Welcome back to HUNGER’s Hits of the Week: your one-stop shop for all the best in music right now. It’s February, which means the music industry’s dreaded quiet period of December and January is finally over, meaning the releases are beginning to come thick and fast. This week, US crooner Don Toliver is back with his first single since announcing his first child alongside fellow singer Kali Uchis, New Jersey’s N3WYRKLA drops an alternative, pop, rock and R&B tear-jerker, Lil Yachty is back on the rap wave and more.
Don Toliver – ‘Bandit’
Stateside rap phenomenon Don Toliver is upping the ante on his latest single. His Love Sick project won huge acclaim last year, matching street rhythms to fantastic hooks and production that ranged from trap, drill, and beyond. The new tune, ‘Bandit’, builds on this energy, a bolshy return that exudes class. The video is typically lavish and features Don’s crew riding their motorcycles – including two from Don’s personal collection. On the track, producer ReidMD gives a kind of chipmunk-soul treatment to ‘One More Hour’, a sprawling deep cut from Tame Impala’s 2020 album The Slow Rush. It works pretty well as source material for the kind of hazy, expansive rap beat that Toliver’s label boss, Travis Scott, would love, and as a result, works perfectly for Toliver’s similarly woozy aesthetic.
N3WYRKLA – ‘it don’t hit no more’
After a career-defining feature on Brent Faiyaz’s ‘Outside All Night’, which also starred A$AP Rocky, New Jersey’s N3WYRKLA is continuing her upward trajectory in 2024. The singer’s latest offering comes in the form of the powerful, ‘it don’t hit no more’, which sees the rising talent glide across plucky acoustics and futuristic synths, laying the perfect foundation for N3WYRKLA’s intoxicating vocals to sit upon. Throughout the cut, the singer’s fluctuating emotions are matched by her unconventional vocal style, letting out strained, heartfelt notes before almost whispering as the track transitions. If you’re in need of a new breakup track to blast on repeat, this should do the trick.
Lil Yachty – ‘A Cold Sunday’
Lil Yachty stays busy. Let’s Start Here., his psychedelic rock album, just celebrated its first birthday, and Yachty has been on a streak of one-off singles and collaborations since that release. Yachty’s new song is called ‘A Cold Sunday’, a brief, chorus-free track built on a chopped-up guitar sample. It doesn’t sound too different from many of the tracks on Let’s Start Here., but Yachty is rapping on this one: “It’s a cold Sunday to complain, I hold it in until it rain, I fought demons after fame, I spent millions on terrain.” The single comes with a music video directed by AMD Visuals, in which he raps along to the song through multiple screens simultaneously and ruminates on heartbreak over a soulful jazz riff. Check it out below.
Dehd – ‘Mood Ring’
Next up, Chicago psych-surf pop trio Dehd – comprised of Emily Kempf, Jason Balla, and Eric McGrady – have announced their fifth studio album, Poetry, and also shared the lead single, ‘Mood Ring’. Kempf’s bright, staccato vocals and Balla’s reverb-drenched guitar riffs, underpinned by Eric McGrady’s punchy drums, create a beautiful facade, as if boiling life down to love alone in the track. “I check my mood ring, gimme that, gimme that sweet believing,” Kempf insists. “I got these feelings, I wanna shout out loud, loud, loud.” The concept of surrendering to “that sweet believing” is further reinforced by the track’s elaborate music video, starring actor Alex Grelle, who escapes mundanity by ordering, then drinking a “Mood Ring” perfume that opens a portal to a far more glamorous world.
BADBADNOTGOOD – ‘Take What’s Given’
Finally, Canadian ensemble BADBADNOTGOOD are back with ‘Take What’s Given’ featuring Houston riser reggie. The track – recorded over multiple sessions at LA’s Valentine Studios last year – sees the band take a countrified, rootsy detour, as horns, harmonies, reggie’s gospel-infused croon and jazzy chords combine into what can only be described as a sunlit spiritual experience. “Stylistically, it’s super different than anything we’ve put out before, but we had such a fun time playing it, and it was stuck in our heads for a year while we worked on other stuff,” the band said of the track on Instagram. This release from BADBADNOTGOOD follows a string of one-off singles with collaborators including Charlotte Day Wilson on ‘Sleeper‘, and Jonah Yano on ‘the ordinary is ordinary because it ordinarily repeats‘. And with BADBADNOTGOOD in and out of the studio, expect plenty more offerings this year.