New Music Report - Week of December 11th

posted by Nicole Mastrogiannis, James Dinh & Isha Thorpe -

Happy Monday! Kickstart your week ahead by checking out all of the new music that has just been released in this roundup of new songs, new albums, and new artists that you need to be listening to. 

From new albums from Luke Bryan and K. Michelle, to songs from Eminem and Camila Cabello, to new collaborations from Charli XCX & Tove Lo and G-Eazy & Charlie Puth, to our expert picks, take a look at this week's New Music Report.

NEW RELEASES:

Camila Cabello - "Real Friends" & "Never Be The Same"

With the announcement of her self-titled album, Camila Cabello drops the follow-up songs to her hit, “Havana,” and she premiered one of the two cuts called “Never Be The Same” at Z100’s Jingle Ball on Friday. "I'm singing new songs from my debut album here in Madison Square Garden. I just can't even believe that. I see a lot of young ones in the crowd tonight and I just wanted to say I can't believe the day I had today and I'm telling you if I can get from Havana to Madison Square Garden, to this stage right now, you guys can get anywhere," Cabello told the sold-out audience before talking about her new track. "This is a song I wrote about when I fell for someone very hard and I knew that it would be very hard to recover from a fall like that, but I knew I'd do it again if I could." The other cut is titled "Real Friends," a stripped-back song aimed at all the counterfeit folks in her life. If you like what you hear, make sure you pre-order her forthcoming set, which is scheduled to drop on January 12.

Luke Bryan - What Makes You Country

Luke Bryan's new album What Makes You Country has officially arrived. The new record is Luke's sixth full-length LP, which fans have received a taste of over the last couple of months with singles like "Light It Up," "Most People Are Good," the title track, and more. There are 15 new songs in total on Luke Bryan's What Makes You Country, some of which he co-wrote, also teaming up with Nashville's biggest and brightest songwriters like Ashley Gorley and Old Dominion's Brad Tursi, among others. 

Bryan recently told iHeartRadio of his new album, "There's a little something for everybody on there. When you look at 'Light It Up,' 'Light It Up' is a pretty progressive sounding song, but I feel that this album has a lot of good country songs on there too that are really, truly country -- and, maybe certainly even more country than Kill the Lights was. But, I think the fans can go on a little emotional roller coaster ride with this one. It has a little bit of everything on there. It has songs you can dance to. Slow dance, fast dance. You know, have a beer with, stuff like that. And that's how I want to make the albums, to speak the country music fans."

Luke Bryan - 'What Makes You Country'

Kendrick Lamar – DAMN. Collector’s Edition

When K. Dot’s DAMN. album came out earlier this year, it arguably was one of the best rap albums the public heard in a long time. It would do insane numbers on the charts and would be recognized as one of the top LPs of the year. Now, just in time for Christmas, Kendrick Lamar has released a special collector’s edition of his popular project. There aren’t any new songs on it. Instead, the order of the songs is in reverse. If you can recall, Lamar said earlier this year that the album’s track order was designed for fans to listen to it backward. So, he just made it that much easy for everyone. Now, we can really get the full effort of DAMN. Thanks, Kenny.

Kendrick Lamar - 'DAMN. Collector's Edition'

Charli XCX featuring Tove Lo & ALMA - "Out of My Head"

It's all about girl power on Charli XCX's new collab with Tove Lo and ALMA called "Out of My Head" as the trio recall all the terrible things one has done to their heads. The track was the product of Charli's time with her signature producers SOHPIE and A.G. Cook, who produced her Number 1 Angel mixtape as well as 2016's Vroom Vroom EP. If you need some help to try and drown out all the manic ways of those bad seeds, then give "Out of My Head" a listen for the therapeutic relief. 

BTS - "Crystal Snow"

BTS is taking advantage of their American breakthrough success with the release of a brand-new song for their Japanese fanbase. On the cut, "Crystal Snow," the septet slow things down to help listeners bundle up in time for the winter season. J-Hope, Jimin, Jin, Jungkook, Rap Monster, Suga, and V cut the seasonal song as part of their MIC Drop / DNA / Crystal Snow Japanese single album. It also marks their first original single release since September’s Love Yourself: Her.

Migos & Marhsmello - "Danger"

Even though Marshmello and JUDGE are at the helm of the cut, "Danger" is a predominately hip-hop-charged track, with Migos offering speedy flow and their signature grit. Fun fact: the rappers recorded their vocals in just one take, as per a recent interview with the EDM heavyweight. Migos and Marshmello's visual also looks like a scene straight out of the forthcoming Bright film, which stars Will Smith and Joel Edgerton, as the acts hit up the strip club until chaos erupts with gunfire. "Danger" is the latest song off the soundtrack to Bright: The Album, which drops Friday and follows the release of "Broken People" from Logic & Rag'n'Bone Man. Among the other collab appearances on the compilation includes ASAP Rocky and Tom Morello, DRAM and Neil Young, and Steve Aoki and Lil Uzi Vert.

