This was probably one of the most difficult weeks to get through after the overturning of Roe v. Wade, which sent the country into panic. Many musicians spoke up about it, from world-dominating pop star Billie Eilish to old-school legends Pearl Jam, providing comfort to fans who know that their idols support the same values as them. It even brought Taylor Swift to Twitter to discuss the matter. Despite the chaos, there were some great releases in pop music this week, which can be found below.
Each week, Uproxx rounds up the best new pop releases. Listen up.
Taylor Swift — “Carolina”
Taylor Swift’s new song “Carolina” is for the forthcoming film Where The Crawdads Sing. It’s a haunting ballad that feels taken from Folklore; it’s in touch with her patient, folky side. Her vocals linger in a lower range, imbuing the track with a visceral seriousness.
Willow — “Maybe It’s My Fault”
Willow, who pivoted to pop punk with her latest album Lately I Feel Everything, has barely rested in the past year. “Maybe It’s My Fault” is the newest of her songs, after collaborations like “Psychofreak” and “Purge,” and it has the same sharp edge and bombastic personality, but it’s even more inventive and catchy, really leaning into the darkness.
Muna — “What I Want”
“Silk Chiffon” singers Muna have had to prove that they’re more than that hit, and this new self-titled album succeeds. This electronic track “What I Want” is colorful and holds nothing back: “I want the full effects / I want to hit it hard / I want to dance in the middle of a gay bar,” they sing. It’s the perfect pride anthem.
Nessa Barrett — “Die First”
Nessa Barrett’s strength is her vulnerability, and her new song “Die First” takes that to the next level. In Morrissey-like fashion (“To die by your side is such a heavenly way to die,” of course), Barrett shows her love and devotion through tragic means, contemplating her own mortality as well as that of her lover: “I hope I die first / ‘Cause I don’t wanna live without you,” she sings.
Conan Gray — “Disaster”
“Disaster” portrays pop star Conan Gray’s immaculate storytelling ability. Against a bouncy beat, he sings about his reluctance about engaging in romance. He thinks about the worst possible scenario, as we’re all prone to do: “I’m a little bit plastered / You call me a liar, / Now I’m falling in faster / This could be a disaster,” he sings entertainingly.
Kacey Musgraves — “Can’t Help Falling In Love”
A lot of artists have taken on the task of covering this classic, but Kacey Musgraves is definitely one of the best candidates. Her soft voice and twangy style make it sound as if the ballad is her own; her vocals glow with earnestness and emotion against the slow piano. Though it’s brief, every second is impactful.
Dove Cameron — “Breakfast”
Dove Cameron is not messing around on this new song “Breakfast,” which is propelled forward with a brooding, menacing rhythm as well as mischievous vocals. She haunts in a Lana Del Rey or Billie Eilish kind of way, with incisive lyrics: “I eat boys like you for breakfast / One by one hung on my necklace / And they’ll always be mine / It makes me feel alive,” she sings.
Charlie Puth, Jung Kook — “Left And Right”
This collaboration between Charlie Puth and BTS’ Jung Kook is about trying to move on from a relationship that’s hard to forget. The two singers trade off verses, singing about the pain over a breezy beat: “Did you know you’re the one that got away / And even now baby I’m still not okay,” Puth sings.
Hayley Kiyoko — “Deep In The Woods”
“‘Deep in the Woods’ is a song that captures the feeling of instant connection,” said singer Hayley Kiyoko, “as if you’ve known someone forever even though you’ve only just met.” She does a great job conveying this powerful sensation in her emotive new song, on which she sings, “I know I met you in another life / You’re unforgettable.”
Glaive — “Minnesota Is A Place That Exists”
Glaive’s new song “Minnesota Is A Place That Exists” is an addictive, vivacious anthem about youthful, reckless love: “Smoking cigarettes with pretty girls inside my head / Do you remember when you / Said you’re smoking less and then you ashed it on your chest,” he sings over an almost hyperpop sound. The track bursts with idiosyncratic synths and an eccentric aura that will make you press repeat.
Some artists covered here are Warner Music artists. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.