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Solange, A$AP Mob and Kings of Leon Headline Our Top Songs of the Week (10/07)

on October 07, 2016, 9:02am
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So, it’s only the first week of October, but we’re already pretty stoked about Halloween. Case in point: We already dug up our list of the 13 Scariest Rock Songs. While spookiness is subjective and there are plenty of eerie songs out there, that’s a list of tunes we’re not going to be pressing play on late at night with the lights off. The tracks on this list, on the other hand, will more likely give you some sweet dreams rather than creepy nightmares. So click on and enjoy!

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10. Kings of Leon – “Reverend”

kings of leon around the world Solange, A$AP Mob and Kings of Leon Headline Our Top Songs of the Week (10/07)

There’s an almost Strokes-y quality to the warm, pinging guitars on “Reverend”, the new single from Kings of Leon. Or maybe it’s the curl of a surf rhythm. And rather than a New York spit or a Californian sigh, Caleb Followill still has that rich, honeyed drawl going on. Add in some vaguely Springsteen-ian lyrics (“I got caught in the middle of a hurricane fight facing the ground/ Beast to the wild with the porcelain smile as it passes around”), and you’ve got a Frankenstein’ed jam ready to slip midway into the Kings’ next stadium tour. The Nashville rockers’ upcoming record, Walls, drops October 14th via MCA. –Adam Kivel



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09. American Football – “Desire Gets in the Way”

american football1

Photo by Carlo Cavaluzzi

In the three short years of their existence, American Football garnered a cult following because of the intimacy of their songs, but more specifically because of those songs’ tone. The Illinois emo giants cultivated a soft, tapped, melodic framework of guitar lines and melodies that hit the heart. As they prep for the release of their highly anticipated return and the sophomore LP — American Football out October 21st via Polyvinyl and Wichita — that comes with it, American Football recreate that sound on single “Desire Gets in the Way” and then some. Mike Kinsella treads lightly, managing his voice so that it stays in a comfortable register, while rolling out guitarwork that once again feels cozy and lush — perfect for coddling your teary emotions even though you’re 15 years older than you were the first time you heard them. –Nina Corcoran


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08. Douglas Dare – “New York”

douglas dare new york Solange, A$AP Mob and Kings of Leon Headline Our Top Songs of the Week (10/07)

London-based musician Douglas Dare gives brooding a new weight. On “New York” — his new single off Aforger, out October 14th via Erased Tapes — Dare follows in the footsteps of James Blake, Sampha, and even (yes) Radiohead. Sobering synth rattles a bass line that predicts something wretched is on its way, but instead we’re greeted with Dare’s voice — a young, shaking tone reminisent of Blake’s authority and Villagers’ self-aware storytelling. It’s when the piano comes in and the filtered vocals follow suit that the song recalls Amnesiac. Douglas Dare finds himself in impossibly original territory on “New York”, and it’s complicated enough to hold your attention long after it ends, the start of an obsession that we hope will only go upwards. –Nina Corcoran



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07. Tasseomancy – “Missoula”

tasseomancy missoula Solange, A$AP Mob and Kings of Leon Headline Our Top Songs of the Week (10/07)

There’s a certain type of person who falls head over heels in love with Kate Bush when they first hear her work. Canadian twin sisters Sari and Romy Lightman seem to fit that category. Under the moniker Tasseomancy, the two join forces to revive Bush’s sound, all the way down to her massive, theatric vocals. “Missoula” details a roam into the unknown, where transient people and the planet itself flee in a voluntary motion, never fully aware of what it is they’re running from or drawn to. It holds itself as a deadbeat anthem for a generation unsure if anything is possible, synths and steady drums inhaling and exhaling, that’s worth drawing into your arms based on the tamber of their vocals alone. The Lightman twins found a style that’s hard to mimic, but as Tasseomancy, they twist it into their own, becoming as creatively endearing and deleightfully unsettling as Kate Bush herself. All that’s required is the patience to understand their alt-pop talents. –Nina Corcoran


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06. A$AP Mob feat. A$AP Rocky, A$AP Twelvyy, and Key! – “Crazy Brazy”

A$AP Rocky // Photo by Philip Cosores

Photo by Philip Cosores

Don’t be out there talking crazy or brazy to the A$AP Mob. Rocky and Twelvyy team up with Atlanta rapper Key! for this Wavy Wallace-produced jam, the three rappers bouncing nimbly over some 808 synth. “I got a lot on my mind/ I put that guap on my mind,” Flacko and Key! offer on the hook, the trio having cash on the top of their priority list and all of your shit at the very bottom. –Adam Kivel


