The 5 Best Songs Of The Week

The 5 Best Songs Of The Week

Every week the Stereogum staff chooses the five best new songs of the week. The eligibility period begins and ends Thursdays right before midnight. You can hear this week’s picks below and on Stereogum’s Favorite New Music Spotify playlist, which is updated weekly. (An expanded playlist of our new music picks is available to members on Spotify and Apple Music, updated throughout the week.)


Hannah Georgas - "This Too Shall Pass"

The phrase “this too shall pass” gets trotted out so frequently, it verges on cliche. Anyone would be forgiven for not knowing its origins. Generally used as an antidote to cope with Bad Times, “this too shall pass” also happens to be about the impermanence surrounding Good Times, which I was fascinated to learn. The adage first surfaced within the writings of medieval Persian Sufi poets, then English poet Edward FitzGerald used it in the 19th century, and Abraham Lincoln echoed its sentiments in a pre-presidential speech, and so on and so on. This week, Hannah Georgas reanimates the words in a brisk yet wistful indie-rock number meant to “quiet my own doubts and insecurities.” It’s an instant classic about a universal condition, from an artist who appears to have good times ahead (which, too, shall pass). —Rachel


Chat Pile - "Cut"

They can’t keep doing this. It’s unseemly. Last year, Oklahoma City’s Chat Pile released God’s Country, one of the year’s grimiest, most concussive albums. Since then, Chat Pile have continued to crank out ugly, terrifying music that reminds us of the bleak realities of human nature. Give it a rest, you know? Let us enjoy some lovely spring weather without forcing us to confront our collective dark side. Or else just keep doing this. Up to you. “Cut,” allegedly inspired by Stephen King’s short fiction, is Chat Pile in guttural-churn mode, letting a tiny bit of twinkle into their all-consuming sludge. But there’s no hope in Raygun Busch’s voice as he goes from troubled mutter to strangulated scream. Busch: “Your voice was God’s voice! Was God’s voice! And it cut me!” We know how he feels. —Tom


Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit - "Middle Of The Morning"

The years 2020 and 2021 tested everyone’s limits. Things might be back to “normal” (whatever that means), but we’ll be dealing with the pandemic’s ripple effects for years to come. To that end, Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit let out a catharsis-packed howl on “Middle Of The Morning,” which looks back at the initial isolation period and traces the resulting emotional whiplash: “Well I’ve tried to open up my window and let the light come in/ I step outside in the middle of the morning and in the evening again,” he sings. “Yes I’ve tried to be grateful for my devils and call them by their names/ But I’m tired, and by the middle of the morning I need someone to blame.” The pain and desperation in Isbell’s “well I’ve tried” hits you right in the gut. Because, like I said, lots of us are still trying. —Rachel


Tyler, The Creator - "Dogtooth"

It’s been two years since Call Me If You Get Lost, but Tyler, The Creator still has some gas left in that tank. “DOGTOOTH,” the first we heard from the album’s deluxe edition (out today), is effortlessly sublime, Tyler riding one of his gossamer synth beats into submission. And the hook is just great, the sort of knotty wordplay that’s bound to get stuck in your head: “She could ride my face, I don’t want nothin’ in return/ Because if she get off then I get off, that’s my concern/ I’m tryna buy my neighbor house and turn it into a yard/ If you don’t know my grandma name, then we ain’t really dogs, bitch.” There are a couple variations on those words, but they’re all striving and sentimental, the perfect thing to zone in on. —James


superviolet - "Big Songbirds Don't Cry"

Over the course of a decade-plus with the Sidekicks, Steve Ciolek built up a reputation as one of the underground’s most beloved guitar-pop songwriters. As the band ascended from the basement DIY circuit to Epitaph Records and headlining club tours, the music morphed too, their blend of pop-punk, emo, and barroom classic rock leveling out into pristinely chiming indie rock with hooks galore. Starting fresh as superviolet after the Sidekicks’ 2020 disbandment, Ciolek’s writing continued to evolve, commingling his Midwest punk background with ’60s and ’70s pop-rock.

Based on the early singles from superviolet’s debut Infinite Spring, the results of that merger are spectacular. “Big Songbirds Don’t Cry” digs into some of the prettiest corners of the White Album — think “Dear Prudence” and “Blackbird” — to convey a particular kind of melancholia. “Big songbirds don’t cry/ They just get the blues,” Ciolek begins. “Besides in sports bars the adage holds true.” It’s a killer line, made even better by its counterpart in the second verse: “Night owls don’t get green/ They just get even/ Jealousy’s a kickstart to an evening.” If that’s the emotion informing these superviolet songs, then keep on coveting, Steve. —Chris

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