Paramore, SZA and MOD SUN are our tracks of the week
Welcome to Sound Station, where we’re highlighting the best new tracks that came out this week. Head into the weekend with songs from Paramore, SZA and more.
Paramore's "The News" is an angsty return to the band's roots
While "This Is Why" captured Paramore's newer influences, "The News" is a return to the band's angsty roots. Teeming with the anxiety of the doomscroll era, "The News" manages to bring back the band's harder roots and pair it with the psychedelic guitar riffs they've been toying with in more recent years: "Shut your eyes but it won’t go away/Turn on /Turn off/The news!” Fittingly, it debuted with a horror-filled music video, too. "The News" proves Paramore aren't done reinventing themselves just yet. —Ilana Kaplan
SZA's "F2F" is a pop-punk anthem for horny sad girls
Five years after the release of CTRL, SZA returned with her triumphant follow-up S.O.S. today. The genre-spanning record is full of instant classics traversing hip-hop, indie rock, R&B, pop-punk and country-folk. While there are a few standouts — including a collaboration with Phoebe Bridgers — "F2F" is the one people can't stop talking about. The country-tinged anthem has a pop-punk chorus that laments being horny and sad, which is the ethos of the project. But "F2F" is SZA's most exciting feat on the record, somehow existing as the three-way love child between Fefe Dobson, Avril Lavigne and Pink Slip. And bonus? Lizzo actually has a writing credit on the track. —Ilana Kaplan
MOD SUN and Charlotte Sands' “SEXOXO” is a nostalgic journey to find bliss
At this point, Charlotte Sands is pop music’s secret weapon, as she's constantly able to add an abundance of emotion and vocal prowess to every track she is featured on. For “SEXOXO,” pop-punk powerhouse MOD SUN enlists Sands to pen a nostalgia-laced track that's centered around a somber guitar line and blunt lyricism. It attempts to make peace with the past to pick up the pieces and find true bliss after a heartbreak. MOD SUN shines in his own right as a vocalist, seamlessly balancing rhythmic cadences that are akin to his previous hip-hop work, with an evocative tone that is sure to pull on your heartstrings. —Alessandro DeCaro
Lana Del Rey asks “Did you know that there's a tunnel under Ocean Blvd”?
Lana Del Rey made her grand return this week when she announced her ninth studio album, the superbly named Did you know that there's a tunnel under Ocean Blvd. To support the news, she also dropped the title track. The tunnel she's referring to may literally be one that existed between 1928-1967 in Long Beach, where the singer-songwriter lived for several years when she was still performing as Lizzy Grant — but on the dreamy ballad, she's more concerned about what the essence of such a place might mean. It's a stunner, and invites you to think about your own Ocean Blvd tunnels. —Sadie Bell
Blondshell’s “Veronica Mars” is an alt-rock ode to Kristen Bell
This year, Blondshell (Sabrina Teitelbaum) made an entrance with a series of mesmerizing releases. Now, with her fourth single, Teitelbaum has crafted an ode to the 2000s cult detective show that rocks like an MTV classic. Midway through the track, “Veronica Mars” blossoms into a ripper, with a guitar squall that could inspire instant devotion. All the while, Teitelbaum sings of home, the early aughts, and protecting her own boundaries over an alluring nonchalance. —Neville Hardman
White Reaper erupt in shredding galore on "Fog Machine"
White Reaper always fucking rip — and they do exactly that on the second single off their upcoming album, Asking For a Ride (out Jan. 27 via Elektra). The latest song from the Kentucky stadium rock-inspired band is an uptempo blast that erupts in some very fun, nostalgic shredding. We can only imagine how thrilling it would be to see the group play this live to a crowd that's totally going off to the sound. —Sadie Bell
Jesus Piece’s “An Offering to the Night” harks back to classic ‘90s beatdown hardcore
Philadelphia-based metalcore unit Jesus Piece have made a chaotic return with “An Offering to the Night,” their first new music since their 2018 debut LP, Only Self. The track is an exercise in unrelenting beatdown hardcore that's accentuated by frontman Aaron Heard’s vocals, which bleed with despair and unbridled rage. Jesus Piece have their musical dynamics down to a science, allowing tension to build just enough before allowing a cathartic release in the form of pummeling breakdowns and bass-driven grooves. Clocking in at just over two minutes, “An Offering to the Night” will evoke your most primal instincts and make you want to destroy everything around you — safely, of course. —Alessandro DeCaro