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05. Joan of Arc – “This Must Be the Placenta”

joan of arc this must be the placenta Solange, A$AP Mob and Kings of Leon Headline Our Top Songs of the Week (10/07)

This is the second appearance of Mike Kinsella on our list this week, but this time solely in a visual sense … Just hang with us for a second. After brothers Mike and Tim Kinsella founded legendary emo outfit Cap’n Jazz back in 1989, Mike moved on to American Football and Tim formed Joan of Arc (though both have plenty of other projects to list, including the excellent Owls to which they both contributed). But anyway: The Kinsellas decided to have a little fun with the video to “This Must Be the Placenta”, the latest from Tim’s Joan of Arc, by doing a standard performance video, in which the only non-standard thing is the fact that Mike stands in for Tim. “I look so much like myself, people always mistake me for my own doppelganger,” Mike sings … I mean, Tim sings. But seriously, close your eyes and listen, and you won’t be mixing them up at all; the sharp-toothed vocals, mechanik rhythmic wonk, and cerebrally playful lyrics all decidedly better fit Tim’s lane. The appropriately quirky-titled He’s Got the Whole This Land Is Your Land in His Hands drops January 20th via Joyful Noise Recordings. –Adam Kivel



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04. Thee Oh Sees – “The Poem”

Thee Oh Sees, © David Brendan Hall

Photo by David Brendan Hall

Just when it seemed like Thee Oh Sees were reenergized and set to keep smashing shit up thanks to their new double-drummer lineup, mastermind John Dwyer goes out and puts together some sweet, cloudy stuff like “The Poem”. The string-driven ballad passes like an afternoon in the golden ’60s psychedelic sunlight, Dwyer’s airy vocals puffing by. This is our first taste of An Odd Entrances, the companion piece to this year’s excellent A Weird Exits. I’m already getting ready to patch the two releases together and spend a lovely evening. An Odd Entrances hits shelves November 18th through Castle Face Records. –Adam Kivel


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03. Amber Coffman  – “All to Myself”

amber coffman Solange, A$AP Mob and Kings of Leon Headline Our Top Songs of the Week (10/07)

When you feel lonely, lost, and out of your bloody mind, the thought of burying that muddy head of yours (or body, in this case) in the sand and hiding from the world brings about a comical sense of relief. While Dirty ProjectorsAmber Coffman goes solo, “All to Myself” is a dreamy blur of crescendos, dynamics, diversions, and woozy folk. There are moments of elegance and self-discovery and subsequent recovery. Coffman caresses the reticent. She simmers slowly, amiably slipping lines like “There’s a voice inside of me/ And it’s time to listen” into her flawlessly inflected coo, her wry words backed by unobtrusive melody. With an album titled City of No Reply on its way via Columbia Records sometime soon, this song and her career are suddenly stupidly exciting. –Lior Phillips



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02. Crystal Fairy – “Drugs on the Bus”

crystal fairy Solange, A$AP Mob and Kings of Leon Headline Our Top Songs of the Week (10/07)

Up front, in your face, just how we like it: Melvins legends Dale Crover and Buzz Osborne, At the Drive-In/Mars Volta’s Omar Rodríguez-López, and Teri Gender Bender from Le Butcherettes team up as Crystal Fairy. This is a rare supergroup who understand that heavy need not necessarily mean overbearing: The crunching riffs and smothering walls of sound across the brooding “Drugs on the Bus” are intended to seduce rather than burn. This makes the moments of naked attack — like Gender Bender’s pummelling vocal-only last verse — all the more bracing. “She doesn’t kiss, she gives a damn, continues to un-strip the bark/ Restrains the roots she uses them to cut out her eyes,” she spits. Crystal Fairy create a catchy, complex, and hugely gratifying listen, but what else would you expect from this bunch? –Lior Phillips



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01. Solange – “Cranes in the Sky”

01 solange cosores Solange, A$AP Mob and Kings of Leon Headline Our Top Songs of the Week (10/07)

Photo by Carlo Cavaluzzi

“Away, away, away, away, away …” It’s as if words could will our futures, pummel that crystal ball with repetition. It feels like R&B and soul have been cryogenically suspended in time for over a decade, with electronic-tinged pop renovated, reproduced, and bungling the sound clouds. But it’s Solange’s spirit that’s struck a match. Over snapping snare rim, limber bass, and insistent string hum — a veritable downtempo R&B take on Massive Attack’s “Unfinished Symphony” — she enumerates the ways in which she’s tried to live a happy life. It’s hard to tell whether her emotional honesty or the skyscraping harmonies are more breathtaking. Solange’s new album, A Seat at the Table, is full of this sort of bold, beautiful self-expression and vulnerability. —Lior Phillips

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