10 Best Songs of the Week: Eaves Wilder, Blonde Redhead, Cherry Glazerr, Lala Lala, and More | Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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10 Best Songs of the Week: Eaves Wilder, Blonde Redhead, Cherry Glazerr, Lala Lala, and More

Plus Wilco, The Joy Formidable, Peter Gabriel, and a Wrap-up of the Week’s Other Notable New Tracks

Sep 29, 2023 Bookmark and Share


Welcome to the 31st Songs of the Week of 2023. This week Andy Von Pip, Marc Abbott, Mark Moody, Matt the Raven, Scott Dransfield, and Stephen Humphires all helped me decide what should make the list and we settled on a Top 10.

In the past week or so we posted interviews with Black Belt Eagle Scout, Tiffany Anders and Mato Wayuhi (the music supervisors on Reservation Dogs), W.H. Lung, Gabriels, Lael Neale, Steven Wilson, Coach Party, and others.

In the last week we reviewed some albums.

Remember that we previously announced our new print issue, Issue 71 with Weyes Blood and Black Belt Eagle Scout on the covers.

To help you sort through the multitude of fresh songs released in the last week, we have picked the 10 best the last week had to offer, followed by some honorable mentions. Check out the full list below.

1. Eaves Wilder: “Freefall”

On Tuesday, rising British musician, Eaves Wilder shared a new song “Freefall,” via a music video. The single is out now on Secretly Canadian.

Wilder says “Freefall” is a follow-up to her 2022 single, “I Stole Your Jumper,” which was about female revenge.

“‘Freefall’ is about pure hedonism, about wanting to feel everything and do everything at once,” Wilder explains in a press release. “I wrote it the moment I realized I was ready to move on and allow myself to let go again.”

“Freefall” follows “Better Together,” a new song she shared in June that was one of our Songs of the Week, and her debut EP, Hookey, released back in March.

Wilder has been recording, producing, and releasing her own music since the age of 16. After she signed to Secretly Canadian, she released Hookey along with some accompanying music videos. Wilder made our 23 for 2023 list and previously we wrote about her singles “I Stole Your Jumper” and “Morning Rain.”

Read our review of Hookey.

2. Blonde Redhead: “Sit Down for Dinner Part I” and “Sit Down for Dinner Part II”

Blonde Redhead released a new album, Sit Down for Dinner, their first new studio album in nine years, today via section1. On Tuesday they shared two interconnected new songs, title tracks “Sit Down for Dinner Part I” and “Sit Down for Dinner Part II.” They were shared via a short film/music video and are essentially one song. Sebastian Mlynarski directed the film.

The iconic band features Kazu Makino and Italian twin brothers Simone and Amedeo Pace.

The two songs and the album title are inspired by this passage from Joan Didion’s 2005 memoir of grief, The Year of Magical Thinking: “Life changes fast. Life changes in the instant. You sit down to dinner and life as you know it ends.”

Makino had this to say in a press release: “‘Sit Down for Dinner’ is written like a journal and I suppose it’s confessional. ‘Part 1’ starts with me living on a remote island and contemplating what to do. ‘Part 2’ is me writing to my mother and father alongside inspiration from Ms. Didion’s writing. It touches on death and destiny and how we move through our lives without knowing how and when the end will come (with no pity). I’m excited by the way I was able to put down my rather terrifying thoughts on top of ‘uplifting’ music. You would never guess what I’m singing about.”

Of directing the short film, Mlynarski says: “The inspiration for the film I made for ‘Sit Down For Dinner’ was the result of long conversations with Kazu. It was important to both of us to create visuals that were deceptively simple. She told me that the song was partially written in honor of her friend’s passing and that got us talking about death. We talked about the various types of death we experience in a lifetime, like an ego death, the death of a loved one, or a death of ideals. Culturally there’s been a lot of discussion about the death of masculinity so we were also interested in that. I turned to the footage of conflict, political uprisings, and sports. For every win there’s a loss, for every victor, there’s a loser. To a certain degree, I think we are always both. Some people die victorious on a hill somewhere, some die doing something they love, but there could also be someone who may die getting ready to sit down for dinner in front of their favorite television show.”

Previously the band shared the album’s first single, “Snowman,” which was one of our Songs of the Week. Then they shared its second single, “Melody Experiment,” which was also one of our Songs of the Week. The album’s third single, “Before,” made a special Songs of the Week playlist.

Sit Down for Dinner was written and recorded over a five-year period in New York City, Upstate New York, Milan, and Tuscany.

Of the album’s title, Simone Pace said in a previous press release: “I know a lot of people eat and run, eat in front of their TV, or don’t care about it too much—and that’s OK—but we really do. It’s a moment for us to sit down and have time with each other.”