G-Eazy featuring Charlie Puth - "Sober"

G-Eazy and Charlie Puth tackle all that comes with drunken mistakes on their collab, "Sober," which is featured on the rapper's forthcoming double album, The Beautiful & Damned. On the cut, both acts sort of play roles for the listeners as an angel and devil. Can you guess which one plays which? As you might expect, Puth serves duties as the hook singer as the Bay area rapper takes on the verses. "I slipped up with my ex and I smashed again/ Stayed over, now she's about to get attached again/ Walls built up around, they come crashing in,” G-Eazy raps at one point in the cut. 

Big Sean & Metro Boomin - Double or Nothing

Big Sean and Metro Boomin teamed up to give us a collaborative album called Double or Nothing. On the 10-track project, the two music industry figures had something to prove to the world and used one another’s talents to be heard. In an interview uploaded by Republic Records, they both spoke about not getting the respect they deserve from their peers. What’s cool about this sit down is that they both interviewed one another.

“I feel like as a rapper, n**gas be sleepin’ on you,” Metro told Sean. “N**gas underestimate you in certain ways. And I feel like n**gas do the exact same thing with me... Still, I don’t get that respect, as a musician. I just feel like this album would be the perfect opportunity and platform to not even really shut it down, but just really to demand the respect.”

Sean added: “Don’t nobody see the vision like we see it. I feel like our vision was to get this s**t out here for the fans, to get it out here because there was a shortage of quality music out here, honesty."

Big Sean & Metro Boomin - 'Double or Nothing'

Juicy J - Rubba Band Business

Juicy J dropped his much-anticipated fourth studio album Rubba Band Business, so you know the party is about to get turnt. The rap vet is now signed to Taylor Gang, so of course he enlisted some of the label’s stars to collaborate with him on his project. Some guest appearances on Rubba Band Business include Wiz Khalifa, A$AP Rocky, Denzel Curry, Offset, Travis Scott, Tory Lanez, Belly, Ty Dolla $ign and much more. When describing the sound of the project earlier this year to XXL, Juicy said, "So whatever you like with Three 6 Mafia, it's just a mixture of old Three 6 Mafia with Lex Luger beats, Metro Boomin beats, with Murda beatz."

Juicy J - 'Rubba Band Business'

Ellie Goulding - "O Holy Night"

While we are all waiting for Ellie Goulding to grace our ears with another album, the singer/songwriter has given fans a little gift this holiday season: a cover of the Christmas classic "O Holy Night." Ellie's cover of the song is quite traditional with the piano and subtle choir vocals on the background, but her ethereal vocals make her sound like an angel that is singing from the top of your Christmas tree. 

Ellie released her last album, Delirium, in 2015, so here's to hoping for album No. 4 in the new year! But until then, we will get our Ellie fix with this glorious Christmas tune.

Mase featuring Puff Daddy & DJ Khaled - "Rap Rushmore"

Wow, it low-key feels like that 1990s again. Mase dropped a brand new track entitled “Rap Rushmore” and it’s featuring his longtime friend/collaborator Puff Daddy – yes, we got to call him Puff, if he’s back on his old stuff with his former Bad Boy MC. DJ Khaled also blesses the track’s production. On the song, Mase spits about sitting on top. In case you forgot he had bars, listen to this track and remind yourself. “Ride like I knew Harley, ungodly/Smoke like I knew Marley, It’s my party…Rap holocaust, this a robbery/I’ll take all of it off/The car, part of the crime scene, have to haul it off/I’m Rap Rushmore, feel like I should bust more,” raps Mase.

K. Michelle - KIMBERLY: The People I Used To Know

After waiting more than expected for K. Michelle's fourth studio album, KIMBERLY: The People I Used To Know, fans of the talented superstar can now celebrate because it's finally here. Get ready to be in your entire feelings! Consisting of 21 songs, KIMBERLY: The People I Used To Know, once again shows the star's vulnerability throughout her lyrics via her incredible talents of singing, songwriting and producing. The LP has been released through Atlantic Records and it's sure to have some of your future favorite songs, whether you realize that yet or not.

In an interview with iHeartRadio, the star was asked what the inspiration behind the album was. Michelle explained: “The inspiration behind the album, KIMBERLY: The People I Used To Know, was basic life. Everybody has somebody that they used to know. Everybody has someone that they want to used to know, that are currently in their lives, getting on their nerves, that they want to put in the past. So, I just wanted to do an album that everybody could relate to about people, and things, and what they've gone through because no matter where you are in your life, you had to go through something to get to the point where you're at.”

