The Drop: Your Guide To New Music Friday Featuring Daya & LANY
The Drop returned last week after an extended hiatus. Why? It’s impossible to cover every worthy new release, which can lead to ear candy falling through the cracks. I’m hoping to prevent that tragic scenario with a cheat sheet (of sorts) to get you through New Music Friday. By now, you’ve probably already heard Lorde’s “Green Light” and possibly checked out Iggy Azalea and Lil Uzi Vert’s “Can’t Lose.” But that’s just the tip of the pop iceberg.
Let’s start with The Drop regular, GIRLI. The Brit carved out a niche as the queen of mouthy pop/rap with viral hits “Girls Get Angry Too” and “Too Much Fun,” but the troublemaker tones it down a little on mid-tempo bop, “Not The Girl.” The production is tighter, there’s a traditional chorus and she doesn’t drop the C bomb once. I’m a little disappointed. Fellow London-based multi-hyphenate Lola Coca also has new music to offer. “Love Me” is another delicious pop/hip-hop hybrid with a retro twist. Her debut LP, The Only Child, arrives on March 31 and it’s going to be good.
A little closer to home, LA-based trio LANY has generated a mountain of buzz with their offbeat brand of alt-pop. They follow up “ILYSB” with “Good Girls” and it’s their most accessible offering to date. It’s a little early to talk about Song Of The Summer contenders but this little catchy tune could be a dark horse. Equally appealing is Hayley Kiyoko’s “Sleepover.” I’m used to hearing the singer/actress in ethereal synth-pop mode, but this slinky slow jam tells a very real tale of unrequited love.
Next up is Pssy Pwr, a side-project for singer/songwriter Anjulie (Nicki Minaj and Cassie’s “The Boys”) and producer Oren Yoel (Miley Cyrus’ “Adore You”). Apart from having the coolest band name I’ve seen this week, they also have one hell of a bop on their hands with “Rodeo.” This could wind up being bigger than their day jobs. Another songwriter moonlighting as a pop star is Harloe. She struck Spotify gold with “All In My Feelings” last year and should continue to rack up those streams with a new remix featuring Dreezy.
Looking for a little blue-eyed soul? After flirting with radio-friendly pop on “LOVE 3X,” ZZ Ward returns to more familiar territory on “The Deep.” It’s rich and soulful, but also forward-thinking. The production is clearly influenced by hip-hop and there’s an unexpected verse from Joey Purp. This isn’t so much a retreat as a change of course. Another bad-ass female singer with faint regard for genre is Charlotte OC. The Brit teases her debut LP, Careless People, with “The Shell” — casually dropping her best single to date.
That takes us to one of the year’s most random/welcome comebacks. Y2K singer/songwriter Michelle Branch (of “Everywhere” and “All You Wanted” fame) is rolling out her first album in 14 years and it’s going to be good if title track, “Hopeless Romantic,” and new buzz track, “Best You Ever,” are any indication. Matt Maeson, on the other hand, is a songsmith at the very start of his career. However, “Tribulation” has the confidence and conviction of a veteran.
I’ll wind this up with a couple of bops. (It’s Friday, after all). Australia’s Miami Horror has been churning out vibey electronica since 2010, but they have struggled to capture the pop-adjacent bliss of their debut LP in recent years. The group rectifies that with “Leila,” which is easily their catchiest anthem since “Sometimes.” More of this please! That takes us to Gryffin and Illenium’s “Feel Good,” which boasts the heavenly vocals of Daya and a brilliant drop. Stream it in my playlist below.