BEST CHILL SONGS: THE 10 TOP VIBES FOR THE WEEKEND
Photo by Clifford John Usher
What can I say, readers? The world is a scary place right now. Look after yourselves, and don't forget to check in on those around you, too. Sending love.
There's honestly so much bad news right now. It can be so overwhelming. Do what you need to do to look after yourself and those around you. Don't feel guilty taking a social media break if you're able to take one. Hang in there. It's ok to not be ok in hard times. Hang in there.
— Obake PAM Ch. CEOtuber (@obakepam) February 24, 2022
Check out the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's 10 Twitter Moments, featuring RY X, slenderbodies, Khruangbin & Leon Bridges, and plenty more!
RY X – LET YOU GO
Just over three years on from the release of his sophomore album, Unfurl, RY X is making his return this February with the intensely brooding "Let You Go." "This song formed from the beginnings of many others, tumbled itself into being, and became one of the center points of the album energetically for me," divulges the Australian native in a statement. With RY's weightless vocals filling the song's chamberous emptiness like a haunting specter, "Let You Go" feels almost alchemical in nature.
SLENDERBODIES – I CAN'T MAKE UP MY MIND
Coinciding with the announcement of their forthcoming sophomore album, simple shapes, slenderbodies has shared "i can't make up my mind." The follow-up to their recent collaboration with ayokay, "i can't make up my mind" is about indecision and the exhaustion that comes with having to make the correct choices in life. "I pick it up put it down/Find a place downtown/Move right in move right out/The bed wasn't right," begins the cut – a serpentine balm that massages in all of the best places.
KHRUANGBIN & LEON BRIDGES – MARIELLA
Having dropped Texas Sun EP in February 2020, Khruangbin and Leon Bridges are reuniting this February for Texas Moon EP. A five-song set of Twin Peaks-esque nocturnes, Texas Moon EP concludes with "Mariella." Clocking in at around five minutes, "Mariella" is a mesmerizing synopsis of Khruangbin and Leon's small-town sound, with Chris Isaak-tinged riffs rippling sunsets behind Leon as he sings: "Mari, I/Don't ever wanna live alone/In a country town down in Texas/With the memory of you."
TRACE – FOR GOODNESS SAKE
Los Angeles singer-songwriter TRACE is over looking for validation in other people on her latest single, the dreamy, brooding "For Goodness Sake." According to TRACE, "For Goodness Sake" is about her experiences of being an up-and-coming artist in the music industry. "It's about carrying your craft with a humble pride rather than with a panicked posture," says TRACE of the ethereal reverie. "It's about actively fending off the noise of people's opinions – good or bad in order to maintain peace of mind.
CLAMS CASINO & JAZZTRONIK – UNKNOWN TOKYO
Following on from the release of his instrumental mixtape, Winter Flower, last year, Clams Casino has announced Winter Flower Reimagined. Originally premiered through the Calm app, Winter Flower Reimagined finds Clams teaming up with Jazztronik's Ryota Nozaki to revision Winter Flower through Japanese instruments such as koto and shakuhachi. Case in point: "Unknown Tokyo." A reinterpretation of the Winter Flower song "Unknown," this ambient composition is a gentle journey into pure meditative zen.
LIZZY MCALPINE (FEAT. BEN KESSLER) – RECKLESS DRIVING
Lizzy McAlpine documents the perils of falling in love too fast and too furiously on the devastating "reckless driving." Having originally gained popularity on TikTok in demo form, "reckless driving" is a visceral confessional that hears Lizzy teaming up with We Are: The Guard regular Ben Kessler to depict a relationship crashing and burning in slow motion. With chugging acoustics acting as a backdrop for Lizzy and Ben's steeply emotive revelations, "reckless driving" is crushing from start to end.
FINDING HOPE – MAGAZINES
Valentine's Day is officially over for another year, but Finding Hope is reminding us of the importance of showing love to those around us at all times on his latest single, "Magazines." The follow-up to "Crush on You," "Magazines" is the kind of blissfully feel-good vibe that goes down like a cup of sunshine on a rainy day. "You don't have to do no crazy things/Study all your beauty magazines/Buying all the hoop hoop earrings," urges Finding Hope on the cut – a lush dose of positive vibes ahead of the weekend.
¿TÉO? – IN YOUR BODY
Back in 2021, ¿Téo? won over much of the music blogosphere with his debut album, the WILLOW-featuring, Justin Bieber-approved Sol, and this February, the New York City actor-turned-musician is making his longing, sensuous return with "In Your Body." Produced alongside Blanda, "In Your Body" very much picks up where Sol left off, with Latin-infused rhythms underpinning much of the song. ¿Téo?, meanwhile, finishes the whole thing off with his aching narration – his croon caressing the flesh with ease.
ANGUS MAUDE (FEAT. RYAN DALEY) – CALABASAS
Angus Maude is counting down to 5 o'clock on his soothing latest single, "Calabasas." The follow-up to "Middle Man" hears Angus teaming up with RYAN DALEY to deliver a song for those of us dreaming of weekends spent with friends and lovers. "Sugar rush in a tipi, we need no sleep/We got right now 'til eyes get weak, I weep/I weep, I wish Friday came sooner than this," lament Angus and RYAN over flourishes of tender acoustics, with birdsong and city noises adding a tangible depth to the narrative.
SAMIA – DESPERADO (EAGLES COVER)
This is deeply, deeply beautiful. We Are: The Guard regular Samia takes time out from touring her Scout EP to share a cover of "Desperado" by the Eagles. While the original comes packed full of cowboy blues, listen as Samia transforms Glenn Frey and Don Henley's offering into an intimate, candlelit ballad tinged with feminine loneliness. "Desperado/Why don't you come to your senses?" sings Samia against a backdrop of flickering keys – her devoted voice sounding like a love letter come to life. Gorgeous.
Follow We Are: The Guard on Spotify for plenty more chill vibes! x
Jess Grant is a frustrated writer hailing from London, England. When she isn't tasked with disentangling her thoughts from her brain and putting them on paper, Jess can generally be found listening to The Beatles, or cooking vegetarian food.