Y: Alice Glass, “LOVE IS VIOLENCE” - After leaving the beloved group Crystal Castles in 2014, singer-songwriter Alice Glass alleged horrific abuse at the hand of her former bandmate, Ethan Kath. (He denied it.) Glass released a few EPs and singles in the years that followed, but it’s only now that her solo debut, PREY//IV, is primed for release (it’s out February 16). The latest track from it, “LOVE IS VIOLENCE” is a pop balancing act of ethereal and jagged, spacious and suffocating with synths that drag and vocals that sparkle. Its accompanying video is heavy on the gore. The song directly speaks to abuse and manipulation, per Glass’s statement in a press release accompanying the single’s delivery. “Disguising power struggles and calling it ‘Love,’ it’s a form of violence against a partner,” she wrote. “I want to help people to see those red flags and encourage them to remove themselves from those types of toxic situations.”
In a new NME profile, Glass described the therapy in writing about abuse: “It’s been really helpful for me psychologically to put things out. That’s what this record is like for me: I’m going to put my pain out into the world and then I don’t own it any more.” Get it out. Get it all out. —Rich Juzwiak
You know it: PinkPantheress, “All my friends know (FKJ Remix)” - Mumble junglist/TikTok fav PinkPantheress has released a sprawling compilation of remixes from her 2021 album all my friends know. Many of her previously lo-fi tracks get a more lavish sonic treatment, including the previously Afrobeat-inflected “All my friends know,” which becomes something weirder, brooding, more psychedelic in the hands of French Kiwi Juice. It’s fascinating to hear Pantheress’s bedroom recordings out in a larger world. The wider soundstage looks good on her. —RJ
Critics say meh, I say yes: Mø “Live to Survive” - Following 2018’s Forever Neverland, Mø is back with her third album Motordrome. The full listening experience sounds like healing—a flustered drive through sadness, temporary joy, nostalgia, and indifference. “Live to Survive,” in particular, offers generic lyrics that still hit: “I lived to survive another heartache/I lived to survive” seems equal parts pandemic anthem and evergreen post-breakup anthem. I’m not sure anything will top 2014’s No Mythologies to Follow, but I’m in full support of this new disco/pop era for the Danish singer.—Emily Leibert
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Y to audio; N to video, Charli XCX “Beg For You” (ft. Rina Sawayama): I’m so happy these two singers have collaborated, but I would skip the music video. The song is definitely more of a Charli track in sound, but Rina Sawayama’s voice carries the second chorus and blends well with Charli’s. It’s a fun bop that maybe I’ll get to dance to at a gay bar some time in the summer! The music video, however, looks like the behind-the-scenes videos from the early ‘00s and 2010s cover shoots. It’s mostly a claustrophobic shot of the pair, giving the impression that they were taking publicity photos and then realized this was a great little setup for a COVID-safe video shoot. I did enjoy the karaoke track lyrics across the screen, though!—Caitlin Cruz
Y: Amber Mark, “Bliss” - If there’s a formula somewhere for a pop-R&B ear worm, Amber Mark has it—just take a listen to her infectious take on Sisqo’s Thong Song. “Bliss” is off of her brand-new album, Three Dimensions Deep, and it’s got a classic, catchy groove that’s something along the lines of a more laid-back take on “Love On Top.” Is there any higher praise than that? -Gabrielle Bruney