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Top 10 Songs of the Week (6/17)

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Festival season continues to rage on, this time with Bonnaroo solidly and sadly in our rearview. It seems every year that these milestones come and go quicker than the last, which also unfortunately means that the summer’s already starting to slip away from us. So, in order to make sure you get the full power of your sun-drenched season, start to collect some new tunes and read on below.
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10. Pascal Pinon – “53”

Pascal Pinon Photo by Cole Barash

Comprised of sisters Ásthildur and Jófrídur Ákadóttīr, Pascal Pinon make minimal but dense soundscapes with ambient folk-tinged leanings. The duo is set to release their third studio album, Sundur, on July 19th via Morr Music. The album is inspired by the sister’s separation at one point and adopts the name through a Icelandic proverb translating to “apart and together.” The first tease of the album comes with the release of “53”, a calm and sinuous track featuring ruminating acoustic flourishes. Boasting Bjork vibes — with obvious reason — the sisters’ soft timbres and emotive, somber songwriting coalesce with swirling and sweeping synths. —Alejandra Ramirez


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09. Yeesh – “World Building”

yeesh world building

Chicago trio Yeesh will have you uttering that very word barely a minute into their new single. In anticipation of their sophomore album, Confirmation Bias, out July 22nd via Tiny Engines, the three shared “World Building”, a song that immediately recalls the unusual organization of Unwound and the emotive instrumental jerks of Pile. Yeesh exercise the type of structured songwriting that deviates from punk rock without fully divulging in math rock, lurching into guitar work that — even at its most basic moments — just feels right. Figuring out how to write that type of guitar-work, nevertheless exercise it in a way with total originality, is hard to do. By the time frontman Alex Doyle lets his gurgling tone burst into full-on shouts at the song’s end, the exhaustion of “World Building” feels gratifying — like every jerked guitar line and unrelenting drum roll fixed your faith in rock itself. —Nina Corcoran


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08. Kllo – “Walls To Build”

Kllo Walls to Build

Kllo is the Melbourne-based duo of cousins Chloe Kaul (vocalist) and Simon Lam (producer). Together, they create weightless, UK garage-indebted pop bliss. And, according to Kaul and Lam, “Walls To Build” is the poppiest of selections pulled from their forthcoming Ghostly International full-length Well Worn (available August 5th). While the title might serve as a subtle allusion to popular political rants, the single is actually a more introspective take on the barriers we construct to avoid stumbling into new relationships and experiences. Whether the wall is figurative or literal, the desired separation arrives from the same place: fear. As Kllo take this show across the globe, that fear hopefully subsides as praise muffles the self-doubt. —Derek Staples


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07. Kodak Black feat. Gucci Mane – “Vibin In This Bih”

kodak black lil big pac

There’s no predicting what will catch our eyes when it comes to sifting through the thousands and thousands of songs that we consider for these Top Songs posts. In this case, we can undeniably say it was the fabulous artwork for Lil Big Pac, the new mixtape from young Florida rapper Kodak Black. Another attention-grabber is the fact that this one features the fresh-out-of-jail Gucci Mane. But it’s Kodak’s nasal, Wayne-esque delivery that’s the real star here, the bouncy track standing tall as an example of the strength that landed him on the XXXL Freshman list. –Adam Kivel


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06. Green Gerry – “Mean Miracle”

green gerry mean miracle

When sweaty, poolside bodies begin gyrating to “Mean Miracle”, please kindly remind them that this is, in fact, an anti-summer anthem. This lo-fi, brass-tinged single is a complaint against the selfish orb sitting at the center of our solar system — usually at its hottest and brightest when one is only wanting to catch a few more Zs to assist a throbbing cranium. Commencing innocuously enough, the Green Gerry tune eventually erodes into a breakdown as frenzied as the most raucous of summer evenings. The collection of tones may be too buoyant to cure that post-party hangover, but it sure is a lot of fun. Secure the track now via Hit City U.S.A. and have it prepped for the next time the sun is more foe than friend. –Derek Staples


