1. Cardi B – Bodak Yellow
When she broke away from Love & Hip Hop: New York, asserting that she was going to make a career as a musician, I doubt many people took Cardi B seriously. She was (and is still) loud and unfiltered on social media, honest and upfront about coming from the Bronx and making her bread stripping and modelling. After releasing two mixtapes, Gangsta Bitch Music volume one, and two, her new single Bodak Yellow has just become the highest charting single since Anaconda, seizing literally everyone into its trap – if you’ll pardon the pun. Drake even bought her out at OVO Fest in Toronto to perform the track, and he knows what’s up. We could all use a little more Cardi B in our lives.
2. Drake – Childs Play
There actually is a new Drake track, like an actual new track. It’s called Charged and it popped up on YouTube a couple of days ago, but it’s pretty boring and I don’t want to talk about it. What I do want to talk about is the fact that Childs Play – one of the best songs on 2016’s Views – now has an amazing music video that no one seems to care about. It’s twelve minutes long, features Tyra Banks fighting with Drake whilst having dinner at the Cheesecake Factory, just like the lyrics of the song suggest. I won’t spoil the rest of the video but it features Drake with cake on his face and strippers. A lot of strippers. It’s a much-watch and an excellent song to revisit.
3. Bicep – Glue
Bicep were one of the headliners of this year’s Hijacked and they’re micro dosing us with releases to get us through the weird mid-point in the summer that has people divided. On the one side there are people so deep into festival season that they can’t tell their arse from their face, and on the other there are the rest of us (broke) souls, working full time and shuffling a queue of Boiler Room videos to lessen the pain. First, there was Aura in June, and now there’s Glue, the perfect song for humid rainy weather and after parties, with a gradual build and a satisfying beat. Apply to any summer situation as necessary.
4. Kelala – LMK
The first release from her upcoming debut Take Me Apart showcases more of Kelela’s dark experimental R&B with the kind of refined control that has come to be associated with her. Do you want to go home with Kelela? It’s not that deep, she sings, all you’ve got to do is let her know. Who could say no? The music video has her stepping into the PVC cargo pants TLC style, and the song itself carries that vibe with it. It’s the perfect mixture between smooth R&B and experimental electronic. It’s a little Aaliyah, a little Grimes, and completely fantastic.
5. Demi Lovato – Sorry Not Sorry
Despite the fact that I grew up with four TV channels and therefore had fairly limited exposure to Disney original shows, I have always had a soft spot for Demi Lovato. My love for her album Unbroken rages on to this day, but over the past couple of years my feelings towards her dulled. Until I heard Sorry Not Sorry at the gym the other day. Demi Lovato can’t do subtle, soft or sly. She is abrasive, loud, and unconcerned with the views of others – or, at least, that’s what suits her public persona the best. Sorry Not Sorry isn’t particularly cool, but it will blow your head off and it will make you want to rip your lungs to shreds attempting to sing along.