Every week, Vulture highlights the best new music. If the song is worthy of your ears and attention, you will find it here. Read our picks below, share yours in the comments, and subscribe to the Vulture Playlist for a comprehensive guide to the year's best music.
Father John Misty, "Real Love Baby"
Father John Misty's constant hyperverbose and ironic antics can often distract from the fact that the artist formerly known as Josh Tillman is a damn good singer with a knack for crafting breezy, Laurel Canyon–indebted acoustic tunes. "Real Love Baby," a one-off now getting an official release, lacks any of the cynicism that was a driving force behind songs like "Bored in the USA." Though that song and many of FJM's others are well-crafted and entertaining in their own right, it's refreshing to see Father John Misty shed his skepticism and revel in sincerity, even if it's only for three minutes. —Samantha Rollins (@Samantha Rollins)
Lil Yachty feat. Burberry Perry, “Pretty”
At first pass, teen Atlanta rap sensation Lil Yachty doesn’t seem like the kind of kid who commands an audience of hundreds of thousands and witnesses commotions outside venues from people jostling to make it inside. He’s meek and soft-spoken in interviews, but on records like “Pretty,” off his brand-new mixtape Summer Songs II, these qualities set him apart from his gruffer Georgia hip-hop peers. Over a peaceful, ascending keyboard figure, Yachty professes deep affection for a girl in the plainest and humblest of terms. It’s the first summer love song in a while that actually sounds and feels like summer love. —Craig Jenkins (@CraigSJ)
Gucci Mane, "Waybach"
Sobriety looks good on the newly freed Guwop. There's always been an effervescence about Gucci Mane that's contagious upon listen, but never quite authentic. For the first time in his storied career, that energy finally feels believable. Gucci sounds genuinely happy and on track to stay clean, fit, and out of the pen for good this time. His new album Everybody Looking — which he recorded in six days, by the way — sees Guwop reinvigorated, like he's been plotting for the better part of this decade to reclaim a throne he knows he never truly left unseated. ("You heard Atlantic dropped Gucci, why would they do that?" he rolls his eyes at naysayers on album standout "Waybach.") But reinstating Gucci's authority is bigger than Gucci; it puts an exclamation point on his whole genre's resurgence. "Now let's bring the trap back, nigga. Gucci Mane back, nigga," he raps with that same vigor you just can't clone. —Dee Lockett (@Dee_Lockett)
Brantley Gilbert, “The Weekend”
Sue me for being a basic, but I love a big, dumb anthem about cutting loose on the weekend. “The Weekend,” the new song from Georgia singer Brantley Gilbert, is this and not much more, and I find it comforting. Country fans rail against the tailgates-and-headlights truck-cab party sentiment Gilbert’s putting out here, and I feel faintly sad hearing this stuff from a guy who quit partying to save his life a few years back. But sometimes the most cathartic part of a party is the one where everyone loses their shit to a song about how cathartic the party is. I’ll allow it. –CJ
Hamilton Leithauser + Rostam, "A 1000 Times"
You can only stay solo for so long, it seems. After leaving their respective bands — Rostam from Vampire Weekend and Leithauser from the Walkmen — the two joined forces to make a few songs, which they say unexpectedly evolved into a full-on collaborative album. And you know what? Maybe they should've been working together all along. This is just lovely — a song that feels familiar (fans have accurately noted it borrows heavily from Peter Paul and Mary's "500 Miles") and so divorced from what their peers are doing. It's an automatic entry in 2016's best songs. — DL
Brand New, "Out of Range"
To call this song "brand-new" would be a stretch, since it's technically been around on the internet for three years. But as Brand New prepare for retirement, they've been busy lately tying up loose ends. "Out of Range" is yet another abandoned demo the band have now revisited and cleaned up for a proper release. Truthfully, they didn't change much (or even anything?), which is good news because the original was about as close to a perfect Brand New song as it gets: aching Jesse Lacy prose, echoey vocals, and Vincent Accardi showing off that haunting guitar work. —DL