AP&R Playlist: psych glam-punk, thundering deathcore and cool surf rap
Here are 10 brand-new releases to put on your radar.July 25, 2020
You’re welcome: We’ve made finding new songs by rising bands easy. Each week, we’re gathering the best from the underground and offering it to you in one concise list. Scroll below and check out our Spotify Discover playlist, featuring these tracks and more!
In return, we want to hear your favorite. Let us know which track you’ll be spinning for the rest of the weekend in the comments!
contradash – “White Lie”
For fans of: YUNGBLUD, Juice WRLD, Lil Nas X
Combining infectious emo rap with bright-beat pop, contradash speaks on toxic relationships in “White Lie.” Recently signing to Interscope Records, the artist melds his take on R&B and contemporary styles with slight reverb and catchy melodies to create a track fitting for a personal jam-out session.
Yellowbird Mantra – “Beverly”
For fans of: Dashboard Confessional, the Spill Canvas, Something Corporate
Accompanied by a mellow guitar, Yellowbird Mantra (Eben Wares) delicately sings of heartbreak and longing. Previously writing on songs for artists such as Set It Off and Cemetery Sun, the singer delivers peaceful verses and swaying choruses in “Beverly.” The track is included on his latest EP, New England Summer, available to stream here and for pay what you want on TDR Records’ Bandcamp.
The Score – “All Of Me” (feat. Travis Barker)
For fans of: Barns Courtney, grandson, Bishop Briggs
Travis Barker accompanies the Score in their latest single, “All Of Me.” The third single off the band’s upcoming LP, lead singer Eddie Anthony’s fiery vocals are accompanied by Barker’s signature drum beats and floating synths. The duo’s upcoming album, Carry On, dropping Aug. 28 via Republic Records.
BLACKSTARKIDS – “SOUNDS LIKE FUN”
For fans of: beabadoobee, BROCKHAMPTON, LAUNDRY DAY
DIY three-piece BLACKSTARKIDS mix modern trap rhythms with classic-rock riffs, creating their own sunny version of surf rap. “SOUNDS LIKE FUN” is exactly what its title suggests. Jumpy beats and buoyant vocals encompass the track, making the listener want to dance without a single care. The track is featured on the group’s latest record, SURF, available to stream here.
merci, mercy – “Fall Apart”
For fans of: Halsey, Hey Violet, Melanie Martinez
merci, mercy shows off her dynamic vocal range in the bubbly single “Fall Apart.” Though the track sounds light and fun sonically, its meaning runs much deeper. The song serves as an apology and explanation about her thought process for anyone in her future relationships. “[The track] references the cynical version of myself where I question the point in starting something with someone when I know it’s just going to end,” the singer shares. “In my mind, I think I’m going to get hurt, so will it be worth it?”
Bartees Strange – “Mustang”
For fans of: illuminati hotties, Ratboys, Trace Mountains
Beginning in front of a lone guitar, Bartees Strange sings longingly before skyrocketing into punk riffs filled with drum-laden spurts and personal lyrics on “Mustang.” The track expresses his current thoughts after growing up in his conservative, mostly white hometown of the same name in Oklahoma where the singer couldn’t be himself. “I didn’t let myself be seen,” he says. “I held myself down so I could make people feel more comfortable around me.” The track will be included on his upcoming debut full-length, due out later this year via Memory Music.
Year Of The Knife – “Premonitions Of You”
For fans of: Varials, Knocked Loose, Jesus Piece
Starting immediately with thundering guitar riffs and shredding vocals, Year Of The Knife’s newest single, “Premonitions Of You,” is as punchy as it is raw. Written from the point of view of an individual watching another’s demise, the lyrics reflect on loss, addiction and self-destruction. The band’s debut album, Internal Incarceration, drops Aug. 7 and is available to preorder via Pure Noise Records.
JunkBunny – “Another Summer Song”
For fans of: Chevelle, Never Loved, Selfish Things
Sharing ’90s alt-rock vibes, JunkBunny combine dark riffs with hooky lyrics to create “Another Summer Song.” Their first single after their debut EP, Junk Rock, the trio’s track boasts resonating harmonies and a memorable chorus, making it the perfect summer anthem.
Bottled Up – “Kilo”
For fans of: Deerhunter, Led Zeppelin, Bad Moves
Washington, D.C. quintet Bottled Up release their inner glam-punk with the fast-moving “Kilo.” As drums race the guitars to the finish line, the track comes to the verge of psychedelic chaos before closing out with a powerful final chorus. Frontman Nikhil Rao says the track “is about the masks we wear to blend in with the rest of the world.” “Kilo” is set to be featured on the band’s debut album, Crystal, which drops Oct. 16 through Maximum Pelt Records.
girlpuppy – “Cheerleader”
For fans of: strongboi, Ultracrush, Tessa Violet
Whereas her debut single “For You” focused on love, indie-pop’s girlpuppy is now sharing a dreamy breakup song with “Cheerleader.” Her second single features rolling melodies backed by light synths and harmonies and moves smoothly through your ears. Produced by Marshall Vore, the track was inspired by how the singer wanted her dog back from an ex, making it all the more heartbreaking.