Top 10 Songs of the Week (8/28)


The trailer for Colin Hanks’ excellent new documentary All Things Must Pass just dropped in preparation of its limited release, and it’s got us all nostalgic. Remember when you’d need to go out to Tower Records and buy 10 CDs just in the hopes of finding 10 thrilling new songs? While that process had its joys, we’ve got an easier option for you: Just click play on the 10 tracks in our list this week and get your fill of everything from Julia Holter’s experimental pop, Ne-Hi’s anthemic garage rock, Lucki Eck$’s particular brand of trap, and much more.

10. Riton – “Rinse and Repeat”

“This is not how I woke up, but it’s how I look now,” hypnotizes Kahio during the mischievous tech-house of “Rinse and Repeat”. Kahio and London-based Riton own the fantasy that is club life, where romances can burn out before the sunrise. Those courageous enough to solicit the attentions of Kahio better be ready to be on until morning — a task far easier when aided by the infectious bass line and distorted vocal interplay. Following a series of indie flips and hip-hop productions in 2014, Riton’s continued departure from his early frenetic techno stylings has enriched his palette and pushed his extended sets into divergent territories. –Derek Staples

09. Yonatan Gat – “0”

Yonatan Gat

Once the frontman of Monotonix, Yonatan Gat has taken new steps under his own name, unspooling his rhythmic, feverish guitar energy in sweaty clubs across the country. Recorded with drummer Gal Lazer, “0” captures that live fury. The two recorded an entire mini-album (with Steve Albini no less) in three hours, and while this first taste runs at full speed, it never feels rushed. There’s something of math rock in the quick-tapped guitar figures of the intro, some jazz in the clearly improvised runs and scattered drumming in the middle, and all rock guitar power throughout. The full mini-album, Physical Copy, will hit shelves September 18th via Joyful Noise. –Adam Kivel

08. HQFU – “Dust & Dirt”


An array of emotions builds during the four minutes of “Dust & Dirt”. With less than a handful of productions released, Glasgow’s Sarah J. Stanley (aka HQFU) has quickly cultivated a visceral aesthetic. The track commences with electro stylings fit for the quickly approaching Burning Man — a combination of synths and dusty acoustics that transport listeners to the emptiness of the American desert. Stanley’s vocals combat the hysteria of loneliness, a tangible presence amid the airy instrumentals. By track’s end, an uneasy happiness begins to set in, led by a series of effervescent blips. Download the track now as a quick reprieve from the day’s more intense moments. –Derek Staples

07. Ne-Hi – “Turncoat”


If you’ve seen CoSigned indie rockers Ne-Hi anytime recently — and considering the number of shows they play and their high energy performance, why wouldn’t you have? — there’s a very good chance you’ve heard the excellent “Turncoat”. The live staple finally got the studio treatment, and the results are as anthemic and fist-pumping as you’d expect. The song and its accompanying video have a working class, Midwestern Springsteen feel, with the big vocal lines gang-shouted and the guitars set to shredded jangle. –Adam Kivel

06. Lucki Eck$ – “Newer Me”

Lucki Eck$

Chicago rapper Lucki Eck$’s music is druggy and despondent, like that of Earl Sweatshirt and Chester Watson. As the 19-year-old mutters about his trapping philosophy and his own penchant for ingesting the supplies he keeps on his person, his flow is slow and clumpy, like he can’t stop thinking about what he’s going to do immediately after he steps out of the booth. That’s no complaint, though, because with those idiosyncrasies comes style, even when Lucki isn’t actually saying something like, “Supreme, shorty, I am looking like a lookbook,” as he does on the gauzy “Newer Me”. An in-and-out loosie clocking in at under two minutes, Lucki risks sounding too relaxed here. But after collecting himself once finished with his stony laugh in the song’s opening seconds, he sounds determined to continue evolving as an artist and as a person as swiftly as the song suggests.  –Michael Madden

05. Telekinesis – “Sleep In”


The first single from Michael Benjamin Lerner’s forthcoming LP as Telekinesis, “In a Future World”, followed a fairly straightforward synthpop swing. On “Sleep In”, he doesn’t let himself get off so easy. This track blossoms and billows at its own pace, tendriling up from a smattering of vocal synthesizer tones and a stock drum machine pattern. “The sun is just a fake,” warns Lerner, just before chipmunk-pitched echoes of his own voice pipe in as backup. “I don’t feel so small/ I can see the sun rise on my wall,” he concludes at the song’s warm, easy coda. Telekinesis will release Ad Infinitum via Merge on September 18th. —Sasha Geffen

04. Julia Holter – “Sea Calls Me Home”


Some music is just not pop, and the use of the word in describing Julia Holter has never been entirely apt; however gorgeously and precisely rendered it is, her music is still experimental and evasive. Then again, here’s “Sea Calls Me Home”, a song Holter originally released in lo-fi form back in 2010. Here, she plays with pleasant, vaguely childlike elements including easily traceable vocals, a bouncy harpsichord progression, and a whistling solo. That seaside clarity makes for a highlight on her new album, Have You in My Wilderness, out September 25th via Domino. –Michael Madden

03. Nicole Dollanganger – “You’re So Cool”

nicole dollanganger Top 10 Songs of the Week (8/28)

Without warning, Grimes launched a brand new artist collective this week just to make sure that Nicole Dollanganger’s music reached more ears. That’s a strong cosign, and the Ontario songwriter’s music more than lives up to it. Her latest single “You’re So Cool” starts at a whisper and arches up to a blinding crescendo. “You got guns for trophies mounted up like animal heads/ With the skulls of all the high school champs you keep in rows above the bed,” she sings in a creepy soprano as if through gritted teeth. If you’ve ever wished Lana Del Rey would take the safety off her songs and let the gore trickle in, Dollanganger’s here to fill that need and more you didn’t even know you had. Her music is violent and unnerving and feminine all at once, hitting visceral frequencies that most artists are all too happy to glance over. –Sasha Geffen

02. Sexwitch – “Helelyos”


Along with Dan Carey and his band TOY, Natasha Khan of Bat for Lashes birthed Sexwitch this week after an extended game of Twitter hangman. If you were expecting a traditional side project from the UK singer, look elsewhere. Sexwitch is technically a cover band, although one that does a lot of work digging into the bones of its originals. Inspired by esoteric ‘70s psychedelic pop and folk records from Morocco, Iran, and Thailand, Khan and Carey set to work arranging a few of their favorite tracks from their record store finds. They sent out lyrics to their friends for translation, and eventually pieced together a six-song EP based on the buried tunes. “Helelyos” is our first taste of the project, and it sees Khan wailing from the bottom of her gut against a cyclical bass groove and a pair of aerated electric guitars. The self-titled Sexwitch EP will be out September 25 on Echo/BMG. –Sasha Geffen

01. Big K.R.I.T. – “86”

Big Krit Fallon

Big K.R.I.T.’s “86”, which the Mississippi rapper and producer released Wednesday for his 29th birthday, is a high-BPM thumper not unlike his previous “I Got This” and “Cadillactica”. But that doesn’t mean it’s formulaic; with spiraling, dexterous guitar and bass work from past collaborator Mike Hartnett, it has the rich musicality that continues to separate K.R.I.T. from unoriginal trap rappers coming out of his region. With that beat and K.R.I.T. waxing poetic about automobile aesthetics (particularly pertaining to his favorite car, the ’86 Monte Carlo), the song has a distinct Dixie rap feel that’s starting to seem timeless. Whether on a banger with Ludacris or alone like he is here, K.R.I.T. is a vessel of that sound in 2015, honoring it faithfully. –Michael Madden