New Music Friday Graphic

After a long first week back to school, this week’s music releases are exactly what I needed to unwind. New releases featured well-known artists who further proved their talent and smaller groups that also established their genius, leaving me satisfied and with a full music queue for the weekend.

Opening with short, jazz-like piano chords, the Fayetteville-based band Honey Collective drew me in with intrigue in their latest single, “I’ll See You.” The soft vocals paired with a taste of trumpet left me feeling refreshed.

A favorite of mine growing up, Aly & AJ continue to impress with “Listen!!!” The single has a sort of nostalgic yet new feeling to it with its upbeat and bright guitar riffs. The lyrics, “It’s clear something went missing / I might be lost but I know my way out,” have a sad but hopeful impression.

dodie’s “Hate Myself” is a song I think many of us will not only love, but also relate to. It’s clear in the opening lyrics, “Could it be different? / Did I ruin the day? / Oh, do you look angry? / Oh, what did I say?” that the track reflects feelings of anxiety. Racing, paranoid thoughts laid on soft instrumentals is an alluring dichotomy that I loved.

“Lie Lie Lie” by Joshua Bassett immediately opens with strong acoustic guitar strokes and bold lyrics that further fuel the drama surrounding Bassett and his co-star, Olivia Rodrigo. Lyrics “So they told me all the things that you said / Runnin’ all over my name, oh / And you’re actin’ all so innocent / Like I’m the only one to blame'' are intense, but I will admit I enjoyed Bassett’s varying vocal range on top of a catchy tune.

Lana Del Rey’s “Chemtrails Over The Country Club” features soft and airy harmonies that have been on repeat in my head. One of my favorite lines in the song, “We laugh about nothing as the summer gets cool,” reminds me of home and leaves me feeling dreamy. The ethereal feel to the song is the perfect escape to whatever is troubling your mind.

Unfortunately, my elementary level of Spanish did not come in handy for Selena Gomez’s Spanish single, “De Una Vez.” Although I only understood a handful of the lyrics, I thoroughly enjoyed the smooth beat and Gomez’s gentle voice. This is her second Spanish song since 2010, and I hope she releases more because she has never sounded this authentic.

“ultraviolet.tragedies” by X Ambassadors and Terrell Hines surprised me in the best way possible. The energetic and electronic sounds are not something I’m usually drawn to, but this song may have changed my mind. The overall sound is completely different to the softer tracks that I know by X Ambassadors, but I like this change and can’t wait for more.

These new releases are the much needed respite after jumping back into the first week of classes, and they make for the perfect three-day-weekend listening.

Abby Zimmardi is the multimedia editor for the Arkansas Traveler, where she previously worked as a staff reporter.

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