For Makino, eating dinner as a family took on new meaning during the pandemic when she couldn’t visit her parents in Japan. She said: “Life changes fast. Life changes in the instant. You sit down to dinner and life as you know it ends.”

Of Blonde Redhead’s enduring band dynamic, Makino said: “We have a language we have kept. We try to change rhythms, concepts, and sounds. But that harmonic sensibility has stayed the same. It hits the same part of your heart.”

Blonde Redhead’s last full-length album was 2014’s Barragán, although in 2017 they released the 3 O’Clock EP.

3. Cherry Glazerr: “Golden”

Cherry Glazerr (aka Clementine Creevy) released a new album, I Don’t Want You Anymore, today via Secretly Canadian. Now that the album is out, we can include one of its album tracks we liked, “Golden.” The lush track starts off like Harry Nilsson’s 1968 classic “One.” Read our review of the new album here.

Previously Cherry Glazerr shared the album’s first single, “Soft Like a Flower.” Then she shared its second single, “Ready For You,” via a music video. “Ready For You” was one of our Songs of the Week. shared its third single, “Sugar,” via a music video.

Yves Rothman (Yves Tumor, Blondshell, Amaarae) co-produced I Don’t Want You Anymore. The collaboration with Rothman began with a cover of Metallica’s “My Friend of Misery” and grew into this record. “The songs on this one are songs I’ve dreamed of making,” Creevy said in a previous press release.

After years of being on the road, the pandemic offered a sense of solace for Creevy, where she was about to take a step back to really think about her life. “I guess I’m coming to terms with a lot of my bullshit,” she said. “When you’re always leaving, you don’t have a great sense of where your relationships stand, romantic or otherwise. You’re not thinking about the work that goes into maintaining them.”

It’s been four years since a Cherry Glazerr album, but the band shared their single “Soft Drink” in 2021.

4. Lala Lala: “HIT ME WHERE IT HURTS”

On Wednesday, Lala Lala (aka Lillie West) shared a new single, “HIT ME WHERE IT HURTS.” The single is out now via Hardly Art.

In a press release, West says: “‘HIT ME WHERE IT HURTS’ is about destruction and impatience. I wanted the song to sound blown out and desperate.”

West’s newest album, I Want the Door to Open, came out in 2021 via Hardly Art. In 2022 she shared the new song “Memory.”

Read our Self-Portrait feature with Lala Lala.

5. Wilco: “Ten Dead”

Wilco released a new album, Cousin, today via dBpm. (Stream it here.) The band only shared two pre-release singles from the album, but now that it’s out we can include one of the album tracks we love, “Ten Dead.” In the song Jeff Tweedy appears to be singing about how we’ve all become somewhat numb to the regular mass shootings and various crisis on the news.

You can also read our review of the album, which we posted yesterday, here.

Cate Le Bon produced Cousin. Previously Wilco shared its lead single, “Evicted.” Then they shared its second single, title track “Cousin,” via a lyric video. “Cousin” was one of our Songs of the Week.

Of Cousin, Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy said in a previous press release: “I’m cousin to the world. I don’t feel like I’m a blood relation, but maybe I’m a cousin by marriage.”

Of the collaboration, Le Bon said: “The amazing thing about Wilco is they can be anything. They’re so mercurial, and there’s this thread of authenticity that flows through everything they do, whatever the genre, whatever the feel of the record. There aren’t many bands who are able to, this deep into a successful career, successfully change things up.”

Of working with Le Bon, Tweedy added: “Cate is very suspicious of sentiment. but she’s not suspicious of human connection.”

Cousin sees Glenn Kotche on drums, John Stirratt on bass, Mikael Jorgensen on synths, Pat Sansone on piano, Euan Hinshelwood on saxophone, Tweedy on electric guitar and vocals, and Nels Cline on guitar.

Wilco’s previous album was 2022’s Cruel Country.

Tweedy is also releasing a new book, World With a Song: Music That Changed My Life and Life That Changed My Music, on November 7 via Penguin Random House’s Dutton.

6. The Joy Formidable: “Share My Heat”

On Tuesday, Welsh alt rock band The Joy Formidable shared a 15-minute long new song, “Share My Heat,” via a music video. This single is out now via Enci/Full Time Hobby/Hassle/Soundly Distro.

The Joy Formidable are Ritzy Bryan (vocalist/guitarist), Rhydian Dafydd (bassist/vocalist), and Matt Thomas (drummer). Vids Invader directed the animated video for “Share My Heat.”

