As music listening habits become more specialized, it's easier than ever to miss a new song. Unless it gets put in constant rotation on the radio, earns a coveted spot on your favorite playlist, or pops up on the soundtrack to that hot new TV show, most tracks -- even from big artists -- fly under the radar for the casual music fan. Thankfully, we've got you covered. Below, you'll find five new songs of the moment that are worth taking time out of your busy day for. It doesn't matter what genre the song comes from or how popular the artist is. If it's good, we want you to hear it -- and then listen again.
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Angel Olsen is a force. The singer/songwriter is an artist of magnitude -- in her voice, arrangements, and the grand way she writes about love and how it can be destructive, forcing you to lose and find yourself again. Her 2016 album, My Woman, propelled her into indie stardom and showcased her as one of the best songwriters of today; her new effort, All Mirrors, is already one of 2019's greatest albums. The opener, "Lark," embodies why her star has risen. Her words, reflecting on a relationship where her autonomy wasn't valued, are delivered with the swagger of poetic rock stars like Patti Smith, and the crescendo of her performance and the strings is brutally dramatic. Her lover didn't respect her aspirations, but her repetition of "dream on" shows she's embracing what's best for herself, even if that means they're dreams he's not a part of.
There are a lot of "babies" in rap. You may be familiar with the Baby, Lil Baby, Bhad Bhabie, and many others -- or maybe you haven't heard of them at all, which is quite all right because of the babies, the baby of the moment is DaBaby. The North Carolina rapper released his debut studio album, appropriately titled Baby on Baby, back in March, and he recently dropped a second project, KIRK, with a handful of exciting features, from Chance the Rapper to Nicki Minaj to Migos. It's when he's performing solo, though, on songs like "VIBEZ" that you can tell how much this babe shines among the rest. It's a banger thumping with the energy of a house party as DaBaby spews whip-smart quick lines. It's like he's offering a vibe check on rap, and delivering surefire energy as he sees fit.
Seattle indie-punk band Great Grandpa's latest single off their upcoming record, Four of Arrows (out October 25), reads and sounds like a sonic representation of those motivational posters you see hanging around school classrooms and office spaces. It's mostly in the chorus that bursts, "Step into whatever you want to and let your spirit bloom" -- but it's all with good intention, because one listen you feel the only kind of immense hope your friends can impart. In their rootsy brand of emo music, and this song especially, this five-piece group of best friends makes you feel part of their embrace.
There are a hell of a lot of break-up songs out there, but more or less each falls into one of the following forms: what feels like irreparable heartbreak, an opportunity to vilify your ex, or a a means to say, "I’m moving on." The last is the subject for Nashville-based pop rock singer-songwriter Liza Anne's latest single "Devotion," a boisterous reminder to devote yourself to your own personhood ("Return to me and who I was before I was in love / I'll do anything for her now, she's my longest love"). The singer shows off her writing chops here like that of other alt singers a la Angel Olsen and Lucy Dacus, but there's a radical self-love-fused kick to the music she's serving. It's time to devote yourself to this up-and-comer just as much as she's looking out for herself.
Not too long ago, Atlanta R&B singer Summer Walker got a DM from Drake. He said he saw one of her videos playing in a bowling alley and wanted to collaborate. Casual, right? Eventually Drizzy remixed Walker's song "Girls Need Love" -- and she definitely warranted the attention. The sultry singer makes the explicit honest and heaven-like, and her new record, Over It, pulls features from other exciting names in soul like Jhene Aiko and PARTYNEXTDOOR. Usher even appears on the '00s throwback track "Come Thru," which samples his hit "You Make Me Wanna…," and the newcomer's vocals mixed with the classic club singer's sound extremely delectable. It's like a "u up?" text (sent via Motorola RAZR) that you've been waiting for all night in a song.
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