This week’s roundup features moody R&B from one of pop’s most promising up-and-comers on the brink of a breakout, some Norwegian heartbreak, and a kicky remix of the saddest, smelliest ballad from a living legend.
1.) Tinashe, “Vulnerable” featuring Travi$ Scott
‘Tis the season! While Tinashe puts the finishing touches on her 2014 major label debut, the much buzzed about artist has decided to drop an early holiday present on us: Black Water, a (free!) collection of tracks to keep her fans temporarily quenched.
“Vulnerable” is the first taste of the singer-songwriter’s mixtape, and, judging by the spooky crooning and downtempo beats, it’s going to be yet another flawless set of haunting, next-level alt-R&B. “Don’t stop looking at me,” she taunts above the murky beats. Travi$ Scott comes in later for an aggressive, Yeezus-like blast of aggression before Tinashe returns to seal the deal.
Don’t expect this one to bring the holiday cheer — but if you’re looking for a serious late-night haunt to vibe with, Tinashe has got you covered.
+ Listen to TINASHE’S “VULNERABLE” FEATURING TRAVI$ SCOTT.
Listen to more Must-Hear Pop Songs after the jump.
2.) Jade De LaFleur, “Jaded”
While Solange continues to put in work on a full-length follow-up to last year’s brilliant True EP, the effortlessly cool crooner has launched an exciting side project: Saint Records, her very own boutique record label. The first release from the new endeavor? An R&B compilation album called Saint Heron, featuring contributions from the likes of Cassie (“Indo“), Jhené Aiko (“Drinking And Driving”), Kelela (“Go All Night”), and Solange herself (“Cash In“).
One of the best numbers from the moody collection? “Jaded,” featuring the slinky vocals of up-and-coming R&B chanteuse, Jade De LaFleur. (Nice double meaning with the song title!) The breathy, vaguely mysterious cut floats along like a lingering trail of smoke in the speakers. “I’m running, running, running/ Running out of my mind,” she purrs across a creepy ambient beat, horns and clicking electronic ticks. Like The Weeknd (or Tinashe’s offering above!), this one plays best when the sun goes down.
+ Listen to JADE DE LAFLEUR’S “JADED.”
3.) Britney Spears, “Perfume (Chew Fu Remix)”
We’ve been weeping along to Britney Spears‘ scent-sual, #SomethingMorePersonal Sia-penned Britney Jean single “Perfume” for weeks now. It’s the sweetest sound (and smell) we’ve heard from Brit-Brit in a long time — but how would it play with a little umph?
Luckily, Chew Fu has come in with a seriously bangin’ remix. The punchy re-rub adds an ’80s gloss and fiery electric guitar licks, giving “Perfume” a nostalgic sort of New Wave stomp. And then, the track suddenly bursts into a full-on four-to-the-floor dance-a-thon. “Yeah, I want it all over youuuuu!” You’ll be spritzin’ on the dance floor all night.
+ Listen to BRITNEY SPEARS’ “PERFUME (CHEW FU REMIX).”
4.) Aiden, “Better Man”
Aiden, formerly known as Aiden Grimshaw of “The X Factor” U.K. fame, has been whipping up an incredible array of brooding electro-pop over the past few weeks. It’s all part of his upcoming re-debut with a new EP called the Aiden EP — see what he did there?
“Better Man” is the final cut from the collection, and, as opposed to the fairly bruised and broken lyricism of the past few songs like “Fire & Ice,” this one’s got an actual hint of happiness — and a peppy beat!
“I know I’d make you happy/ I know you’d make me smile/ And if all your friends are busy, I’ll stay up with you all night,” Aiden promises. It’s has a sort of The Killers-ish New Wave ’80s sheen mixed with Rihanna‘s “Where Have You Been.” “I just want to be close to you!” he wails across shimmering synthesizers. “Better Man” is his strongest song from the set and, unexpectedly, his most club-ready moment yet. Go, Aiden, go!
+ Listen to AIDEN’S “BETTER MAN.”
5.) Röyksopp, “Something In My Heart”
Amazing news! Norwegian electro duo Röyksopp (you know, “Girl And The Robot” with Robyn, etc.) have officially signed to Cherrytree Records, meaning that their music will be heading Stateside shortly. We’ve already utterly obsessed over “Running In The Sea,” the duo’s last No. 1 Norwegian single for some time now. And, as it turns out, the accompanying B-side’s just as good.
“Something In My Heart” features vocals from The Impressibles‘ Jamie McDermott. “You say that time can’t heal, broken heart you stole/ I don’t know what’s real,” the singer painfully laments over the sleek, somber electronica pulse. It’s quintessential Scandinavian sad disco — which is to say that it is objectively perfect.
+ Listen to RÖYKSOPP’S “SOMETHING IN MY HEART.”
Bradley Stern is a writer from New York. In his spare time, he enjoys organizing his Britney Spears CD collection in reverse chronological order and writing impassioned letters to Congress urging that Madonnalogy be taught in all public schools. But most of all, he spends his time tweeting and musing daily about pop music on his blog, MuuMuse.
Photo credit: RCA Records