Hands up, who thought they’d be craving a sticky dancefloor and overpriced drinks to Rebecca Black’s ‘Friday’ in 2021? Nobody. The answer is nobody. And yet, here we are doing just that. Other new music to raise a glass of your choice to include a top bop from Dua Lipa’s extended ‘Future Nostalgia’, a choice cover from The Vaccines, brand new Dry Cleaning and more.
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Dua Lipa - We’re Good
Given the frankly embarrassing quality of last year’s standout ‘Future Nostalgia’, that any bonus tracks added to the deluxe version of that record would be pretty damn great is no surprise. While it’s quite possibly the first time we’ve heard “cocaine” stretched over multiple syllables by a mainstream act (in public, at least), it’s undeniably a bop of the highest order, a gut-punch of pure pop. Bonus points too, for the bonkers vid. (Emma Swann)
Rebecca Black ft Dorian Electra, Big Freedia & 3OH!3 - Friday (Remix)
Back in 2011, Rebecca Black released the instantly viral ‘Friday’, and now to celebrate the 10 year anniversary she’s dropping a remix even more catchy than the original. Transforming the song into a hyper-pop banger, Rebecca enlisted some of the greats - Dorian Electra, Big Freedia, 3OH!3, and 100 gecs’ Dylan Brady - to bring the track to its full glitch-pop glory, evolving the original into an anthemic bop that is bound to go off as soon as we have our first Friday back in the club. Now the only question in which seat can we take in the party bus there? (Elly Watson)
The Vaccines - High Horse
Where their previous breathy overhaul of Queens of The Stone Age’s thunderous classic ‘No One Knows’ was all-but-unrecognisable from the original, the latest in The Vaccines’ series of nocturnal-leaning covers - a take on Kacey Musgraves’ ‘High Horse’ - saddles up and rides much closer. Though that track helped cross Kacey from country into mainstream territory, it still errs on the understated end of the pop banger spectrum. Add some electronic drums, restrained occasional guitar interjections and whisper-in-your-ear vocals courtesy of frontman-cum-sea-shanty-purveyor Justin Young and you’ve got a natural successor. (Lisa Wright)
Dry Cleaning - Strong Feelings
If you’re staring down the barrel of another Valentine’s Day spent alone - except this time even MORE alone than normal cos, y’know, pandemic - then worry not, ‘cause Dry Cleaning have got just the anthem for you. “I just want to tell you I’ve got scabs on my head / It’s useless to live” monotones Florence Shaw over minimal, shuffling drums and bass, before repeated intonations of “It’s Europe” arrive to kick the boot in even more by reminding you that, not only are you sitting there in your own filth for the 11th consecutive month in a row, but you’ll also never be able to work abroad again. Strong feelings indeed. Sob. (Lisa Wright)
William Doyle - Nothing At All
This nostalgic and eccentric number from William Doyle’s upcoming album ‘Great Spans Of Muddy Time’ gently wanders through decades of synth-pop. ‘Nothing At All’ is a mix of contradictions: cheerful yet wistful, with the melody feeling both desperate and triumphant. Under his earnest and confident vocals, William combines retro synths, melodramatic strings and energetic percussion - all things that might not necessarily work together, but do here. ‘Nothing At All’ is unexpected the whole way through, but deeply satisfying. (Aliya Chaudhry)
Kings of Leon - Echoing
On one hand, ‘Echoing’ actually has an above-middling tempo to speak of, so in comparison to most of Kings of Leon’s output over the past decade, it’s quite lively. But then there are Caleb Followill’s vocals, which in the verses bear an uncanny resemblance to comedian Vic Reeves’ club singer turn (ask your parents, or think Elton John during last year’s ‘One World’ show), and the fact that while the song might canter along willingly, it doesn’t in fact go anywhere at all. (Emma Swann)
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