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The seven members of the girl group XG are all Japanese, but they’re based in South Korea, and they sing in English. The group’s name stands for Xtraordinary Girls, and they’ve been around for two years; their debut single ‘Tippy Toes’ came out in 2022. XG’s whole thing seems to be based on a relative fluency with straight-up rap music — they post cypher videos and stuff — and now they’ve released ‘Woke Up,’ which is being marketed as their first full-on rap song. It’s some wild shit. The ‘Woke Up’ clip is high-grade CGI sci-fi vomit, and I have no idea what’s going on with any of it. Experience it for yourself below. [via Stereogum]

Leicester-born, London-based Shivani Day releases her new single, ‘Blue Car’ via FAMM. Channeling her thoughts on self-worth and closure, ‘Blue Car’ offers an insight into Shivani’s inner thoughts capturing an amalgamation of feelings. Co-produced by Shivani and 23Sunz (BXKS, Joe James), the dark-yet-ethereal sonics make for a textured backdrop for Shivani’s contrasting vocals. The cinematic ambiance is inspired by the Tron Universe and it’s pulsating ice-blue palette referenced in the Jay Green-directed (Biig Piig, Lava La Rue, Izzi De Rosa) video. Over the past three years, Shivani has governed her creativity with a sound that carries her South Asian heritage, the influences garnered in her life and a refined synergy between instrumentation and her voice. “I began the process of ‘Blue Car’ in 2022, and it was initially a freestyle to express a stream of emotions. Working closely with 23Sunz was great, he pushed me to use my voice as an instrument and carve the final sonics in an abstract way. Creating it in the summer, paired with the darkness of the beat and lyrics resulted in a beautiful contrast. It was important to let the track breathe and allow the production to have its moment too.”

Singer, songwriter and producer Rosie Lowe triumphantly marks her musical return with a new single and accompanying video, ‘Mood To Make Love’, setting the scene for a fresh chapter in her celebrated career. The release not only showcases Lowe’s evolution as an artist but also serves as her first solo endeavor since 2021’s Now, You Know a compelling collection of self-produced demos, and her collaborative album Son with longtime friend and kindred spirit Duval Timothy. The self-produced ‘Mood To Make Love’ unveils a captivating blend of soulful melodies, intricate rhythms and delicate vocal work, all crafted with Lowe’s signature minimalist finesse. Lowe invites listeners on an intimate journey, exploring themes of desire, self-worth and human connection. In her own words; “‘Mood To Make Love’ was written on a warm evening in Spain and we wanted it to sound like our surroundings. It is a moment of self love and an acknowledgement of what I have to offer my partner.” Accompanying the release is a visually sumptuous music video, directed by Lowe’s brother, Louis Hemming-Lowe. Through languid visuals, the video brings the song to life, offering viewers a cinematic experience. From its striking cinematography which plays with angles and perspectives, to its raw, emotive performance shot through with surrealism, the ‘Mood To Make Love’ music video is a testament to the creative synergy between the siblings. Rosie says, “I knew I wanted to keep the team small and work with people I know, trust and love so I decided to collaborate with my big brother, a director, on the music videos. We wanted the visuals to feel much like a dream sequence. We shot it on a very cold January morning on a small rowing boat on a river in Devon, and somehow lucked out with the 1 x sunny day we got in January!”‘ Hemming-Lowe adds, “I wanted to create an abstract, fantasy feel with hand drawn animation elements and dream sequence symbolic connectivity. Themes of nostalgia, looking back, looking forward, time and repetition, the reliving of episodes and memories, beginning and ending, life and death. I wanted the viewer to do the work to figure these out, much like waking up from a dream and trying to decipher the meaning.”

