songs of the week

9 Best New Songs of the Week

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.

Paramore, “Hard Times”
I’ll go ages without listening to Paramore and basically forget all about them, and without fail, anytime I check back on them, I think, “Hayley from Paramore (alias Hayley Williams) has one of the best pop-music voices of the 21st century.” I might not think of Paramore again for months after “Hard Times,” but for now I can’t stop playing it. —Jordan Crucchiola (@jorcru)

Frank Ocean, “Lens”
“Ain’t seen rainbows in the sky since college” is such a Frank Ocean line! It’s compact, simple on the surface, and contains a fraught sense of nostalgia for a time when finding beauty in rainbows was totally viable. The nice thing about “Lens” is that even as he mourns the loss of that innocence, it still permeates his songs. “Lens” drifts along, but it still feels kind of heavy. —Sam Hockley-Smith (@shockleysmith)

MØ, “Nights With You”
MØ can generate an endless stream of irrepressible pop earworms and seduce you away from your boyfriend. Ladies, get you a girl who can do both. —JC

Chimney, “Walk Don’t Run”
The members of indie-pop giants Lucius have a penchant for using childhood imagery to discuss adult truths (their sophomore album, Good Grief, took its title from Charlie Brown, while the themes of childhood dreams and looking backward run throughout their music). That motif has carried over into “Walk Don’t Run,” the first track from Lucius drummer Dan Molad’s solo debut as Chimney. The rhythm-driven sonic lovechild of Animal Collective and early Lucius is framed as an address to Roald Dahl’s Charlie: “Charlie won’t you come back / Tell another story / I’m a stupid sad kid / All of mine are boring.” The chorus, “Walk don’t run,” is a rejection of that guy who tells Charlie to “run straight home” immediately after Charlie finds his golden ticket — because, in reality, that walk home, with all its expectation and ecstasy, is probably just as good as the chocolate-factory tour itself, and Charlie misses it. Plus, you know for every golden ticket in life, there’s eventually a petrifyingly terrible boat ride. —Gabe Cohn (@gabescohn)

D.R.A.M. ft. A$AP Rocky and Juicy J, “Gilligan”
I love me a rapper who can pivot from singing lullabies to slurring wavy rap. D.R.A.M.’s career is young, but already it feels like he can do anything. The sometimes-great thing about this new era of newcomers barely being developed or manipulated by the industry is it affords them all this creative freedom to test the limits. Every rapper should have a song in their arsenal referencing Gilligan’s Island that sounds like it was made on the fly after a night sipping lean at some party, especially if it’s got an assist from A$AP Rocky and the legend Juicy J. It’s trippy, mane. —Dee Lockett (@Dee_Lockett)

The War on Drugs, “Thinking of a Place”
This new War on Drugs song is over 11 minutes long and it sounds like the following: a post-apocalyptic desert road trip (but not the Mad Max kind, more one where everything is calm and still and looks like the Valencia Instagram filter), and a dad in his 50s getting a divorce then driving across the country with only the clothes on his back (a denim shirt) and a shaggy dog. The drive will be lonely and long, and will prompt the dad to think about his own life, but also about America’s complicated, potentially unhealthy relationship with masculinity. It’s worth noting that War on Drugs front man Adam Granduciel is not yet 40, but is constantly classified as a creator of dad-rock — maybe this is because his songs are unhurried and expansive, possessed by the spirit of Springsteen, instantly timeless and sometimes idealistic, but with an understanding of the cost of idealism. –SH-S

Gucci Mane, “Coachella”
My weekend in the desert was not at brrrrisk as it could’ve been because I had to miss Gucci Mane’s set and, therefore, miss Rihanna smoking blunts front and center. This, a song about the debauchery that clouds ’Chella, released just after Gucci played the festival — because Gucci’s never not working — is a nice consolation, I suppose. It is also the far and away winner of this year’s random assortment of Coachella-themed songs. —DL

ACES, “Stranger”
Just immerse yourself in the chill, longing vibes of “Stranger.” That is all. —JC

Gorillaz ft. Popcaan, “Saturnz Barz” (Baauer Remix)
Baauer, a white dude who’s lived in a lot of white parts of the world, is not exactly someone I’d trust to properly execute dancehall. Nor is he someone I’d trust to remix Gorillaz. But his take on “Saturnz Barz” is more like a dancehall-trap reimagining above all else and it works. It works so well. The bass thumps at all the right cues and he practically isolates Popcaan’s vocals so that it becomes a Popcaan song versus a Gorillaz song with some Popcaan on it. It’s filthy in the best sense of the word but also NSFW solely for making you twerk at your desk, and no one needs to see that. —DL

9 Best New Songs of the Week