Singles 12/25

Taking place during Christmas and often beyond, Readers Week allows us to review suggestions. This year, in keeping with the unexpected rush of song, we had more choices than ever. “Bad Friend” had a resonance transcending the pandemic. “Guess we fell out/what was that all about?” — hell yes, chilling. I wish the arrangement hadContinue reading “Singles 12/25”

Singles 12/21

Welcome to Amnesty Week, friends, during which TSJ writers submitted tunes to we should’ve paid attention in the last year. The sheer plenitude stunned me; I didn’t review four songs and I still came up with the highest number of blurbs since the pandemic started. I preferred The Aces’ Haim-adjacent “Daydream” to Haim’s plodding “TheContinue reading “Singles 12/21”

The best singles of 2020

I measured my 2020 to the slap-slap of my sneakers on damp asphalt and the daily COVID-19 infection rate in Florida (the state with the prettiest name!). Bangers like “Say Something” accompanied those movements. Humid mornings and cool ones, before dawn or sunset, I was the fool reading Ali Smith and singing Kylie Minogue inContinue reading “The best singles of 2020”

Singles 11/28

Clinching a year in which his diminished commercial clout led to mildly bold strokes that served as quite excellent vocal showcases, Usher releases his sharpest single of 2020. He wastes no time explaining the stakes: “I love love but I’m freakin’ bad at it.” How he admits to caddishness without succumbing to Kanye or DrakeContinue reading “Singles 11/28”

Single 11/13

Covering the spectrum of adult sexuality from ogling to spooning, Positions shows Ariana Grande at her most commanding. Her voice has constricted to a whiskery coo faster than Mariah Carey’s, but her weaknesses complement “My Hair, “POV,” and “Westside”: she’s single-minded to distraction. Welcome back, Stevie Wonder, and you brought friends! Click on links forContinue reading “Single 11/13”

Singles 10/30

Sooner or later we’re gonna get tired of Megan topping these things, and this isn’t even her best single of the year. Click on links for full reviews. Megan Thee Stallion ft. Young Thug – Don’t Stop (8) Headie One ft. AJ Tracey & Stormzy – Ain’t It Different (8) Bruce Springsteen – Letter toContinue reading “Singles 10/30”

Singles 10/3

The overlong Folklore works as a return to Taylor Swift’s acoustic foundations, but like many excellent singer-songwriters this far into a career she has used a decade’s worth of sonic discoveries to toughen the new material. Imagining Aaron Dessner arranging “Illicit Affairs” and “Cardigan” for National albums would not stretch credulity; the same works forContinue reading “Singles 10/3”

Singles 9/12

BTS’ American breakthrough didn’t move us, nor did we cop to Selena Gomez’s making herself ‘real’ or whatever by collaborating with Trevor Daniel. More Flo Milli, please! Click on links for full reviews. Flo Milli – Weak (7) Miley Cyrus – Midnight Sky (7) Love Regenerator x Steve Lacy – Live Without Your Love (7)Continue reading “Singles 9/12”