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.)
Tube Alloys - "Jubilee"
“Violence jubilee! Hardcore orgy!” That’s the chorus. London’s Tube Alloys chant those lyrics with the nasally muscular nyah-nyah energy of first-wave punks. Their guitars slash and sputter and clang, making a giddy ugly-catchy noise that’s both abrasive and hypnotic in equal measure. “Jubilee” calls back to different traditions of abrasive music — stop-start math-rock riffage, buzzing post-punk guitar-treble, a big and mean bassline that doesn’t need to pitch its tent in any particular genre. But the song is never as disturbing as it wants to be because it’s just too much damn fun. —Tom
Open Mike Eagle - "WFLD 32' (Feat. Eshu Tune, Still Rift, & Video Dave)
Lately I’ve had so much fun listening to Open Mike Eagle’s podcasts (stream What Had Happened Was) that I sometimes forget how much fun I have listening to his music. He sounds as casually excellent as ever over Kenny Segal’s “WFLD 32” beat, the kind of woozy, wobbly production Segal often serves up for billy woods. It’s kind of a posse cut, with verses from Hannibal Buress (in his Eshu Tune guise), Still Rift, and Video Dave. But OME stands out for his easy command of the language and a flow that makes the song’s off-kilter rhythm feel intuitive. I love the way he stacks up rhymes across his verse, and I especially love how he shouts out my favorite Animaniacs characters on the chorus: “Pinky can get it cracking but Brain’s got the memory/ Friday’s got the bread but Thursday’s got the energy.” —Chris
Tove Lo - "Elevator Eyes"
“Elevator eyes/ I’m not surprised/ You’re hypnotized/ Goin’ up and down.” A line like that scans as corny on paper, but in Tove Lo’s hands it lands as sultry and even a little sweet. “Elevator Eyes” — a highlight from the deluxe edition of Dirt Femme that came out last week — is indeed hypnotizing, a luxe and laidback jam about a vacation hookup, one where you meet someone new and have some good old fun and there are no strings attached. “Yeah, I will remember you/ Naked and beautiful,” Tove Lo sings, an infatuation that’s over just as soon as you realize you’re staying on different floors. —James
Rid Of Me - "Rid Of Me"
The Philadelphia band that named themselves after a PJ Harvey song now have named a song after themselves. The lead single from Rid Of Me’s sophomore album retains all the fearsome immediacy that led us to name them one of the Best New Bands Of 2021, and what starts out as wrenchingly intimate soon speeds into a towering heave of noise. Where Harvey whipped those three words between vulnerable and blistering, Rid Of Me emphasize the soulless emptiness they invite. Itarya Rosenberg’s words curdle — “Lies to make you nut, just like owning downtown/ Easy fucking luck, show while taking me down” — and explode into indignation: “You don’t take care of me/ You just get rid of me.” —James
MJ Lenderman - "Knockin'"
This is a re-recording of a song that first came out two years ago. Maybe it should be disqualified from appearing on this list, but it’s too good — and significantly better than the original cut. Like so many of the best country songwriters, Jake Lenderman knows how to wring fresh pathos from a well-worn formula. In this case, the formula is not some industry standard, just his own tendencies: sick riffs that never get too complicated, a heavy dose of world-weary twang, some not particularly snooty pop culture references, a quavering drawl that sounds like it’s haunted by heavy burdens. “Knockin'” is bookended by references to “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” as sung by the golfer John Daly. In between, things get personal. “They took my drivers license/ But you still have yours,” Lenderman sings. “You’re all I need babe/ Yeah, you’ve heard that one before.” Like so much of Lenderman’s music, the results are triumphantly downcast — and that’s before he raises his voice and the song soars skyward, as if charting a course toward the pearly gates. —Chris