45s of the week: Caroline Polachek, Normani, Chvrches and more!

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Caroline Polachek – ‘Bunny Is A Rider’

Caroline Polachek is finally back with new original music, the first since her 2019 album ‘Pang’. A slick, bassy and understated track introed by cavalier whistles, ‘Bunny Is A Rider’ is all about being unavailable. “Bunny is a rider, satellite can’t find her”, Polachek flirts, evoking a femme fatale cruising down a freeway. The instrumentation is rich yet laidback, its use of marimbas (perhaps an influence from London, where Polachek has lived over the past year of lockdown?) giving a warm and summery sound. 

CHVRCHES – ‘Good Girls’

CHVRCHES have dropped a glittery, electrifying call to arms – against a technicolour 80s soundscape, frontwoman Lauren Mayberry is “hellbent with revenge“ and happy about it. “Killing your idols is a chore… we’d kill them with a thousand cuts”, she sings, “I cut my teeth on weaker men”. In typical forthright, unequivocal CHVRCHES fashion, the message is clear – “Good girls justify but I don’t… Good girls satisfy but I don’t’”.

Mahalia – ‘Whenever You’re Ready’

Mahalia is giving 90s R&B excellence on her newest release, a sexy and confident statement of patience to a loved one having second thoughts – “whenever you’re ready, I’ll be here… Ima set you free, you won’t be gone for good”. Mahalia delivers cool confidence on this clean, sharp summer bop, sampling Montell Jordan’s 90s classic ‘Get It On Tonite’ for that nostalgic touch.

Xenia Rubinos – ‘Working All The Time’

Xenia Rubinos has released the chaotic ‘Working All The Time’ in the lead-up to her third album. A sonic smorgasbord full of beat changes, pitch shifts and genre hopping, the song starts as an 8-bit electronic moment and within a minute, Rubinos is rapping against a backdrop of air horns and distortion. This “2-minute maximalist jaunt” captures the mood of a “hot NYC summer” – one for this heatwave weekend, perhaps. 

Lala Lala – ‘DIVER’

London-born, Chicago-based Lala Lala’s new single DIVER is a beautiful statement of intention and purpose. The song sounds like the colour blue, its stormy bassline and swelling instrumentation evoking the feeling of water and movement. With lush and uplifting lyricism, Lala Lala describes “swimming out towards my new life, dragged in by the undertow”, finishing off by looking forward to “the salt, the spit, the magic / to last, to be romantic”.

Normani feat. Cardi B – ‘Wild Side’

Normani is finally back, with her first new music since 2020. As expected, she delivers complete ‘Normani supremacy’ (as Cardi B teased yesterday) on her new single ‘Wild Side’. The sultry track showcases Normani’s smooth lower registers – her vocal sweet spot – and samples Aaliyah’s well-loved ‘One In A Million’. Normani delivers impeccable choreography and visuals in the accompanying video, reasserting herself as a consummate renaissance performer who is totally dominant in every skillset.

Listen to the above and even more flaming hot tunes on our BRAND NEW playlist

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