45s of the week: Beabadoobee, Princess Nokia, Yaya Bey and more!

The tracks you need to hear this week, reviewed by Jemima Skala.

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Yaya Bey: ‘september 13th’

Taken from her forthcoming release on Big Dada ‘The Things I Can’t Take With Me’, ‘september 13th’ is a quiet track that showcases Yaya Bey’s power to strip an emotion down to its bones and leave it shivering. ‘september 13th’ commemorates the day that Bey realised she was fighting for a doomed relationship; if this song isn’t enough, check out her recent essay ‘Why We Owe The Hood Everything… I’ll Get To That Eventually’ for more proof of her ability to weave emotional threads together in an affecting whole.

Georgia Anne Muldrow: ‘Mufaro’s Garden’

Grammy-nominated producer and musician Georgia Anne Muldrow announces the third instalment of her ‘VWETO’ hip-hop beats series with ‘Mufaro’s Garden’. 

With luscious and wobbly instrumentation, ‘Mufaro’s Garden’ allows itself to soar. Muldrow has herself said that ‘VWETO III’ has been made to soundtrack when “you birth yourself outside after a long introspective period to get the things you need”. Quiet but affirming, ‘Mufaro’s Garden’ grants the necessary confidence for just that moment.

beabadoobee: ‘Last Day On Earth’

‘Last Day On Earth’ is the lead single from beabadoobee’s upcoming EP ‘Our Extended Play’, co-written and -produced by the 1975’s Matty Healy and George Daniel. With Oasis-esque guitars and prominent drums, it’s all been stamped with the 1975’s signature production style, and Healy’s hand is felt particularly in the rhythmic patterning of the melodies. Beabadoobee’s devil-may-care lyrics are achingly evocative of the world that could live outside our bedroom walls; the youthful fatalism of ‘Last Day On Earth’ is tantalising as we wait for the world to open up again. 

Babe Rainbow feat. Jaden: ‘Your Imagination’

Apparently, the only reason this feature exists is because Jaden Smith spent months badgering his favourite band over Instagram to collaborate. The result is the gloriously dreamy ‘Your Imagination’, a beautiful psych-rock track that encapsulates a certain sun-soaked 70s nostalgia. Jaden’s contribution adds a deeper longing to the whimsy, a desperate questioning of the way things are. As many of the YouTube comments note, it’s the collab. we never knew we needed.

Princess Nokia: ‘It’s Not My Fault’

With opening lyrics like “Yes I’m God’s favourite flavour/ I’m blessed and highly favoured”, it couldn’t be anything but a Princess Nokia track. Alongside visuals indebted to J-Lo’s ‘If You Had My Love’ video, ‘It’s Not My Fault’ sports a swaggering beat and bombastic bassline to match the bravado of Princess Nokia’s bars. If you ever needed a song to gird your loins to before diving head-first into battle, this could very well be it.

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