YEAH YEAH YEAHS — “BURNING”
A seemingly ominous synthesizer opens the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ latest single, “Burning.” What proceeds can best be imagined soundtracking a revenge scene of an action movie. At first there is a more tender buildup. Tracked by piano, Karen O’s vocals initially come across as emotionally charged, yet still holding a softness; only a slight edge detectable. But a stark transition to the chorus brings a biting power. Marked by cutting vocals and a newly high-strung electric backing, this turn the song takes will have you feeling like that badass movie character going after what they want.
“Burning” is the follow-up to “Spitting Off the Edge of the World,” the first piece of original material from the band since 2013’s LP Mosquito. Nearly nine years later, a new album from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs is finally in sight. Cool It Down is due September 31st. Its title serves as both a nod to the Velvet Underground and the climate crisis inspired thematics. And with “Burning” evoking connotations of natural disaster, it is apparent that the Yeah Yeah Yeahs are carrying on its themes.
- Nora Onanian, Web Services Coordinator
MICHIGANDER — “STAY OUT OF IT”
Michigander balances pop rock like no one else and he proves it on his latest, "Stay Out of It." A song about escapism and running away with someone you love, there's a burning optimism that will make your heart beat as fast as the strumming of the guitar. I love tempo changes between the verses and the chorus; the chorus feels like a racehorse, charging forward and driving the song. It's just a truly uplifting song and is the perfect pick-me-up for a tough day at work or gloomy weather.
- Tatum Jenkins, Music Coordinator
SYLVAN ESSO — “DIDN’T CARE”
Husband and wife duo, Sylvan Esso, has returned with their latest album, No Rules Sandy. The lead single, “Didn’t Care,” outlines how the two met and takes listeners back to their humble beginnings as both artists and life partners. After all, the two are intertwined; vocalist Amelia Meath and producer Nick Sanborm immediately began work on their first single, “Play it Right,” during their first meetup.
The new lush single features lean production, and references Paul Simon’s “You Can Call Me Al,” with a reverse bass fill. According to Meath, No Rules Sandy “feels like who we actually are. It just feels like us. We’re not trying to fit into the mold, just happily being our freak selves”. This is the pair’s fourth studio album, following 2020’s Free Love, and On July 24th, they performed the entirety of No Rules Sandy at the Newport Folk Festival.
- T.J. Grant, Staff Writer
PIXIES — “VAULT OF HEAVEN”
Alternative rock band the Pixies have made a return to music after three years with their eighth album Doggerel. Their song “Vault of Heaven” starts off referencing its intriguing title. It begins, “There in the vault of heaven, while trying to titrate, I ended up in another case.” The singer, Frank Black (aka Black Francis), continues on with the lyrics. “I went to 7-Eleven, to try and get me straight. I ended up there… In outer space.” The song’s interesting words are matched with an equally wacky music video. It features Marilyn Monroe and Black Elvis impersonators along with Zorro dressed in a speedo and cape. The group gather in a 7-Eleven, acting hilariously absurd, seemingly misbehaving at the rhythm of the melodic guitar. All together, “Vault of Heaven” alludes to a bad drug trip.
- Mina Rose Morales, Staff Writer
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