4th December, NMF!

A rather quiet and sombre week for releases this time around as we sweep into the colder months. Get yourself a cup of coffee and tuck into these delights.

Flawes | Reverie

FLAWES / WHAT’S A BOY TO DO

Gorgeous British pop trio Flawes dropped their first album, Highlights, moments before the pandemic descended. A shame then that their potential seemed wrenched for a moment. ‘What’s a Boy to Do’ works to reject that, taken from a whole new EP that keeps things winding nicely. ‘What’s a Boy to Do’ is just brilliant from start to finish – that typical silky melody that has helped many a Brit-gang find success before. It’s hard not to hear this Coldplay meets CHVRCHES anthem appealing.

Kill That Beat, Kult Kyss

KULT KYSS / KILL THAT BEAT

Meet Little Boots and Grimes in the middle of an acid-wrecked dancefloor, half a glass of Vodka-Coke in one hand and a stranger in the other. That’s ‘Kill That Beat’: a gym ready banger that’s all about the trance-inducing production. Dance music really can take you away, can’t it?

FOLEY / SO PERSONAL

Something about a crisp and unfiltered guitar riff gets me real in the mood for chilling in the sunlight, alas it’s freezing outside and Winter is creeping in. ‘So Personal’ is a terrific montage of R&B meets Katy-Perry melodic heaven, particularly shifting gears and exploding in the last minute into an almost entirely different song. Think Foxes does ‘Harley’s In Hawaii’ and you’re halfway there.

Rina Sawayama - SAWAYAMA (Deluxe) Lyrics and Tracklist | Genius

RINA SAWAYAMA / WE OUT HERE

For better or worse, Sawayama wears her influences on her sleeve. The recent album, which has just received a Deluxe Edition, dips wider than the original immaculate RINA EP but those 90s influences will always be integral to Rina as an artist. ‘We Out Here’ is a love letter to key shifts, a chanted chorus and those huge Max Martin chorus’ and, as on that damn good EP, Rina wears it perfectly.

Evanescence Yeah Right

EVANESCENCE / YEAH RIGHT

At some point we’re sure to hear when the actual album is coming out, right? At this point, ‘Yeah Right’ serves as the fourth promotional single with no release date in sight and we’re beginning to feel parched. ‘Yeah Right’ opens as far from traditional Evanescence as you could expect, bringing those Open Door influences flooding back once again, only for the chorus to descend into typically brooding and stretched grunge chorus glory, but it’s those damn verses that keep the song afloat. Delivered in such a way that you can almost hear the smile on her face, ‘Yeah Right’ isn’t going to win any non-fans of Evanescence over, but it’s damn fun hearing the band continue to experiment.

27th Nov, NMF!

MILEY CYRUS / GIMME WHAT I WANT

Quite an established force at this point, Cyrus turns her back on her pop roots to fully embrace the gritty rock callings of Can’t Be Tamed. With a breadth of genre-based albums in her collection, there was no doubt that Cyrus would arrive here eventually but, unlike those past albums, here it feels like she has arrived at her core sound as opposed to dressing up within one. ‘Gimme What I Want’ isn’t the rockiest on the album, nor the grittiest, and it would certainly feel at home with almost all of her other albums, but god it proves the point so well that 2020 Cyrus has it all figured out. The Weeknd influences shine right through, so much that this screams to be a single.

Fred again.. – Julia (Deep Diving) Lyrics | Genius Lyrics

FRED AGAIN.. / JULIA (DEEP DIVING)

Grit your teeth through the rom-com cheese of a spoken opening because everything that follows it is pure bliss. A truly heartfelt and intimate soft-dance epic built around these small samples of ‘real life’ excerpts. Whilst it certainly doesn’t sound as detached here, the vocal just a smidge too professional to suggest anything overtly real, it’s really that smooth production and absolutely stunning piano melody that beats at the heart of all this.

Rina Sawayama Announces Deluxe Album: Hear "Lucid" - Stereogum

RINA SAWAYAMA / LUCID

Headline: Sawayama embraces generic but enormous Bloodpop production for her cheapest but most commercial hit yet. That’s about all you need to know. Big fans of Sawayama are going to recognise every single polished edge and overly perfected angle, but if you’re going into this having loved Chromatica and wanting more easy dance-pop, you’re in for a treat.

CALL ME LOOP / ROSE

Call Me Loop was built to soundtrack the summer, her new single ‘Rosé’ a delightfully light Sophie Ellis-Bextor anthem built for sunshine kisses. Odd then that it drops following our stolen summer in the middle of the coldest temperatures of the year so far. Still! A little cold isn’t enough to dampen her brilliant melodic touch and, like the title suggests, ‘Rosé’ is as lightweight and joy inducing as the beverage itself.

YUNGBLUD / MARS

There’s nothing new or overtly weird about Yungblud, his schtick a well worn trope for many an upcoming British artist BUT having suffered the dull ‘Everyday-man!’ reign of Sheeran and Capaldi I’ll take Yungblud and his genderbending red-hair ways every single day. What makes it even easier is that the music is really blood good. ‘Mars’ in particular is about as weird as a barbecue in Summer, but its melody is ripped straight from a top-charting Harry Styles solo single.

That’s our highlights for the week, but what were yours? Be sure to let us know in the contact section. As always, there are whopping handfuls of more highlights every week in our dedicated playlist. Check it out.