What a week for new tunes!
It’s been a huge week for new music, with fresh cuts from huge indie acts like Gorillaz, The National, Phoebe Bridgers, Arkells, Car Seat Headrest, Dirty Projectors, and more! We also got some unbelievable new tracks from up-and-coming artists like Dizzy and Pleasure Craft. Check out the best new indie tracks from this week below.
This Indie88 feature is presented with Zed80.
Gorillaz – “Désolé (feat. Fatoumata Diawara)”
Gorillaz have shared a video for “Désolé,” their new collaboration with Malian musician Fatoumata Diawara. The track comes packed with a killer groove, strings, and horns, as Diawara and Damon Albarn sing together in English, French, and Bambara. The clip, which marks the second installment of Gorillaz’s Song Machine series, sees the band discovering a door in their Kong Studios that leads to a dock in Lake Como, where Diawara and Albarn cruise in the water on a speedboat.
The National – “Never Tear Us Apart (INXS cover)”
The National have shared a cover of INXS’ “Never Tear Us Apart” as part of Songs For Australia, the new Julia Stone-curated compilation benefiting Australian brushfire relief. The National’s contribution of INXS’s hit track from 1987’s Kick stays true to the original, while adding a quintessential The National-style melancholic twist. The keys-driven cover lets frontman Matt Berninger’s crooning vocals thrive as he delivers classic lines like, “I/ I was standing/ You were there/ Two worlds collided/ And they could never tear us apart.”
Phoebe Bridgers – “Garden Song”
Phoebe Bridgers has returned with a video for her first solo single since 2017’s Stranger in the Alps, “Garden Song.” “I was just thinking about my home town and I was thinking about reoccurring nightmares I have on tour,” Bridgers explains to Zane Lowe about the track. “So on ‘Garden Song’ my tour manager sings with me – he’s 6 ft 7. He’s a Dutch man named Jeroen. I realized he had the voice of an angel when he was singing Mitski with me in the van and he was two octaves below me and I was like ‘You sound like a Dutch Matt Berninger from The National.’”
Arkells – “Years in the Making”
Arkells have shared a video for their optimistic new single “Years In The Making,” which marks their first new song since 2018’s Rally Cry. “You never know when the universe will deliver a tune from the song gods, but ‘Years In The Making’ arrived just when we needed it,” frontman Max Kerman explains. “It leans on a question we keep coming back to: How do we conceive of everything we’ve been through, and shape it to offer some love and hope? ‘Years In The Making’ is meant to encourage us to find ways to embrace the bumps in the road, because all of our challenges are ultimately there to help us work towards the dream – whatever that may be.”
Car Seat Headrest – “Can’t Cool Me Down”
Car Seat Headrest have come back strong, announcing a new album Making a Door Less Open, out May 1st, and a tour accompanying it. Along with the announcement, they’ve released a new single called “Can’t Cool Me Down.” Running nearly five minutes, the track is a trip for your eardrums. An electronic bedroom-pop medley, Car Seat Headrest successfully combines synth, xylophone, grainy vocals and robotic effects for a sonically wide-ranging track.
Christine and the Queens – “La vita nuova (feat. Caroline Polachek)”
French pop sensation Christine and the Queens has surprise dropped a new EP called La vita nuova alongside an accompanying short film. The new short film, which was shot by Colin Solal Cardo and choreographed by Ryan Heffington, opens with Christine on the rooftop of Paris’ historic Opéra Garnier at golden hour, and moves through dance battle scenes with mythical creatures, and eventually even sucks Caroline Polachek’s blood during their collaboration “La vita nuova.”
Stephen Malkmus – “Shadowbanned”
Pavement frontman Stephen Malkmus has shared a video for “Shadowbanned,” which stars celebrities like Mac DeMarco, Kurt Vile, Conor Oberst, and more. The amusing new Jan Lankish-directed clip sees a digital version of Malkmus’ face getting superimposed on a variety of musicians and actors including Kim Gordon, Jason Schwartzman, Sharon Van Etten, Superorganism’s Orono Noguchi, and many more. “The video was inspired by reading about female singers and musicians who were photoshopped from their album covers by an Iranian music screaming site,” Lankish explains of the clip.
Dirty Projectors – “Overlord”
Dirty Projectors are back with a video for their new single “Overlord.” The new track marks the first recording to feature the band’s new lineup in a full studio setting. “Overlord” is a little different than the last few singles, as guitarist Maia Friedman takes the lead vocals on this tune, delivering powerful lines about surveillance. The accompanying David Longstreth-directed music video comes packed with shots in New York City, as Friedman sings on top of several different famous architectural buildings.
Dizzy – “Sunflower”
Dizzy have made their return with a video for their new track, “Sunflower.” “So happy to be coming out of hibernation to share this song with you,” Dizzy explain on Facebook. “She started as a voice note of a choir we heard rehearsing at a rec centre one night, and ended up unearthing a mantra of self awareness and confusion in the process. The song acts as a 3 and a half minute ‘snap out of it!’ when we’re feeling low. Hope you can find a piece of yourself in it.”
Perfume Genius – “Describe”
Perfume Genius has announced a new album called Set My Heart on Fire Immediately, which drops on May 15th. As part of the announcement, he’s shared a self-directed video for his new track “Describe.” The album’s lead single sees Mike Hadreas playing with distorted, ominous sounds, slide guitar, and visual-heavy lyricism that’s powerful in its simplicity. The new record, which marks the follow-up to 2017’s No Shape, explores the concept of masculinity and completely subverts it.
The Rentals – “Teen Beat Cosmonaut”
While gearing up for the release of Q36, The Rentals have shared a video for their new track, “Teen Beat Cosmonaut.” The new track comes packed with vintage MOOG synths, cinematic electric guitar lines, and grand, orchestral vocals. As the song progresses, it lyrically explores a fantasy about a former teen idol and astronaut named Steve, as frontman Matt Sharp delivers lines like, “So, goodbye, my big blue shining star/ I’m gonna miss you a lot/ I’m your Teen Beat Cosmonaut.”
Pleasure Craft – “Work It Out (feat. Mingjia)”
Pleasure Craft has shared a genre-bending new track, “Work It Out.” “This song is about the anxiety and mental health problems I associate with my inability to express genuine emotions in relationships. A lot of men struggle with this due to our culture teaching us a version of masculinity that is very damaging to ourselves and the people who have to live with us. ” Sam Lewis explains in a statement. “The video relates to this theme by contrasting the light beige and dark red strobe lighting.”