Songs You Need In Your Life: July 2024
Our rolling list of this month’s essential new tracks.
Songs You Need In Your Life: July 2024

The FADER's Songs You Need In Your Life are our picks for the most exciting and essential new music releases out there. Every day, we update this page with new selections. Listen on our Spotify and Apple Music playlists or hear them all below.

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MAVI: "i'm so tired"

MAVI entered 2024 with “drunk prayer,” a song that revealed the deep wounds success had lashed into the rapper. The South Carolina MC’s music is a leatherbound notepad, a place for timeless poetry far from stifling definitions of what’s “lyrical” while remaining enamored with the form of hip-hop. He continues to stir our empathy with “i’m so tired,” another tale of paranoia, self-medication, and a deep bitterness simmering beneath it all. “Flippin’ through the chicken, your fingertips get stained red,” he raps, and even before his voice cracks slightly with emotion, you know he’s not talking about Buffalo wings. His disorienting, engrossing odyssey of guilt feels claustrophobic next to the beat, a tragic and soulful end-credits piano punctuated with metallic SOPHIE-like synth stabs. But even at his most pessimistic, MAVI never loses his defiance, even if it has a pyrrhic quality: “I made it out, I ain’t too worried if they claim me / Mainly if we ain’t co-parent this pain, prefer you hate me.” – Jordan Darville

Veeze and Rylo Rodriguez: "F*cked A Fan"

"Good rappers convince you they're the best alive while their songs are playing; better rappers like Veeze and Rylo Rodriguez casually drop lines that ring in your head while listening to other people's music." — Vivian Medithi, from the July 12 edition of Rap Blog

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Tanukichan: "City Bus"

Riders of public transit will delight in Tanukichan’s new single “City Bus” from her upcoming EP Circles. From Oakland-native Hannah von Loon, the song indicates a new, grittier sound to the shoegaze artist’s catalog. “Feeling the constant start and stop motion making me sway and keep my balance while watching the city go by," she sings, "surrounded by all the different looking people, sounds and smells in SF.” Like the titular vehicle, the song jerks back and forth, reminiscent of a familiar path. — Hannah Sung

Dialect: "Late Fragment"

Listening to Andrew PM Hunt’s music is like taking a weird walk through the Northern English countryside — or, at least, how someone (me) who’s never taken a weird walk through the Northern English countryside would imagine it to feel. Atlas of Green, his forthcoming album as Dialect, germinated from such excursions, as well as more academic dives into the ancient history of his native Wirral Peninsula. Here, Hunt blends the legends of the past with a vision of the future as a sort of post-apocalyptic Eden, where the record’s protagonist, Green, walks a lonely road of exploration. “Late Fragment” blossoms with glittering, consonant strings, synths, and woodwinds, while strange vocal loops sprout and blow away, dappling the verdant landscape with their quaint detritus. It’s the type of track that rewards repeat listens, each one revealing a new seed to float away on. — Raphael Helfand

Show Me The Body: "It Burns"

Appropriately agitated and indiscriminately angry for our dystopian present, "It Burns" is chaotic hardcore punk for the post-apocalyptic world, where brutal industrial noise and face-punching percussion come together to intensify Julian Pratt’s confrontational bark, brimming with rabid aggression and unchecked paranoia. A gritty cacophony that borders on a tumultuous assault on the ears, there’s something about the rage and rebellion of “It Burns” that just makes you want to smash some shit and say “fuck you” to the New World Order. — Sandra Song

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Laura Marling: "Patterns"

Mark Twain said history doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes. Laura Marling says “But as the years go by and points comply / With ever more relief / Then patterns in repeat can begin.” Marling explores these idiosyncratic changes that you retrospectively realize are cyclical. In her narrative, Marling softly declares that this mid-July lull is nothing to hate. If we view time like a friend like the veteran signer does, “Patterns” in repeat is something we can all delight in its hushed familiarity. — Hannah Sung

Kelly Lee Owens: "Love You Got"

Welsh techno producer Kelly Lee Owens is pushing for unbridled joy on the excellent first taste of her upcoming album Dreamstate. "Love You Got" is the sound of Owens willing another to lean into fate, tethering the prospect of what lies on the other side to some of her most straightforwardly bold and uplifting production to date. "Feel these desire lines, they pull like the tide, between you and I," she sings. Resistance is futile. — David Renshaw

