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The Best Songs of the Month
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The Best Songs of the Month

Picture of Ann Lee
Music Editor
Updated: 28 April 2017
April has brought with it a veritable shower of good music. Kendrick Lamar blew everyone out of the water with the surprise release of his new album DAMN while sisters Haim have also returned after far too long away from the scene. Culture Trip’s Music Editors Ann Lee and Ryan Kristobak have rounded up the very best new music for you to feast on this month.

Kendrick Lamar – ‘DNA.’

How do you make the year’s hardest, most urgent song? As explained by the track’s producer Mike WiLL Made-It during his interview with NPR:

‘With “DNA.,” he went the whole way [through] and then he just started rapping a cappella. He said, ‘I just want to see if you can put some drums around this.’ I said, ‘Man, hell yeah.’ But he was going so hard; that man was rapping so crazy. Just imagine him a cappella rapping the second half of “DNA.” and I had to build a beat around that. I didn’t want the beat to just sound like a regular boom-clap, boom-clap. I wanted that s*** to sound just as crazy. I wanted it to sound like he’s battling the beat.’

—Ryan Kristobak (RK)

Halsey – ‘Now or Never’

Synth pop singer Halsey goes for a spot of soulful R’n’B on the luscious ‘Now or Never’, which hints at great things to come from her forthcoming second album Hopeless Fountain Kingdom. —Ann Lee (AL)

Kamasi Washington – ‘Truth’

Kamasi Washington’s latest offering, ‘Truth’, is everything you want from big band jazz: over 13 minutes of swelling-tsunami composition that reengineers itself just as each crest is about to crash down. As we await the rest of his forthcoming EP, Harmony of Difference, let’s hope Washington is always hear to make our days feel more meaningful. —RK

Haim – ‘Right Now’

The Haim sisters are back after after an extended hiatus with ‘Right Now’, accompanied by a video shot by Paul Thomas Anderson, director of There Will Be Blood (2007). Their debut album, Days Are Gone, was released way back in 2013 and this is a welcome return, understated and gloriously intimate. —AL

Dauwd – ‘Leitmotiv’

It feels like we’ve been waiting a long time for Dauwd’s debut album, but as the Berlin-based producer explains himself, ‘it’s been a long time coming, but I wanted to challenge myself to make the album I didn’t expect.’ Minimalist electronic perfection, expect Theory of Colours to be your any and every party go-to. —RK

Joep Beving – ‘An Amalgamation Waltz 1839′

Taken from his gorgeous new album, Prehension, ‘An Amalgamation Waltz 1839’ is Joep Beving at his finest. The Dutch pianist’s haunting music will appeal to fans of Max Richter and Dustin O’Halloran. —AL

The War on Drugs – ‘Thinking of a Place’

Few would have guessed that The War on Drugs’ return after three years would materialize in an 11-minute slow burner, but it’s hard to imagine anything less now. Just as its title suggests, the wormhole Americana of ‘Thinking of a Place’ will have you reeling deep into your memories of truest love and loss. —RK

Dua Lipa featuring Miguel – ‘Lost In Your Light’

Here’s a blast of pure sunshine from rising British singer Dua Lipa, who has roped in Miguel to help her out on this electro-pop banger that’s the perfect soundtrack to the summer. —AL

Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah – ‘Diaspora’

Can jazz boast trap beats? Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah answered that question with an electrifying ‘Hell yeah!’ on Ruler Rebel, the first of three albums to be released this year as part of his ‘Centennial Trilogy’. Adjuah is wasting no in time moving on to the second installment, unleashing its title track ‘Diaspora’ to close out April, further proving there’s no limit to his ability to blend ‘seemingly disparate cultures of sound’. —RK

Keaton Henson – ‘Epilogue’

The ever enigmatic Keaton Henson returns with this raw piano ballad, which paints a brittle portrait of loneliness as he struggles on the path to success. The title and the sense of an ending that weighs heavily over the track also hint at some kind of farewell from the singer. —AL

Listen to these songs and more in the playlist below: