Tuesday Tracks: Your Weekly New Music Discovery – Nov. 13

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Noah Kahan

Noah Kahan

Every week, there’s a plethora of new music at our fingertips.

Artists on platforms such as Spotify and Bandcamp are plentiful, and the radio offers a steady deluge of new singles, but who has time to sort through all that? RIFF does!

We pooled our resources to find some of the best new singles from all genres and backgrounds, so you can find your newest earworm without all the drama. Enjoy this week’s hidden gems:

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Jamie N Commons, “Paper Dreams” – Although born in England, Jamie N Commons moved to Chicago with his father when he was 6. While acclimating to the city, he began to appreciate blues and soul. “Paper Dreams” has a heavy blues rock feel reminiscent of “Jungle,” which Commons co-wrote with X Ambassadors. The bass line feels both rugged and smooth, supporting catchy electric guitar riffs and a sexy vocal melody. Commons’ voice is equal parts innovative and soulful, bringing emotional and musical depth to this single.

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Fantomaticos, “Andar” – Fantomaticos is a Brazilian group that rose in that country’s folk rock movement of the late ‘90s. The quintet is clearly influenced by the British Invasion on “Andar.” This song’s melody and instrumentation bear a similarity to “Tom” by The Who, as well as the Beatles’ Abbey Road b-sides. Although “Andar” is performed in Portuguese, it feels authentically inspired by their English heroes in the Beatles-esque harmonies and soft-spoken, vital percussion. The song undergoes surprising tempo changes, tied together by tasteful reverb. It streamlines into powerful rock and roll while maintaining intimate folk sensibilities.

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Sure Sure, “Idiot” – Getting the attention of indie rockers like Rostam and Grizzly Bear, Sure Sure has gained recognition since dropping its “New Biome” in 2016. The L.A. natives showcase their quirky sense of humor with a song about judging someone from afar but eventually realizing their similarities. “Idiot” charges small-scale sonics with a clever narrative and tasteful crescendos. The consistent pacing of “Idiot,” while never fully culminating, remains interesting with its nuanced electronica production.

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Noah Kahan, “False Confidence” – This newest single by the Vermont artist wrestles with the theme of being a people-pleaser. The video sees Kahan play up different musician personalities for multiple gigs at the same restaurant, trying to find the one that will impress his audience. The song’s lighthearted bluegrass rhythm and exhilarating melodies increase Kahn’s emotional impact by playing into the video’s self-aware sense of humor. His vocal croons recall a hoarser take on Of Monsters and Men, as his music paints a gorgeous picture with vivid human nature. This single’s catchy acoustic bass line resonates loudly, beefing up the song’s arrangement.

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Bayonne, “Uncertainly Deranged” – The Texas songwriter wrote this song’s lyrics to detail the mental turmoil he experiences while on the road. From the innovative, upbeat percussion intro, Bayonne follows in the footsteps of artists like Foster the People. He hides heavy and resonating subject matter in happy-go-lucky piano riffs and a bubbly tempo. The song’s title feels fitting for the rapid-fire lyrical delivery, but Bayonne’s use of electronica makes his crazy side much catchier.

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Vic’s Pick: Something about the Noah Kahan’s song had me singing his infectious single for days. The songwriter has already played with the likes of Julia Michaels, but is now set out to grab attention with his own work. “False Confidence” unpacks experience shared by many musicians, but connects to a more universal human experience. Kahan drives home the point that people only care about what other people think until realizing there’s no need.

Follow writer Vic Silva at twitter.com/VicSilvaaaa.

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