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The past two weeks saw new music by exciting artists from a wide range of genres. We will be looking at tracks by Bree Runway & Khalid, ALOK, Vicetone, Jessy Nelson and more. Some Honourable Mentions for new tracks include “Dive” by Olivia Dean, “Try Me” by Jorja Smith, and “Glue Song” by Beabadoobee and Clairo. 

The new EPs and albums of the week are J-pop group ATARASHII GAKKO!’s ‘Ichijikikoku’ EP, rapper ENNY’s ‘We Go Again’ EP and Shygirl’s ‘Nymph_o’ deluxe album.

  1. Bree Runway & Khalid – Be The One

Bree Runway and Khalid attempt to make an unabashed ode to love and “The One” and a smashit pop duet at the same time, with “Be The One”. Bree’s brilliantly out-of-the-box production is absent here as she dumbs down her usual innovative sound for mainstream appeal. And what better artist to collaborate with for such a sound than the radio-friendly Khalid? All the best to them.

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  1. ALOK – Ready Set Go

Brazilian DJ ALOK makes a highly energetic, sweeping track called “Ready Set Go” for the video game Honor Of Kings. It is cinematic and dramatic with a thumping score and beat that will power you up for the game.

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  1. Vicetone – Dopamine Junkie (feat. Ben Samama)

Vicetone is a Dutch-born EDM duo currently based in Nashville, Tennessee. Their lead single “Dopamine Junkie” featuring Ben Samama is from their forthcoming 4-track EP ‘Departing Reality’. The electronic-genre EP will come out this summer, and be followed by a summer tour. “Dopamine Junkie” is a bold and well-sung electronic dance track with an inspiring message about never giving up. 

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  1. Grace Carter – Bloodwar

London-born neo-soul singer Grace Carter’s latest single is an angry and hurt anthem about a father who was never there for the child. Just like her previous work, the songs paint a picture of pain, loss, betrayal and abandonment. It is angrier than her previous single, “Pick Your Tears Up”, and has a strong hook.

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  1. Jesy Nelson – Bad Thing

The former Little Mix member croons in a slow-tempo pop song while singing about toxic relationships, domestic abuse and the difficulty in breaking out of this toxic cycle. A wounded soul is at the centre of this narrative, a woman who keeps coming back to her abusive partner because she is seduced by his words and touch. While I enjoyed her previous debut single “Boyz” feat. Nicki Minaj, comparing it to “Bad Thing” would be unfair as it is a wholly different mood. It will please Jesy stans, that’s for sure.

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  1. Jessie Ware – Begin Again

English singer-songwriter Jessie Ware is back with a banging new song that follows the same path of disco/retro revival that she has come to be loved for. The lyrics in “Begin Again” shine brighter than her new works as she sings about wanting something “that’s even better than it seems”. The chase for that euphoric, transcendental ecstasy is seen again when Ware sings “why our love is filtered through machines”. She wants authenticity, face-to-face interactions, deep connections, and more… but through the dance floor. Let’s hope we get this same deeply connected, transcendental moment in her album ‘That! Sounds Good’, which comes out this week.

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  1. Jaz Karis – THERAPY

London singer-songwriter Jaz Karis is one of the coolest artists in the British R&B scene right now. And while “Therapy” follows the common R&B topic of toxic relationships and loving men who don’t put in the same work and energy into the relationship, it still feels fresh, sexy and laidback. Listening to this melodic tune itself feels like therapy.

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  1. Gus Dapperton & BENEE – Don’t Let Me Down

“Don’t Let Me Down” sees main man Gus Dapperton hand the reigns to guest featuring artist BENEE as BENEE does most of the singing here. She has been sounding sadder than usual with her lyrics about disappointing connections and lack of love from a desired boy, seeming more common in her releases than ever. The song sees Dapperton and Benee play two characters speaking to each other, with the latter’s character putting an end to the disappointing relationship and the former (Dapperton) playing the lost boy who admits to slipping into his old, bad habits. It is a dancier, and dare I say more electronic, track than the indie pop singers’ catalogues. But we love experimentation here.

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  1. The Linda Lindas – Too Many Things

The four-piece girl band from California makes a straightforward and by-the-numbers rock song about overstimulation and stress from many things: too many problems, thoughts, issues in the world that one is helpless about, and more. Sometimes the narrator cares too much about these things, and sometimes she’s not even sure she cares. Relatable. 

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  1. SZA – Kill Bill (feat. Doja Cat)

Doja Cat has hinted at her next studio album being a “rap” album. Looks like we got a glimpse of what it will sound like thanks to her feature on SZA’s hit “Kill Bill”. Cat raps about breaking into her ex’s house and seeing his girlfriend and attacking her. She paints a vivid picture by describing the suburban home and her thoughts and feelings about being on their property. It’s wonderful storytelling. We just wish she had one more verse if not two, because after her verse is over and we are left breathless, the song goes on with SZA’s usual verses and chorus and we never hear from Doja again, which makes the song feel incomplete.

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