K. Michelle - 'KIMBERLY: The People'

Aaron Carter - "Don't Say Goodbye"

Aaron Carter just celebrated a milestone birthday -- he turned 30! And he celebrated big by releasing a brand new song called "Don't Say Goodbye." On the electronic pop song, Aaron is pleading with his lover to make up her mind about what she wants out of the relationship. "Say Goodbye/I don't wanna waste my time/With crazy fights/Girl, you gotta let me go or hold me tight/I don't wanna say goodnight/Don't say goodbye." 

"Don't Say Goodbye" is the first single from Aaron's upcoming album LøVë, which is expected to be released next year. On Twitter, Carter wrote, "Thank you so much for this support you guys [it] means the world to me I worked really hard on this project for two years." Followed by, "I’ve been waiting for this I’m so stoked my new single dropped."

Aaron Carter - "Don't Say Goodbye"

Quality Control – Control the Streets Vol. 1

After months of anticipation, Quality Control finally released its compilation project featuring tracks from the artists on his monster roster. From Offset, Quavo, Takeoff, Lil Yachty, Mak Sauce, Lil Baby, Marlo, Kollison and more; they all lay verses down on the project. Other guest appearances included are Travis Scott, Cardi B, Nicki Minaj, Tee Grizzley, Ty Dolla $ign, and Kodak Black. Control the Streets Vol. 1 consists of 30 songs. There’s even a song with only engaged couple Offset and Cardi B. Listen to it ASAP.

Quality Control - 'Control The Streets Vol. 1'

Axwell /\ Ingrosso - "Dreamer"

It's the track that Axwell /\ Ingrosso fans have been waiting for (over a year to be precise), but it has finally arrived. The former Swedish House Mafia members released their brand new single "Dreamer," featuring vocals from Canadian singer/songwriter Trevor Guthrie. A version of the song was debuted at an Amsterdam festival in 2016, but the duo has finally given fans the finished product. Starting off with only piano riffs and Trevor's voice, the song almost sounds Coldplay-esque before it picks up in the uplifting chorus. Guthrie sings, "We are dreamers together/Always and forever/Let's get high on believing/I can promise you/Yes, I am a dreamer too."

Chris Lane - "Old Flame"

Everyone has old flame, a former boyfriend or girlfriend, and if you've been thinking about them at all lately, then country singer/songwriter Chris Lane has a song for you. Chris released a new song called "Old Flame," and as you can imagine, the track is all about a former relationship, and the connection you have with that person when you see them again -- even if it's just one night (😉😉). In the chorus, Chris sings, "You and I last night/Nothin' lights like an old flame."

Lost Kings - "Don't Call"

Back in November, producer/DJ duo Lost Kings had teased that they had a few new singles coming our way, and they were solo songs with uncredited vocals. And now, here we are in December (only a month later), and the guys have done just that and released their new track "Don't Call." The new song follows their last single "First Love" featuring Sabrina Carpenter, and this time around, the duo bring a bit of a darker house vibe to their newest effort. Lost Kings' Rob Abisi told Billboard of the track, "'Don't Call' is a really special song to us. We had some amazing sessions with some awesome writers and developed 'Don't Call' from scratch. This song shows a side of us that fans haven't seen yet. We live in L.A. and are constantly inspired by the city, and we think the nighttime L.A. vibe shows in 'Don't Call.'"

EMERGING ARTIST OF THE WEEK: Greta Van Fleet

Greta Van Fleet

If you've been wondering where the future of rock music is going, you can definitely look to rising rock band Greta Van Fleet. Many are referring to the band -- which includes two 18-year-olds and two 21-year-olds -- as the next Led Zeppelin, and are even going so far as to compare the lead singer to Robert Plant himself.

Greta Van Fleet consists of three brothers Josh Kiszka, Jake Kiszka, and Sam Kiszka, and Danny Wagner, who hail from Frankenmuth, Michigan -- the place where the woman who the band is named after also lives (and yes, she gave them the green light to use her name, which is actually Gretna Van Fleet).

This year, the band accumulated a lot of buzz for their single "Highway Tune," and actually hit the highway spreading their music on their own headlining tour. The guys also released their debut EP Black Smoke Rising back on April 21st via Republic Records, which includes their single "Highway Tune," in addition to three other songs.

Most recently, Greta Van Fleet released a brand new EP called From The Fires consisting of eight songs in total, which include four tracks from Black Smoke Rising, and four new tracks. At the rate these guys are going, a full-length album is sure to come soon! Check out their hit single "Highway Tune" below.

Greta Van Fleet

EXPERT PICKS

Nicole's Picks:

Morgan Evans - "I Do"

Just a few weeks ago, two of the most adorable country cuties got married: Kelsea Ballerini and Morgan Evans. Morgan just released a brand new single called "I Do," and it will melt you. No, it's not exactly a wedding song (unless you slow it down a bit), however, it will give you ALL the feels. Morgan sings in the chorus, "Just when I think it couldn't get any better/To be the man standing in my shoes/There you go walkin' in in a new dress/Sayin' 'do you like this?'/Baby I do/Wanna hold you forever/No, I ain't ever been so sure/Just when I think I couldn't love you any more/Baby, I do."

