Every week, members of the Vulture staff will highlight their favorite new songs. They might be loud, quiet, long, short, dance-y, rawkin', hip, square, rap, punk, jazz, some sort of jazz-punk-rap fusion — whatever works for the given person in that given week. Read our picks below and please tell us yours in the comments. (Also, read music critic Lindsay Zoladz's piece about the awesome Kanye West, Bruce Springsteen, Bono-less U2 concert.)
A$AP Ferg, “Talk It”
“All I ever wanted was a Clam Casino beat / To talk about oppression / That’s repressin’ my peeps." What follows in the track "Talk It" is a powerful verse from A$AP Ferg, addressing what is happening in the city he shares a name with. And what a Clam Casino beat he got. Jesus, this thing is gorgeous: haunting and sparse before building to an affecting crescendo. The song is one of the many stand-outs off Ferg’s fantastic new mixtape, Ferg Forever. —Jesse David Fox (@JesseDavidFox)
The Decemberists, “Lake Song”
The Decemberists are sentimental and sweet in “Lake Song,” a cut from their forthcoming album. Beautiful and pared-down, the track sounds a bit like a sped-up Nick Drake track (“Pink Moon,” anyone?). Revel in heart-melt-y lines like “you, all sibylline, reclining in your pew / you tattered me / you tethered me to you.” —Lori Keong (@ljkeong)
Donnie Trumpet & the Social Experiment, “Sunday Candy”
There are many sides to Chance the Rapper. “Sunday Candy” has a gospel feel similar to that of “Good Ass Intro,” the incredible opening track off his breakthrough mixtape Acid Rap (it was also my favorite song of 2013). I like to imagine the song recorded in a big room with a whole bunch of people singing and playing instruments and dancing and for some reason they invited me. —JDF
Sky Ferreira, "Guardian"
Sky Ferreira might be one of the only artists to still sound cool singing what could be a song from a Bette Midler movie that never got made. —Marcus Jones (@MJinMD)
Denai Moore, "Something Out There"
You may recognize Denai from the song “The Light,” which was a standout on SBTRKT’s Wonder Where We Land. Part of the beauty of her music is the sense of vulnerability conveyed with every note. This song is a prime example of that. —MJ
The Neighbourhood featuring Danny Seth and Dej Loaf, "Givin N' Takin'"
The Neighborhood, who had a minor hit with “Sweater Weather” last year, came back this weekend with a very different project: a mixtape titled #000000 & #ffffff. On it, they collaborate with some of rap’s brightest new stars like Raury, Danny Brown, and Dej Loaf, creating a weird genre-less sound that is a little dark, but works way better than expected. —MJ
She & Him, “Stars Fell Oon Alabama”
Three years ago, in New York’s profile of Zooey Deschanel – the one that ended with Deschanel making a mix CD for the writer – her then-husband, Death Cab for Cutie front man Ben Gibbard, said this about her: “I was immediately taken when we first met that she had this just, like, immense knowledge of really obscure music. I hate to say it, but it’s the kind of obsession that mostly dudes have. Like, ‘Oh, but Emitt Rhodes’s second record …’ Nerdy, lonely guys know about this stuff. She’s turned me on to a lot of music I hadn’t heard.” She & Him’s new album, Classics, which came out today and is made up of a bunch of oldie covers, puts that quote to the test. “Stars Fell on Alabama” is a 70-year-old jazz standard that, in the hands of Deschanel, sounds like a 70-year-old jazz standard with great bangs. —JDF
St. Vincent, “Sparrow”
Is it just me, or does it feel like every day is Record Store Day? Even though there is technically only one official Record Store Day, there is a seemingly endless supply of seasonal ones. Last Friday was the Black Friday edition of Record Store Day. I’d complain more, but I’m too busy listening to this terrific new song from St. Vincent’s Record Store Day release. —JDF