After the unveiling of this week’s Take 5, we’ll be at 50 songs on the playlist. That’s 10 weeks of great singles, album deep cuts, covers, and collaborations. It’s a kaleidoscopic look of how much music is being released each and every week, and we hope it encourages you to expand your musical horizons beyond what you otherwise might. The next time you’re browsing your local record store’s wares, check out that country artist you’ve heard your friends talk about. Pick up that album from the local band that has some buzz. Get into the underground hip-hop artist that’s playing over the speaker system. Good music is not confined by genre. Get out there and listen to as much as you can. Let’s dig into this week’s selections.
Walk The Moon – Tiger Teeth
Our critic Molly Hudelson wrote glowingly of Walk The Moon‘s new album What If Nothing, and we’re inclined to agree with her. “Tiger Teeth” is a good example of the band embracing the roots of rock and roll and combining them with some of the more electronic trappings of recent rock in a package that is still unique to themselves and a fresh listen. What If Nothing deserves a full listen, but “Tiger Teeth” is a good place to start.
Taylor Swift – New Year’s Day
reputation came out on Friday. There’s no way there wasn’t going to be a Taylor Swift on this week’s list. Swift’s sixth album finds her moving in new directions musically for the most part, but not entirely. “New Year’s Day,” the album’s last song, is a piano track that harkens back to the earliest albums of Swift’s career, and it’s one of the best tracks on reputation. The live performance she gave to fans at her house that we’ve linked to above is breathtaking.
Angel Olsen – Endless Road
This song was technically released as a bonus track several years ago, but it has just now made its way to an album proper and I make all the rules for this column so it still counts. Angel Olsen‘s “Endless Road” shares similarities with the previous two tracks. It’s from an album one of our critics (myself) adored, and it’s the last song on the album. For anyone on tour or otherwise away from home, it’s a melancholy reflection of a life spent on the move that Olsen gives that extra bit of emotion to really drive home the message.
AWOLNATION – Seven Sticks of Dynamite
If you know one song from AWOLNATION, it’s probably 2011’s “Sail.” The rock band from LA aren’t one hit wonders by any means, though. They’ve got a new album, Here Come the Runts, coming next year, and what we’ve heard from it so far is promising. “Seven Sticks of Dynamite” builds on a country western standoff riff into a big, full-bodied rock explosion. Lead singer Aaron Bruno has a set of vocal cords, and he shows off all they can do here. With “Seven Sticks of Dynamite,” AWOLNATION have put themselves on the radar of most anticipated 2018 releases.
G-Eazy – The Plan
Today’s Monday. We could all use a boost of energy to start out our week. Enter G-Eazy. The rapper has never been one to shy away from boastfulness, but on new single “The Plan” he’s truly living his best life. World travel, celebration of talent, it’s all hear. As noted in our story about the single, it also features G-Eazy bringing an energy that we’ve seldom seen on his releases before. Put it all together and you have the perfect pick-me-up for the week.