The Arctic Monkeys have returned and there’s little else to say other than welcome back, lads. Alex Turner fronts the four-piece as they continue their path towards more stylish, lounge vibes, rather than the stadium rattling rock that defined their tenure in the charts around the turn of the millennium. No matter how you feel about this new direction, it feels only right that our favourite Sheffield band return to our speakers once again, and we will be blaring the record from now until Monday morning.
Arctic Monkeys, Santino Le Saint, and Olivia Lunny lead this week’s new-music round-up.
Arctic Monkeys – The Car
Olivia Lunny – “WONDERLAND”
Not an ode to any particular magazine, but instead it’s Canadian nascent talent, Olivia Lunny’s latest earworm “Wonderland”. “Forget the internet, just be who we are,” Lunny sings on the track, as she proposes losing yourself in the moment, and staying in “Wonderland”. It’s the latest from the alt-popstar of tomorrow, who blends tangible emotion with irresistible sonics, and magnetic hooks. We are happy to stay in “Wonderland”, incidentally!
Santino Le Saint – “Damaged Goods”
Brixton hip hop and rock hybridiser, Santino Le Saint’s, “Damaged Goods” sees the 23-year-old in full flow suffusing his lo-fi trap, R&B, rock, and pop influences with his unmistakable emotional lucidity. Centred around a devastatingly beautiful chorus that unravels with every repeat, Cloud X member, Santino, emerges as a voice of clarity, with idiosyncrasies and purpose in equal spades.
Props – “before you let go”
SC Embed code
South London, Sir Elton John co-signed artist, props, shares endearing track “before you let go”, which amalgamates the unassuming organic quality of bedroom-pop with riotous pop-punk verve, into both a soothing and kinetic cut. “Is it just me or does it feel like the cliff edge is approaching faster every day?” props asks in reference to the track. “‘before you let go’ is about getting that feeling off your chest and wanting to make the planet a nicer place. But at a time when we’re all programmed to turn on Netflix and zone out completely. I guess it’s appropriate then that you can just interpret these lyrics as a cute, nostalgic break-up song if you like.”
New Dad – “ILY2”
Galway four-piece, and newcomers to the big smoke that is London, New Dad, share their first track since lauded EP February EP “Banshee”, with this shoegaze-leaning reimagining of Charli XCX track “ILY2”. The vivid luminosity of lead, Julie Dawson’s vocals adds a new direction to the track from the alt-pop queen, with the four-piece easily exemplifying their right to have a go at the work of an icon. There’s reportedly a debut album in the works from the quartet, so we’re now just counting down the days until we get that all important announcement.
Saint Joshua – “Even If We Don’t”
Burgeoning Croydon R&B star Saint Joshua shares groove-overflowing, infectious cut “Even If We Don’t.” The artist, who only hit the music scene in 2021 with debut single, “I Like”, appears as refined in soulful, dexterous R&B as the likes of Frank Ocean, Solange and D’Angelo, and incidentally, that’s who he cites as an inspiration. Moreish, R&B perfection – what more could you want on a Friday?
DC – “Firing Sqaud’
Hailing from South London, nascent storyteller DC releases an impactful new single “Firing Squad” that is thought-provoking and soulful all at once. With cosigns from the likes of Stormzy and AJ Tracey, if you find yourself gripped by grime and UK trap, then this new track is definitely one to watch out for. Accompanied by a rhythmic melody and a booming bass, the Greenwich-based artist laments the hussle that many of London’s youth have no choice but to face. It’s empowered, yet vulnerable – tough, but candid. It’ll not only get you thinking, but vibing too.
Wauve – “DEH DEH”
“DEH DEH”, the vibrant new single by emerging Afrobeats artist Wauve, draws you in immediately with its melodic guitar riff. The syncopated percussion then bursts through, and what results is an unadulterated vision of the artist’s future – of life, love, and everything in between. Written as a love-letter to East African women, a focus born our of Wauve’s Eritrean heritage, this new track also serves as an exuberant celebration of culture. With a nod of approval from the global hit-maker Ne-Yo, we’re sure that this new single cements Wauve’s place in the Afrobeats game.
Sufferin Mall – “Luv U Always”
In today’s digital landscape where intimacy and the internet go hand-in-hand, “Luv U Always”, the new single by rising hyperpop artist Sufferin Mall, seems pixel perfect. The Toronto-based artist cites a disparate blend of genres – such as trap and indie rock – which all meld together in a feat of glitchy, pixelated heartache. The vulnerability of some of its lyrics like, “I’ll love you always, I’ll miss you always,” bleed through the craftily auto-tuned vocals. But like most hyperpop hits, it doesn’t take itself too seriously – “I think I’m just addicted to the drama” – Mall admits within the song; it’s irreverent and intimate in equal measures. If you enjoy artists like Charli XCX and Sega Bodega, “Luv U Always” is worth a listen.