ArrDee — Pier Pressure
Brighton rapper ArrDee exploded onto the scene with a self-described “cheeky chappy” sound and breakout single “Oliver Twist.” The drill artist is a riot, dropping rambunctious bars about swerving around, drinking out of the bottle because cups are prone to spilling, and all other measures of debauchery. Pier Pressure is ArrDee’s debut album, and it’s not just a collection of his beloved singles. This is a crafted body of work to drink along to, to party to, and music to help get to know ArrDee for who he really is, as on “Come & Go.”
Read more about ArrDee in our Re-Upped feature.
Charli XCX — CRASH
Charli XCX spent the last decade being an architect of pop’s future. In 2020, beset by the pandemic, Charli released how i’m feeling now and somehow, amidst the nightmare that was that year, delivered on her promise of hyperpop hits only she could craft. CRASH has all the frenetic energy and haptic feedback of previous Charli XCX efforts, and this time, there’s a touch of tension and rising swells that make each tune feel like an awesome digitized wave of emotion.
GAYLE — a study of the human experience volume one
GAYLE just fucking rocks. In 2020 she released “abcdefu,” which has taken over social media globally in the last two years, soaring to No. 3 on the charts from an at-the-time virtually unknown teen artist. Alternative versions of the major label single—angrier, chill—are a great study in marketing in the new decade. The artist’s youthful sound culminates in the a study of the human experience volume one EP, which also rocks, covering the growing pains of being a teen across six promising tracks.
midwxst — better luck next time.
In the culture of digicore—an internet-centered pop music extravaganza—midwxst is a towering force. Breakout single “Trying” and the subsequent SUMMER03 EP marked midwxst as an artist to watch. As an artist who makes music for every emotion, the follow-up BACK IN ACTION and 2.0 releases expanded his sound. This week, he delivers better luck next time., which is packed with catchy anthems. Approaching midwxst with questions like “Well, are you the hyperpop rapper?” are moot—midwxst is one of the faces of pop music’s real-time evolution.
Learn more about midwxst with our feature interview.
Allan Rayman — Roadhouse 02
Since 2016’s Hotel Allan, soul singer Allan Rayman has been in the business of gut checks. He writes in the woods, he is elusive in interviews, and he is obsessed with songcraft. In 2017, Rayman released Roadhouse 01, which was meant to explain the fabric of the character of Allan himself. Roadhouse 02, out today, is meant to be the final chapter of this narrative, which also catalogs albums and EPs like CHRISTIAN and Courtney. In 45 minutes, Rayman tells a complete story with his tuneful sound and lush instrumentation.