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Essential Listening: The week's best new music

We’re saving you all the effort, rest your tiresome thumbs and searching eyes, because we have here in this nice little segment, some of the week’s best new music.

As with every week so far in 2020, this week saw a few heavy hitters returning to the limelight, most notably, The Strokes and the first cut from their upcoming album ‘At The Door’.

This week has also seen the return of some of our favourite artists from down under as Alex Lahey and Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever both contributing indie bangers to empower your week.

While Grimes and Billie Eilish are some of the biggest names in pop, there is also room on our list for TOPS, PINS and Honey Lung to bring us a cool fresh side of the sonic pillow.

So, without further ado, get some of the week’s best new music in your veins immediately.

‘At The Door’ – The Strokes

One of the biggest releases of the week came from a legacy indie act, The Strokes as they marked their first firm footstep on the road to their new record The New Abnormal. The group initially debuted the song at a rally for Democratic hopeful, Bernie Sanders, but later released the song in full HD.

It’s a song that will likely split The Strokes down the middle. But let’s put it this way, if you like Julian Casablancas and the Voidz, then you’re gonna love it. The lo-fi sound is punctuated by vocoder vocals and heavy synths to add the 80s edge. It makes for a truly engaging track and is a dead cert’ for afterparty bliss.

It’s a sound replicated in the epic new video which sees all your favourite animated gems from the ’80s merge into one 5 minute plus adventure. With a soundtrack provided by your favourite New Yorkers.

‘Sucker For Punishment’ – Alex Lahey

The latest release from last year’s brilliant The Best of Luck Club sees Lahey in empirical form. Not only providing a riff worthy of bringing any stage down on the audience but a deeply poignant track.

“We’re living in an era where the micro has become the macro,” says Lahey. “I don’t think there has ever been a time where our actions and attitudes as individuals have had such an impact on broader humanity and the planet.”

She continues, “Whether it’s a ‘think about it later’ attitude towards climate change, the undemocratic consequences of sharing personal data to big business online, a lethargicness in the face of political engagement or the need to be validated as a worthwhile individual through obtaining arbitrary units of engagement on social media – we need to catch ourselves out before we suffer greater consequences.”

‘Be My Friend’ – Honey Lung

The latest from London shoegazers Honey Lung sees the band at their most richly textured as they play devil’s advocate with the awkwardness of meeting new people. The band have returned from two years of honing their sound while on tour to sign with indie-hero label Big Scary Monsters and now they have shared their first new cut, ‘Be My Friend’.

It’s a perfect composition of the band’s past and their ever-brightening future. Manging to channel the shining moments of Britpop without feeling hacky the group deliver a track destined for bedroom floor dancing.

‘Cars In Space’ – Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever

The Melbourne outfit returned this week to share their new single, out on Sub Pop Records, alongside a brilliant new video which was co-directed by Far Out favourite, Julia Jacklin.

There’s no way to summarise this track for you without using the sometimes unwanted label of ‘indie-pop’. But we mean it in the kindest of ways as Rolling Blackouts C.F. have some of the most infectious guitar-driven tracks we’ve heard in a long time. ‘Cars In Space’ is yet another triumph in writing music to move your feet to.

‘No Time To Die’ – Billie Eilish

We couldn’t have a round-up of the week’s new music without including Billie Eilish’s contribution to the pantheon of Hollywood soundtracks as she took on James Bond’s ‘No Time To Die’.

It’s a song that breaks records, Eilish is the youngest singer of the Bond theme song ever and will almost certainly go on to have a chart-topper on her hands with the 25th edition of James Bond being released later in the year.

‘Witching Hour’ – TOPS

“‘Witching Hour’ is a song about reckoning. David [guitarist] wrote the chorus of the song, and when he showed it to me I gravitated towards the idea of a witching hour as a time of night for unconscious thoughts and uncomfortable visions,” vocalist Jane Penny said of the new song. “The pressure to be feminine has twisted my experience of my own sensuality in this nightmarish way, and I wanted to articulate that by conjuring the nefarious ways that trauma emerges in dreams.

“There’s a sense of reprisal in witchcraft, of retribution as a means of expression, and I wanted to explore that side of feminine power.

‘Delete Forever’ – Grimes

Grimes shared the new single, ‘Delete Forever’, which has been taken from her forthcoming new album Miss Anthropocene. The most recent song follows the likes of ‘My Name Is Dark’, ‘So Heavy I Fell Through The Earth’, ‘Violence’, ‘We Appreciate Power’ and ‘4ÆM’ which will feature on the album which is released on February 21st.

“It’s about losing friends to the opioid crisis and the self-hatred that arises when the grieving process mimics the behaviours that cost your friends their lives,” Grimes notes