Bartees Strange: "Lie 95"

Bartees Strange returns in confessional mode, with a hearty and widescreen song written from one of life's in-between moments. "Lie 95" is filled with longing, regret, and a little hope with Bartees is on a quest for new love, be it romantic or merely platonic. Fresh from what sounds like a recent split he's down but not out, positively roaring his way through the lines, "She’s so good I’m dying, now I’m crying / Ain’t no need for lying." It sounds like work on the follow-up to his 2022 album Farm To Table is heading in a blockbuster direction. — David Renshaw

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Asma Maroof, Patrick Belaga, Tapiwa Svove: “The Stranger”

Despite being the polar opposite of Asma Maroof’s better-known work as one-half of Nguzunguzu, “The Stranger” is just as striking and alien-sounding as the deconstructed club beats she once produced. Taken from her experimental collaboration with cellist Patrick Belaga and saxophonist Tapiwa Svove, it’s a surrealist, 15-minute slow burner with an improv-like groove that would feel right at home inside of a smoky jazz lounge. Accompanied by lonesome strings, percolating percussion, and stretched-out notes, “The Stranger” may be a far cry from the GHE20G0TH1K dance floor, but it does solidify that Maroof hasn’t lost her touch for creating near-impossible textures out of senseless noise — she’s just managed to get even better. — Sandra Song

Truck Violence: "He ended the bender hanging"

Hailing from the rural Albertan countryside, Truck Violence create experimental hardcore that incorporates the warped atmospherics of shoegaze and disillusioned yearning of folk-country with the existential alienation of first-wave emo. Abrasive and off-putting, their sound is almost as heavy as the morbid title of “He ended the bender hanging,” a track overwhelmed with absolute disillusionment and dread. It’s a song that’s completely at odds with itself, where a battering ram of hardcore noise slams up against the sharp twang of a banjo, and frontman Karsyn Henderson’s guttural wails manage to bridge the gap between the lyrics’ use of flowery language and the acrid sting of its subject matter, whether it's the abuse, the shame, or the abject ugliness of human nature. — Sandra Song

Buscabulla: "11:11"

“11:11” is the latest release from Buscabulla, a.k.a. Luis Alfredo Del Valle and Raquel Berrios, the Puerto Rican power couple making infectiously fun electro-pop that’s perfect for cleaning, chilling, or clubbing. Just as bright and wavy as you’d expect, it’s an easy-breezy burst of exuberance and energy that strikes the perfect balance between indie dance and funky blasts of reggaeton, bachata, and salsa. Kept in time by an enthusiastic clap track, you can’t help but soak in “11:11’s” neon-colored mix of pulsing synths and sugary pop vocals, ideally on the beach in your little American Apparel one-piece. — Sandra Song

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Amore: "Delirio"

"Delirio," the new single by Madrid-based Amore, does the Rosalía thing of taking traditional flamenco sounds and sculpting them into a sleeker, more modern shape. There are echoes of Erika De Casier's ASMR&B album Still, too. Co-produced by Amore alongside Dinamarca and Rusia-IDK’s TRISTÁN!, the song pulses gently throughout with subtle percussion and gunshot samples adding a little grit to the smooth sheen. Amore's vocals are understated but heartfelt as she explores the idea of love as a prison, the kind from which there is no release. — David Renshaw

KOKOKO!: “Motema Mabe”

Despite escalating violence, mass displacements, and rampant human rights violations, the ongoing conflict between the DRC military and hundreds of rebel groups has garnered little international attention. With hundreds of thousands of Congolese civilians caught in its crosshairs, the fighting has been met with civil unrest in the capital city of Kinhasa, fueled by the kind of righteous anger heard within the distorted soundsystem noise and biting punk vitriol of KOKOKO!’s “Motema Mabe.” Four-and-a-half minutes of traditional Congolese rhythms played on “ready-made” scrapyard percussion, it’s D.I.Y. electro-punk with a clubby disposition, a spiky exterior, and an onslaught of razor-sharp polyrhythms pumped through static-filled production. And with a sense of palpable fury contained within its tangle of jagged instrumentation, “Motema Mabe” truly feels like late-night dance music for a riotous proletariat, caustic and cutting as it’s blasted through a blown-out soundsystem on the corner of a busy Kinhasa street. — Sandra Song

