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Top 10 Songs of the Week (4/1)

A fresh batch of exciting tunes to soundtrack your weekend

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Some weeks, we argue with each other about how difficult it is to rank the week’s 10 best songs. Then CoS went ahead and ranked every single alt radio hit — that’s right: every single one. So, yeah, this week didn’t seem like as much of a problem. While you might not find a few hundred jams in this list, we can guarantee you 10 spectacular new tunes that may just make it into a future all-time great list.
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10. Dowsing – “Dissolve”

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Chicago once again seems like a hotbed of emo, much as it was near the genre’s formation. After a couple years off, Dowsing are rejoining that conversation with the news of their upcoming third LP. “Dissolve” is an early taste of that record, and it’s a propulsive, charming track led by Erik Hunter Czaja and Michael Crotty’s dual guitar attack. There’s some pop punk to the song as well, particularly in their line-swapping chorus. Their record, due April 29 via Asian Man Records, technically has no title, but it’s being referred to as OKAY because of the hand gesture featured on the cover. Which is about as appropriate for their sound and styling as I could’ve imagined — not to mention awesome. –Adam Kivel

This week, you can also get discounted vinyl courtesy of our friends at SoundStage Direct with the code: CS12
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09. Moonface and Siinai – “Risto’s Riff”

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While Wolf Parade went on hiatus a few years ago, Dan Boeckner and Spencer Krug continued to develop and grow their voices — both literally and figuratively, adopting new styles and experimenting in different genres. For a good stretch, Krug dropped the Sunset Rubdown moniker and went out as Moonface, exploring softer and vaster spaces, including a lot of piano-driven work. As news of Wolf Parade’s return looms, it’s interesting to hear that neither has put that growth on hold to reconvene — Boeckner’s Operators put out an excellent new album this week, and Krug’s new track as Moonface builds an indie rock drone unlike anything he’s done with the project. “Risto’s Riff” uses guitarist Risto Joensuu’s churning tone at the core (fittingly), charging full speed ahead, Krug at the helm with lines about ghosts, radio, and captains. Moonface and Siinai’s new collaborative album, My Best Human Face, drops June 3 via Jagjaguwar. —Adam Kivel

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08. EV Zeppelin feat. A$ton Matthews – “Chem Dream”

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Chuck Inglish and Blended Babies seem like an unlikely duo, but the two will be joining forces next month in a collaborative project called EV Zeppelin. Their album is set to drop April 29 and will include appearances from friends Buddy, Alex Wiley, Asher Roth, and Boldy James. The group have offered their first single off the album entitled “Chemdream”, which features A$ton Matthews. The single boasts minimal piano keys with erratic electronics, as airy and ominous synths coalesce with Matthews’ rap musings. –Alejandra Ramirez

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07. Snakehips feat. Anderson .Paak – “Money on Me”

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The UK production duo Snakehips have gained steam the past few years through their soulful blend of retro and modern, primarily via remixes of artists like Banks, Raury, and Wild Belle. The last time we heard from them was late last year with the pop confection “All My Friends”, which featured Tinashe and Chance the Rapper. They’ve followed that track up with “Money on Me”, an electronic slow-burn accompanied by reverbed flourishes and catchy hooks from singer/rapper Anderson .Paak. The track will be featured on the duo’s forthcoming EP of the same name, which will also include collabs with Tory Lanez and Malika. –Alejandra Ramirez

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06. The Coathangers – “Squeeki Tiki”

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Two weeks out from releasing their fifth full-length in 10 years, Nosebleed Weekend, Atlanta’s The Coathangers continue to have a blast atop their shoegazing garage rock riffs. With “Squeeki Tiki”, the trio manages to transform one of the world’s most annoying sounds (the squeak of a cheap plastic dog toy) into a totally welcome structural element. A narrative on the collapse of a regrettable relationship (“You can have it/ I don’t want that shit/ It’s just a bad memory of what I did”), the single also highlights some traits needed to survive a decade in the music industry: the ability to leave the negativity behind, earn a few valuable lessons from the drama, and quickly move on to more fruitful endeavors. Nosebleed Weekend will be available April 15 through Suicide Squeeze. –Derek Staples

