From game-changing Cardi B collaboration ‘WAP’, to her powerful Saturday Night Live debut performance (which saw her demand justice for Breonna Taylor), 2020 has undoubtedly been the year of Megan Thee Stallion. Latest single, the Young Thug featuring ‘Don’t Stop’, is another triumph to add to her long list – and it was a must add for the NME Radio playlist.
Also new to the playlist this week we have the return of Chet Faker, the banging new one from Mallrat and AC/DC’s explosive comeback single ‘Shot In The Dark’; as well as excellent tunes from Girlhood and Lavish K.
Here are all this week’s additions to the NME 1 & 2 playlists:
On the A List
Megan Thee Stallion
‘Don’t Stop (feat. Young Thug)’
Fresh off her record-breaking collaboration with Cardi B, the chart-topping ‘WAP’, Megan Thee Stallion is back with another masterpiece. With help from Young Thug, the belting ‘Don’t Stop’ sees Megan spits empowering lines (“People say I’m way too full of myself / You’re right, and I ain’t even made it to dessert”) over a scratchy beat produced by Buddah Bless.
On the B List
‘Come Over (feat. Popcaan)’
‘Come Over’ sees Jorja Smith showcase her stunning vocal chops over groovy instrumentals, topped off by a banging verse from Popcaan. The song’s chill vibes are juxtaposed with its heavy lyrical content, which tell the story of someone who has been hurt by a hot-and-cold relationship.
Following a successful 2019 with her ‘Driving Music’ EP, Aussie singer-songwriter Mallrat (aka Grace Shaw) finally returns with her first solo single of the year. Titled ‘Rockstar’, the grungy indie-pop track features hints of Mazzy Star, Violent Soho and Lana Del Rey over sludgy guitar and lo-fi drums.
Chet Faker is back again. Five years after abandoning the moniker and switching to his real name, Australian singer-songwriter Nick Murphy has revived his Chet Faker project with a brand-new song ‘Low’, an upbeat and breezy production that also marks his debut on BMG Australia & New Zealand. If anything, here’s a rather promising start to his rebirth. Long live Chet Faker.
‘It Might Take A Woman’
London-based duo Girlhood have named The Avalanches and Fugees as inspirations, and both those influences shine through on the dreamy ‘It Might Take A Woman’. Tessa Cavanna’s smooth vocals entwine with Christian Pinchbeck’s crystalline production and foggy samples on this track, which is the latest preview of their self-titled debut album, due out later this year.
‘Good Love 2.0’
‘Good Love 2.0’ is Tamil-Swiss artist Priya Ragu’s major label debut – and a hell of a debut it is. Co-written by Priya and her brother Japhna Gold (who also produced the track), ‘Good Love 2.0’ has an infectious Kaytranada-laced bounce and an attention-grabbing outro that deconstructs traditional South Indian instrumentation. It may also be familiar if you’re an avid gamer: it’s featured on the official FIFA 21 soundtrack.
On the C List
‘Shot In The Dark’
It isn’t an AC/DC track if it isn’t rip-roaring fun. Thankfully, ‘Shot In The Dark’ – the first taste of the band’s forthcoming studio full-length ‘Power Up’ – is exactly that. Featuring the legendary group’s surviving classic lineup (Brian Johnson, Phil Rudd, Cliff Williams and Angus Young), the song is proof the group have never lost their touch, even decades on.
For his latest song ‘JEWELZ’, Anderson .Paak teamed up with hitmaker Timbaland for the first time ever. The result is an infectious funky pop production that’ll inspire plenty of shoulder shimmying and hands-in-the air moments. Although pitched, .Paak’s vocals here are still recognisable, adding a layer of playfulness to the light-hearted tune.
‘Forever Isn’t Long Enough’
Alfie Templeman isn’t resting on his laurels: In July, he dropped the EP ‘Happiness In Liquid Form’, an “eclectic, poptastic” collection that NME praised as “a welcome expansion on the kinetic indie rhythms that Templeman has merely flirted with in the past”. Now, the 17-year-old has followed up with the new single ‘Forever Isn’t Long Enough’ – which is fitting, seeing as the funky, synth-filled track is all about seizing the moment despite self-doubt.
Summer may be over, but since the pandemic has scrambled everyone’s sense of time, it’s perfectly appropriate to put on ‘Yo Sho’, by 18-year-old South London rapper Lavish K. The sunny tune, which fans of Chance The Rapper and his soulful collaborations with The Social Network will love, has been a long time coming. As Lavish tells it, “For a whole year I’ve had people hunting me down for the song; they was even unfollowing me because I was trying to make it perfect.”