Listen Tracks (St Vincent, girl in red, The Streets & more)

The biggest and best tracks of the past week, rounded up and reviewed.

It’s officially the weekend, we’ve launched our brand new issue, and there’s been absolutely loads of incredible new songs released this week, aka loads of reasons to be feeling pretty chipper this Friday evening.

And if you don’t believe us, just take a look for yourselves. Not only did St Vincent return earlier this week with her first delicious slice of new album ‘Daddy’s Home’, but the long-awaited collaboration between No Rome, The 1975 and Charli XCX also dropped. Yes, yes it did.

There’s also new bangers from girl in red and Japanese Breakfast, as well as a collaboration between Remi Wolf and Dominic Fike. Oh, and hero-of-the-nation Mike Skinner has offered up a new track from The Streets that we never knew we needed. But we really did. Now’s the time to dive in…

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St Vincent - Pay Your Way In Pain

Last seen clad in hot pink latex and shredding her way through the saucy future art-pop of 2017’s game-changing ‘Masseduction’, of course Annie Clark decides to herald her much-anticipated return with a track whose opening rinky-dink piano bars sound more like a wartime sing-song than the work of a Bowie-esque musical shapeshifter. But, whilst incoming LP ‘Daddy’s Home’ (black and white artwork, interview quotes about 1970s New York), is undoubtedly set to be a different beast to its racy predecessor, the playful spirit remains. Like a strut down a Brooklyn sidewalk of the past, ‘Pay Your Way In Pain’ swiftly throws off the ragtime in favour of funk sensibilities, loose swagger and exactly the kind of tricksy duality that only someone as clever as St Vincent can pull off (the breathy, sexy-or-subversive “Sit down/ Stand up/ Heads down/ Hands up” a case in point). Fully into her imperial phase, it’s the work of a master returning to their throne. (Lisa Wright)

girl in red - Serotonin

From McCartney to Mark Ronson, music history is littered with artists taking pain and turning it into pop gold. But even though it’s not a new trick, there remains something gleefully disruptive about a shoulder-popping, mid-song rap drop featuring lyrical fantasies of “cutting my hands off… jumping in front of a bus”. Not only does ‘Serotonin’ mark Marie Ulven’s crunchiest, most indisputable banger so far - its Charli XCX sass making way for the kind of giddy chorus swell that neatly mirrors the hormone headrush of its title - it also acts as a neat primer for girl in red as a whole, ahead of her imminent debut: an artist embracing the raw, messy realities of life in all their glory.(Lisa Wright)

The Streets - Who’s Got The Bag (21st June)

For close to twenty years now, Mike Skinner has been a hero for our nation - the people’s musical poet laureate - and has seamlessly used The Streets as a vehicle to tell stories of our lives, however mundane or exceptional. And today, in 2021, that’s no different. Once again lending his voice to the nation, ‘Who’s Got The Bag (21st June)’ is a track dedicated entirely to the date everyone has marked on their calendar with the word ‘freedom’. And while, alright, yeah, it’s not exactly the most serious affair, it is a celebration of everything we’ve missed for over past twelve months. Plus, it’s really bloody fun. And isn’t that exactly what we need right now? (Sarah Jamieson)

No Rome feat. The 1975 & Charli XCX - Spinning

For ages The 1975’s Matty Healy has been promising music with Charli XCX, and the pop heavyweights have finally delivered, hopping on brand new track ‘Spinning’ with alt-pop fast riser (and ‘75 label mate) No Rome. A joyful new pop bop to lighten up these grey days, there’s licks of hyper-pop swirling around the catchy track, with The 1975’s resident producing mastermind George Daniel once again jumping on production duties. Though perhaps not quite as mind-blowing as we might have hoped given the huge names involved, if you’re wanting a cute pop song to dance around your living room to, look no further. (Elly Watson)

Japanese Breakfast - Be Sweet

The first cut to be taken from Japanese Breakfast’s forthcoming new album arrives in rather bombastic fashion. Written with Wild Nothing’s Jack Tatum, ‘Be Sweet’ somewhat marks the turning of an emotional tide for Michelle Zauner, and it’s reflected perfectly via its bubbly 80s-inspired melodies. Having used her previous records as more of a vehicle to process her own grief, it’s clear that with her third album that things seem to be much more jubilant; ‘Be Sweet’ is an enthralling first glimpse into this new chapter of her life. (Sarah Jamieson)

Remi Wolf & Dominic Fike - Photo ID

After originally appearing on Remi Wolf’s fantastic major label debut EP ‘I’m Allergic To Dogs!’, the head-turning pop newbie has now linked up with fellow game-changer Dominic Fike to share a new version of ‘Photo ID’. A joyous reinvention of the catchy track, the pair trade fun AF verses over the instantly dance-a-long beat. A sweet reminder of why these two are so damn exciting, it’s pure pop escapism and you’ll love every second of it. (Elly Watson)

Tags: Charli XCX, Dominic Fike, girl in red, Japanese Breakfast, No Rome, Remi Wolf, St. Vincent, The 1975, The Streets, Listen, Features, Tracks

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