I hope everyone had a great Valentine’s Day weekend and if you didn’t then you’re lying. How do I know you’re lying? Because so much great music came out since the last Music For Your Monday that there’s simply no way that you weren’t happy. From a sneak peek to what Kanye’s latest album is going to sound like to a surprise Drake mixtape drop to an incredible, life-altering single from Florence + The Machine’s upcoming release, last week was a good week for music and I can’t wait to talk about it now.
SNL’s 40th anniversary got interrupted by Kanye performing a new song from his new album. Kanye first performed a particularly good performance of “Jesus Walks” and a weird version of “Only One,” but what people are talking about is “Wolves.” We first heard a snippet of the “Wolves” during Kanye’s fashion show (lol what a sentence) on Thursday. Sunday night’s performance was pretty weird, but we got to hear a much higher-quality version of the song, which features both Vic Mensa and Sia. Overall, the song sounds pretty good, nothing stood out to me as being very different or very weird, so who knows. It’s Kanye, stop the speculation and just enjoy it as it comes.
Few things thrilled me more than 1) seeing a surprise Drake album come out of seemingly nowhere and 2) critics quickly calling it emo. Emo rap, what a time to be alive. That being said, this isn’t emo in the same vein as Dashboard Confessional circa 2006. If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late is emo in the sense that there is arguably no rapper more in touch, and more comfortable with themselves talking about their feelings than Drake. “Know Yourself,” a phrase that keeps popping up in his music, is probably the most self-aware track on the album and tied with “Legend” as my favorite. “Legend” is the type bombastic fire that an album like this one has to open with. “Know Yourself” is just a solid track that’s about to be on repeat for a long time.
Florence + The Machine is back with a new album set to be released on June 2 and a new video and a new single, What Kind of Man. After pretty much listening to this song on repeat for four days now, I’m still not quite sure how to put this song into words. I admit, I’m not the biggest Florence fan, sure I’ve listened to, and enjoyed her music in the past, but by no means would consider myself a huge fan. Well, let me tell you this song is incredible. The slow intro features the classic booming vocals and ethereal sound that Florence is known for. But then these guitars and drums start and the whole mood changes. It makes a 180 into a solid rock song, but the anger that drips from the lyrics is sweetened by Flo’s saccharine vocals, creating this delicate tension that makes the song absolutely explode in perfection. Does that sentence even make sense? I have no idea, this song puts me in a trance and I hope you all love it at least half as much as I do.
Music in 2015 is truly the gift that keeps on giving, now the Alabama Shakes have finally graced us with a new song. Although they’ve played this one live quite a few times, it’s still nice to hear it recorded and get the green light that a new album is finally on it’s way (April 21!!!). Few rock bands are as fun to listen to as the Alabama Shakes and I am so excited to hear the follow up to the excellent Boys and Girls.
This song makes me heart eye emoji. I literally heard this song on the radio for the first time less than 12 hours ago and I can’t stop thinking about it. I guess I just have a thing for a guy with a decent voice and a guitar (as if you guys haven’t figured that out yet). This Icelandic band is finally breaking through the American airwaves and I’m sure they’ll make a name for themselves here because I can’t be the only one in the country who has a thing for a guy with a decent voice and a guitar.
Calvin Harris was kind enough to feature Haim on a track from his otherwise mediocre Motion. Luckily, the decided that this fantastic song deserved a fantastic music video, so now we can watch Daniele, Este and Alanna embrace their inner witch/Hocus Pocus as they run on horses through the woods and stoke a fluffy white bunny. As as per usual, their middle points are on point.
That’s it for this week. You can catch more of my favorite music every Monday from 5-6 p.m. on 99.1 or follow me on Twitter @jyarvin