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Top 10 Songs of the Week (3/25)

Here's a mini catalog of great songs that Paul McCartney doesn't own ... yet

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We were particularly struck this week that Paul McCartney is reacquiring the Beatles’ catalog. Pretty cool! Apparently, the US Copyright Act allows him to reclaim the songs 56 years after their composition. Which means in 2072, any of the artists in this week’s countdown that sell off their songs can reclaim them. Here’s hoping they never have to get to that stage. In the meantime, though, they’re available for us all to enjoy!

10. The So So Glos – “Missionary”

the so so glos matthew greeley Top 10 Songs of the Week (3/25)

“I am a man out on a mission,” frontman Levi Zaru (aka Aleksander) offers at the start of “Missionary”, the latest from The So So Glos. That’s clear from the tone in his voice and the huge chunky hook that comes not long later. But his mission is a decidedly self-aware one, despite the mindless head-bobbing that the song will incite. He’s “a mirror of God in a prime position” and then makes sure to let you know exactly what’s going to happen: “Here comes the chorus the kids can sing along.” Those jonesing for early Wavves, a more melodically-sung Art Brut, or even classic fare like The Boys will find something to like here. “Missionary” comes from the Glos’ upcoming Kamikaze, which will be released on May 20th via Votiv. –Adam Kivel


This week, you can also get discounted vinyl courtesy of our friends at SoundStage Direct with the code: CS12

09. Ariana Grande – “Be Alright”

Ariana Grande Dangerous Woman

When hosting and performing on the March 12th episode of Saturday Night Live this year, Ariana Grande debuted two new songs, one of which was “Be Alright”. It’s probably the only song she’ll ever make that sounds remotely close to Detroit techno. As such, it’s surprisingly fit for not just Manhattan clubs, but those at the heart of London’s underground scene. The unmistakable popping of vinyl and Jamie xx-like xylophone introduce a thick beat that dances with looped vocal oohs. Grande’s own voice sounds like a sample, too. Given “Be Alright” confronts relationship doubts by offering solutions via, of course, dancing until the morning (“Midnight shadows/ When finding love is a battle/ But daylight is so close/ So don’t you worry ‘bout a thing”), it’s already primed for the dance floor. All you have to do is enjoy her cue. —Nina Corcoran

08. Lil Silva – “Lines”

Lil Silva

Give this one a moment to wash over you. Commencing like a light spring shower, “Lines” patiently develops into a deluge of stuttering percussion, hypnotizing synths and Lil Silva’s own disembodied vocals. Similar to James Blake’s early post-dubstep offerings, “Lines” is near perfect for those final moments just as club doors open and the sun bleeds over the horizon. A single meant for free hearts and minds, but excessively tired soles. “Lines”, the first single from the forthcoming JIMI EP, is set to arrive May 6th via Good Years Music. –Derek Staples

07. Mark Pritchard feat. Thom Yorke – “Beautiful People”

thom yorke mark pritchard beautiful people song Top 10 Songs of the Week (3/25)

By now, Mark Pritchard has shelled out enough tracks to make his gorgeous, minimalist electronica recognizable to more than just his cult fanbase. “Beautiful People” invites a new group of listeners into his translucent world. Spacious production invites the song’s airy components — slow flute, cushy synth, metronome-like drums — to swirl together above your head, creating a trance that’s impossible not to feel seep into your veins. Throughout it all is Thom Yorke. The Radiohead frontman sings with that falsetto we’ve grown to love, but it’s slowed down, like he’s drugged up and whispering through closed teeth from the backseat of a car. It’s six minutes of straight beauty — about as good a break from the daily hustle of this week as you can hope for. –Nina Corcoran

06. SBTRKT feat. The-Dream – “Good Morning”

SBTRKT

If we don’t consider the new material SBTRKT released in 2015 via BBC Radio 1 shows and Soundcloud, the last time we “officially” heard from the masked British producer was with the release of 2014’s Wonder Where We Land. Luckily, the wait is now over with the release of the single “Good Morning”, which features R&B crooner The-Dream. The track lingers along the brooding melancholy and languid production typical of the producer, as well as the vocalist’s typical romantic ruminations. It’s possible that “Good Morning” will be paired with other recent SBTRKT releases, like the jazz minimalistic “I Feel Your Pain”, on an upcoming project. We’ll let you know when we do. –Alejandra Ramirez


