Listen Up

Sweeping cosmic-disco, soulful melodies, pop laments and more in our musical round-up

Röyksopp feat. Alison Goldfrapp: Impossible

Last month, electronic music legends Röyksopp (Svein Berge and Torbjørn Brundtland) released a new instrumental track, teasing the Profound Mysteries project. Now they share more details about the endeavor, along with a song featuring Alison Goldfrapp. Immediately recognizable as Röyksopp, the dark and moody “Impossible” is enthralling. The English singer, songwriter, musician and producer says, “I’ve been a fan of [Röyksopp] music for years and it was a fascinating joy creating ‘Impossible’ together. I truly hope everyone enjoys the track as there’s more to come.” A visualizer by Australian artist Jonathan Zawada accompanies the track—and all videos, “artefacts” and music will be available at the Profound Mysteries portal. Physical copies (available on CD and cassette, with vinyl coming) are also available for purchase online.

Image courtesy of Jonathan Zawada/Röyksopp

Arlo Parks: Softly

British singer, songwriter and poet Arlo Parks endeavors toward a more pop-forward style with her newest song “Softly.” About a relationship ending, rejection and insecurity, it’s an upbeat lament with fast-paced percussion, hand claps and plenty of piano. Parks says, “‘Softly’ is a song about yearning, about how fragile you feel in the dying days of a relationship when you’re still desperately in love. The song is about how it feels to brace yourself before the blow of a break up and reminisce about the days where it all felt luminous.” The video—directed by Zhang and Knight—provides a fitting hazy nostalgia.

Image courtesy of Lillie Eiger

Kim And Buran: Phazerdelique

From St Petersburg, Russia-based electronic disco outfit Kim And Buran (led by Vyacheslav Zavyalov), “Phazerdelique” is a sweeping, seven-and-a-half-minute song that never dips in ecstatic energy. It’s the first single from their forthcoming album, Tramplin (out 4 February). With a dose of psychedelic sonic influence and a lot of cosmic infusion, the dance track grooves, pulses and delights.

Image courtesy of Kim And Buran

Nanna.B feat. Raphael Saadiq: Too Much

Danish-born, LA-based singer, songwriter and producer Nanna.B teams up with R&B legend Raphael Saadiq for “Too Much.” With syncopated piano and percussion, the track features a muffled verse from Nanna.B which leads to Saadiq’s similarly altered—but still immediately familiar—vocals. On Instagram, the artist explained her excitement to work with Saadiq: “If you know me you know I have to pinch myself daily to make sure this is real!!!! 17-year-old me would lose her fucking shit knowing this is actually happening, but here we are…”

Image courtesy of Nanna.B

The James Hunter Six: Never

Out from Daptone Records, The James Hunter Six’s soulful new single “Never” precedes the Grammy-nominated English artist’s forthcoming album, With Love (out 14 February). A ballad of heartfelt lyrics and enveloping melodies, the smooth track exists outside of time or place—allowing anyone with an affection for love songs to appreciate it.

Image courtesy of The James Hunter Six

Niagara Moon: Bad Vibes

A whimsical baroque-pop track reminiscent of the lush arrangements found within The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds, “Bad Vibes” by Massachusetts-based singer and composer Niagara Moon is “a parody of paranoia” and “a satire of superstition,” according to the recording artist. The expressive song will appear on Good Dreams, Niagara Moon’s forthcoming album out on AntiFragile.

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. Hero image courtesy of Arlo Parks