5 songs you must hear this week: 12 April 2021

You can feel when we’re in the midst of some sort of musical trend. Given the stratospheric rise of a certain social network platform, the term “TikTok pop” is starting to gain purchase. Think of it as songs that either lend themselves to 30-second dance routines on TikTok or songs that blew up on TikTok to penetrate the mainstream’s collective consciousness. A few of this week’s song picks will inevitably end up in that category.

1. Command Sisters, Rain on My Parade
Single (UMG)
Recommended If You Like: Something in between the Chili Peppers and Weezer but with women

Yes, they are sisters (Charlotte and Sarah) and their last name really is Command. Their bio quite rightly describes the Toronto duo as “stepping out of frame from a Quentin Tarantino flick.” They were of the recent Lost Tapes of the 21 Club project performing an AI extrapolation of what Amy Winehouse might have done had she lived. Watch them.

2. Area 21, La La La
Single (Hollywood Records)
RIYL: Transatlantic collaborations

This Dutch-American project consisting of Martin Garrix and an EDM due who goes by the name Maejor mine pop, hip-hop, trap, and a few other genres for their sound. If you’re the kind of person who has the Ultra Music Festival on their bucket list, then this is something you should check out.

3. Smashing Pumpkins, Ramona
CYR (Sumerian)
RIYL: Well, it’s Pumpkins, innit?

While everyone waits for a double album due this year (33 songs!), this is another single from last November’s still-quite-mammoth (20 songs, 72 minutes) Cyr album. The video—pretty big budget for this COVID times—will remind you of a spaghetti western from the late 60s/70s that took a left turn into Goth. Billy actually looks pretty cool as a cowboy.

4. Peach Tree Rascals, Change My Mind
Single (10K Projects/Capitol)
RIYL: Jazzy funky alt-pop

Let’s overlook the terrible name and focus on what’s happening here. We have a four-person musical collective featuring two singer-rappers, a producer/mixer, and a “creative director.” All of the guys are high school friends from San Jose, California, who have been working together for the last three years.

5. Beach Bunny, Cloud 9
Single (further/Mom + Pop)
RIYL: Stripped-down female-fronted alt-pop.

Last week, this song was racking up two million streams a day. And I can see why. Older alt-rock fans might be reminded of Vercua Salt or Liz Phair, two other acts from Beach Bunny’s native Chicago. Nothing wasted here. Singer Lili Trifilio and her three male bandmates say what they have to in two-and-a-half minutes.

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