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.)


Cusp - "Window"

Chicago’s Cusp was on our list of best new bands of 2023 following the release of their debut album You Can Do It All, a whimsical, engaging shoegaze supernova. Their new song “Window” is a pleasant taste of their forthcoming EP Thanks So Much, and it’s an anxious indie rock earworm that tries to calm itself with affirmations that blur into frustrations: “I’m grateful, I’m grateful/ I hate being so hateful.” Toward the end, the track fades into a piano interlude before ending with a tame instrumental and Jen Bender still stating, “I’m grateful,” though this time it sounds like she really means it. —Danielle


Hatis Noit - "Jomon (Preservation Rework)" (Feat. Armand Hammer)

Japanese vocal artist Hatis Noit pulls from different global traditions, and she makes vast, sweeping music — the kind of thing that makes you feel like you’re flying over snow-capped mountains while the sky burns. She released the otherworldly “Jomon” two years ago, but I was unfamiliar with her game until this week. That’s because the New York rap producer Preservation, a master of avant-bap lurch, remixed the track and got Armand Hammer to spit nerve-jangled apocalyptic imagery over it. Now, an epic feels even more epic. —Tom


Microwave - "Bored Of Being Sad"

Last year, Atlanta pop-punk crew Microwave released “Ferrari,” “Straw Hat,” and “Circling The Drain.” Their new song “Bored Of Being Sad” comes with the announcement of their next album Let’s Start Degeneracy, and it’s the loudest single so far. It kicks off with a burst of bright guitars, as Nathan Hardy sings about being jaded of the romanticization of misery, not without taking responsibility himself: “Shit’s really not so bad/ I created this hell/ I have no one to blame but myself.” This attitude is also what sets Microwave apart from their peers. They’re too restless to wallow, and surely Let’s Start Degeneracy will be full of more fun mayhem. —Danielle


Bat For Lashes - "The Dream Of Delphi"

We don’t have oracles anymore. That’s too bad. We could probably use their help. In Greek mythology, high priestess Pythia was a mysterious force who had access to the vast, mysterious forces controlling the fate of mortals. She would tell kings and heroes things that they needed to know, though her prophecies had a way of undoing those kings and heroes. On her first song since becoming a mother, Nathasha Khan meditates on dreams and visions while conjuring her own, her voice floating beatifically over drones and tingles and swooshes. Near the end of the track, when the Björk-style space-dance drums kick in, Khan’s voice disappears, as if she’s entering a shamanic trance of her own. Maybe we still have oracles after all. —Tom


Vampire Weekend - "Capricorn"

Here comes a feeling you thought you’d forgotten. For those that weren’t vibing with Father Of The Bride (shame on you), Vampire Weekend are ready to give you want you wanted. “Capricorn” and its counterpart “Gen X Cops” sound like the band’s discography collapsing in on itself. It’s all so familiar, but something’s off. It’s dense and dirty. The production is willfully difficult, all those layers that Ezra Koenig and his go-to Ariel Rechtshaid built up are a muddle. It’s like going to a college reunion and everyone’s worse off. Those hallowed halls are dimmer. There’s mud on the parquet floors. Fuck, is the mansard roof leaking?!

It’s all intentional. Of course it is. Vampire Weekend have long been concerned with the slow march of history, the inexorable churn of time, that low click of a ticking clock. What’s old will become new again, and what’s new is already dying. “Capricorn,” named after the astrological sign that straddles the old year and the new, is filled with sonic allusions to past glories. Koenig sings about “sifting through centuries for moments of your own,” and you get the sense that he’s been engaging with his own band’s mythology, turning it on its head and providing you a haunted-house version of what you thought you needed. And then that sound cuts through — you know the one, mangled and yawning and cacophonous. It’s all too much. Welcome back. —James

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