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Beyoncé Rolls Into Her Country Era, and 10 More New Songs

Beyoncé Rolls Into Her Country Era, and 10 More New Songs


In a flex of genre-spanning musicianship that’s additionally a workaholic’s lament, Beyoncé declares her subsequent realm to beat — nation, one in every of her birthrights as a Texan — whereas she recollects her previous and doubles down on her ambition, singing, “Ain’t acquired time to waste, I acquired artwork to make.” The music is an arena-country crescendo, from acoustic-guitar strum to full-band influence topped by pedal-steel guitar, together with gospel-organ underpinnings and nation quavers in Beyoncé’s vocal traces. At a second when nation music is being pushed to acknowledge Black roots and present Black musicians, Beyoncé just isn’t solely claiming an expanded demographic base. She’s additionally utilizing her celeb clout to drive some doorways open. JON PARELES

Vampire Weekend channels a technology’s exhaustion, disillusionment and overload in “Capricorn,” a stubbornly sluggish ballad about being “too outdated for dying younger” and “sifting by means of centuries for moments of your personal” from “Only God Was Above Us,” a brand new album due April 5. The music layers stately chamber-pop with heaving, squealing noise, then eases towards folky resignation. PARELES

“Right Back to It,” the primary single from Waxahatchee’s upcoming album, “Tiger’s Blood,” was a laid-back, mid-tempo tune that confirmed Katie Crutchfield’s informal mastery of a sure type of twangy people. The second single, “Bored,” is one thing else totally: a fiery and biting country-rock foot-stomper that permits Crutchfield to channel some severe had-it-up-to-here perspective. “My benevolence simply hits the ground,” she sings with a sneer. “I get bored.” LINDSAY ZOLADZ

Pearl Jam blasts again into motion with “Dark Matter,” the title monitor from a coming album that kicks off a tour. Drums slam, guitars align in bruising riffs; Eddie Vedder howls about demagogues who pit “Your phrase towards the regulation” and rails about how “Everybody else pays for another person’s errors.” The darkish matter is disinformation and amorality: ethics, not astrophysics. PARELES

In the very best music named after punctuation since Vampire Weekend’s “Oxford Comma,” serpentwithfeet — the songwriter Josiah Wise — and Orion Sun (Tiffany Majette) sing about shifting previous the inadequacy of phrases to the purity of kisses: “When phrases fail, ellipsis, child come kiss me,” they every sing. It’s a bossa nova with a hip-hop undertow, making vulnerability seductive. PARELES

On Valentine’s Day, precisely a yr after releasing her alt-pop opus “Desire, I Want to Turn Into You,” Caroline Polachek put out an expanded “Everasking Edition” of the album with seven extra tracks. Along with a model of the album’s “Butterfly Net” that now options Weyes Blood, a spotlight of this deluxe version is the luminous “Spring Is Coming With a Strawberry in Its Mouth,” a reverent cowl of a comparatively obscure music by Roger Doyle’s Irish synth-pop band Operating Theatre. Polachek recites the music’s spoken-word sections with requisite angst, however the refrain turns into a showcase for her otherworldly falsetto. ZOLADZ

The Canadian songwriter and producer Saya Gray counts the times since somebody left her in “AA Bouquet for Your 180 Face.” Her voice is wry and a bit sleepy as she reconsiders the connection, singing, “I bent over backwards so many occasions/I became a golden arch so that you can stroll by means of.” But her manufacturing is alert, hyper-detailed and surreally unpredictable, segueing amongst ticking electronics, syncopated indie-rock, spacey vocal chorales, distorted guitars and what could be a koto. She could also be lonely, however she’s resourceful. PARELES

Written after she suffered by means of one too many unhealthy dates (sure, even Dua Lipa goes on unhealthy dates), the spiky, precision-cut “Training Season” seethes with romantic frustration even because it goals of one thing higher: “Need somebody to carry me shut, deeper than I’ve ever recognized.” Presumably the second single from an as-yet-unannounced album, “Training Season” re-teams Lipa with Tame Impala’s Kevin Parker, who additionally produced her earlier teaser, “Houdini.” On each tracks, Parker proves to be an knowledgeable architect of intriguingly textured surfaces, however amid such cautious design, Lipa’s icy vocals change into simply one other component within the construction, slightly than an elevator to the music’s emotional depths. ZOLADZ

The South African producer and songwriter DBN Gogo enlisted 4 extra producers — Atmos Blaq plus Yumbs, Shazmicsoul and Dr. Thulz — and two singers, Leandra.Vert and Mashudu, for this music from “Click Bait,” her new album. “Uthando” (“Love”) is an upbeat amampiano monitor that locations a dialogue by the husky-voiced Mashudu and the breathy Leandra.Vert over a richly layered, subtly mutating beat. Amapiano’s sparse bass, electric-piano chords and deep log drums mesh with an ever-changing assortment of percussion and a refined however insistent synthesizer pulse that hints at hidden tensions. PARELES

Leave it to Lana del Rey and the producer Jack Antonoff to show Irving Berlin’s proclamation of pure optimism — “nothing however blue skies any longer” — into one thing nervously foreboding. Switching it right into a minor key’s just the start. The tempo is perky, however Del Rey sings as if she’s glancing over her shoulder at one thing she needs she might beat back. Soon Antonoff dissolves her voice into echoes and fragmentary, wordless phrases. The combine on the finish is actually whistling at nighttime. PARELES

Very quietly and plainly, Sasha Alex Sloan — whose first EP, in 2018, was titled “Sad Girl” — indicts a uncared for, probably abusive upbringing in “Highlights.” Over austere guitar selecting, she sings, “I’m not offended any extra for what you probably did/But who does that to a child?” and provides, “You love me when it’s straightforward/You love me when it appears good to your folks.” There’s a survivor’s dedication behind her composure. PARELES

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