As much as I secretly love the Pharrell-Johnny Marr-Hans Zimmer salute to Celine Dion, otherwise known as their Amazing Spider-Man 2 song, there’s better stuff for your ears this week. Some options:
Lykke Li — “Gunshot”
Holy Phil Collins, the new Lykke Li album (out May 6) sure seems promising. Her vocals remind me of Robyn in places here, and overall, the song’s more in line with glossy pop heartbreak ballads from the late ’80s/early ’90s than Li’s other (darker) previews of I Never Learn.
Lana Del Rey — “West Coast”
The first taste of Lana’s Ultraviolence finally hit the web this week; as it turns out, production from Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach suits her quite well. She nods to a west coast queen, Stevie Nicks, with her “ooh baby” coo a la “Edge of Seventeen,” but it’s the only thing that feels recycled here. The plastic dreaminess of Del Rey’s debut is given a roughened rock edge but not tossed off completely. Curious to see how Lana’s iconography-strewn pop mixes with what seems to be a more human touch.
Tomboy — “Roll Out”
Tomboy’s a new Brooklyn duo that plays electro-pop in similar vein as CHVRCHES and Haerts. Their first single, “Roll Out,” has a bit more oomph in the BPM department than the artists I just mentioned. I get a slight Classixx vibe, and you can really dance to it — which I will be doing all spring. Tomboy’s self-released debut will be out this summer.
Amen Dunes — “I Can’t Dig It”
Five records in, Damon McMahon has made the best Amen Dunes album of his career. “I Can’t Dig It” is just one small piece of Love, out May 13 on Sacred Bones, but it’s a deeply complex piece at that. You go into the song thinking it’s an homage to vintage garage rock, and over the course of five minutes and African tribal drums and sax via Colin Stetson, you find that you underestimated it as a simple fuzz jam. Godspeed You! Black Emperor’s Efrim Menuck takes on lead guitar duties.
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart — “Eurydice”
The second single from Pains of Being Pure at Heart’s forthcoming third album, Days of Abandon (out May 13), is the stuff of movie soundtracks, like if John Hughes teen movies had been a viable genre after the ’80s. Windows open, driving through the suburbs, it’s summer. “Eurydice” is music that makes you feel invincible in an obtainable sort of way.
Telekinesis — “This Time Tomorrow” (Kinks cover)
While this Kinks cover certainly doesn’t reinvent the wheel, Merge’s Telekinesis puts a nice spin on the classic for the aptly-titled (I Saved Latin!) musical salute to Wes Anderson. Among other Kinks songs, “This Time Tomorrow” was prevalent in Anderson’s Darjeeling Limited. (via The A.V. Club)
Bonus track: Future’s new song with Andre 3000, “Benz Friendz (Watchutola),” is more like Andre’s new song with Future. Have a listen if you’re sad you’re not seeing the Outkast reunion at Coachella this weekend.