After releasing the single ‘runrunrun’ last year, My Chérie has already doubled her 2023 output this year with February’s ‘Don’t Compare Yourself’ and her new tender sonic exploration of the intricacies of human existence, ‘Darkness & Gold’. An addictive combination of hip hop and alt-pop, ‘Darkness & Gold’ features a boom bap inspired beat alongside some tasteful guitar licks and atmospheric synths with My Chérie’s engaging vocals alternating from warm, inviting dulcet tones to spitting laidback bars to great effect. Speaking on her new single, My Chérie explains “‘Darkness & Gold’ is my candid portrayal and deep dive into my human experience of the internal struggles we all face. In confronting themes of strength, vulnerability, and the pursuit of self-improvement, I want to acknowledge the efforts of trying and the tricky journey of figuring ourselves out.” Meanwhile, the music video shows this journey in fantastical form, with My Chérie transported from the comforts of watching Betty Boop in her living room to an enchanted forest type setting with everything not being as it first appears. “The music video brilliantly captures the essence of our inner dichotomy. It delves into the juxtaposition of embracing our ethereal, confident personas while also confronting the raw vulnerability of our human experiences. The intertwining narratives in the forest setting vividly portray the complexities of our inner selves, from our stories and pain to our dreams and aspirations”, explains My Chérie. [via Pilerats]

Okay Kaya, the Norwegian-American alt-pop artist born Kaya Wilkins, is back with her first new single since 2022’s SAP. This past winter, Wilkins wrote her new single ‘The Groke’ on a small island at a temperature of -25 degrees Celsius (that’s -13 Fahrenheit, Americans). It’s billed as a pop song about our ever-changing ecological landscape. “I was thinking about The Groke as an apt lore of the Nordic countries brutal seasons, and about how climates around the world are getting more temperamental,” Wilkins says. “The chorus end sentence is borrowed from Timothy Morton’s Dark Ecology.” Below, watch director Julia Patey’s video for the track. [via Stereogum]

Daphne Guinness releases her new single ‘Dark Night of The Soul,’ from her eagerly anticipated fourth album, Sleep, out June 21 via Agent Anonyme Recordings. The baroque ‘Dark Night of The Soul,’ featuring strings arranged by Tony Visconti, drips with loss and builds with a cataclysmic tension towards the final chorus, where Daphne’s vocals vault into her upper register like a glimmer of hope. ‘Dark Night of The Soul’ is accompanied by a hypnotic and mesmerising video. Speaking about the single, Daphne says, “That song is speaking to the fact that in the loneliest moments of one’s existence there is hope and there are other people who are going through the same thing. Yes, we’re living in a state of uncivilisation and we’re living on the edge of many catastrophes, but we are human beings! We need to bind ourselves together in these bleak moments. It’s about that feeling of being alone but also recognising that there are other people there. When you’re at the depths of despair it’s a reminder that there is something there. The first line in arcadia ego is a reference to a painting by Nicolas Poussin. The lyric ‘We’re living in intemperate times/In the twilight of our gods’ is a reference to a schism in society. All the established religions are slightly off course. But before the last two millennia of gods, there was another way. And also, the idea of God and religion manufactured into some relatable human form. Captured in a suitably stylish and timeless monochrome, David LaChappelle’s video for ‘Time’ turns the clock back to Berlin in the 1930s. The setting is backstage at a cabaret and tensions are running high, leading to a violent conflict between Daphne’s character and a club boss – played by David himself. But the show must go on. Daphne’s performance is beguiling and magnetic: her star quality enamouring an audience of larger-than-life characters. Yet a little of that earlier schism remains…”

Cross Dog have released a video for their new song ‘Jane Roe’. The video was directed by lead vocalist Tracy A and the video features appearances by Valerie Knox and Emily Bones of The Anti-Queens (who also provide backing vocals). The description for the video contains links to Action Canada for Sexual Health and Rights and Plannet Parenthood. The song is off there upcoming album All Hard Feelings which will be out on June 7 via Stomp Records. Cross Dog released their album Hollow in 2019. Check out the video below. [via Punk News]

La Luz have released a new album, News of the Universe, via Sub Pop. Now they have shared its fourth single, ‘I’m Always in Love With You,’ via a music video. The band is led by guitarist, singer, and songwriter Shana Cleveland. She had this to say about the new single in a press release: “To me this song is the heart of the album. I get emotional every time I hear it. Lyrically it’s about realizing that love is the only thing that matters and that it’s always a choice that I’m able to make. It’s hard to explain how huge that is, but if you get it you get it. In the guitar solo that closes the song I can hear myself blasting through all the fear and stress of the year before, the most difficult time of my life, and moving past all of that propelled by the dedication to live in love. The video for this song is inspired by the Japanese camp horror film House.” [via Under The Radar]

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