Yes, this is completely inspired by Morgan's now WIFE Kelsea. On Twitter, Morgan explained about the new song, "Wrote it about my girlfriend. Recorded it about my fiance’. Releasing it about my wife." 

AWW. Can we clone Morgan?? Everyone deserves a Morgan.

Mat Kearney - "Face To Face"

Mat Kearney has released another new song called "Face to Face," and it is awesome -- and that's not CRAZY TALK. Or maybe it is since it's expected to be featured on Mat's upcoming 2018 album CRAZYTALK. Following "Better Than I Used To Be," "Face To Face" kicks off with some guitar riffs, or it actually sounds like a ukulele TBH, but then takes you by surprise when the beat drops into this dance-y rhythm all the way into the chorus. I love it when songs catch you off guard like that.

On his new song, Mat had tweeted, "This is another one I'm really excited about," along with a video revealing that he worked on a lot of his new record at his home studio, and that he produces a lot of his own music. He said, "We're here at my house. We have a home studio. Some of my last record, but a bulk of this record, a lot of things took place here. People probably don't know that I produce a lot of my music. This is where I feel like I'm at home, but I'm not. I'm in my own little world."

Follow Nicole on Twitter: @NicoleMastr0

James' Picks:

Charlie Puth - "How Long" (EDX Dubai Skyline Remix) 

EDX breathes new life into Charlie Puth’s newest hit, “How Long,” offering the pop cut with a minimal makeover and a slick beatdrop for his “Dubai Skyline Remix.” Instead of adding unnecessary bits to the track, the Swiss DJ keeps the subtleness of the song flowing but manages to elevate it to new deep house levels. Interestingly enough, it all comes from genuine fandom. “It’s definitely an honor to create a remix for such a bright young talent in the industry,” the DJ said in a statement. “‘How Long’ was one of my favorite pop records of late 2017, and I'm thrilled I was given the chance to rework the track by Charlie and his team!”

Nora En Pure - "Trailblazer"

Nora En Pure wasn’t kidding when she said she had some new music up her sleeve and her latest track, “Trailblazer,” is a certified deep house banger. On the almost-four-minute song, the DJ works a hypnotic beat that’ll keep your feet moving until the sun rises. It’s absolutely entrancing, especially with the gentle piano rift that breaks up the high energy mid-song. “'Trailblazer' is very special to me. It’s a very touching record, that is both melancholic, but also has such power in its bassline, which pushes it in a totally different direction,” Nora said in a statement. "The piano melodies gives it light and the song just really takes you on a journey. It’s one of my favourites to date."

Follow James on Twitter: @newyorkinstinct

Isha's Picks:

Eminem - "Untouchable"

Eminem raps about white privilege – his included – on his latest song “Untouchable.” The powerful track will be featured on the rapper’s upcoming REVIVAL album, which hits stores on Friday (Dec. 15). Throughout “Untouchable,” Em spits about Colin Kaepernick, Black Lives Matter, police brutality, the government and so much more in the six-minute song. His lyrics will definitely strike something in you when you listen to them.

"No one's ever indicted you / Why?" Eminem raps. "'Cause you're a / White boy, white boy, you're a rock star / (My momma talkin' to me, tryna tell me how to live) / White boy, white boy, in your cop car / (But I don't listen to her, 'cause my head is like a sieve) / White boy, white boy, you're untouchable (The world's coming to an end, I don't even care) / Nobody can tell me s--t 'cause I'm a (big rock star)."

He continues: "Wait, why are there black neighborhoods? / 'Cause America segregated us / Designated us to an area / Separated us, Section-Eight'd us / When we tear it up's the only time attention's paid to us" and says, "Bad cops f**k it up for the good cops."

Offset and Cardi B – "Um Yea"

Engaged hip hop couple Offset and Cardi B jointed forces for one of the songs on Quality Control’s compilation project, Control the Streets Vol. 1. It’s called “Um Yea” and everyone on social media has been speaking about how hot it is ever since the project was released. This isn’t the first time they've done a song together either (i.e. “Lick” and “MotorSport”), but Cardi revealed that this was the first time they recorded in the studio together.

On IG, Cardi said: “Ok, soooo this was the first time I ever got in the studio with @offsetyrn. I did ‘LICK’ way before he featured on it, anyways I was soo nervous cause he was looking at me like, ‘Let’s see if she really be doing this s**t on her own.’ Then, I got in the booth. Had to show his ass why he had to put a ring on this finger.” The chemistry is nuts between the two because they both sound dope AF on the beat. Listen now.

Follow Isha on Twitter: @IshaThorpe

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