45s of the week: Arlo Parks, Cat Burns, Olivia Dean and more!

The tracks you need to hear this week, reviewed by Hollie Geraghty



The final single from her second album ‘My Soft Machine’ (out today) and one of Arlo Parks’ favourite songs she’s ever made, ‘Devotion’ is about “feeling so in love it’s almost like being ripped apart, there’s an intensity, a wildness and a tenderness”. “All yours, baby / Come down like a million tonnes,” she sings in her lulling sweet tones against a brisk chill-hop melody before erupting into an angsty, ‘90s indebted electric guitar breakout.

Buy Arlo Parks – ‘My Soft Machine’ on vinyl


The closing song from London singer Olivia Dean’s forthcoming debut album ‘Messy’ is a tender, emotional tribute to her grandmother, who moved to the UK from Guyana as part of the Windrush generation. “You transplanted a family tree, and a part of it grew into me,” Dean sings on the stripped back verse as the track steadily grows more jubilant and hopeful. Celebratory steel pans, soaring horns and honeyed background vocals swell with familial nostalgia and cultural pride in this touching track.


“Relationships can be so complicated but at the end of the day all you really want is to be treated nicely!” said piri of their sugary new single. “I try not to think about the bad times / But am I just pretendin’ that it’s alright? ‘Cause you treat me so different every night,” she sings atop bossa nova beats and skittering drum ‘n’ bass. A weightless summer melody that radiates warmth and golden hour sunshine. 



Cat Burns‘ most lyrically vulnerable song yet, Burns attempts to make sense of a relationship that’s fizzling out while coming to terms with the painful reasons why. “Just say there’s someone else you adore / not that you don’t love me anymore,” she pleads, her bare, stirring vocals seeping with heartache. “It would hurt less if you gave a reason.” Rising to a gospel-like instrumental interlude, Burns beautifully captures the emotional turmoil that precedes the end.


The electronic pop-rapper is well-versed in seething, furious takedowns, but there’s an undercurrent of something altogether more sinister coursing through the US singer’s latest track. The fourth single to emerge from the post-apocalyptic world of Ashnikko‘s forthcoming new album ‘Weedkiller’, the singer confronts the crusade against bodily autonomy in the US with primal ferocity. “It’s just flesh, it’s just flesh / Can be grotesque, move my body like chess,” she sings in a low drone against a jarring, eerie backdrop.

Listen to these tracks and more of the best new release on our BRAND NEW playlist, updated every week.