Michael Kiwanuka feat. Tom Misch: Money
British artists Michael Kiwanuka and Tom Misch connect on an infectious track that’s heavily influenced by disco and funk. “I think I want everything,” Kiwanuka calls out at the track’s start. The tune is fun at heart, but as the breakdown begins, Kiwanuka chimes again, this time noting, “I’m spending without being ashamed / spending ’cause I’m all alone.” Despite the lyrics warning about the perils of our cash-obsessed society, the song is ultimately upbeat and perfect for summertime listening.
KT Tunstall: Little Red Thread
A sweeping orchestral remix of KT Tunstall’s most recent single, “Little Red Thread” finds the original track’s guitar work replaced with a Matthew Sheeran composition performed by the Budapest Scoring Orchestra. The crisp acoustic string work accents Tunstall’s captivating voice—enhancing its dramatic highs. A video, directed and edited by Mark Haldane, pairs live footage from the vocal and orchestral recording sessions to great effect.
Spoon: No Bullets Spent
Spoon’s first new music since 2017’s Hot Thoughts, “No Bullets Spent” is an infectious pop-influenced post-punk tune that’s inimitably of the Austin band. With snappy, spry percussion, crisp riffs and frontman Britt Daniel’s vocals, the song will appear on the band’s best-of album, Everything Hits At Once: The Best of Spoon (out 26 July) and will surely make an appearance during their US tour this summer.
Yellow Days: Just When
Beaming with funk and soul influences, “Just When,” the newest song from Yellow Days (aka George Van Den Broek), is delightfully slow and croon-filled. The solo indie project, according to Van Den Broek, is about youth but this track feels unmistakably mature. With production assistance from Nate Fox, it’s a tune that demands repeat listens.
Devendra Banhart: Kantori Ongaku
A tribute to Japanese pop act Yellow Magic Orchestra’s Haruomi Hosono, Devendra Banhart’s new single “Kantori Ongaku” taps into the singer/songwriter’s specific vein of clever, eccentric folk. The track, whose title translates to “country music,” releases with an absurdist, surreal and theatrical video directed by Giraffe Studios. “Kantori Ongaku” is from Banhart’s newly announced album, Ma, his first full-length in three years.
Luke Temple: Wounded Brightness
From his upcoming album Both-And (out this August on Native Cat Recordings), Luke Temple’s song “Wounded Brightness” is exquisitely tranquil. With gentle bossa nova percussion, the song floats along delicately for the most part, but surges beautifully at times—especially at its almost-frenetic final moments. This is Temple’s first solo work since he released music under the Art Feynman moniker two years ago.
Cassius: Cassius 1999
DJ, producer and pioneer of the French electronic music scene, Philippe “Zdar” Cerboneschi has sadly passed away. Cerboneschi formed Cassius with Hubert Blanc-Francard (aka Boom Bass) in the late ’80s, releasing original sparkly house music, and also producing and remixing music for Phoenix, Beastie Boys, Robyn and others. The duo’s upbeat, luminous production saturated everything they touched, and they are set to release Dreems—their first new album in three years—tomorrow.
Listen Up is published every Sunday and rounds up the new music we found throughout the week. Hear the year so far on our Spotify channel.