“Anaconda”, Nicki Minaj’s new booty-rap single, is everywhere, and between the Sir Mix-a-Lot interpolations, the single’s cover, and the anticipation for the upcoming video, it’s a thoroughly viral phenomenon. It’s not exactly a grower in the sense that there’s a lot of subtlety (or in any other sense, for that matter); instead, everything is as overt as can be.
Obviously, not all songs have to be like “Anaconda” to catch our ears. Pop hooks and rap punchlines are great, but the likes of artful ballads and prog metal journeying require more time to be absorbed. Mr Twin Sister and Opeth fill such roles this week, and with new ones from Sophie, Cayetana, and Black Milk, the following list spans songs that kick you in the stomach right away all the way to tracks you (and we) may still be parsing in November.
10. Opeth – “Eternal Rains Will Come”
Opeth dabbled in prog rock on 2011’s Heritage and pissed off a lot of their hardcore fans. The growls were gone, and the songs took on a calm fluidity more Pink Floyd than metal. The upcoming Pale Communion offers no respite for those looking for the old Opeth, though the band commands the prog style with more confidence and tact this time around. Lead cut “Eternal Rains Will Come” moves back and forth between a percussion-heavy jam (jazzy in the way the drums dictate the tempos and chord changes) and slower verse, featuring Mikael Åkerfeldt’s clean(est) vocals. Whereas Heritage could meander and bore, this song’s gradual buildup offers surprises and comes to a satisfying conclusion. Pale Communion drops August 26th via Roadrunner. –-Jon Hadusek