April 2020 Playlist: Songs In Heavy Rotation

We’re all bunkered down but the hits keep coming and April is bound to be full of ’em.

From Jessie Reyez and her unlikely collab with Eminem on “COFFIN,” The Avalanches’ tribute to the late Silver Jews mastermind David Berman, and Snotty Nose Rez Kids’ air-tight #ACAB anthem, these are some of the songs we can’t stop listening to this month.

Follow us along via Spotify to keep your ear to the ground.

Jessie Reyez – COFFIN (Ft. Eminem)

We’re willing to bet you never thought you’d hear Slim Shady rap over a doo-wop waltz beat. The third collaboration between these two grim lyricists, Reyez compares a toxic relationship to the two racing each other to plummet to their deaths off the side of a building on an album full of morbid metaphors. Reyez always has a truly stunning voice and she’s never sounded better. 

 

Protomartyr – Processed By The Boys

The progressive post punk outfit unleashes a meditation on the end of the world, offering wide-eyed and spastic vocal bursts amid drumbeats falling wildly like a hail of meteors. Running through a series of fantastical and cosmic scenarios, the band dubs them “fiction” and instead suggests it’ll be something boringly human. An appropriately chaotic track for the insanity of these times. 

 

Diet Cig – Thriving

The opening track to the appropriately titled upcoming album, Do You Wonder About Me?, pop-rock duo Diet Cig deliver an anthem about conflicted post-breakup feelings with lyrics that refuse to sugarcoat. Alternating between quieter sections and pounding power chords, singer Alex Luciano steps into the single life defiant and unperturbed but still wondering why her old flame doesn’t care enough to notice.

 

Viagra Boys – Common Sense

While some continue to ignore COVID-19 social distancing warnings, filling parks and lining the beaches, this Swedish post-punk powerhouse has released the perfect anthem for our times. Sebastian Murphy’s exasperated bass vocal pleads for people to discover the tiniest shred of common sense within themselves as the guitar tones blend into a delightfully heavy sludge behind them. 

 

The Avalanches – Running Red Lights (Ft. Rivers Cuomo & Pink Siifu)

The sample-heavy electronic group pays tribute to the late Purple Mountains mastermind David Berman, recruiting Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo for a track that recycles lyrics from Berman’s “Darkness and Cold.” Cuomo drops some characteristically nerdy literary references over a starry-eyed psychedelic pop groove and an infectious chanted chorus. 

 

TOPS – Direct Sunlight

The Montreal indie-pop group kick all their negative energy and bad vibes directly in the face, opting to let the sunshine shine through over a sonic palette bursting with colour as disco-flavoured synth stabs explode behind Jane Penney’s adorably sweet delivery and a virtuosic flute solo out of left field. Perfect for a socially distant dance party.

 

Childish Gambino – 12.38 (Ft. 21 Savage)

The closest we get to old-school Gambino on his latest album, a six-and-a-half-minute storytelling track where he brings back the punchline bars detailing a romantic night over a laid-back synth-funk beat – although 21 Savage gives him a run for his money as he delivers some of his greatest deadpanned zingers in a career that’s already full of them.

 

Yves Tumor – Kerosene! (Ft. Diana Gordon)

Continuously heralded as one of the most experimental and genre-bending artists out there, Yves Tumor keeps up their reputation with a track that blends together a hip-hop beat, soulful vocals, and searing guitar solos into one all-encompassing groove. Tumor and Diana Gordon trade lines as the tension between them ultimately sets everything ablaze. 

 

Snotty Nose Rez Kids – Cops With Guns Are The Worst!!!

The First Nations hip-hop duo really lets you feel the emphasis behind each of those three exclamation marks on this track. They deliver a protest song for the ages in solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en nation, unleashing scathing and spiteful shots (both lyrical and literal) at all the forces that serve to restrain them and a riot-inducing chorus with fists raised proudly in the air. 

 

Dua Lipa – Pretty Please

Seemingly out of nowhere, Dua Lipa just released the best pop album in the last five years. One of the many highlights, this track continues to dive into her newfound all-out 80s synth-pop sound, using her confident alto delivery to draw out notes before the shimmering drop. It’s an endlessly rewarding series of exhilarating production quirks and clever lyrical flips, modernizing a timeless sound. 

Coleman Hell – Show ‘Em

You never quite know what to expect from the Canadian star who broke through with a banjo-filled banger, and here he unexpectedly leans into the Latin trap wave and actually drops some surprisingly competent and catchy rap verses. It’s a very brief but undeniably fun party-starter that sends a shoutout to up-and-coming movie heartthrob Timothee Chalamet. 

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