We are honestly never going to stop talking about this song. Seriously. We all know and love Romy Madley Croft as the heavenly voice and brains behind The XX’s best hits, and she’s come in swinging from all angles with her new “Lifetime”. Produced by bandmate Jamie XX, the blissful track is an ode to the floor-fillers of the 00s, that wreckless Balearic trance sound that manages to bottle up exactly how you feel when everything falls into place on a night out. As if things couldn’t get any cooler, Romy has even partnered up with the Kim Gordon-helmed X-Girl for a merch collection celebrating her debut single. It seems no member of The XX can tread wrong, leaving Oliver Sim to dazzle us too at some point in the near future, maybe on OnlyFans?
The XX’s Romy has dropped the song of the year in this week’s floor-filling Wonderlist.
Romy – “Lifetime”
Róisín Murphy – “We Got Together”
“I’m back to snatch Dua Lipa and Jessie Ware’s wigs,” said the otherworldly musical entity we know as Róisín Murphy about her newest project this week, and unsurprisingly she did exactly that. The 10-track album, titled Róisín Machine, is some of the former Trip-hoppers best work yet, with 6th track “We Got Together” emerging as our immediate favourite. Between the flurry of driving rhythms and pounding bass – you know, the type that leaves your legs quivering and unable to sit down afterwards – this one is for the patron saints of the dance floor, those beauties who are still cutting shapes at 5 in the morning when everyone else is outside calling an Uber. I reckon after BoJo hears it he’ll open up the clubs for a night just so we can experience it as intended – we are well and truly indebted to you Ms. Murphy.
Phoebe Bridgers – “I Know The End”
We’ve waxed lyrical about Phoebe Bridgers’ sophomore album Punisher these last few months. It’s truly, truly brilliant. In fact, we even included “I Know The End”, and it’s fabulously dark video in our last Wonderlist of July. But guess what? We’re including it again. If things were normal we’d have seen Bridgers on some kind of tour/festival route over the summer and screamed our guts out to the calamitous track, but alas… they’re not. Instead, we’re getting our live fix from Late Night talk show’s, and this week it’s with Seth Meyers. Watch our beloved sad girl absolutely kill her performance in a vintage-tiered-organza-skirt moment, we’re so proud!
Dua Lipa – “Levitating (feat. DaBaby)”
Bloody hell, how many remixes of this song is our favourite nostalgia specialist gonna put out into the universe? We aren’t complaining though, it is a banger. Sorting out the girls and the gays with a Missy Elliot and Madonna featuring iteration at the beginning of September, Lipa now has a treat for everyone else, enlisting the help of a Vuitton clad DaBaby for the occasion. She’s even done us ANOTHER insane music video, making an art deco club in Outerspace before Richard Branson gets there first, it is the twenties after all…
Oz – “Foot Down”
Some of us love wallowing in our sadness, yes we might be drama queens, but being able to switch from the vibrant tunes that defined our youth to the songs in our cry playlist without so much as shedding a tear is a talent. Luckily for us, Oz has cooked up the perfect storm to bridge these two worlds. “Foot Down” is solemn dark-pop through and through, filling that sad and angry void inside with volcanic choruses and moody swagger, affirming that we’re the masters of our own destiny. This is just the beginning for the emerging pop star, and with her Jupiter EP due to drop in the next few months, we’ll be looking to her for plenty more lessons about life.
Refs – “Run”
New York City/Berlin-based duo Refs maintain a similarly dark vibe on their latest track, “Run”. The witch-house-esque track shimmers with cavernous vocals and wholesome optimism, ironic considering it was born out of vocalist Rich Saunders’ concern about the mortality of his loved ones. “I know it’s kind of morbid for a pop song,” he jokes about the emotionally-charged hit, “but I wrote this tune with Zach [Lipkins] last spring as a self-reminder that life is short and fleeting. Might as well spend your time doing exactly what you care about the most.”
Kid Brunswick – “4am”
“4am” is a track for those of us who indulge our love of music while the rest of the world sleeps peacefully beside us. The West-London helmed Brunswick penned the plucky slow-burner a few months after leaving rehab and getting sober for the first time, using cigarettes and sex as his only vices to stop him relapsing. Baring your soul is never easy, yet Brunswick does it with such poignance and care you’d assume it was almost a second nature.
Julia Bardo – “The Raw” EP
From Italy to Manchester, former Working Men’s Club guitar woman Julia Bardo brings you “The Raw” EP, a 3-track project exploring the austere side to indie rock. Tracks like “Never As Tired As When I’m Waking Up” are strung-out, hazy indie at it’s best, a bit too demure to be dreamy, but are still wistfully euphoric in other ways. Showcasing her insane vocal chops, “Only Over You” is a cover of one of Bardo’s favourite Fleetwood Mac tunes, whilst closing number “Random Rules” has us pretending to be the main character on a road trip somewhere far away from here. For now, we’ll be waiting for Bardo to release this masterpiece on vinyl…
Jaguar Jonze – “Deadalive”
A little bit Blondie, a little bit Alvvays, Australian multihyphenate Jaguar Jonze’s “Deadalive” is a fascinating blend of up-beat indie, peppered with Western twang and alt-rock drums. Jonze had penned the song whilst on tour in New York, just before coronavirus stopped the world in its tracks, and ended up finishing it in hospital after being admitted for complications due to the virus. Of course, the singer ended up living to tell the tale, and stepped behind the camera to direct the orange-tinged music video herself. That’s some queen shit…
London Grammar – “Californian Soil”
We’re very thankful for London Grammar’s return to the musical fray this year, a reassuring reminder of the trio absolutely dominated the early 2010’s with their tranquil and dramatic approach to pop. Of course, it’s seven years on now, and so much has changed. They’ve matured. We’ve matured. As for the music? Still as fab as ever. In fact, the group are actually gearing up for the release of their third studio album, releasing slow-burning title track “Californian Soul” just this morning. Amongst many things, the record is about the band’s frontwoman, Hannah Reid, gaining control of her own life, kicking misogyny in the balls and allowing herself to embrace success. Brace yourselves, because they’re about to carve out the British pop blueprint for a new generation.