Bryan had this to say about the song in a press release: “‘Share My Heat’ is about true connection & love. Deep, selfless love between humans is a beautiful part of our existence, but I’m also singing about our inherent love for nature, the living world and our kinship to everything: plants, animals, mountains & lake. Can we repair our relationship and bring more reciprocity, compassion and companionship to a world that already gives us so much.”

“Share My Heat” follows “The Hat,” a new song the band shared in September that was one of our Songs of the Week, and “Cut Your Face,” a new song the band shared in August.

The band’s last album was 2021’s Into The Blue.

The Joy Formidable are originally from North Wales and currently split their time between there and Utah, “in the middle of nowhere” and the closest thing they could find in the USA to their home turf.

7. Peter Gabriel: “This Is Home”

Yesterday, Peter Gabriel shared a new song, “This Is Home.” It is the latest single from Gabriel’s forthcoming new album, i/o, which will be his first album of original songs in over 20 years. The album’s exact release date has yet to be announced.

Gabriel calls it “a love song” and also had this to say about “This Is Home” in a statement: “It began with inspiration from some of the great Tamla Motown rhythm sections so we’re trying to recreate that in a modern way, complete with the tambourine and handclaps. The groove I like a lot, Tony Levin does a great bass part there.

“I did an unusual thing for me in that I tried doing this low voice / high voice thing, so you get this almost conversational voice at the beginning and the second part is a higher, more emotional voice. I thought that would be both intimate and emotive to put the two side by side.”

Gabriel initially worked with DJ/producer Skrillex on “This Is Home,” although he doesn’t appear on the final track. Gabriel explains: “I’d had a call from Skrillex, who’s a very talented musician, and I thought it would be interesting to see what he had in mind, so he came to my home studio and we sat down and talked and tried to evolve bits and pieces and it was mainly for this song. He was trying to encourage me to write a song about staying up all night in a night club and that sort of thing, but that’s not really my life so I made it more about family and home and I like it. Though we took the song in this other direction it was an interesting experience nonetheless, and I think it is good for me to be taken outside my normal comfort zone sometimes.”

“This Is Home” also features Swedish male voice choir Orphei Drängar and an orchestral arrangement from John Metcalfe. Says Gabriel: “I think it’s got a groove but unlike most pop songs that have a middle eight or bridge this has two and they are both quite different. The first one is atmospheric and dreamy and we have this amazing all male choir which comes in slowly into this dreamy, garden-like section. The choir, Orphei Drängar, are based in Sweden and I think they get a fantastic sound, it’s dark, stirring and emotional. The strings in the other middle section I really like, it’s quite catchy, poppy in a way. I think John picked up on what I was trying to go for there and did a beautiful job, as always.”

For each single from the album, Gabriel is working with a different artist to do the cover artwork. David Moreno and his work “Conexión de catedral II” forms the single cover artwork for “This Is Home.”

Gabriel says: “The artwork this month is a wonderful piece by David Moreno. I was looking for contemporary art that represented the house or home in some ways and we saw a few things but his really stuck out. David often makes these one-colour, house-like symbols with piano wire connecting and I think it is very unique work. This is a relationship song, so given what I was trying to do with the lyric it felt like his image with the two doors was a very natural match. He was up for letting us use it, so I am very grateful to David for that.”

Previously Gabriel shared the album’s first single, “Panopticom,” which featured Brian Eno and was one of our Songs of the Week. That was followed by its second single, “The Court.” Then the album’s third single was “Playing For Time.” The fourth single was the album’s title track, “i/o.” The album’s fifth single was “Four Kinds of Horses,” which also made our Songs of the Week list. “Road to Joy” was the album’s sixth single and it also made our Songs of the Week list. Then he shared “So Much,” “Olive Tree,” and “Love Can Heal.”

Gabriel’s last full-length album of original materials was 2002’s Up, although in 2010 he released the Scratch My Back covers album and in 2011 he released New Blood, which featured orchestral re-recordings of songs from across Gabriel’s career. Gabriel’s last full tour was 2014’s Back to Front Tour, which celebrated his classic 1986 album So.

The new tour will feature Gabriel’s regular band-mates Tony Levin, David Rhodes, and Manu Katché and will include songs from i/o, as well as ones across his back catalogue.

Also read our previous interview between Gabriel and Arcade Fire’s Richard Reed Parry.

8. Helena Deland: “Strawberry Moon”

Montreal singer/songwriter Helena Deland is releasing a new album, Goodnight Summerland, on October 13 via Chivi Chivi. On Wednesday, she shared another new song from it, “Strawberry Moon,” via a music video featuring Deland performing the song on a rowboat at dusk. David Connor directed the video.

