Happy New Music Friday everyone! We’ve got a wide variety of artists this week showcasing their latest works! Taylor Swift surprised us all with an all new album and leading single, “cardigan,” Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani teamed up once again for another country love song, Ashe dropped an emotional banger, Neon Trees released their latest song off their new album that will have you evaluating your past and last but not least, Kylie Minogue is spreading her love in an out of this world dance anthem. All that and more in this week’s edition of Philip’s Music Corner for Friday, July 24, 2020!
“cardigan” by Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift is back! 2020 hasn’t been the year all artists had envisioned. Touring is something most artists would be doing in the summer months but with the coronavirus pandemic still in the forefront, a lot of artists are taking this downtime to create art. Swift no less is one of those examples. She surprisingly announced an eighth studio album effort on Thursday morning titled folklore. This album follows the chart-topping album Lover which was released just eleven months ago. It will contain 16 new tracks, 17 if you buy the physical deluxe version. The bonus song on that iteration is called “the lakes.” She notably collaborated with 2x Grammy-winner, Bon Iver on a song called “exile” and worked with award-winning producer and artist himself, Jack Antonoff once again, as well as The National member Aaron Dessner and songwriter William Bowery (pseudonym for someone perhaps??) whom she calls her musical heroes. See her official announcement tweet below:
With her leading single “cardigan” out today, Swift revealed that she directed the accompanying music video and took the necessary precautions (e.g. doing her own HMU, everyone on set wore masks and kept their distance) to remain safe producing this during quarantine.
She explained in her online Q+A before the music video was premiered that the song “is about a lost romance and why young love is often fixed so permanently within our memories. Why it leaves such an indelible mark.”
Overall, the new sound is very chill. It’s definitely a departure from her singles from the Lover era. It’s perfect for those casual listening sessions when you want to de-stress from a long day of work or school. It has that “great with a cup of your favorite beverage while you read a book” kind of vibe. The Swifties will be very warm and content with TS8! I wonder what other surprises she has in store for this new era?
“Happy Anywhere” by Blake Shelton & Gwen Stefani
This is the second time Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani have worked together on a song following their hit single, “Nobody But You.” It makes sense to work together again since they’re both dating each other in quarantine in the same house. “Happy Anywhere” is a jovial anthem that fans will love and adore.
Put this on your quarantine playlists for feel good vibes and if you relate to having someone in your life you truly admire no matter where you are on Earth!
The music video was made by Gwen’s brother, Todd whom is also living in quarantine with the couple. It was shot in Oklahoma at Shelton’s ranch on a really hot, triple digit degree day. It also showcases and highlights some of the couple’s precious memories they experienced together over the past months.
“Save Myself” by Ashe
Rising singer-songwriter Ashe has followed up her hit single “Moral Of The Story” featuring Niall Horan with this emotional and cathartic song called “Save Myself.”
This song is about regretting and being angry about the wasted time and money one has put into a past relationship. Sonically speaking, it’s not even sung in a rage-like manner which is commendable. In fact, it’s a soothing vocal that will make you empathize with her. The lyrics speak for themselves and that’s the beauty of Ashe’s songwriting abilities. She’s saving herself now via this song so that she can laugh about it in the future and not make the same mistakes.
The color aesthetics in the video shifting from this golden yellow sparkly tone to black and white to normal colors should not go unnoticed too. I appreciated that artistic choice. It really makes you think about your own life as if you were floating on water like Ashe did, deep in thought.
Personally, I feel this song and “Moral Of The Story” goes hand in hand. What do you think?
“Nights” by Neon Trees
Multi-Platinum alternative rock band, Neon Trees have dropped their latest single off their fourth studio album, out today! It’s called “Nights” and according to their recent IG post, they made this song to signify the “rush of complicated emotions.” Listeners can relate if you find yourselves staying up late at night, deep in thought and contemplating about what was once was (i.e. a relationship you had that just broke off or perhaps a lost of someone or something), and hopefully using this song to find clarity on what lies ahead.
“Nights” has that classic Neon Trees charm to it. I enjoy the overall melody for this uptempo song and this kick starts the new era for the band in my eyes. It will likely be a mainstay song for their future set lists. What are your thoughts? Share your comments below.
“Say Something” by Kylie Minogue
If you’re looking for an optimistic dance pop track then look no further to Kylie Minogue’s latest single, “Say Something.” The cosmic track from the 52-year-old Australian-British singer is back to her dance pop roots after experimenting with a country sound in her last album, Golden (2018). This song will be a part of her upcoming milestone fifteenth studio album effort, Disco which will be releasing in the fall, November 6th.
This song was co-written and produced by long time creative collaborator Richard “Biff” Stannard whom worked with her on numerous songs in the past like “Love At First Sight,” “In My Arms,” and “In Your Eyes” just to name a few.
I really felt the lyrics for it’s desire and hope for a loving future. Yes, we’re proverbially a million miles apart from some of the people we love and we miss them oh so much but that doesn’t mean the love isn’t there. Minogue repeatedly asks and sings in the bridge and outro portions of the song, “‘Cause love is love, it never ends…Can we all be as one again?” Those lines are so resonant and so meaningful in crazy times such as the one we’re living in now in 2020 with the COVID-19 pandemic. Why can’t we all just get along and respect one another and learn to spread kindness and love rather than anger and hate.
Thanks for reading this week’s edition of New Music Friday here at Philip’s Music Corner. If you liked what you read, please hit the follow button in the lower right hand corner to get weekly email alerts when the next post gets published. Stay safe and happy listening!