Songs of the Week: Guided By Voices, Destroyer and More

Here's everything you need to hear from the week of 1/6

January 10, 2020 10:23 am
Guided By Voices
Guided By Voices

And we’re back! After a few sparse weeks around the holidays, new music releases have finally, thankfully returned to their normal cadence. This week was a big one, with new singles from the likes of Tame Impala, Guided By Voices and Destroyer, as well as the news that Bright Eyes has something cooking this year. As always, we’ve compiled all the highlights into a Spotify playlist for your perusal. Check out everything you need to hear from the week of Jan. 6 below.

Tame Impala, “Lost in Yesterday”

The fourth single from Tame Impala’s highly anticipated The Slow Rush (out Feb. 14 via Interscope) finds Kevin Parker reflecting on the past and the old adage that time heals all wounds. “When we were living in squalor, wasn’t it heaven?” he asks, before later concluding that “Eventually terrible memories turn into great ones.”

Wild Nothing, “Foyer”

Wild Nothing announced a new EP this week (Laughing Gas, out Jan. 31) and gave us our first taste in the form of “Foyer.” “So much of people’s lives are caught up in the quest for wholeness and sometimes it feels so much easier to loosen our grip through these fabricated shortcuts, whether it’s escapism, self-medication, seeking external validation or any number of other things,” Jack Tatum said in a statement. “I often find myself guilty of almost all of these, but ultimately I think this EP finds me in a place of trying to go easier on myself.”

Guided By Voices, “Volcano”

There are prolific bands, and then there’s Guided By Voices. After putting out not one, not two, but three albums in 2019 (Zeppelin Over China, Warp and Woof and Sweating the Plague), Robert Pollard and company are already readying a new record for 2020, Surrender Your Poppy Field (out Feb. 20), and dropping its first single, “Volcano.”

Destroyer, “Cue Synthesizer”

The music video for Destroyer’s “Cue Synthesizer” — the third single from the upcoming Have We Met (out Jan. 31), which Dan Bejar called “maybe the most audacious piece of music Destroyer’s laid to tape” in a recent press release — features a gray, grim-looking world in which everything is wrapped in plastic while Bejar observes that “the idea of the world is no good.”

The Men, “Children All Over the World”

The Men’s new album Mercy, recorded live to tape and slated for a Feb. 14 release, features the synth-heavy “Children All Over the World.” “‘Children’ was, like a lot of songs, altered and tossed around quite a bit before it took shape,” guitarist and vocalist Nick Chiericozzi said. “At one point it sounded like a cruising metal tune — our version of metal that is. After the synth landed though, it felt complete and off it went.”

Alicia Keys, “Underdog”

Ahead of her gig as host of the Grammys on Jan. 26, Alicia Keys has released “Underdog,” an ode to — as you might have guessed from the title — those who are down but not out. “Some people may think of the word underdog as a negative word but I see it as a powerful word representing people who may be underestimated and yet still rise to the challenge and exceed expectations,” Keys said in a press release. “I love this song so much because it’s about real life and real people and our experiences. We’ve all been in a place in our lives where we’ve had to defy the odds. It’s never easy. One of my favorite lyrics in the song is, ‘They say I would never make it but I was built to break the mold.’ I don’t think there’s a person on the planet that hasn’t felt that way.”

Nada Surf, “So Much Love”

Nada Surf’s “So Much Love” (from the forthcoming Never Not Together, out Feb. 7) offers a welcome reminder that no matter how dark the world gets, humans still have the capacity for good. It’s “a song that celebrates good will between people,” frontman Matthew Caws said. “Sometimes it can be hard to remember that it’s there. But it’s all around us. Small things add up. A little tolerance and acceptance can be built on. We’re good at love and being kind. It comes naturally to us, but so do other things. You just have to keep looking for the right way to lean, it’s worth everything.”

Lilly Hiatt, “Brightest Star”

Lilly Hiatt’s new album Walking Proof (out March 27) features collaborations with Amanda Shires, Aaron Lee Tasjan and her father, the legendary John Hiatt. This week, she unleashed its first single, the uplifting “Brightest Star,” where she sings, “Give ’em hell, kid, don’t worry about the rest of it, let it roll. The brightest star in my whole sky is you.”

Caroline Rose, “Feel the Way I Want”

SUPERSTAR, Caroline Rose’s follow-up to 2018’s excellent LONER that’ll be out in March, is a concept album that chronicles its protagonist’s quest for fame and fortune. “To me, there’s both humor and horror in hubris and what it takes in order to be successful,” Rose said in a statement. “I wanted to make a story out of those parts of myself that I find largely undesirable and embarrassing, then inject them with steroids.”

Khalid, “Eleven”

The second single from Khalid’s upcoming, as-yet-untitled new album sees the singer checking out a crush who’s riding with him. “Late at night, eleven, we’re cruisin’/Lately, I’ve been watchin’ your movements/If I’m the only one that you’re choosin’/Am I your favorite drug you’ve been usin’?” he croons.

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