Essential Tracks This Week: Nilüfer Yanya, GEL, and more

Avatar photo
Nilufer Yanya - Essential Tracks

The list of the best new releases out today is pretty out of control, if you haven’t taken a look. We chose 12 of our favorites, but you could keep going from there if you wanted to. We’re not done yet though—can’t close out the week without some Essential Tracks, and this week’s includes some searing hardcore, impeccably produced and written art-pop, psych-pop instrumentals and more.

Blurbs by Jeff Terich (JT), Mia Euceda (ME) and John-Paul Shiver (JPS)


Nilüfer Yanya – “Like I Say (runaway)”

Nilüfer Yanya is a unique songwriter, evoking disparate sounds like the smooth sophisti-pop of Jessie Ware and the art-rock of Radiohead—with a hearty wash of distortion—all in the same song. “Like I Say (runaway)”, her first single for Ninja Tune and first new music since 2022’s PAINLESS, is just such a song, snapping with infectious beat-loops and droning acoustic guitar riffs against Yanya’s layered vocals before erupting into a thunderous rock anthem during its ascendant chorus. At once one of Yanya’s catchiest songs as well as one of her most impeccably produced, it’s a spectacular showcase of her undeniable if idiosyncratic talents. – JT

Out now via Ninja Tune


GEL – “Mirage”

New Jersey hardcore heroes GEL continue to offer up riveting and nuanced bangers. This time, they return with a heavy hitter guaranteed to open up any pit. Throughout “Mirage,” Alex Salter’s throbbing drums and Maddi Nave’s hefty riffs back up a refrain full of grime and grit. “Creation guiding my hands, spawned from your cruelty,”  Sami Kaiser spits out hoarsely, calling on an unwanted figure to channel chaos. The breakdown that follows is equally brutal. – ME

From Persona EP, out August 16 via Blue Grape


Los Bitchos – “La Bomba”

Put on your boots, it’s time to ride again. For the past couple of years, London quartet Los Bitchos—comprising guitarist Serra Petale, Augustina Ruiz on synth/keytar, bassist Josefine Jonsson, and drummer Nic Crawshaw—have been playing quick-hitting, strong-sailing disco-infused Anatolian-psych-rock-inspired instrumentals that waste no time getting to the foot-thumping section. “La Bomba,” their new festival pleaser, is inspired by basslines you’d find in a Nile Rodgers disco bumper and little ping-pong drum sounds reminiscent of Anita Ward’s “Ring My Bell.” It takes disco groove, lays those anthemic ’80s guitar hero lines on top, adds a crowd cheer dead center of the song, and poof. Another two to three-minute joy-bomb sends you off into a fog machine-like haze. Subscribe to a “don’t think just move” philosophy and make an effort to catch them on the road this year. And pack clean underwear. – JPS

Out now via City Slang


Candy – “Love Like Snow” (feat. Mirsy and mmph)

Candy is, ostensibly, a hardcore band, but on 2022’s Heaven Is Here, the group began reaching deeper into electro-industrial aesthetics, and in the process, seemed to touch upon even nastier, more hostile sounds. “Love Like Snow,” the second single from their upcoming album It’s Inside You, initially appears to be just such a song, caked in digital distortion and menacing, martial beats. But then the chorus arrives, shimmering, melodic, ascending through the grace of Mirsy’s backing vocals. It’s a glorious moment of pop, transcending the nastiness perhaps, but never actually leaving it behind, ensuring that a sound that dirty isn’t put to waste. – JT

From It’s Inside You, out June 7 via Relapse


Actress – “Dolphin Spray”

Most music that’s driven by rhythm and beats is meant to be played loud—it’s an implicit assumption in our entire conception of how pop music works, after all. But “Dolphin Spray,” the first of two new tracks released from Darren Cunningham only six months after the arrival of last year’s outstanding LXXXVIII, needs to be turned up for a very different reason: You’ll miss out on something good, otherwise. Cunningham tweaking his productions in ways that make you lean in closer, sometimes barely audible elements juxtaposed against hypnotic, undeniable pulses. “Dolphin Spray” is a bit like that, and the minimalist beat is the thing you’ll notice first, but the faint glow of psychedelic guitar that hums beneath becomes a curious background device, a melody that seems to never quite reach the foreground, its distance just as fascinating as the melody itself. Puzzling, certainly, but for Actress, far from the first such instance. – JT

From Statik, out June 7 via Smalltown Supersound

View Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Scroll To Top