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05. Jaded – “4000hz”

jaded 4000hz

Black Butter Records pick their releases with fortuneteller-like vision comparable to Primavera Sound or Sonar Festival. They know talented electronica when they see it, and Jaded will receive a rising tag before the end of the year thanks to the label picking them up. The trio of Nari (a chemist), Teo (an Italian restaurant owner) and Jordan (who resides in the studio) are as varied in their day jobs as they are in their sonic styles. Standalone single “4000hz” wastes no time dipping its fingers into K-Pop sugar while submerging the rest of itself in old-school club beats. With a bit of LCD Soundsystem-inspired cowbell and punchy Le Tigre percussion, the song romps around with unforgivable sass, recalling the mid-2000s with its straightforward bass and weird samples (eagles, police sirens, bird chirps). If you want a reason to Dance, Jaded’s new single is all you need. —Nina Corcoran


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04. The Avalanches – “Colours”

Nina Corcoran, The Avalanches 3

“Where do all the mermaids go?” Jonathan Donahue of Mercury Rev sings. “Everybody’s got there somewhere.” That looped vocal line at the heart of The Avalanches‘ newest song gives it an uplifting glow. As if a sophomore album after 16 years of silence wasn’t magical enough — Wildflower out July 8th via Modular, for those of you unaware — nor was “Frankie Sinatra”, the Australian electronic trio use “Colours” as an opportunity to fine-tune their production skills. Gorgeous keys and waves of sanded synth rotate in slow motion, several sections of the audio played in reverse, to give it the feeling of floating through an acid trip. Birds chirp. Snare drum rattles. Conversations pop in the background. Perhaps the magic of all of this — of the sunshine, of the sensation of unfiltered serenity, of the entire song’s daze — hinges on the spelling of that word. Have we all found a mermaid somewhere (“there”) or have we all found our own place (“their”)? Both speak to refuge and the comforts they provide, but one spelling looks towards another [half] human while the other looks towards a place. Whichever you choose, it’s yours to cozy up in. —Nina Corcoran



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03. Moon Bros. – “These Stars”

moon bros these stars

As a Chicagoan who frequents the city’s various indie and low-profile music venues, I’ve known for a while just how special and beautiful the music of Moon Bros. can be. But luckily the rest of the world will get a new chance to catch on to Matt Schneider’s moonlit pastoral tunes, complete with an all-star cast of players. The musicians aiding his new record, These Stars, have played in Iron and Wine, The Cairo Gang, Tortoise, and more, but you won’t hear busy collaboration on the title track to that upcoming record. “These Stars” succeeds largely on Schneider’s gently twisting acoustic guitar and soulful voice, airy percussion barely noticeable behind. Grab the entirety of These Stars on July 8th via Western Vinyl. –Adam Kivel


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02. Phantogram – “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore”

phantogram you dont get me high anymore song mp3 Top 10 Songs of the Week (6/17)

For the past week, Phantogram has been teasing their newest single “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore”, and it was well worth the wait. Premiered on Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 Radio, the song serves as the follow-up to their joint collaboration album with Big Boi and will most likely appear on their forthcoming album entitled Three out September 16th via Republic Records. Since the album is inspired by heartbreak, it comes as no surprise that the track has Sarah Bethel lamenting on a broken relationship: “Nothing is fun, not like before/ You don’t get me high anymore.” Beginning with jarring and barraging synths, the electropop punch crescendos from dulcet harmonies and languid electronics to a bombastic and dark chorus. –Alejandra Ramirez



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01. Danny Brown – “When It Rain”

danny brown hella hoes remix song Top 10 Songs of the Week (6/17)

Damn is it good to have Danny Brown back. One of the most recognizable voices in the rap game, Brown is finally set to return with his first studio album since 2013’s sublime Old, and it’s shaping up to be a mind-bending delight. “When it rain, when it pour, get your ass on the floor,” he demands on early cut “When It Rain”, bouncy retro synth and alt percussion combining for one of the most paranoiac and danceable production grooves in a long while, only topped when Danny’s nasal flow matches the synth pattern. The track features a reference to classic “Coffee Pot” percolator shout-out and hints of the Talking Heads influence he’s feeling, notably through a twitchy funk vibe. Whenever his 2016 album finally drops, we’ll still be grooving to this one. –Adam Kivel

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