WHY IS PIKACHU IN THIS: Katy Perry, “Electric” - Well, here’s a music video for a song that Katy Perry has made that also sounds like it belongs in a deodorant commercial. Truthfully, I cannot follow what is happening. Katy Perry and her best friend, Pikachu, inspire a girl to follow her dreams; that appears to be wearing a leopard print coat in Hawaii while also singing at an open-mic night. Katy Perry also has enough “electric” in her to light up a lighthouse? But I have to assume Pikachu helped because isn’t that his whole thing? Anyway, the song isn’t for me, but I do hope that someone at Deodorant Soundtracks LLC is listening because this will be great for them. —Megan Reynolds
Ex-YES-utive realness: Erika de Casier, “Busy” - It’s some kind of magic that Erika de Casier is able to combine a bunch of common dance-music elements (a 2-step beat, early ‘90s pop house keyboards, a jungle sonic boom) and emerge with something so clearly fit to chill to. Must be her vibe. This ode to being preoccupied comes with an “official slideshow” as its visual—a series of snapshots of de Casier in business casual, complete with a hands-free phone headset. It’s not just camp, it’s really good camp. —Rich Juzwiak
Y: Wolf Alice, “No Hard Feelings,” - English band Wolf Alice are one of those shiny, cleanly-produced, Grammy-approved rock bands (read: critically uncool) that are easy to snicker at, but I was hooked on their 2015 debut. All the new songs from their forthcoming album haven’t stuck with me, but I like this latest, a pretty little stripped-down thing, miles away from their usual shoegaze-inspired vibe. - Hazel Cills
YYYYYYYYY: Olivia Rodrigo, “good 4 u” - Okay here’s a truly unpopular opinion: Olivia Rodrigo’s smash breakout hit “Driver’s License” didn’t do anything for me, and neither did her follow up “Deja Vu.” But “good 4 u” is absolutely hitting. The song is a cutting fuck you to a cold ex, and Rodrigo means business from the gate: “And good for you, I guess that you’ve been workin’ on yourself/I guess that therapist I found for you, she really helped/Now you can be a better man for your brand new girl.” Whew!
I think what really draws me in is the fact that “good 4 u” reminds me of women-fronted pop-rock acts of the early ‘00s mixed with a really fun Disney Channel Original Movie soundtrack from that same time period—think Paramore, or the Josie and the Pussycats soundtrack from 2001, or, as my colleague Hazel Cills pointed out, Lindsay Lohan’s fictional band Pink Slip in the movie Freaky Friday. The video direction from Petra Collins only adds to the track, a good girl gone bad tale with aesthetically pleasing visuals: A disillusioned Rodrigo as a spiritless cheerleader, Rodrigo losing her cool in a burning room, a Rodrigo partially submerged in water with the kind of chaotic energy that instantly reminded me of the poster for the movie Wild Ones... there’s a lot going on, and I have no complaints about the visuals nor the track itself.
I will say this though: I really don’t know what to expect from Rodrigo’s upcoming debut album. Are we going to get more of this or more of “driver’s license”? What kind of sound is she naturally more drawn to? Is she just trying this out because the girlies love Beabadoobee? I don’t know, I’ll keep an open mind. —Ashley Reese