This week in the best new pop music saw some major releases from big artists. Ariana Grande shared her long-awaited album Positions, Dua Lipa offered an unexpected single, and Carly Rae Jepsen got ready for the holiday season.
Each week, Uproxx rounds up the best new pop music. Listen up.
Ariana Grande — “Motive” Feat. Doja Cat
Ariana Grande dominated the internet this week when she dropped her sultry album Positions, earning Uproxx’s best new pop stamp of approval. The record also saw the anticipated collaboration with Doja Cat, “Motive,” where the two singers flex their vocal ranges over a shuffling beat while trying to figure out the intentions behind a suitor’s advancements.
Dua Lipa, Angèle — “Fever”
Though Dua Lipa released her sophomore album back in March, the singer has had no shortage of music in the last few months. After sharing an album of remixes, Lipa returns with the buoyant single “Fever.” The layered production boasts a medley of unconventional samples interlaced with Lipa’s soaring vocals and Angèle’s French musings.
Carly Rae Jepsen — “It’s Not Christmas Till Somebody Cries”
Carly Rae Jepsen offered her own take on the highs and lows of the holidays with the buzzing song “It’s Not Christmas Till Somebody Cries.” Explaining the meaning behind the track, Jepsen said: “I love the old-fashioned movies and the family traditions and the excitement of gifting presents and decorating the tree and and and… my list is endless. But each year the pressure to have the perfect Christmas always ends in tears. I call it ‘Christmas versus expectation.’”
Jonas Brothers — “I Need You Christmas”
The Jonas Brothers also ushered in the start of the holiday season this week with their soulful piano ballad, “I Need You Christmas.” “With having such a crazy year, we all really need something to look forward to,” they said in a statement. “The holidays [are] a time that brings us together and is something that brings us joy in the darkest of times. For us, this song stirs up memories of childhood snowball fights and finding the nearest hill to sled. It brings us back to spending time with family setting up the Christmas tree.”
Kai — “Get Me Good”
Kai has been working her way up in the music industry for several years and now, the singer has released her long-awaited debut EP Like Water and on it arrives the track “Get Me Good.” In a statement about her project, Kai wrote: “Like Water takes you on a visceral journey of a love found and a love lost with ebbs and flows in between. I believe that relationships are our greatest teachers. Some are meant to last forever, others are meant to teach us more about ourselves, even if only for a season.”
Benee — “Plain” Feat. Lily Allen, Flo Milli
After experiencing her global breakout this year, New Zealand musician Benee is gearing up for her debut album, Hey U, X. Sharing the Lily Allen and Flo Milli collaboration “Plain,” Benee said: “I wanted to make it a song someone could listen to when they find out their ex is with someone new. The feeling sucks, so I wanted ‘Plain’ to make ya feel like you have the upper hand. Lily and Flo Milli both have such cool sass, and both their verses really elevated the track!”
Bad Bunny — “Dákiti” Feat. Jhay Cortez
While Bad Bunny recently announced he was teaming up with the divisive shoe brand Crocs for a new design, it wasn’t the only collaboration the singer had in the works. This week, Bad Bunny tapped Jhay Cortez for the rhythmic single “Dákiti.” Over a low-key beat, Bad Bunny and Cortez trade verses about spending time with a love interest.
Wens — “Giant Bat”
Wens released her debut EP Lemoncholy earlier this year, but that hasn’t stopped the singer from releasing even more music. Sharing two tracks side-by-side this week, Wens explained that the double singles go “out to anyone who’s ever tried to or is currently trying to make long distance work. it’s hard as heck but if i could go back in time, i’d still do it all again.”
The Avalanches — “Interstellar Love” Feat. Leon Bridges
After cryptically announcing their next LP earlier this year, The Avalanches returned with a new single. Releasing the song “Interstellar Love” with Leon Bridges this week, The Avalanches’ Robbie Chater said: “Leon is an incredible singer, with just the most beautiful voice. He’s from Texas but we both happened to be in LA at the same time, which was lucky as he was on my all-time wish list. When we were in the studio, I told him the story about Ann Druyan and Carl Sagan and how her love-struck brain waves were sent out into space on the Voyager’s Golden Record. And this song came out of that.”
Empress Of — “You’ve Got To Feel” Feat. Amber Mark
Following her acclaimed record I’m Your Empress Of back in March, Empress Of launched her own label Major Arcana with the new single “You’ve Got To Feel.” Tapping Amber Mark to lend her hypnotic vocals, the single’s anticipatory beat offers a captivating juxtaposition to the lyrics which detail the pitfalls of our capitalistic culture.
Some of the artists covered here are Warner Music artists. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.