Tracks You Should be Listening to: 09/06/17

Phoenix — Ti Amo

There’s this thing called Paris syndrome. Wikipedia describes it as a “mental disorder exhibited by some individuals when visiting or vacationing to Paris, as a result of extreme shock resulting from their finding out that Paris is not what they had expected it to be.” It might be especially acute in the City of Lights, but people have claimed to experience the disorder after visiting other romanticized cities as well, like Rome.

The new Phoenix album is the opposite of Paris syndrome. Instead of realizing that the city they adore is, you know, just a city, with taxes and crime and shitty WiFi like any other place, they stubbornly stick to their romanticized ideas — in this case, about Italy. The band themselves acknowledge that the record presents a “fantasized version” of the country, and here that fantasy means endless summer days full of disco and gelato.

They make no attempt at dispelling the misconception. Instead, they revel in it. When listening to Ti Amo, it’s hard not to join them.

Andrew Applepie & Bjurman — Drowning World

Andrew Applepie’s social media doesn’t look like a rock star’s. His Instagram is full of pictures of dinosaurs. And robots. And pretzels. The only sign at all that he’s a musician and not a dinosaur/robot/pretzel fetishist are the occasional pictures of art his fans have made for him. “The fact that people paint pictures for me blows my mind omg I’m just a dude making beaaats”, Applepie wrote under one of them. Applepie might just be a dude, but his beats actually slap, which is more than one can say for most rock stars these days.

Cigarettes After Sex — Apocalypse

“ It’s like music therapy,” says Greg Gonzalez, lead singer of ambient pop band Cigarettes After Sex. “Because if I’ve had really rough times, I’ll use music for that purpose, to get all the noise out of your head.” The band’s new track does sound therapeutic, if only because it’s so confessional. Against pitch-black synths, Gonzalez sings about failed relationships, childhood secrets, crumbling bridges and saying good bye. It would be pretentious — if it didn’t sound so good.

Lorde — Sober

“It’s leaning & drawling, juvenile & triumphant,” Lorde said in a recent tweet about her newest track. “Impressing someone then embarrassing urself.” Sober is yet another in Lorde’s unbroken streak of pure fire that runs from Green Light to Liability to Perfect Places. Like those songs, it will appear on her new album, out 16 June. “This song was so important to me because it felt like pop music i hadn’t heard before,” Lorde added.