The Drop: Your Guide To New Music Friday Featuring Kat Dahlia & Kacy Hill
Fridays can be overwhelming for pop fans. Every week you’re bombarded with a glut of new music, which can lead to ear candy falling through the cracks. I’m hoping to circumvent that tragic scenario with The Drop — a cheat sheet (of sorts) to get you through New Music Friday. By now, you’ve probably heard Miley Cyrus’ iTunes-conquering “Malibu” and possibly checked out PSY’s cheeky “New Face.” But that’s just the tip of the pop iceberg.
Let’s start with a pair of female artists, who have overhauled their sound since we last heard from them. Kacy Hill was hailed as The Next Big Thing when her Bloo EP arrived in 2015. She returns with dual lead singles from her debut album and one of them is a real surprise. Produced by Stuart Price, “Hard To Love” is an ’80s synth-pop experiment. It’s Bleachers meets Kate Bush and I’m obsessed. The same goes for Kat Dahlia’s epic “Friday Night Majic.” She leaves behind the urban bangers of My Garden in favor of ’90s-referencing hip-hop/pop. Think of this as the female equivalent of Bruno Mars’ “24K Magic.”
Next up is Polish pop sensation Margaret. She won an international following last year with “Cool Me Down,” which effortlessly channeled Rihanna. She could land another global hit with “What You Do.” This is the kind of monster bop Zara Larsson needed on So Good — a catchy party jam with a nuclear drop. Less mainstream, but equally fun is Paperwhite’s “Only Us.” The Brooklyn-based duo serves tropical-flavored synth-pop with an indie bent on this summery delight.
Another duo doing great things is Now, Now. They release their first song since 2012 (!) with “SGL” and, miraculously, it was worth the wait. This finds the sweet spot between Haim and Tegan and Sara with its sweet harmonies and undertone of melancholy. Hopefully, “SGL” is the first taste of a larger body of work. Speaking of which, Wrabel dropped an EP today called We Could Be Beautiful and it’s great from beginning to end. However, I’ve been obsessed with “Poetry” since I first heard it live and I’m ecstatic to finally have the studio version on my phone.
In the mood to turn up? I got you. Calvin Harris moves on to the next single from Funk Wav Bounces Vol. 1 and “Rollin” wins back my interest after the boring “Heatstroke.” Consider this a companion piece to “Slide” with its slick hip-hop beats and wavy synths. Felix Jaehn delivers a similarly retro-leaning banger with “Hot2Touch.” The “Cheerleader” remixer calls on Alex Aiono, who recently featured on The Drop with “Question,” for the track and delivers a smooth, disco-tinged anthem.
If you need a little more disco in your life (and who doesn’t), DJ Cassidy turns to Solidisco for a masterful remix of “Honor.” Their version strips out Lil Yachty’s verse and focuses on Grace’s soulful vocal. I think I prefer this version to the original. Last but not least is Hardwell’s surprise collaboration with Austin Mahone, who is having something of a career resurgence at the moment. The Dutch DJ never strays too far from his winning formula and this is no exception. The massive chorus makes this a crossover contender. Check it out my playlist below.