Rock & Roll – Chelsea Wolfe – Lana Del Rey goes Goth – B-

Dirty Laundry – Danny Brown – Two years since we last heard from Brown, he returns with Q-Tip producing on the sexual conquest stories of Brown as he works his way through the female population with a bemused forthrightness and some incredible beats – B+

Taking a Page – Devendra Banhart – Inspired by Carole King, with a crib sheet from her “So Far Away” – C+

Never Change – Don Diablo – Top future house pioneer cops a piano sample – C+

YES – Fat Joe, Cardi B, Anuel AA – I didn’t hate his work with Remy Ma two years ago, but he really takes off now,  once Cardi B adds a killer verse for the Puerto Rican 90s star, Anuel AA adds trap vibe  – B+

This Country Makes It Hard To Fuck – Björk Remix – Fever Ray, Björk – Pretty much way out there, electronic remix of Fever Ray’s “This Country” which finds the hook and then tortures you with it – B-

The Runner – Foals – A cooler vibe than Foals prog tendencies tend to stick us with – C+

Take Me to the Light – Francis and the Lights, Bon Iver, Kanye West – Wow, could this meet and match of people who meet and match all day long since the mid 10s, be more cliched? All the multi-sampled, multi-tracked, stuff we have been hearing for years all comes together in one giant lump – C

bad idea! – girl in red – bedsitland mood pop, home made,  and not terrible – B-

Oh No!!! – grandson – rap style vocal, rhymin’ grandson – B-

Violence – Grimes, i_o – heavy duty DJ adds beats to Grimes secret, strange song – B-

Nothin’ Out Here (HARDY feat. Thomas Rhett) – HIXTAPE, HARDY, Thomas Rhett – You can hear why Rhett’s invited in, the beats are hip hop, the vibe mainstream country – B

Dance in the Sunshine – Hollie Cook – Paul Cook’s kid continues to mine bright colored lover’s rock vibes – B

Far Out – Homeboy Sandman – Top rhymer, nearly top rapper, but still missing the breakthrough. He won’t change his luck with well crafted bars here – B

Carry Me Away – John Mayer – Mayer as brooding boy toy – C

Bonita – Juanes, Sebastian Yatra – Colombian pop star plays it straight with smart,  reggaeton vibes – B-

homecoming queen? – Kelsea Ballerini – acoustic country blah – C

No Stones (feat. Casey Veggies) – Kid Ink, Casey Veggies – pretty good r&b track return from Kid Ink – B

Ain’t Together – King Princess – Mikaela hasn’t released a goodie in awhile, so, assuming “Ain’t Together,” with its “being chill” earworm, is the final single before the debut album drops, she has left one of her best songs for last: a simple track where her gungho lesbianism is a little more sexually neutral and the execution flawless -SINGLE OF THE WEEK – A-

Can You Hear Me – Korn – about as pop as Korn will ever be, or perhaps the world caught up with the metal tech – C+

Kill My Mind – Louis Tomlinson – one step closer to the One Direction reunion – C

Temple of Sorrow – M83 – Eight years later, Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming feels more and more like a fluke, and dowdy electronic moviescape “Temple Of Sorry” where they are truly at – C

Shelter – Mikal Cronin – Ty Segall cohort, has a poppier bent and a way with the riff on a indie rock snoozer –  – C+

Wedding Bells – Metronomy – synth pop duo with a catchy song – B

Easy (feat. 6LACK) – Next Town Down, 6LACK – mainstream r&b boy band  helped by 6lack – B

Hallelujah – Oh Wonder – Pretty piano based track by Lil Uzi Vert’s pals – B

Wanted – OneRepublic – Ryan Tedder’s tedious dance rock crossover crap – MUST TO AVOID – D+

Dawn At The Factory – One True Pairing – Wild Beast leader’s new one man band, help by a synthy 80s production, and a good vocal, the song ain’t up for it – C+

When I Get It (feat. Young Thug) – O.T. Genasis, Young Thug – Hook-y rap track, Young Thug ain’t up to much – B-

Two Commas – Poo Bear – Justin Bieber collaborator can absolutely compose an r&b song, and does a goodie here – B

What’s The Frequency, Kenneth? – Remix – R.E.M. – One of the bands greatest moments, sounds pretty much the same future shock as it ever did  – A

Fashion Week – Rico Nasty Of the new round of badass women rappers 2019 style, Rico is last, she can rap though she can’t do it on stage, and here she gives up sex for Christian Dior and it is a drag  – C+

Beach2k20 – Yaeji Remix – Robyn, Yaeji – Not bad at all remix by SK DJ Yaeji’s playful weirdness – B+

When She Finds You – Single Mix – Shakespears Sister, Richard Hawley –  Former Bananarama Siobhan Fahey gets a Dusty Springfield, Walker Brothers, big ballad mix tied to synthpop – C+

Sounds Of The Skeng – Stormzy – Back in the day, it was all Dizzee Rascal and Stormzy representing Grime, now there is a cast of thousands, but they don’t have Stormzy’s mad skills, here he spots the bars with a lilt that defines speed as flow – B

Oh! Darling – 2019 Mix – The Beatles – Giles Martin with a pointless remix of a song that deserves a pointless remix – A

Oh! Darling – Take 4 – The Beatles – Interesting but not very interesting, it is all but finished and despite some lyric fudging, it is the same song without McCartney’s vocal pyrotechnics – B+

I Meant Every Word I Said – The Milk Carton Kids – A folk Every Brothers, finger picked acoustic guitar with a gorgeous melody and gorgeous two part harmonies – A-

The Only Ones – The Milk Carton Kids – The title track of the upcoming album, very lovely and perfectly done with some speed on the verses – A-

Really don’t like u – Tove Lo, Kylie Minogue – Swedish popster goes disco with heavier drums, and helped by one of the greats – B

Self Control – YoungBoy Never Broke Again – Autotuned modern r&b with a vocal that veers towards rap and then straightens itself – B

Strike a Pose (feat. Aitch) – Young T & Bugsey, Aitch – Two young UK rap guys plus the also young Aitch, on a soulful teen soulrap track and already a hit in the UK – B


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