05. Tinashe – “They’re On”

Tinashe

Unfortunately, there’s still no word on when Tinashe’s sophomore album, Joyride, will be released. There have been a slew of tracks that could be on it — the bedroom-eyed “Ride of Your Life”, whirling Young Thug-assisted “Party Favors”, and sultry “Energy” — that show the pop starlet may be trying to slow things down for a sensual R&B vibe for the record, as opposed to the club-ready singles on her debut LP, Aquarius. To add to the list is “They’re On”, another FM-friendly single that features the lithe, sexy beat of DJ Mustard. –Alejandra Ramirez

04. Mourn – “Evil Dead”

Nina Corcoran, Mourn 2

There was always something a little feral about Spanish quartet Mourn, but it seems we now know where it comes from: Those Barcelona teenagers were catching up on old zombie flicks! Their spooky, new track, “Evil Dead”, would seem to be proof, shouting out a threat to “feast on your soul” (like in the movie!). Oh and wait! On their excellent debut last year, they had a song called “Your Brain’s Made of Candy”. Are these kids actually zombies? Well, if they are, the disease is spreading; where “Your Brain’s” built to a shout, “Evil Dead” threatens from its very first churn. If I keep listening to this song over and over, it may be because zombie-ism spreads aurally now and I’ve turned (send help), or maybe it’s just because this one’s a gritty gem worth repeating. Mourn’s new album, Ha, Ha, He, drops June 3 from Captured Tracks. –Adam Kivel

03. Novelty Daughter – “Not Fair”

Novelty Daughter

For the uninitiated, Novelty Daughter is the stage name of Brooklyn-based musician Faith Harding. Harding won’t be a stranger for long; her angelic, jazz-influenced vocals make an immediate impact during “Not Fair”. Listen closely, as the narrative is strikingly universal: “How could I ever be someone who constantly changes but also loves who she used to be?” This dichotomy of personal evolution and steadfast authenticity is reflected in the track’s instrumental, which wanders through smoke-filled speakeasies guided by a nervously confident electro sway. Grab “Not Fair” and Novelty Daughter’s debut full-length, Semigoddess, now via Stereocure. –Derek Staples

02. Marissa Nadler – “All the Colors of the Dark”

Marissa Nadler

If anybody is capable of capturing and exploring the various shades of black and making them all beautiful, it might just be singer-songwriter Marissa Nadler. There’s always been a shady patina covering her folk-rooted music, as if a verdant, black-speckled moss were creeping its way slowly across her songs. But then there’s “All the Colors of the Dark”, her latest single, which finds her comparing those grayscale shades to “All the colors of the heart” and how you have left your mark. There’s loss at the song’s core, and it sits like a purpling bruise, the twinkling waltz circling around decay. The song suggests that Nadler’s upcoming album, Strangers (out May 20 through Sacred Bones), will draw out more than a few tears and weighted sighs. –Adam Kivel

01. The Range – “Copper Wire”

the range

Age is just a number, and there’s no better way to mask ageist assumptions than through music. On “Copper Wire”, James Hinton, the man behind The Range, samples vocals by a 13-year-old London rapper named Kruddy Zak. The YouTube video audio spikes an otherwise fuzzy song where plunging crescendos push sharp backbeats. “’09 was emotional/ It’s a memory/ I wish that everything was still the same,” he sings. We’ve all got our own memories from that year, but for Hinton, it choked him up; it’s the year he lost his mother, and this is the first time he’s ever addressed that in music. It shows that The Range’s new album — Potential, out today — is more than a rookie swinging a bat. It’s Hinton raising the standards for the electronic game, dishing out songs we can depend on and will most certainly return to in years to come. — Nina Corcoran

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