With the bounty of new music flooding in at the moment, there are almost exactly a million different directions I could have gone in for this week’s picks. Stephen Malkmus has a brand new album that explores more off-kilter electronic landscapes than he has in the past. The Mountain Goats have released another single from their forthcoming album In League With Dragons (which is my most anticipated album of 2019). The artists Kindness and Robyn not only continue to exist (which is more than enough), they have also teamed up to release the anthem “Cry Everything.” Any of these would have been valid paths to travel this week, not to mention the myriad SXSW recommendations I have waiting in my cue. We’re dealing with serious abundance right now, so I’ll leave you to the songs that I have selected to share. But first, go ahead and enjoy “Cry Everything” as a bonus. It really is everything.
Black Pumas - “Fire”
The most resounding recommendation I’ve gotten from this year’s SXSW is Black Pumas. According to many highly trusted sources, they slay. This is very evident on their latest single “Fire,” a song that’s sharp as a tack, and radiating soul at a wattage that may not exactly be street legal. Expect to hear a lot more from these guys, and expect to be very happy about it.
Taken By Trees - “Careless Whisper”
It’s a truth universally acknowledged that Wham!’s “Careless Whisper” is a masterpiece. So anyone choosing to cover it is making a MOVE. Thankfully for the sake of all of our ears Taken by Trees are well up to the task. Produced by Bjorn Yttling (Peter, Bjorn & John), and featuring backing vocals by Mr. Little Jeans this is a vibe-y, balearic take on a classic that is guaranteed to slink it’s way into your heart.
Damien Jurado - “Throw Me Now Your Arms”
Damien Jurado is an artist whose voice I never quite realize how much I miss until I hear it again. So it has been wonderful over these past few weeks to receive such satisfying little bites of his forthcoming 14th album In the Shape of a Storm. Listening to “Throw Me Now Your Arms” feels like taking a deep, cleansing breath. It’s short, sweet and so pretty. Exactly what you need to unwind for the weekend.