EVERY THURSDAY, here you’ll find a short list of three little birds singing sweet songs of melodies pure and true — a mini-comp covering the best new music, music videos, albums, underappreciated songs, and so on. These might be big-time artists with big, new hits, small-time musicians we stumbled across on social media, or even iconic musicians from the past whose songs may help us better understand today.
This Thursday’s Three Little Birds are Lana Del Rey (“Doin Time”), Tyler, the Creator (“EARFQUAKE”), and Men I Trust (“Norton Commander (All We Need)”).
“Doin Time” by Lana Del Rey
Summertime. Yes — about time. For us winter-depressed Montanans on the brink of jumping off that cliff, this is a big deal. And Lana Del Rey’s “Doin Time,” a cover of Sublime’s “Summertime (Doin’ Time),” has brought summer to us a few weeks early. As the sound of SoCal, Sublime’s ripe with feel-good, Californian nostalgia; and a nostalgia for a sound that, really, was pretty ahead of it’s time. Which is perhaps why Lana Del Rey’s cover still sounds good and current, without having to diverge too far from the source material — and, yet, still sound uniquely Lana.
“EARFQUAKE” by Tyler, the Creator
Tyler, the Creator sings — not raps — throughout most of his new album IGOR, a beautifully strange album by an incredibly strange artist. Tyler, the iconoclast of his early “I’m a fuckin’ walkin’ paradox” days, matured into Tyler, the sad, sunny nostalgic, in his previous album Flower Boy — a feels good, feels bad concept album and the subject of the Spotify podcast Dissect’s season 4. (Definitely check out the podcast, especially if you’re into the sort of deep dive art analysis stuff that we’re into here.) IGOR continues the maturation of Tyler, the Creator without any compromise to his artistic strangeness that sets him apart and above other rappers — or rappas ternt sangas, or what have you. Big, radical ideas at play in IGOR that few mainstream artists would risk playing, lest they lose their mainstream status. As much as he’s matured into a caring, feeling artist, Tyler, the Creator still simply doesn’t give a fuck. This is a good thing.
“Norton Commander (All We Need)” by Men I Trust
Another feel-good, summer’s-right-around-the-corner song by Montreal’s Men I Trust: “Norton Commander (All We Need).” Set to come out in February, Men I Trust’s new album Oncle Jazz has been delayed without an updated release date. Even so, the trio has shared a couple new singles, including the synthy “Numb” and “Norton Commander (All We Need)” — music video below. Enjoy, doods.