Now Hear This is a daily dive into the standout songs of the day. Today, M83 returns, Greys and Mitski explore in between-ness, and The Range get grimey.
M83, "Do It, Try It"
M83 recently put out an open call for a new singer/keyboardist, and though it didn't yield the GOAT it did last time, it did herald Junk, their first album in 5 years and its pitch-perfect cover art. Somewhere between Schoolhouse Rock and Justice, "Do It, Try It" will either convince you to follow your dreams (and join M83?) or spend three figures on a summer festival ticket. Either way, Anthony Gonzales wins. - Richard Trapunski
M83's Junk is out April 8 via Mute.
Mitski, "Your Best American Girl"
As a kid, Mitski Miyawaki moved around a lot. Born in Japan, she and her family have called many places home: the Democratic Republic of Congo, Malaysia, China, Turkey. She moved to New York to study composition at SUNY Purchase College. The song "Best American Girl" is a reflection on being “half Japanese, half American, but not fully either.”
It takes on the tropes of the indie rock American songbook, playing up the maleness and the whiteness, prostrating herself, a young Japanese woman who feels as though she'll never quite fit there. All the while, she builds a noisy anthem bigger, bolder than any beardo — and hers boils with derision. - Chris Hampton
Mitski's Puberty is out June 17 on Dead Oceans.
Greys, "No Star"
By coincidence, "No Star" from Toronto's Greys explores a similar theme to the song above. Written after the shootings in Paris, Shehzaad Jiwani says the song was inspired by the feeling of "not knowing where you fit in as a person of colour who was raised in a predominantly white community, not identifying completely with either side," being used as a "strategy," and not able to speak his own words. Through a growing sense of dynamics — they now lead up to the scream — Greys' psychedelic grunge pulls you in and then hits the accelerator. - Richard Trapunski
Greys' Outer Heaven will be available April 22nd on Buzz Records & Carpark. It is available for pre-order here.
The Range, "Five Four"
The Range has picked up where the Brits failed to do so — recognizing the country’s great grime artists. James Hinto features OphQi and Superior Thought in the second song released from his new album Potential. Their verses are chopped and sampled over a frolicking piano that dances around in a dark, cold atmosphere. This imagery is enhanced by the song’s contrasty music video, directed by Daniel Kaufman. - Ryan Parker