The world proper now feels topsy-turvy, stuffed with cancellations, closures and postponements. However for musicians, the brand new music releases — if not the reveals themselves — should go on. Fortunately, there’s one medium that anybody with an web connection can entry with out strolling out the entrance door. Tune in to The Weeknd‘s new album After Hours for his signature pensive temper, elevated with new sonic textures. Try Jackson Wang’s mixture of Chinese language tales and pop-electronic manufacturing on “100 Methods.” Vibe to Giolì & Assia’s digital groove on the brand new “Habibi,” or watch their weekend livestream DJ session. Reside it up with Mel C’s return on the disco-pop confection that’s “Who I Am.” And revel within the ache of a crush with Fragrance Genius on “On the Ground.”
“Alone Once more,” The Weeknd
Right here is quarantine music: moody, pensive, melancholy (as is The Weeknd’s model) and eminently introspective — and solitary. “Collectively we’re alone,” he sighs, and repeats. “I don’t know if I could be alone once more.” The background is a layered mixture of whispered digital echoes and surreal, glittering beats with a lure coronary heart; it’s just like the tune is at all times nearly to get began, however by no means fairly launches. That’s really an excellent factor, as a result of Abel Tesfaye revels in uncertainty and a sort of discontent. “Alone Once more” is the primary monitor off his new album After Hours, and it’s the place he finds probably the most recent sonic territory to discover.
“100 Methods,” Jackson Wang
Jackson Wang, of Okay-pop group GOT7, is positioning himself as one of many class’s breakout solo stars; his final solo album Mirrors broke by means of on the Billboard charts, his media presence has been refreshingly open, serving to him create a fandom all his personal — and his new tune “100 Methods” is a pulsing digital monitor with minor-key flutes that provides him a particular sound, too. Wang sings in English about being “the one one that you simply want” (the “100 Methods” could be construed as exit methods to disentangle from a less-worthy rival), however there’s a deeper story: Wang, who’s Chinese language, has stated his character within the tune is taken from an historic Chinese language story a few love that transcends this lifetime. His take, nonetheless, feels completely fashionable.
“Habibi,” Giolì & Assia
Digital producers/singer-songwriters/musicians Giolì & Assia are Italian; they’ve been quarantined in Sicily for the previous few weeks as they wait out the present world well being disaster. However that hasn’t stopped them from releasing “Habibi,” their newest trance-inducing vibe monitor, which options Spanish and French lyrics and an Arabic instrumental affect. In different phrases, if you wish to redefine “world music” for the following era, it would sound rather a lot like what the forward-thinking duo are at the moment making. “Habibi” is laid-back however propulsive, an digital tune that asks for meditation and connection greater than motion. In the meanwhile, that feels proper. Even higher: like many musicians who’ve needed to cancel excursions, they’ve determined to livestream classes from their quarantine on YouTube. They used to broadcast these Diesis Reside classes from, say, the highest of a volcano — however circumstances, for now, have modified.
“Who I Am,” Mel C
Sure, you learn that proper: it is a new single from Spice Lady Mel C. (You would possibly keep in mind her as Sporty Spice.) It’s pure disco-pop uplift, a bouncy confection destined for the dance ground however grounded in pathos. Mel C has launched seven albums over her prolonged profession, however “Who I Am” is a transparent referendum on her personal private and profession historical past; “I used to be misplaced within the ruins of who I assumed I ought to be; I forgot I used to be human, I need to set my physique free,” she displays as, within the music video, she explores a museum stuffed with shows of her personal picture. Pop stars are consistently grappling with picture and persona, however with maturity comes the readability to decide on which of these selves to current. It appears like Mel C has made her selection.
“On the Ground,” Fragrance Genius
Fragrance Genius — the Seattle-based artist Mike Hadreas — has a method with shimmering, mild alt-pop that teeters on the sting of ache. His final album, 2017’s No Form, crept towards tentative pleasure, like a the fragile shoots of a plant in its infancy. “On the Ground,” the brand new single off his upcoming Might album Set My Coronary heart on Fireplace Instantly, is the following part of development: the stems are sturdy now, and he can play with having enjoyable—musically, at the least. The tune is a bouncy bop of a tune with a sighing ’50s refrain. The lyrics are about an unrequited crush, nonetheless, and the bodily discomfort of that solitary expertise. “I shake, I promise day by day to vary, I cross out his identify on the web page,” he sings, wrestling along with his emotions. It wouldn’t be Fragrance Genius with the bitter to mood the candy.