Sound Off: 10 New Songs You Need to Hear Now

Sound Off: 10 New Songs You Need to Hear Now

by Shaad D'Souza

It's impossible to be across all the new music out each Friday. Luckily, PAPER is here to help you out: each week, we round up 10 of our favorite new songs from artists — emerging and established — to soundtrack your life. From the surreal to the sublime, these songs cover every corner of the music world. The only criteria: they all have to absolutely rip.

Yola — "Diamond Studded Shoes"

Yola's latest is a rousing, vintage-sounding barnstormer that sneakily takes aim at the 1%. The first taste of her sophomore album Stand For Myself, it's a nuanced and endlessly listenable parable.

Jorja Smith — "Gone"

Jorja Smith's forthcoming EP is looking to be darker than her debut album, Lost & Found. Still, if the quality is as high as on "Gone," it'll undoubtedly be one of 2021's best.

Kilder & Alice Longyu Gao — "Crying at CVS"

It's lovely to hear Alice Longyu Gao over Kilder's production. "Crying at CVS" is a little softer, more pastel-y, than what she usually spits over — a good look for her!

The Weeknd & Ariana Grande — "Save Your Tears (Remix)"

Ariana Grande lends her pipes to a highlight from The Weeknd's still-great After Hours, and the results are stunning. The sequel to "Love Me Harder" and "off the table" we didn't deserve!

Deb Never — "Sorry"

Work, Deb! The first single from Deb Never's upcoming project is a complete and utter (emotional) demolition — a striking R&B track that pulls no punches lyrically. It's my favorite Deb Never single yet — so hooky and still somehow so minimal.

aldn & glaive — "what was the last thing u said"

It says a lot about the fact that hyperpop is its own self-contained universe that this collaboration between aldn and glaive feels like a heavy hitter, with glaive giving a cosign to an emerging artist despite both technically being underground. Still, this track feels like an event — a hyperpop classic-in-waiting.

Dreamer Boy — "Best of Me"

Dreamer Boy's music is warm-hearted, glamorous and genreless — kind of like the aural equivalent of an Online Ceramics drop. "Best of Me" is a highlight of All The Ways We Are Together, his dreamy sophomore album.

Porter Robinson & Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs — "Unfold"

It's been a long time between drinks for a new Porter Robinson album, but Nurture more than lives up to expectations. This TEED collaboration pulls Robinson's unique brand of bedroom EDM into a new, heightened realm.

Stella Donnelly — "If I Could Cry (it would feel like this)"

If there was anyone who was ever going to do this Jens Lekman classic, it would be Stella Donnelly, whose wry, observational humor feels directly indebted to Jens'.

Kero Kero Bonito — "21/04/20"

The highlight of Kero Kero Bonito's new EP is devastating in small, quiet ways — one of the most affecting portraits of COVID-19 and lockdown I've heard in song form.

Photo courtesy of Joseph Ross Smith