songs of the week

5 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.

Dhani Harrison, “All About Waiting”
Dhani Harrison’s solo debut (he’s previously released music with thenewno2 and Fistful of Mercy) is anything but a throwback. As the Beatle son repeats over and over here: “It’s not like it used to be.” While the soaring harmonies that keep popping in — at once jubilant and achingly sad — might hint at the blood running through his veins, the song’s pulsing, synth-driven spine feels fresh and new. “It’s not like it used to be” may be directly stated, but there’s another follow-up message that’s also implied: that’s often a good thing. —Gabe Cohn (@gabescohn)

Lana Del Rey, “Cherry”
The curious thing about Lana Del Rey albums is that, on immediate listen, either every song blends into one long score or no two songs sound the same. Lust for Life is a little bit of both: It’s split into four different sections, each with their own mood and chapter in telling Lana’s story of self-growth, but every song within them stands out. “Cherry” falls toward the beginning, when Lana hasn’t fully come to realize that she’s allowed a toxic relationship to cloud her judgement. Here she’s still in free fall, spiraling out of control and admittedly “in pieces.” That should be alarming, but Lana’s made a career out of being attracted to the specter of losing yourself in something that feels much bigger than one person should handle. “Cherry” is morose, dark, and swept up in itself; meanwhile, Lana thinks she deserves a reward for surviving all this torture. She describes love as “smiling when the firing squad’s against you.” That’s why it’s so important that what I hear as the Lana from the future taunts her past self throughout the song with sarcastic, ad-libbed curses after all her delusions. Someone’s gotta tell her her perspective’s fucked. —Dee Lockett (@Dee_Lockett)

Alvvays, “Dreams Tonite”
The sincere, dreamy indie pop of Alvvays is an easy and potent vehicle for yearning and pathos, which is prettily proven on their newest single “Dreams Tonite.” Straightforward, crisp drums and incessant synths provide a simple foundation for singer Molly Rankin’s surprisingly passive vocals, as she questions, “If I saw you on the street would I see you in my dreams tonight?” The wistful sentiment is matched by the song’s somberly unchanging melody, although a breakdown two-thirds of the way through makes for a much-needed and enjoyable change of pace and emotional opening. While slightly clichéd, the song’s delicate qualities and emotional heart make for a promising look at Alvvay’s upcoming Antisocialites. —Ethan Sapienza (@ClickTheMovie)

Chelsea Wolfe ft. Troy Van Leeuwen and Aaron Turner, “Vex”
“Vex” will take you somewhere. I don’t know exactly where it is, but it’s dark and only getting darker; beautiful and only getting more tragic. The second single from Chelsea Wolfe’s upcoming Hiss Spin brings in Queens of the Stone Age’s Troy Van Leeuwen and Old Man Gloom’s Aaron Turner to dial up the doom. Wolfe’s vocals float above the mix, as though she’s alone even in the company of a full band. As the instruments bleed into one another, Wolfe and Turner begin a monstrous duet, which itself is reason enough to give the track a listen. —GC

Tyler the Creator ft. Frank Ocean, “Where This Flower Blooms”
Have you heard Tyler the Creator’s new album is phenomenal? Because it is. One of the best of the year, actually. It raises the ceiling on what many thought Tyler was capable of — the album is mature, beautiful, and deeply honest. “Where This Flower Blooms” seems aimed directly at those who doubted his creative potential by telling them a story about what happens when you stop telling young dark-skinned boys what they can’t do. It traces Tyler’s history from days sleeping on his grandmother’s floor to being able to fill multiple houses with beds, fancy cars, and whatever frills he wants. He’s thriving and wants kids who look like him to fully believe this life is possible for them, too. His best advice comes in one very effective analogy for taking care of yourself because no one else will: “Water your garden my nigga and stunt.” —DL

5 Best New Songs of the Week