GORILLAZ — “BABY QUEEN”
The title and unusual subject matter of “Baby Queen” come from a dream Damon Albarn had about the Thai crown princess. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Albarn shared that when the two originally met at a Blur show in Thailand in 1997, “‘Song 2’ started and she stood on her throne and stage-dived into the crowd.”
On “Baby Queen,” the Gorillaz’s trademark combo of floaty synth and Albarn’s echoey vocals, which practically drip with reverb, carry the listener off into a dreamscape. The laidback drumbeat and bassline on top of which the rest of the song sits forms a proverbial pillow you could practically lay your head on if it wasn’t already busy bobbing along to the beat. That’s not to say the song will put you to bed, but it certainly is a “sleeper” hit.
- Eden Unger, Staff Writer
SURNAMES — “FIRST DAY”
If there’s anything that Surnames does so well in each of their songs, it would absolutely be maintaining an upbeat sound while allowing their lyrics to be deliciously introspective. This is something that they achieve so beautifully in their song “First Day.” They dabble in a wonderful combination of electronic elements as well as grounding piano chords and percussion to create a catchy melody. They also sing poetic lyrics like “where’s your rose tinted kaleidoscope.” Repeating this line in each chorus, Surname is quick to bring images and visuals to the forefront of the listener’s mind. We’re definitely looking forward to every new bit of music we get from this Massachusetts-based bedroom pop artist!
- Erin Norton, Membership Assistant
CIGARETTES AFTER SEX — “PISTOL”
Cigarettes After Sex leans into their classic sound on their newest single “Pistol” while telling a familiar story that listeners can resonate with. Lead singer Greg Gonzales lays his soft and inviting voice over a simple bassline and classic acoustic guitar. He sings to the image of his lost lover, which haunts him as he tries to move on. “You’ve been on my mind so long I can’t deal with it,” he sings repeatedly throughout the song. He begs them to just come back one more time, in hopes that if they do they’ll “Lift him off the floor” again and back into love. The mellow bass and drums add to the moody atmosphere of the song, allowing it to be more than just a sad melody. All this together makes for a listening experience that envelopes you in these complicated feelings but also makes you feel a little bit less lonely.
- Sidnie Paisley Thomas, Staff Writer
Each week, our intrepid music staff picks out some new songs you can't miss. For even more new releases, listen to All New From 8-9 every evening on 88.9
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