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The best (and worst) new singles: Oneohtrix Point Never, Sudan Archives, Troye Sivan, and more

New tracks from Oneohtrix Point Never, Sudan Archives, Troye Sivan, and more

Single Of The Week

Oneohtrix Point Never : Black Snow

Daniel Lopatin’s Oneohtrix Point Never releases have often carried an eerie undertone, and 2015’s Garden of Delete LPwas at times physically unsettling. You could apply both adjectives to ‘Black Snow’, but the lasting impression is one of dark, regretful beauty. Led by a spare, descending synth bass and Lopatin’s water-clogged vocal, ‘Black Snow’ encircles us in a web of emotional uncertainty. When the floodgates eventually break open, bringing an accelerated heartbeat and counter-balancing synth arpeggio, you’ll feel strangely equipped to embrace the incoming dread.

Sudan Archives : Nont For Sale

Violin-led, African-inspired, electro funk? Already alarm bells are ringing, but Sudan Archives’ ‘Nont For Sale’ makes this seem like a perfectly reasonable proposition. Fast, rhythmic violin plucks – inspired by North and West African playing styles – set the scene for an immersive pop song that issues a warning to time wasters. Programmed drums and bass and multi-layered vocals join the violin in constructing a sufficiently self-contained resistance.

Merpire : Invitation

Moving away from glitzy synth-pop, Merpire’s ‘Invitation’ is a solemn alt-country ballad. Enriching the Melbourne artist’s fine songwriting achievement are a radiant vocal performance and slickly dynamic band accompaniment. Although it’s hard to ignore the influence of Angel Olsen – evident in Merpire’s pain-stricken vocal pleas and doo-wop chord progression – when homage is executed this spotlessly, it’d be silly to complain.

Troye Sivan : Bloom

With idols like Troye Sivan to look up to, the kids will be all right. Despite not fitting the mould of a conventional male pop star, the sensitive and tremendously likeable Perth singer is in the process of making 2018 his own. ‘Bloom’ is a pleasingly upbeat pop song – a queer anthem in the making, and a shining example of young love’s effusive power. Fit to soundtrack the summer despite coming out on the cusp of winter, Sivan’s hook-ridden ode to living and letting love is hard to resist.

Christina Aguilera : Accelerate ft Ty Dolla $ign, 2 Chainz 

It’s no ‘Genie in a Bottle’, but does anyone really feel nostalgic for the Xtina of old? All we want is a decent song, strong vocal performance, something that isn’t nauseating. Co-produced/co-written by Kanye, and featuring vocals from Ty Dolla $ign and 2 Chainz, ‘Accelerate’ blatantly targets a younger audience. But the trap-inspired track is so intent on retaining attention that it sounds like three songs rammed into one. It’s an interesting listen, only rather disorienting.