Nettspend: “That One Song”

“That One Song” has been floating in the ether for months (an eternity in internet rap years), teased in snippets and at shows, its prominent Deftones sample a supercharged electromagnet for the TikTok generation. It’s finally out now in full, accompanied by a video in which the 17-year-old Richmond rapper takes flight, swimming through the air like he’s in a 2008 5 Gum commercial. Like most music from Nettspend’s cadre, the new track is over in less than two minutes. But this one feels like a fully fleshed-out idea, as he rides Stephen Carpenter’s iconic guitar line and justron’s clipping 808s with unflagging, vocal-fried charisma from start to finish. — Raphael Helfand

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Kali Uchis: "Never Be Yours"

Back in 2014, a bleach blond, pastel pink-wearing, pre-Isolation Kali sang of Sanrio and Beamers on a song called "Never Be Yours." That song now has an official release a decade later, the sample of “Oh Honey” by Delegation finally cleared. The interpolation is still saccharine but with an extended, heavenly-ascension-like intro and new breathy harmonies that bring the song up to par with her current discography. Listening to lyrics like “I’m not gonna be yours right now,” sung after becoming a parent for the first time with her partner Don Toliver, makes me emotional; she’s not the untouchable, carefree 20-year-old that first lured us in anymore. But for these 3:16 minutes, she’s taking us back to her Por Vida era — simpler times. — Hannah Sung

Jim Legxacy: "nothings changed (!)"

Jim Legxacy's first new music of the year is a bittersweet song dedicated to his sister, Atinuke, who passed away at age 19. "nothings changed(!)" is focused on loss, Legxacy refers to Atinuke being on a "phantom holiday" as he steps into empty rooms and hears the songs she loved, but there is an underlying message of hope and perseverance rising up throughout. The midwest emo guitars that twinkled across last year's HNPM remain with drums adding a gentle sway to the U.K. artist's rallying cry. "Nothing's changed," he shouts out to his sibling. "You're still on my mind." It's a wonderful, heartfelt tribute. — David Renshaw

Another Dancer: “Overfriendly Dogs”

Flashes of the shambolic post-punk of Good Sad Happy Bad and the goofy, fraternal synth-pop of the blog-era gem Teenagers can be seen, often simultaneously, across the new single from the Brussels-based band Another Dancer. Vocals are layered on top of each other to a conversational near-cacophony, like you’ve been placed at the center of a Dry Cleaning show where everyone is, improbably, in a good mood. Sunny synth sweeps jostle next to bent, jangly guitar lines for a song that finds a special kind of vibrance in its mess. — Jordan Darville

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Clothesline From Hell: "You Don't Know"

Toronto-based Adam LaFramboise records under the name Clothesline From Hell, a relatively deep-cut WWE reference that nods to the playful nature of his music. Though his earlier material dates back to 2018, LaFramboise is on a hot streak right now with "You Don't Know" arriving soon after the similarly excellent "Open Up!" His Beck-like songs mix acoustic songwriting and processed beats and "You Don't Know" takes the punchy drum machine sound and applies it to lyrics expressing frustration and rage. "Say it to me, do you want to go?" he sings at one point as if he needs holding back from starting a barroom brawl. Maybe those wrestling moves might come in handy. — David Renshaw

Luster: "Like I Do"

L.A.-based shoegaze band Luster have a tranquil yet spin-tingling sound and seem to have a good sense of humor, to boot. "Like I Do" glides, cloud-like, until around the half-way mark when a spoken word sample kicks in. It's tough to make out but you can hear a male voice talking about friendship and adolescent pain working its way into adulthood. The plume of distorted chords is then studded with a dry, almost militaristic beat. It makes me think of the way their Funeral Party label mates crushed mix dream-pop and trip-hop sounds together; those guys should definitely tour together someday. — David Renshaw

Kamxilo feat. Isabella Lovestory: "Pitch Black"

Kamixlo first broke out nearly a decade ago, delivering his brutalist take on reggaeton and establishing Bala Club, a party and label highlighting the Latin diaspora operating in London's experimental club scene. An album, Cicatriz, followed in 2020 and later this month he will release DEATHWORK, his first project in four years. Time hasn't mellowed the intensity of his sound, which on "Pitch Black" remains industrial and replete with whirring synths and drums that hit like steel on concrete. Reggaeton vocalist Isabella Lovestory smooths out the edges with her pop-leaning vocals "Pitch Black" is a reminder that Kamixlo's future-facing sound has always been this uncompromising. — David Renshaw

