New Songs Sunday: FLO, Fiona Apple, Raja Kumari & more…
New sunday playlist

This week is big for indie pop music. We get heavily-waited-for singles by rising music
acts like Hope Tala and groups like FLO and CHAI. Big stars like Fiona Apple and
Sophie Ellis-Bextor make a quiet return with “(Remember Me) I’m the One Who Loves
You” and “Hypnotized”, respectively.

Before we dive into the list, Honourable Mentions include the EP, Change The Locks, by King Princess, Doechii’s studio version for “B**ch I’m Nice” and the band Wet Leg’s Soulwax remix of “Too Late Now.

1. FLO – Immature

Few groups today are bringing back the excitement in non-solo music like FLO (at least in the English speaking world). The British all-female trio called FLO take inspiration from 90s and early 00s R&B music. Seems like the band has studied everyone from Destiny’s Child and Cheetah Girls to Aaliyah and Mariah Carey. As a result, their new single is a delicious treat full of melodious vocals and splendid harmonising.

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 2. Baby Queen – Nobody Really Cares

The English artist channels Kate Nash and Olivia Rodrigo in this youth-centric pop-rock song, which essentially urges the listener to not care about what anyone says about you. It’s a much needed confidence boost for insecure teens who are into alternative indie music. But the lyrics can also sometimes seem on-the-nose (“crash your daddy’s car”, “Start a fight, cause a commotion”). There are some lyrical gems though, such as “write a song for Jodie Comer”. It’s crystal clear songwriting, which isn’t a bad thing. If the message is great and the song is a banger, who cares?

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3. CHAI, Superorganism – Hero Journey

The four-piece Japanese band redefine all things pink and kawaii (cute) with some innovative music inspired by Basement Jaxx and Gorillaz. There’s a stellar guest appearance by Superorganism, a London-based pop band. What this collaboration results in is a colourful, kaleidoscopic dance pop song tailor made for the summer.

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 4. Raashi Sood – Out of Love (feat. Raja Kumari)

Raashi Sood is a Punjbi playback singer who teaches English in daytime and performs as a side job. Which is not something you would guess by the professionalism in Sood’s resplendent voice. Sood and rapper Raja Kumari get together for a pop tune that, interestingly, has that very 80s snare sound à la Rick Astley and Kate Bush of Hounds of Love era.

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5. Watkins Family Hour, Fiona Apple – (Remember Me) I’m the One Who Loves You

 The “I Want You to Love Me” hitmaker, FIona Apple, joins hands with her old friends and collaborators, the L.A. bluegrass band Watkins Family Hour. “(Remember Me) I’m the One Who Loves You” is a blues-y, folks-y piece with a country flair that will remind you of Southern US culture and ranches.

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6. Easy Life – OTT (feat. Benee)

Kiwi artist Benee hops on the new pop single by Easy Life, an English alt indie band from Leicester. It’s a perfect bittersweet song about growing up and struggling. Benee’s voice is perfect for this bebop sound and Easy Life is a band to look out for.

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7. Sophie Ellis-Bextor X Wuh Oh – Hypnotized

Bextor is a 90s music icon from Hounslow, UK, who has served a disco-pop track titled “Hypnotized”. The lyrics sing of a toxic relationship with a narcissist. But the dark songwriting mixes with a bouncy dance beat produced by Glasgow-based composer Wuh Oh.

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8. Hope Tala – Is It Enough

The singer-songwriter made a splash in the indie scene in 2020 with her EP, Girl Eats Sun. As expected, Tala tackles social injustice and identity with this new song. Her vocals are delicate and sombre as ever, and reminiscent of Lily Allen and Corinne Bailey Rae.

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9. Pussy Riot – Plastic (feat. iLoveMakonnen)

Nadya Tolokonnikova’s singles get better. We never really know what to expect from her! The alternative hyperpop-inspired track with hip hop beats grows on you. Rapper iLoveMakonnen nicely adds to the subject matter with his verse. Nadya’s lyrics put an ironic, parodic spin on a toxic culture that sees women as objects who have no opinions and are preferred as silent. Whether ironically singing about how you have no power or discernible identity and that you’re okay with that works as an empowering feminist track, and not something that only further validates chauvinists, is still up for debate. Until then, we can listen to this catchy bop and hope for the best.

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10.Kennebec – Tall Tales (feat. Hemlock Ernst, Sudan Archives)

Rapper Kennebec makes a collaboration with Future Islands-lead singer Hemlock Ernst and musician Sudan Archives to make a spellbinding and ruminative jazzy song. The arrangements are simply exquisite. While thematically, the lyricism is a little disjointed.

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11. Mitski, Clark – Love Me More (Clark remix)

A very confusing remix of a Mtski song. Clark does his best to make a club-friendly track out of this indie synth pop song. But the results are arguably messy and some parts of the production sound offbeat. 

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Check out the “New Songs Sunday” playlist on Spotify. 

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