5 Songs to Hear This Week: Jenny Lewis, WITCH, This Is The Kit

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Indie queens x electro R+B dreams Harve, Jenny Lewis, and This Is The Kit, Photos by Luke + Nik, Bobbi Rich, and Cedric Oberlin.

Hey! Did you know that there’s an entire aspect of KCRW music discovery that you might be missing out on? Fear not, because our 5 Songs to Hear This Week newsletter is now a weekly feature on our website. Watch this space for rundowns of the five songs that you need in your life immediately, curated by KCRW Music staff. Don’t want to wait for your latest taste of fresh tunes? Sign up for the Friday newsletter here, and always be the first to know.

Jenny Lewis – “Psychos” 

JENNY! The alt-queen is back with a folksy-fresh single that’s as easy to love as the rest of her catalog, which spans from featuring with The Postal Service to co-leading Rilo Kiley. Combining classic country inspiration with indie stylings and decidedly enlightened lyricism, this easygoing jam asks big questions to the breezy sounds of a tambourine and slide guitar. And there’s even more to come — the album Joy’All is out in June! 

This Is The Kit – “Inside Outside”  

Indie UK outfit (perhaps actually an outfit, as in “get your kit on”) This Is The Kit is an amorphous blob of a band, always changing, lead by vocalist Kate Stables. And this track follows suit, a meandering piece of music infused with a spirit of improvisation and punctuated by a sturdy central chorus with (what we kinda hope is) a Ralph Wiggum reference. Click play for layers of grab-bag percussion, interpretive choreography, and accessibly excellent vocals laid over warmly plucked bass. 

WITCH – “Avalanche of Love (Feat. Sampa the Great)”

We love a long-rooted comeback — how’s 39 years for you? Zambian psych-rockers WITCH have done just that, and thrown fellow Zambian Sampa the Great into the mix to celebrate. This funky, jammy track didn’t just fall out of the clear blue sky — a documentary about the band, We Intend To Cause Havoc (the founding phrase by which we get the band’s name) was released in 2019, piquing fresh interest. They reunited to play SXSW and a surprise set at Desert Daze just last year. And lo, a single! This track is a whole vibe, so hit play whether you’re a longtime fan or a new one.

Gareth Donkinquickly, quickly, & The Breathing Effect – “GEEK OUT!”

Here’s one for your headphones: the ideal track for dancing down the sidewalk on your way to rule the world. Infectious, joyful, and flavored with sunny Sunday afternoon goodness, this exclamation-point of a track from UK singer-songwriter and producer Gareth Donkin is a surefire crowd-pleaser. Contributions from standout Portland artist quickly, quickly and LA’s own post-rock nu-jazz duo The Breathing Effect make this the best group project ever turned in at the end of sixth period.

Harve x Miso Extra – “02:29”

South East London creative force Harve first caught our attention with their fresh take on R&B woven into an ultra-modern electronic music-scape. You’ll find more of that here — but the artist’s evolution is clear to see and a joy to behold. This track’s equally at home in the club, the bedroom, and your sunset-and-six-pack kickback. English-Japanese rapper Miso Extra, a favorite of this newsletter, brings her signature multilingual bars to the track with the effortless cool that only comes from total authentic expression. We’re so glad these two got together — click play and you’ll likely agree.