The 10 Best New Songs We Heard This Week: Beck, U.S. Girls


It’s Friday, which means that it’s nearly the weekend, and also that it’s time to look back at the best new music we’ve heard over the last few days. This week there’s Beck doing his best Dirty Projectors impression, along with an awesome new Spector-esque track from U.S. Girls, Oneohtrix Point Never and Purity Ring remixing Nine Inch Nails and Lady Gaga, respectively, a bunch of Motion Sickness of Time Travel, the return of Robert Pollard (with six new records in tow), and lots more. Click through and get listening!

Beck — “Gimme”

I’ve always liked Beck best when he’s not trying to do too much — Sea Change, in particular, which found him shedding his usual too-clever-by-halfness and being sincere, with largely excellent results. But this is the man at his most musically intricate — as Consequence of Sound point out, it sounds more like Dirty Projectors than anything else — and yet still managing to be engaging. Bravo.

U.S. Girls — “28 Days”

U.S. Girls go all ’50s girl group on this track, which comes from their upcoming EP Free Advice Column and features the sort of faux-Wall of Sound that’d probably impress Phil Spector if he weren’t in jail for being a murderous lunatic. The video, which was made by Montreal director Emily Pelstring, is pretty great too.

Nine Inch Nails — “Find My Way” (Oneohtrix Point Never remix)

In which Daniel Lopatin deconstructs Trent Reznor’s recent ode to existential isolation and recreates it as the sort of dreamy, minimal synth piece for which he’s justifiably well known. The result is eerie and atmospheric, and arguably a whole lot better than the original.

Robert Pollard — “Tonight’s the Rodeo”

It’s been about 27 minutes since we last heard from Robert Pollard, which is an eternity in Pollard-time. But never fear! The most prolific man in music is making up for lost time with the release of six (6) new records between now and February — two solo singles, one solo album, two Circus Devils albums, and a Guided By Voices album. Ye gods. This is the A-side to one of the aforementioned solo singles, and it finds him adopting a curious English accent.

Motion Sickness of Time Travel — “Remixes”

This isn’t strictly a single track — it’s a series of excerpts from an upcoming suite of Motion Sickness of Time Travel remixes, put together for Tiny Mix Tapes — but the album that it’s promoting sounds so good that I couldn’t resist including it.

The Oscillation — “All You Want to Be”

Hypnotic psych jams? Yes. Yes, please.

Lady Gaga — “Applause” (Purity Ring remix)

Well, this is about a gazillion times better than the original. Also: Purity Ring remixing Gaga? Whatever next?

Jenny Hval — “The Cool, Cool River”

A pretty jaw-dropping minimalist cover of a Paul Simon song, of all things. Jenny Hval really hasn’t put a foot wrong this year — Innocence Is Kinky is a fantastic album, and this is also most excellent indeed.

Bryce Dessner and the Kronos Quartet — “Aheym”

In which the Kronos Quartet — perhaps best known outside avant-garde classical music circles for their work on the Requiem for a Dream soundtrack — perform a bunch of fascinating compositions by The National’s Bryce Dessner. Dessner studied music composition at Yale, and it definitely shows.

Le1f — Tree House mixtape

And finally, rejoice: another Le1f mixtape! And it’s another free download! That’s the weekend sorted, then.