V’s New Music Round-Up

V’s New Music Round-Up

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V’s New Music Round-Up

Here are some of the biggest and best releases of the week

Here are some of the biggest and best releases of the week

Text: Ahad Sanwari

Hello and welcome to spooky season! Or, as I like to call it, spoopy season! While you’re out and about, hopefully gamboling in a mask, because there are greater problems to fear than just things that go bump in the night, we’ve got you covered with some of the best and biggest releases of the week with V’s New Music Round-Up! 

Here are this week’s top picks:

= by Ed Sheeran

Image courtesy of Asylum Records UK

Ed Sheeran has a very clear and distinct understanding of the commercial appeal of his art, and his newest record really shows it off. It’s a lot more movement and dance heavy than his usual balladry and emotional slow burns, which can admittedly feel contrived. He maneuvers through sounds popularized by the likes of The Weeknd over the past year to create a largely fun if not unremarkable set of club hits, with a few quiet moments that really, really shine. Ditch “Sandman” and “2Step” and you have a pretty solid Ed Sheeran album!

Something For Thee Hotties: From Thee Archives by Megan Thee Stallion

Image courtesy of 300 Entertainment

Megan Thee Graduate just dropped a full 21-track record for all her hotties, full of archival records, old freestyles, and new beats. And it’s thoroughly entertaining. It’s all about Megan on here, it’s about appreciating her story, her style, her panache, and her ability to dominate whatever variety of beat she’s given. If you’re really just a fan of Megan Thee Stallion and want to hear her rap for songs on end, then this is for you, hottie.

Moongate by Alina Baraz

Image courtesy of Memo Blue/United Masters

Following up on Sunbeam from a little over a month ago, Alina Baraz keeps her signature penchant for lush harmonies, smooth production, and lovelorn narratives alive. Her second EP release of the year follows up on the same themes and voices that she explored on the first, feeling like a continuation of the record that only serves to be separate to allow listeners the time to explore them both individually.

“Telepath” by Conan Gray

Image courtesy of Republic Records

“Telepath” just sounds like this 80s fever dream that sounds like it’s about to turn into Sheeran’s “Bad Habits,” but then becomes more of a savage take on the eternal classic, Michael Sembello’s “Maniac.” It’s effervescent, it’s buoyant with its light synths, floating vocals, and key changes, it deserves to soundtrack any competition taking place in a skating rink, complete with leg warmers and a vengeance for the crown.

“Oh Na Na” by Myke Towers, Camila Cabello, and Tainy

Image courtesy of Oh Na Na

“Don’t Go Yet” was more of a departure for Cabello from her usual style while fully embracing her Latin-American heritage and musical history. “Oh Na Na” is more like one foot in that direction, with another in her Romance era, with the easy pop hooks, seamless production, a dance-able club-ready beat that seems destined to bust up most charts, whether mainstream or Latin-oriented.

“Doesn’t Matter” by BENEE

Image courtesy of Republic Records

After the burst of joy in the scene that came from “Supalonely,” BENEE takes a turn towards the raw and the serious as she takes on her own struggles with her mental health and confidence on “Doesn’t Matter.” She uses her best asset, her extremely evocative and ethereal vocals, to great effect here over a steady drum-and-guitar melody that does sound slightly like a pared down version of her biggest hit. Maybe that was intentional, it does present an intriguing narrative of the perils of reaching heady heights too quickly.

“Family” by David Guetta ft. Bebe Rexha, Ty Dolla $ign, and Boogie Wit Da Hoodie

Image courtesy of Atlantic/icons+giants

Bebe Rexha is clearly the dominant force on the track, not just with her sung portions, but also the fact that it lays in the same vein as the production on her recent studio effort, Better Mistakes, which makes me question: is David Guetta becoming derivative? He’s certainly popular and effective with his skills, but his tracks haven’t been exciting in a hot minute now. Ty Dolla $ign is perfectly fine, and we honestly could’ve done with Boogie Wit Da Hoodie’s verse, which really just derails the tempo a bit. Maybe I’m missing something.

“Best Of Me” by Alicia Keys

Image courtesy of RCA Records

Alicia Keys drops the first proper taste of her upcoming dual-sided album, KEYS, with the original and unlocked versions of this track. There’s not a significant difference between the two on first listen, with the latter being produced by Mike Will, but it’s in the minute details. It’s especially the beeping sound in the unlocked version that can get slightly grating. I recommend the original, which is this rich and lushly created R&B/lounge hybrid that oozes raw emotion.

“Next Year” by Macklemore ft. Windser

Image courtesy of Bendo LLC

Macklemore reconnects with his first big hitmaker, Ryan Lewis, to create this slice of optimism that’s all about the mantra that’s kept most of the world afloat through the past couple years. The chant of “next year’s gonna be better than this” may not be for the cynics in the audience, there’s a little cheese and sucrose to this jam. But it’s so earnest with its rap and Windser’s sung choruses that you can’t really hate on it.

“Weigh me down” by ego apartment

Image courtesy of NihyakuWIND

There’s an effortless charm to the way ego apartment takes their blend of rock, punk, and a lot of funk to produce this little ditty. It’s like floating above the clouds for a song that’s distinctly anything but, more of a statement on a constricting relationship. It’s actually quite the aesthetically pleasing contrast, to have a song sound as light as air and be that heavy in subject matter. Definitely a worthy listen on many levels.

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