In a press release, Deland says she wrote the song “during an annual vacation at a beloved friend’s cottage by the lake, where strawberries are known as ‘heart berries’ in the Anishinaabe tradition, ‘Strawberry Moon’ is sleepless and peaceful.”

She adds: “I was clear minded, able to welcome both the eagerness and weariness brought forth by the love story unfolding at a distance. These sentiments infuse ordinary nights with the colors of fate. Every year of our lives has taken us to where we are. We’re not just witnesses to this moment; we’re an integral part of a world where strawberries bloom every year. This is the final single from and last song on Goodnight Summerland, out October 13th. My North American tour starts November 2nd with support from Jana Horn and Shaina Hayes.”

Goodnight Summerland includes “Spring Bug,” a new song Deland shared in June that was one of our Songs of the Week, and the 2022 single “Swimmer.” When the album was announced she shared another single from it, “Bright Green Vibrant Gray,” via a music video.

Deland released her debut solo album, Someone New, in 2020 on Luminelle. It was #30 on our Top 100 Albums of 2020 list.

Deland co-produced the new album with Sam Evian (aka Sam Owens, who also engineered it), recording at Flying Cloud Recordings in the Catskill mountains. Heba Kadry (Beach House, Slowdive) mastered the album.

Read our 2018 The End interview with Helena Deland about endings and death.

9. Sun June: “Mixed Bag”

Austin-based band Sun June are releasing a new album, Bad Dream Jaguar, on October 20 via Run for Cover. On Tuesday, they shared another new song from it, “Mixed Bag,” via a lyric video.

Sun June is Laura Colwell (vocals), Michael Bain (guitar), Justin Harris (bass), Sarah Schultz (drums), and Stephen Salisbury (guitar).

The band collectively had this to say about “Mixed Bag” in a press release: “‘Mixed Bag’ is about the comforts and frustrations of well-worn relationships with people and places. It focuses on the harsh realities of living in Texas, being in a long distance relationship, and becoming irritable with the people you love.”

The also had this to say about the song: “In some ways this song allowed us to reflect and become more aware of how dumb our arguments are. ‘You were searching for a reason to be mad,’ and ‘I know every single fight we’ve ever had,’ are accusations and boasts that made us laugh. Each chorus expands on the last, as we acknowledge the ways we’re repeating the past but try to keep score regardless.

“We recorded ‘Mixed Bag’ both in Texas and North Carolina—Dan Duszynski, Alli Rogers, Danny Reisch, Max Lorenson, and Chad Doriocourt all had a hand in trying to shape this into a dusty Petty-esque song. The song is about struggling to stay hopeful about the future, but we hope the bop outweighs the sadness.

“For the video, we asked Vanessa Pla to help capture some of the rural outskirts of Austin on Super 8 film. We took inspiration from some old 1940s PSAs and Texas corporate films. She and her crew found themselves in the middle of cow pastures off of brand new highways, face to face with some friendly longhorns.”

Previously the band shared Bad Dream Jaguar songs “Get Enough,” “Easy Violence,” and “John Prine.” “John Prine” was one of our Songs of the Week.

The band’s last full-length album was 2021’s Somewhere.

Read our interview with Laura Colwell on Somewhere here.

10. L’Rain: “r(EMOTE)”

L’Rain (aka multi-instrumentalist Taja Cheek) is releasing a new album, I Killed Your Dog, on October 13 via Mexican Summer. On Wednesday, she shared another song from it, “r(EMOTE).”

Cheek says of “r(EMOTE)” in a press release: “I’m wondering how long it takes to forget someone you’re close to. This theme is present throughout the album as I reflect on living through moments of heartbreak, not just romantic, but the dissolution of friendships and other close relationships. As always in the world of L’Rain, the specifics are hidden from public view but I leave listeners with a lot of big feelings and an invitation to examine their own life experiences through my particular lens.”

When the album was announced, L’Rain shared the album’s “Pet Rock,” via a music video. “Pet Rock” was one of our Songs of the Week. Prior to that, she shared the album’s “New Year’s UnResolution.”

Cheek worked with long-time collaborators Andrew Lappin and Ben Chapoteau-Katz on I Killed Your Dog, which is her third full-length.

Honorable Mentions:

These songs almost made the Top 10.

alexalone: “ALL I NEED”

Maria BC: “Still”

Daneshevskaya: “Challenger Deep”

Adam Miller: “Illusion Pool”

The Mountain Goats: “Murder at the 18th St. Garage”

The Rolling Stones: “Sweet Sounds of Heaven” (Feat. Lady Gaga and Stevie Wonder)

Ty Segall: “Eggman”

Underworld: “denver luna (acappella)”

Here’s a handy Spotify playlist featuring the Top 10 in order, followed by all the honorable mentions:

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