The 5 Best Songs Of The Week

The 5 Best Songs Of The Week

A moment of silence for Jay-Z, please.………………………………………………………………… ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..Thank you.

Now check out the five best songs of the week.

5. Deafheaven – “Night People”

It almost doesn’t make sense to separate Ordinary Corrupt Human Love, the shattering new Deafheaven album, into component parts. There are only seven songs, after all, and all seven of them blur into one roaring, twinkling, angry, sad, beautiful whole. It’s best experienced that way. But instead of talking about the best song on the album — and the early singles “Honeycomb” and “Canary Yellow” might still be the strongest candidates there — it might make sense to talk about the song that can stand the best on its own. And that might be “Night People.” For one thing, at four minutes, it’s easily the shortest song on an album full of convulsive 10-minute guitar meditations. For another, it’s the one that sounds least like Deafheaven. There’s practically no metal here. Instead, Chelsea Wolfe shows up to duet with George Clarke, who sings in a shockingly pretty inside voice for once. Together, they weave a goth lullaby over strings and pianos and ominous ambient synths. It’s a calm-in-the-storm moment that still sounds, in its own way, plenty stormy. –Tom

[Listen here.]

4. Let’s Eat Grandma – “Donnie Darko”

I’m All Ears is filled with immaculate and unexpected transitions, and “Donnie Darko,” its sprawling closing track, acts like an album-in-miniature. It starts with coiling guitar lines that recall Let’s Eat Grandma’s psych-prog roots, but those slowly build into a throbbing disco beat. Named after a film that thrives in the inexplicable, “Donnie Darko” also evades simple categorization. But the paranoia and itchiness of that middle part is undeniable: “I’m going batshit crazy/ It’s not real life, I can’t be dialing 999,” the words crawling sticky-sweet off the tongue. The song reaches revelation after that, the climax to a narrative that’s as muddled as it is transcendent. “The beatings just get harder and we’ll never grow them out,” they sing, battered but persistent. It’s a widescreen ending to an album that never fails to feel cinematic and sweeping. –James

3. Converge – “Permanent Blue”

Our current national predicament often makes my insides seethe with the chaotic violence of a Converge song, so a blisteringly short EP venting the band’s frustrations with the situation is a welcome surprise. Each one of Beautiful Ruin’s ballistic freakouts whips me into a righteous frenzy, but opener “Permanent Blue” — the longest of these four tracks at a breezy 2:24 — is especially, epically brutal. High-register guitar work seemingly borrowed from At The Drive In’s “Invalid Litter Dept.” (the one about “dancing on the corpse’s ashes”) snakes through the relentless double-kick onslaught, spiraling up and down across the wreckage while Jacob Bannon pours his full lung capacity into rallying the complacent. “Passivity will only lead you to the mouth of tragedy!” he shrieks, seemingly from the brink of that very precipice, begging you to get off your ass and do something about this mess. Hopefully his listeners will respond with passion, conviction, and creativity in kind. –Chris

2. Drake – “Summer Games”

It’s fair to assume Scorpion didn’t go exactly as Drake had planned. His latest 89-minute double album wasn’t epic, it was over-indulgent. It did, however, succeed in stripping down the fashionable sad-boy to reveal someone who is truly flawed and paranoid. Someone who pores over women’s Instagram habits and nervously glosses over fatherhood. But on the album’s standout track “Summer Games,” Drake’s brooding screed is softened under the light of a disco ball. The ballad’s backing track sits somewhere between Beyoncé’s “XO” and Alphaville’s “Forever Young.” Its glowing synth suggests a slow song that might play at an ’80s school dance, but its lyrics are unmistakably current (see: Instagram-induced anxiety).

It’s easy to give Drake shit for analyzing his love interest’s social media activity, about as easy as it is to forget that many of us are guilty of similar musings. Petty concerns (“You say I led you on, but you followed me / I follow one of your friends, you unfollow me / Then you block them so they can’t see you likin’ someone just like me”) are justified by his heartbroken conviction and a love story turned sour. Drake used to spend his summers “looking for revenge” and “running through the six with [his] woes.” Now he’s stuck indoors, scrolling through pics on his phone. –Julia

1. Charli XCX – “No Angel”

When Charli XCX brought her Pop 2 show to Brooklyn she called it “the fucking future.” That might seem a little extra, but anyone who’s watched Charli’s rise knows that she can’t be too far off. Charli has always been miles ahead of the pop machine; she breaks trends, she doesn’t bite them. No matter how much Charli’s preferred production techniques have changed over time, there’s an essential Charli-ness to her music that refuses to get buried or lost in translation. You can hear her influence on the pop charts whether her name makes it up there or not.

“No Angel” feels like a synthesis of the ideas Charli’s dealt in throughout her career. Her cadence in the opening verse could’ve been ripped right off of 2014’s Sucker, but the production isn’t guitar-driven and towering. Instead, it coasts on a minimalist, synthetic beat that never really quickens to the point of catharsis the way it might’ve if it were included on Pop 2 or Number 1 Angel. There aren’t any features on “No Angel.” There’s nothing really distracting the listener from Charli’s voice, which is unmistakable. “I’m sorry that you caught me/ Fuckin’ in the hotel/ It didn’t mean anything,” she pouts, totally unashamed. “No Angel” joins a lineage of Bad Girl anthems, one that Charli has dominated for years now and will hopefully continue to dominate for many more. The future can’t come fast enough. –Gabriela