Dove Cameron puts a dark twist on 1994 Edwyn Collins hit with "Girl Like Me"
Dove Cameron has gone full-throttle into dark pop, and she has yet to miss. Following the success of playful numbers like "Boyfriend" and "Breakfast" this year, the singer has flipped the 1994 hit "Girl Like You" by Edwyn Collins and turned it into a sultry, synth-pop smash that challenges power dynamics and gender roles with an air of mystery. As she says it herself: "This song is what I would want playing behind me in a slow-motion fight scene in the action film of my dreams." So would we. —Ilana Kaplan
Gloomer creates disorienting scuzz on “One More Time”
Gloomer, the humble shoegaze/drum-and-bass project of Elliott Kozel, is built on connecting genres that shouldn’t go together, but work. Now, the LA producer has unveiled another new single, “One More Time,” that follows that enthralling pattern. Lyrically, the song revolves around trying to help loved ones with drug addiction and the struggle of caring for someone set on self-destruction. Over breakbeats, fuzzy guitars, and even a string sample, Gloomer has made another cut that mesmerizes and disorients. —Neville Hardman
Samia releases a heartbreaker of a double single with "Pink Balloon" and "Sea Lions"
Nashville-by-way-of-NYC singer Samia has a way about her that could instantly make you break down, just upon hearing the sound of her voice relaying any number of her literary lyrics. The double singles she released this week off her upcoming record, Honey (out Jan. 27 via Grand Jury), "Pink Balloon" and "Sea Lions," certainly have that emotional pull. The pair examines a failing relationship — from when it's on its way out and drenched in anger ("Sea Lions") to the calm reflection that can come once you're done grieving the breakup ("Pink Balloon"). While the love here may have been as fragile as the string on a balloon, you're going to want to hold onto these tracks, and hold onto them dearly. —Sadie Bell
Lostboycrow’s “Coffe Drugs” is a decadent ode to old vices
“Coffee Drugs,” the sixth track from Portland crooner Lostboycrow’s newly released album Indie Pop, is a decadent love letter to old vices. Wrapped up in a retro-style arrangement that's reminiscent of Arctic Monkeys and Roy Orbison, Lostboycrow shows incredible versatility as both a singer and lyricist on “Coffee Drugs,” allowing the song to toe the line between heartfelt sentimentality and melancholy, as well as projecting his voice in a way that creates a palpable, intimate feeling. “Coffee Drugs” is the perfect pick-me-up for a dreary Monday morning spent lost in rumination. —Alessandro DeCaro
"LEMON LIME" will make you want to be best friends with the duo Bestfriend
Bestfriend are an alt-pop duo made up of Stacy Kim and Kaelan Geoffrey. Like a meant-to-be indie-pop collaboration of the modern generation, the two connected via mutual friends and Instagram DMs and now make music together remotely from their respective homes in Vancouver and Toronto. Their latest single, "LEMON LIME," is a charming little earworm, layered with harmonies and sound. Even as they're singing of 20-something malaise, it's a comforting tune and will make you an instant wannabe bestie of Bestfriend. —Sadie Bell
ill peach mark a momentous occasion with “GUM (The Loveless Edit)” featuring Ian Sweet
When ill peach shared “GUM” last year, they promised that they’d rerelease the track once it reached a million streams. This week, the experimental pop duo of Pat Morrissey and Jess Corazza made good on their word with the arrival of “GUM (The Loveless Edit)” featuring Ian Sweet. The pair’s chemistry remains as kinetic as ever throughout its three-minute runtime, but Sweet’s vocals and Estrada’s explosive guitar solo take the track to new heights. See for yourself below. —Neville Hardman
Matt Pond's latest project as the Natural Lines is back with "Monotony"
Earlier this year, indie-rock artist Matt Pond announced that he would no longer be performing as Matt Pond PA, as he had for over 20 years. Instead, he debuted his latest project, the Natural Lines, and they're already set to release their debut full-length next year on March 24. The lead single is a sweet, folksy song about taking a step back and allowing oneself to breathe ("When you start to think about the way you breathe/It doesn't mean you believe in monotony.") Those harmonies and uplifting guitars are sure to do the trick and help you take a deep breath in. —Sadie Bell