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Album art | © Respective artists
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The Best Songs of the Month

Picture of Ann Lee
Music Editor
Updated: 9 March 2017
January kicked off music in 2017 with a throng of top-tier releases, setting a pace that seemed almost impossible to maintain. But with the lightning-fast passing of February we have been once again treated to a laundry list of phenomenal tracks and albums from both mainstay acts and fresh faces. Here our music editors, Ann Lee and Ryan Kristobak, share their 10 favorite songs of the month.

THEY.—“Truth Be Told”

Genre-hopping LA duo Dante Jones and Drew Love coined their own genre Grunge & B for their debut album Nü Religion: HYENA but for this epic break post-break up song they go full R&B. Crooning with the sensual hedonism of rappers like The Weeknd and Drake, the band throw in some seriously smooth beats, distorted guitar and a hefty dose of heartbroken angst. —Ann Lee (AL)

Bearcubs—“False Mirrors”

Last month, British artist Bearcubs (Jack Ritchie) emerged with the first and title track off his upcoming EP Underwaterfall, sounding something like the lovechild of James Blake and Jamie xx. Follow-up single “False Mirrors” is another cut of contemplative, dynamic production, this time building layer after layer to reach heights that are a bit more dance-floor favorable. “False Mirrors” carves out a clearer identity for Ritchie and secures him as a 2017 must-know act. —Ryan Kristobak (RK)

Lana Del Rey—“Love”

Love is the main emotion that dominates Lana Del Rey’s music so it’s fitting that she’s finally come up with her own swoonsome tribute. It’s a gorgeous, full-blown ballad which harks back to her old hit “Born To Die” with its luscious string arrangements, as she sings about disillusioned youths, freedom, and the giddy thrill of romance. —AL

The Menzingers—“Your Wild Years”

“Where are we gonna go now that our twenties are over?” Menzingers’ frontman Greg Barnett asks in the opening track of the punk rock band’s fifth LP, After the Party. Doing their best to settle into their thirties, standout album cut “Your Wild Years” reminds us that our concerns don’t change with the decades as dramatically as we might think. We still worry about whether our love is good enough for another; we still look back on “wilder” times with a golden lens, just as we looked back at our high school years from our early twenties. There will always be a yearning for returned youth, but the fun doesn’t ever come to a screeching halt. We just find it in different ways, like getting drunk with your significant other’s father in the middle of the day. —RK

The Blaze—“Territory”

French producers/directors The Blaze return with the second single to be taken from upcoming EP of the same name. Sparse, moody and atmospheric, the track is propelled by spellbinding electronicia. Make sure to watch the incredible music video, filmed in Algiers, which explores male bonding, identity and belonging. —AL

The Districts—“Ordinary Day”

It’s been two years since Pennsylvania-bred outfit The Districts released their album A Flourish and a Spoil, but the wait for new tunes feels like it has been double that time. Thankfully, the first taste of their follow-up has arrived right at the month’s end in the form of “Ordinary Day,” and it’s more than fans could have expected. The quartet channel moments of The Beatles as frontman Rob Grote hits an untapped register, and The Killers in others as their quiet-loud-louder formula kicks ass harder than ever before. —RK

Hand Habits—“Demand It”

Hand Habits, aka Meg Duffy, has just released her debut album Wildly Idle (Humble Before The Void). It’s a sweet and euphoric LP—just like the track “Demand It”, which wraps you up in a warm, cosy cocoon of sweet vocals and dreamy pop melodies. —AL

Sampha—“Plastic 100°C”

If the duty of an album’s opener is to secure the listener’s attention and convince them to listen through each of its successive tracks, Sampha’s “Plastic 100°C” is the archetype. Detailing his struggles with anxiety as an introvert thrust into fame, Sampha pairs Neil Armstrong’s quote “I’ll work my way over into the sunlight here without looking directly into the sun,” with the closing chorus line, “You touched down in the base of my fears / Houston, can-can-can you hear me now?” It’s hard to imagine that few other albums will top Sampha’s debut, Process, once 2017 comes to a close, and “Plastic 100°C” demonstrates a little piece of every reason why. —RK

Arca—“Piel”

Venezuelan producer Arca, best known for providing beats for Kanye West and Björk, makes eerie, otherworldly electro, and his new track “Piel” is no different. The opener of his forthcoming third album, the song marries his operatic vocals with synthesisers and just the barest hint of menace. —AL

Thundercat—“Friend Zone”

“You know, being put in the friend zone really isn’t that bad,” said no one ever. In the midst of delicious, full-bodied melodies, Thundercat dishes out line after line of uncompromising humor calling out “that bullshit” we’ve all come to hate known as the “friend zone”—”So let me break it down for you / Don’t call me, don’t text me, after 2am / Unless you plan on giving me some / Cause I got enough friends.” Sure, the track‘s petty, but we’re all petulant sometimes and we should be so lucky to have Thundercat as our rejection guru. —RK

Check out more of our favorite songs from February in the playlist below.