Music

If there were ever an idyllic introduction to a star on the rise, then Celeste’s Not Your Muse is it. The winner of BBC Music’s Sound of 2020, Celeste is an artist whose versatility is her handshake, as her project takes listeners on a journey through her ears and eyes. The 12-track offering is full of vibes, anchored by the siren’s lush vocals. Whether she’s purring on opener “Ideal Woman,” lifting the energy on “Tonight Tonight,” getting sensual on “A Kiss,” or hitting you right...
This past Friday, SZA dropped her long-awaited music video for “Good Days,” the latest single off of her yet-to-be-titled, upcoming third studio album. The popular R&B singer-songwriter rose to mainstream stardom in 2017 with the release of her sophomore project Cntrl. The songstress originally teased fans with a visual snippet for "Good Days" toward the very end of her video for “Hit Different” last September. The new, self-directed visual stirred up much excitement among fans all weekend long, becoming a trending topic on Twitter and currently sitting...
La Chica (French-Venezuelan artist Sophie Fustec) morphs into a magician, a witch, and an alchemist on the bilingual La Loba—dedicated to her recently deceased brother—in order to translate this devastating loss more clearly. “I transform anger,” she spits in Spanish on the visceral title track, over roiling piano and handclaps, “My anger is my strength.” The seven songs are dreamlike yet raw, more pared-down musically than her previous synth-pop works. “I don’t want to dream again/I’m his ghost/I drink your memory and swallow my wish,”...
If you’ve been waiting for a song that makes you feel seen during these unprecedented times, “Waiting For the World (Tired)” might just become your newest anthem. Candice Hoyes, known professionally as an “artist-cum-activist,” is a woman in jazz wanting to spread the message of Black activism and joy. And she’s doing a damn good job at it. “Waiting For the World (Tired)” is more than just a song that will stick in your head; it’s a mantra that will become embedded into your consciousness. “I wanted...
Underground bands are intimately familiar with the DIY grind: spending precious free hours crafting show fliers, practicing hour-long set lists, organizing local showcases for friends and touring acts. Just ask Minnesota's Beebe Gallini: a mix of elbow grease, moxie and sheer enthusiasm has kept their colorful Twin Cities indie scene going (and that was back in the “before times”). When COVID-19 hit the U.S. last spring, artists who had already been spread thin had to ask whether music could still hold a real place in their lives...
Natalie Bergman sees gospel music as “the true source of rock 'n' roll.” It's also the source of the Chicago-bred, Los Angeles–based singer’s forthcoming solo debut album, Mercy. Today, Feb. 24, marks the release of the record’s second single, “Shine Your Light On Me.” The song’s accompanying video is a nostalgic, black-and-white fever dream, sparkling with vintage Paco Rabanne sequins and largely inspired by a 1967 performance of “Reflections” by Diana Ross & The Supremes. Bergman enlisted her ex-boyfriend, Jean Lebrun (a.k.a. theOGM of hardcore hip-hop...
While acts of rebellion could be described as techno, a closer listen reveals a wide array of styles under the surface. The album was written, performed, and produced by Colombian musician Gabriela Jimeno, who spent a decade playing in a hardcore band before moving to the U.S. to study jazz drumming and synthesizer design at Berklee. Jimeno brings a raw, political punk sensibility to tracks like “el cielo no es de nadie.” The percussion-forward approach makes her upbeat songs highly danceable (“Everyone told us it’s...
She Shreds, founded by Fabi Reyna, has created a safe space for musicians—especially womxn of color—to heal.  In 2017, She Shreds Media, initially a print publication dedicated to women guitarists and bassists, started an online challenge that encourages women and non-binary musicians to commit to playing and posting one riff (a 5-minute jam session) a day for an entire month.  This January was unlike any other month of riffs, as participants met the #1RAD challenge while our social, economic, and political worlds collapsed, to put things lightly....
When Big Thief’s spring tour was cut short by the coronavirus pandemic, vocalist and guitarist Adrianne Lenker decided to use her unexpected free time to take to the woods and record. The result is a duo of albums, songs and instrumentals, whose uniting principle was Lenker’s attempt to make music she describes as sounding “like the inside of an acoustic guitar.” If that means she wanted to capture the instrument’s warm tones and association with intimate, comfortable spaces, then she’s succeeded. Sparer and quieter than her...
“Mr. Know-It-All is always right/And I think the only way out of this, is somehow they lose all their power,” multimedia artist Seth Bogart muses on the title track of his second solo LP, summing up the album’s underlying theme (and what the culturally and intellectually evolved children of this hell-world have already figured out): the patriarchal systems in which we are all raised are total bullshit! Men on the Verge of Nothing contains 10 fuzzy, post-punky, poppy tracks featuring a girl gang of guests including...