Layla McMurtrie: This is Layla McMurtrie coming to you with the Eastern Echo Music Podcast, where I talk about the hottest releases of the week, both reviewing and recommending. In this week’s episode, I will be talking about a multitude of new singles from artists including Lorde, Doja Cat, Megan Thee Stallion, Tyler, the Creator, and Banks. These hot tracks and music videos are all in anticipation of new full-length projects from these artists in the near future, all of which I am super excited about. I will also discuss new albums from both rapper Polo G and R&B artist H.E.R, as well as mention some of my other recent favorites. I am your host, Layla McMurtrie, and this is the Eastern Echo Music Podcast.
On June 11, Lorde returned with a new single titled “Solar Power,” her first release since her Melodrama LP came out in 2017. The song is said to be the first from her upcoming project of the same name.
The upbeat track begins with the singer stating her dislike for the cold winter, symbolizing the start of the summer season coming.
While I do like the carefree mood of the track and acoustic sound, I also feel like it could have been bigger and better, especially since it’s her first release in so long. Still, it kind of does feel like it is starting a new beginning for the musician and I’m excited to hear more, with more versatility.
I would give this track 3.5 out of 5 Swoops.
During the same day, Doja Cat released the 2nd single from her album Planet HER, releasing on Friday, June 25. The track, called “Need to Know,” is super sexual and fun, not unusual compared to many of her previous tracks.
The visual shows Doja playing an alien, and she tweeted that the video is basically about her as an alien wanting to know what it is like to have sex with a human man, which is...interesting to say the least. As always, Doja Cat’s eccentricity and uniqueness shines bright. She is never afraid to be out-of-the-box and weird, in a good way of course.
I would love to hear more meaningful tracks from her too though and I am super excited to hear her entire new project when it comes out later this week.
I would give this single 4 out of 5 Swoops.
Megan Thee Stallion put out her newest single “Thot Shit,” on June 11, too, paired with an interesting video, and like a few of her previous creations, it created some controversy.
It’s sort of a response to the conservative outrage that occurred after “WAP” was released. The video begins when a misogynistic, hypocritical male senator is pleasuring himself to Megan’s video, then proceeds to comment something hateful and degrading.
In consequence, Megan and her crew make it hard for him to get through his day as they twerk front and center in a grocery store, on a police car, in a restaurant, and at the front of a garbage truck. The visual even alludes to iconic scenes from The Shining and Nightmare on Elm Street, taking a final surprising and slightly horrific twist after the Senator has some time in surgery by Dr. Megan.
But, if you want to see what ultimately became of that, you’ll have to take a watch for yourself. Ironically, but not really, Ben Shapiro has already had his own commentary in response to the new video, which Megan responded to with simply a piece of the visual itself, made into a threatening GIF.
I loved the surrealness of this release and that Megan is never afraid to make people mad and demonstrate the truth in wild ways.
I would give this release 4 out of 5 Swoops.
Also on June 11th, Chicago rapper Polo G released his highly anticipated album Hall of Fame. The project includes features from The Kid LAROI, Lil Durk, Lil Wayne, Scorey, G Herbo, Rod Wave, Dababy, Young Thug, Roddy Ricch, Nicki Minaj, Pop Smoke, and Fivio Foreign.
With all of those amazing additions and Polo G’s tremendous talent already, the LP is pretty good.
There is a mix of moods, from up-beat tracks like GNF to slow love songs like “So Real,” but a lot of the production is similar, and there could definitely be more versatility when it comes to sound.
Regardless, if you are a Polo G fan or music fanatic in general, I suggest you give the album a listen for yourself.
On June 16, Tyler, the Creator released his first single in a while called “LUMBERJACK.”
On the track, Tyler flexes his material wealth and addresses his haters aggressively while rapping over a dark beat, different from most of his recent, more melodic production.
Tyler dropped the single as a surprise alongside a short-film-like teaser for his upcoming 7th studio album titled CALL ME IF YOU GET LOST.
The single does not disappoint and tons of Tyler fans have been talking about their excitement for the new music.
Also on June 16, indie musician Banks released her new single “The Devil.” While some people may have never heard this underrated artist’s name before, she may be my all-time favorite. Her last LP III came out in 2019, and this track is her first release since.
The song and video are both dark and empowering, as the artist gives herself the title “The Devil.” She goes from whispers to a soothing voice, to screams in the background. Banks shows her ability to experiment with production and be versatile.
I personally hope that this track means her fourth studio album is coming soon and you should definitely give Banks a listen if you haven’t already.
I would give this track 4.5 out of 5 Swoops.
Finally, on June 18th, R&B artist H.E.R. released a full-length album titled Back of My Mind. In the short film paired with the album, she stated that the LP is about accepting vulnerability and being able to quiet the noise around her and listen to her own voice.
She talks about how it can be hard to be honest with yourself, especially when you’re writing. Still, the project is filled with nothing but honesty and raw emotion, demonstrating the artist’s bravery and talent.
The LP goes from more upbeat features in the beginning, to slow and emotional ballads about love and loss towards the end. With additions from Ty Dolla Sign, Cordae, Lil Baby, Chris Brown, Yung Bleu, and YG, accompanied by HER’s soulful talent, this project is truly a masterpiece. It shows growth in the singer not only musically, but as an individual as well. I definitely recommend you take a listen and I’m sure you will fall in love with a handful of tracks just like I did.
I would give this project 4 out of 5 Swoops.
Some other honorable mentions that people have been enjoying in the past couple of weeks include a new album from Migos Culture III, as well as The Life of Pi’erre 5, a new project from Pi’erre Bourne.
I have also been really enjoying the newest single from indie artist Deb Never “Dissociate,” and the debut album from pop duo BETWEEN FRIENDS titled I like when you shine!.
Be sure to check out many of those tracks on our Spotify playlist curated by yours truly, including a mix of all the amazing artists and releases I discussed.
As always, thank you for listening, and don’t forget to tune in for our next episode. I am your host, Layla McMurtrie, and this is the Eastern Echo Music Podcast.