Listen Up

A delicate tune, "tiny desk" concert, bass-line heavy bop and more new music this week

Dahlia Sleeps: Storm

Dahlia Sleeps, a London-based four-piece band, shared the first single, “Storm,” off their Love, Lost EP set to be released later this year on Beatnik Creative. The single, anchored by lead singer Lucy Hill’s delicate vocals, sounds like poetry—echoing lines and heavy strings make this one last well beyond its closing notes. “I know I’m not your only one,” she calls, “but I want to be the one you keep.” It’s less pleading than it is self-reflection—like a journal entry for only her to recount. The song is beautiful, boundless and bold (in its admissions).

Hobo Johnson and The Lovemakers: NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert

NPR Music’s Tiny Desk Concert Contest entrant Hobo Johnson and The Lovemakers rose to internet stardom with the viral performance of their jubilant, spoken-word-like track “Peach Scone.” The music from the five-piece act, which was selected to be featured on NPR, is both kindhearted and youthful, but no line is lost in any one of their tracks. They weave clever connections between Romeo and Juliet and the unfortunately high divorce rate, biblical references, loud calls pleading for happy endings and recollections of lost love that pack punches resonating well beyond one humorous moment. Nothing is perfect here—but, nothing is wrong about it either. It’s raw, real and a welcome break from more serious songs discussing similar topics.

Jon Hopkins: Singularity

To begin with, Jon Hopkins’ track “Singularity,” which leads this year’s album of the same name, plunges listeners into a frenzy. It escalates, ensnaring and entwining emotions and human energy. And the just-released music video somehow matches it all. Directed by Sebastian Edwards, the visuals track a woman and man as they dance—or battle—through a dark, abandoned property. It’s pretty bonkers—like the song throbbing behind it.

jives: Your Reality

Tom Rose, known by his moniker jives, released the Strawberry Girl EP yesterday, 17 September, on More Creativity Records. A standout from the three track drop is “Your Reality.” It’s hypnotic—and a mysterious interlude divides the track, with the first half possessing an otherworldly delicacy and the latter functioning as a well of dark beats. The rhythm of the second portion is infectious and attention-grabbing—especially for a song with, aside from its two sentence interlude, no lyrics.

Maribou State feat. Holly Walker: Nervous Tics

English electronic duo Maribou State, comprised of Chris Davids and Liam Ivory, enlist the help of London-based singer Holly Walker for “Nervous Tics.” It’s a single off the duo’s album Kingdoms in Colour which released 7 September on Counter Records. An accompanying video for the steady, sultry tune is a technicolor loop of nervous tics—though, most of them appear as dance moves, carrying a diverse cast of characters up and down, along with the song’s riffing bass line. The video, directed by Hugo Jenkins, gives the standout an even stronger push post-release.

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Maribou State feat. Holly Walker: Nervous Tics

English electronic duo Maribou State, comprised of Chris Davids and Liam Ivory, enlist the help of London-based singer Holly Walker for “Nervous Tics.” It’s a single off the duo’s album Kingdoms in Colour which released 7 September on Counter Records. An accompanying video for the steady, sultry tune is a technicolor loop of nervous tics—though, most of them appear as dance moves, carrying a diverse cast of …

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Frank Ocean covers "Moon River," Dita Von Teese sings with Sébastien Tellier and more

Frank Ocean: Moon River (cover) There have been hundreds of covers of “Moon River” since the original (performed by Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”) but Frank Ocean’s surprise version—released today—is certainly one of the most beautiful. Pared-back and relying mostly on Ocean’s divine vocals, the track is (in Ocean’s style) both celestial and haunting. This serene cover is more evidence that seemingly everything Ocean …

Austra: Change the Paradigm

A B-side from this year’s Future Politics, Austra’s “Change the Paradigm” slowly burns on an electronic fuse. Just after two-thirds of the way in, the track completely lets loose. It’s a turbo-charged number ready for the dance floor. Before 2017 ends, the band will be playing a final show in their hometown, Toronto.

Ella Vos: I Know You Care

With “I Know You Care,” Ella Vos continues her string of beautiful, powerful electro-pop tracks. Once again, the LA-based songwriter and vocalist delivers sing-along lyrics of tremendous depth. Her highly anticipated debut album Words I Never Said, from which this song was drawn, will release 17 November.