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05. LUH – “Beneath the Concrete”

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LUH’s Ellery Roberts experimented with the convergence of dark pop and hardcore-influenced gang vocals as part of Manchester’s WU LYF.  So, while Spiritual Songs for Lovers to Sing is a sublimely powerful title for LUH’s debut full-length offering (available May 6 via Mute), a more fitting tagline might have been Spiritual Songs for Lovers to Antagonistically Shout!. The album’s lead single, “Beneath the Concrete”, unifies in its nod to the uncertainties of personal growth: “All we are is people trying/ All we are is people trying to live/ Trying to live a life that means something/ Trying to live a life that means something more.” Alongside Ebony Hoorn, Roberts is defining a new, dark gospel for disenchanted souls to collectively emote on this eternal struggle. –Derek Staples


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04. Mick Jenkins – “The Artful Dodger”

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It seems Mick Jenkins has been reading some Charles Dickens, as the Chicago rapper named his latest track “The Artful Dodger”. Though rather than child pickpockets, he’s referencing Batman antagonist Harvey Dent and NBA young gun Karl-Anthony Towns. So, he’s talking more about avoiding Two-Faces and dunking on the fools that try to come at him than wanting more gruel. He’s artful in his music, and he’s dodging all the shit that’s being thrown at him. “The art gon’ prosper,” he promises in the outro, and anyone that’s been following Jenkins won’t doubt that assertion. Add to that a bouncy, fun production from Kaytranada and THEMpeople, and you’ve got a jam that’ll last for quite a while. Jenkins is currently working on his debut full-length, so expect even more in the near future. –Adam Kivel

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03. Xenia Rubinos – “Lonely Lover”

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Xenia Rubinos has tried to figure out her identity for years, and “Lonely Lover” — the lead single off her sophomore LP, Black Terry Cat, out June 3rd via ANTI- — finally sees her find it. The criminally underrated singer-songwriter is Puerto Rican and Cuban, lives in America, and sings in both English and Spanish; she’s her own melting pot, and musically speaking, she pulls on enough funk, art rock, and R&B styles to match that. Instead of labeling the combination “fusion,” it becomes her own style free of labels, channeling the spirit of St. Vincent’s Marry Me, Billie Holiday’s vocal flair, and Afro Latin bass that emphasizes jazzy rhythms. After having spent her last $5 on a drink and losing her glasses, Rubinos is left trying to escape the grasp of a fraying relationship, but her vocal control in the face of creativity, nevertheless in the face of a demanding fling, emphasizes her independence even more. –Nina Corcoran

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02. Moses Sumney – “Everlasting Sigh”

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Humans, particularly Americans, are obsessed with health and well-being. Living to your hundreds isn’t just a want; it’s an imagined right. In “Everlasting Sigh”, Moses Sumney calls for a re-imagination of our desire to live — our mental strength can convince our physical deterioration to soldier on if we give it reason. He layers hand claps and melodic vocal crescendos in order to better mirror the swelling heart. Then, in his usual poetic way, he pits religion against humanity in a way that makes the battle both eye-opening and encouraging. “Creator, you create monstrous men/ From the ink that clots your pen,” he sings. “Running on a sentence that must end/ So your bones can rise again.” As he projects humanity on vultures shortly after, Sumney makes one thing clear: We better go about immortality not by taking from other people’s energy, but by observing how they holster theirs — and figuring out how to do so ourselves. –Nina Corcoran


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01. Tim Hecker – “Black Phase”

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Take a breath. No matter what you’re doing right now, there’s room for you to slow down. Once again, Canada’s beloved ambient composer Tim Hecker reminds us of this on the new single off his upcoming album, Love Streams. The song, titled “Black Phase”, sees Hecker lacing blurry electronic notes over a deep bass while the off-kilter voices of the Icelandic Choir Ensemble sing above it all. The combination will make you pause in surprise at the very least. After all, that’s what Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson — who arranged and recorded the choir’s vocal parts in Reykjavik — is so good at. It’s a perfect encapsulation of the gorgeous yet terrifying nature that sculpts the very city in which it was recorded. — Nina Corcoran

Stream via Spotify.

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