5 songs you must hear this week: 18 January 2021

Science says (allegedly) that today, the third Monday in January, is the most depressing day of the year. No wonder you’re hearing so many radio stations play New Order’s Blue Monday. Let’s fix that with five fresh tunes that should serve as a pick-me-up.

1.Tom Morello, Natural’s Not In It
The Problem of Leisure (Independent)
Recommended If You Like: Alt-rock supergroups

Like Dave Grohl, Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine isn’t one for sitting around. His new COVID-19 project brings him together with Serj Tankien of System of a Down and the surviving members of Gang of Four for this cover of a 1979 Go4 song. This will appear on a tribute to Go4’s Andy Gill, who died of COVID-19 last year and will be released in May on what would have been his 65th birthday.

2. Postdata, Nobody Knows
Twin Flames (Paper Bag)
RIYL: Well, Wintersleep for one

Postdata is the solo side project of Wintersleep’s Paul Murphy. Recorded in isolation (isn’t everything these days?) outside of Halifax where he has a place that overlooks the water. He collaborated with Ali Chant over in Bristol, who has worked with PJ Harvey and others. Paul wrote this song on a sunny day, which explains the cheery vibe. I think we can all use some of that.

3. Dayglow, Close to You
Single (Very Nice Records)
RIYL: 80s pop

Dayglow is 21-year-old Sloan Struble of Austin, Texas, who had a viral hit called Can I Call You Tonight last year. Things are going so well that he’s temporarily put college on hold in order to devote all his time to his music career. Anyone else hear strains of the Doobie Brothers What a Fool Believes in here? If you do, notch that on your bingo card. Dayglow is a huge Michael McDonald fan.

nothing,nowhere, Fake Friend
Trauma Factory (DCD2/Fueled by Ramen/EMG)
RIYL: Emo-ish pop punk

John Mulherin is a vegan straight edge depression sufferer out of the Boston area who starting his music career by uploading material to SoundCloud about five years ago. He’s since released three albums and three EPs. A fourth, Trauma Factory, is coming on Feb. 19. There are some corners of the music industry that believe that this is his year.

The Knocks, All About You feat. Foster the People
Single (Big Beat/Atlantic/WMG)
RIYL: Foster the People, for one.

This isn’t the first time The Knocks (an electro duo from New York) have collaborated with Foster the People (well, at least singer Mark Foster). Just go back to Ride or Die form 2018 which saw 100 million streams and a rise to #1 on the iTunes dance chart. This new single is from The Knocks’ still-untitled third album which will be out sometime this year. And Foster the People has a new EP coming, too.


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