I can’t speak for the weather anywhere else in the world, but in northeast United States, there’s been a mix of gloom and sun that teases the warm weather of summer and then goes right back to a cold, rainy sky. It seems like everyone’s been itching to get outside and truly enjoy the warm weather that pops up once every few days. Music seems to be in a similar vein right now – Alex Cameron is talking about Miami, K.Flay’s on a bike, and Barns Courtney is mentioning suitcases. This means only one thing: the time of the summer anthem has started.
Miami Memory by Alex Cameron
“Holding your hand at the strip club, holding your hand at the beach…”
Alex Cameron is known for a well place euphemism here and there, but his newest single goes bigger and bolder than any before. For good reason – Alex Cameron hasn’t released new music (unless you’re counting his album of live music) since 2017, so if there was a time to release the lines “Eating your ass like an oyster / The way you came like a tsunami,” the time is now. Yet there’s something sweet among the crudness, as it has the same wistful, long lost love as “Runnin’ Outta Luck.” Like this 2017 song, a love founded in late nights and explicit acts is something deemed worthy of fighting for and looked upon fondly, even if was always going to end.
You and I by Barns Courtney
“Suitcase in your hand, wave goodbye to Mom and Dad…”
Barns Courtney released his previous single, ‘“99”’, back in August of 2018, and considering that he has just announced his first headlining tour, it’s safe to say this is the first of many new songs to come. It has the same drum ramp up as previous hit “Fire,” but doesn’t have the low vocals and periodic falsettos often found on album “The Attractions of Youth.” While ‘“99”’ and “Good Thing” are both in this vocal range, neither have the sort of restless, manic energy found on “You and I.” Is the sound a one off? Doubtful, if the unreleased tracks “Fun Never Ends” / “London Girls” played on his current tour with Elle King are anything to go by.
This Baby Don’t Cry by K.Flay
“I used to worry ‘bout the way that I walk, like was I talking too loud, and could I hang with the jocks…”
I found out about K.Flay in 2017, with the release of “Blood In The Cut,” and I’m delighted that “This Baby Don’t Cry” is filled with the same rebellious chaos as my original favorite track, if not more. Where “Blood In The Cut” is filled with hurt due to rejection, K.Flay’s newest track doesn’t give a damn whether you like her or not. A bit less moody, a bit more driven by drums, this is the newest ‘love yourself, forget everyone else’ anthem people can dance to as if nobody’s watching, even if they’ve got a crowd. As stated in the song: “When you don’t give a fuck, it’s just like riding a bike.”
Hush by Car Astor
Pleasantly haunting, “Hush” speaks about a hidden relationship over a track of distorted ‘ahhs’ and a deep, moody bass. It’s much darker than any other songs mentioned in this roundup, and is even more eerie than other recently released tracks from Car Astor. “Don’t Stop, Don’t Speak” seems to follow the same story line of a casual and sexually charged relationship, but “Hush” is the only one to bring about a feeling of taboo risk. There’s something about the single’s cover art as well – leather gloved hand holding a fresh “HUSH” tattoo with a line going through the middle of the word. It’s the perfect song to accompany one on a midnight stroll.
Call the Night by Luna Bay
“Show me your heart, I wanna feel just a little bit of love…”
“Call the Night” takes off running from the get go, with a momentary burst of drums, followed by a bright and uplifting series of notes that you can’t not smile to. Luna Bay only has six songs out (at least on Spotify) at the moment, but this new single is easily the most energetic single of the bunch. While it follows the same storyline as “Little Amsterdam,” with the storyteller convincing a girl to head home with them, “Call the Night” feels a little more urgent, like a happy, drunken request after a night of adventure. There’s something about the song that brings about unadulterated joy, and I can easily picture the lyrics being sung in unison by a crowd, whether it be the one planned for Scala this November or later in the years to come.