New Music Friday Graphic

As we continue our journey into 2021, Gen-Z social media sensations have made their way onto this weekend’s new music playlist with early-2000s-inspired singles and covers. 

“Lo Vas a Olvidar,” a collaboration between Billie Eilsh and Spanish singer Rosalía, accompanied the latest episode of HBO’s hit series, “Euphoria.” Between the track’s reverb-heavy synths, gentle vocal runs and melodramatic tone, its heart wrenching lyrics steal the show: “I needed to go ‘cause I needed to know you don’t need me / You reap what you sow, but it seems like you don’t even see me.” 

Former e-Boy and Hype House member Lil Huddy released his debut single, “21st Century Vampire,” one week after starring in Machine Gun Kelly’s directorial debut, “Downfalls High.” Characterized best by the lyrics “Dark circles under my eyes / No sunlight up in the sky / Can’t feel the pain I’m immune,” the track sounds reminiscent of Green Day. I’ll be honest, I did not want to like this song, yet its catchy chorus won me over. 

And, as if one popular TikToker’s single wasn’t enough for this weekend’s playlist, there were two such tracks released Friday. Rock musician and Sway House member JXDN released his latest track, “drivers license,” a pop-punk cover of Olivia Rodrigo’s viral smash-hit. Similar in style to Huddy’s music, “drivers license” seamlessly blends angsty vocals and heavy drums — performed by no other than Travis Barker himself — into an otherwise pop-centric single. 

Speaking of popular early ‘00s artists, Weezer released “All My Favorite Songs,” the first single from the band’s recently announced upcoming album, “OK Human.” Mirroring its off-the-cuff vibe, the track’s lyrics describe the singer’s lost sense of direction: “I love parties, but I don’t go / Then I feel bad when I stay home.” Whether it was the oddly sprinkled orchestra music or ultra-monotone vocals that threw me off, “All My Favorite Songs” did not make my list of favorites. 

If Pisces was a song, it would be the alt-rock, Lo-Fi fusion track “Someone Else,” by Los Angeles singer Deb Never. The song easily earned its place as my favorite release of the day, mixing booming bass drums and power chords with hopelessly romantic lyrics: “The sparkle in your eyes / Look like all the stars / Do we see the same moon when you look up?” 

Youtube-sensation and Canadian singer-songwriter Tate McRae released her latest single “rubberband,” a heart wrenching and emotional letter to a past lover: “Was it a wasted couple months? / Sneaking outta the window, spending nights in limbo / Was that all there was for us?” Although McRae’s vocals didn’t wow me, her natural lyrical ability kept me engaged.

Vacation Forever, an indie solo artist with only 3,547 monthly listeners on Spotify, released his latest single “Ride Or Cry,” an indie-assortment of muffled drums, catchy guitar melodies and drowsy vocals. Whether I fell more in love with the track’s tasty bass-line or the exhilaration of finding a new artist, “Ride Or Cry” definitely won another spot on this weekend’s playlist.

Although this weekend’s new music releases also include a little something for the younger, social-media-savvy crowd, fans of early-2000s artists like Greenday, Blink-182 and Weezer are in for the most rewarding listen.


Raegan Holland is the lifestyles editor for The Arkansas Traveler, where she previously worked as a staff reporter.

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