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Caput Medusae: “Endboss”

Despite only having a handful of singles to their name, Caput Medusae have already made a big splash in the coldwave revival scene with “Endboss.” The lead single from their debut album, “Endboss” combines moody post-punk synthesizers and a very Peter Hook bassline. However, its aura of dreamy mysticism stops it from becoming a Joy Division deep-cut, with the Berlin-based duo bringing in softer textures and New Age sounds to stave away any feelings of alienation. Rather, the combination of hypnotic krautrock rhythms, aughts-style arrangements, and layered vocal harmonies end up coalescing into something almost otherworldly, far away from the ennui and angst you tend to find within most coldwave productions. — Sandra Song

Coco & Clair Clair: “Aggy”

The lead single from Coco & Clair Clair’s next album, Girl, is a knife in gauzy packaging. At surface level, it’s a Y2K-evoking pop song super-engineered for the nostalgia center of TikTok’s mainframe. “You bring the boys, I’ll bring the girls / Have a couple drinks, forget about the world,” Clair Clair croons, adopting a saccharine, sing-song delivery. After the beat kicks in, though, the Atlanta duo are already delivering pointed blows to the NYC socialites stealing their swagger. “They wanna see my ass in jail / Wanna see me fail / You're gonna have to wait for that, exhale,” Coco raps at the start of verse one. “Bitches in New York that I wanna impale / But I know they got a Dimes Square in hell.” After this initial onslaught, though, she and Clair recoat their poison pill in a sugar capsule. “I'm all about love I don't mean to be aggy / It's all good vibes where's the party? Drop the addy,” Coco continues, shifting gears. “Got my jeans on, go ahead, admire the fatty / Lookin' for the one that wants to make my name a tatty.” By the time Clair’s chorus returns, the mean-girl venom has receded beneath a smooth veneer of faux friendliness. — Raphael Helfand

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Lord Spikeheart feat. Talpah: “SILENCE IN THE C-DRAL”

The Adept landed like a mortar shell in April. Featuring at least one guest artist on every track, Kenyan death metal scene leader Martin Kanja’s debut solo LP was not only a direct shot of adrenaline to the jugular, but proof positive of his supreme talent for working in tandem: With Sam Karugu as Duma, he made one of the best records of 2020; and Drunk In Love (or Drunken Love, depending on your DSP of choice), his 2023 joint record with Welsh experimentalist Elvin Brandhi, was no less inspired. “SILENCE IN THE C-DRAL,” a new track with Italian producer Talpah, is an apocalyptic firestorm of a track, built for a club in a bunker miles underground. Like Duma standout “OMNI,” its intense atmosphere tempers Kanja’s tendency toward all-out aggression in favor of something more danceable, if no less doom-inducing. — Raphael Helfand

Amaarae: “jehovah witness”

“jehovah witness” starts with a sensual sweep of dusk-tinged vocals a la “Drunk In Love,” but Amaarae is far from in thrall to anyone. On the track from roses are red, tears are blue, a seven-song expansion on Amaarae's essential 2023 album Fountain Baby, she raps in a squeaky, misleadingly small voice that contains unimpeachable flexes — one is reminded of a Looney Tune character, perhaps a small bird prone to sudden, outsized bellows. She’s as uninhibited as the song’s addictive Afrorave melodies, summoning a sweaty vibe that demands an energetic private afterparty for two, or maybe a few more. — Jordan Darville

Syzy: “ILUUUU”

The weight of the world, the debut album from California producer Syzy, is the kind of modern dubstep album that you give to people who don’t like modern dubstep: a barrage of Rustie-colored synths rains down on each track, creating mushroom clouds of positive catharsis with every sharp and sudden deviation. It’s not surprising that “ILUUUU” stands out to me, since it samples one of my favorite songs on one of my favorite albums of all time and offers a similarly aggressive, steely beat, though Syzy cuts it with deliriously twinkling builds and drops that are far from cheap EDM festival fodder. — Jordan Darville

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Songs You Need In Your Life: July 2024