BEST CHILL SONGS - WEEK 12
There's no doubt about it, you guys. We're living through some crazy times right now. Every day, it feels like the news keeps getting more and more like something straight out a zombie apocalypse movie. And while it's important to stay informed and up-to-date during this global pandemic, it's also important to step away from the madness every once in a while. As we wrap up what's arguably been one of the most dystopic weeks of our lives, then, why not take a moment to pause and reflect this Friday with the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's Best Chill Songs? Featuring Yaeji, Kehlani, Mustafa, and more, this playlist has something for everyone...!
YAEJI – WAKING UP DOWN
Make no mistake about it. Adulting is HARD! Just ask Brooklyn's Yaeji, who's exploring the subject on her latest single “WAKING UP DOWN.” “I got waking up down/I got cooking down/I got making a list and checking down,” sings Yaeji in her signature monotone voice the song – a crystalline ode to getting your sh*t together that hints at a turmoil underneath.
KEHLANI – TOXIC
Unfortunate as it was to hear Kehlani and YG had split earlier this year, it's true their breakup has provided us with an endless supply of bops, the latest of which comes in the form of the cathartic “Toxic.” It hears Kehlani comparing her previous lover to that of a drug, with a dark trap production curling around her like smoke as she purges her poisons.
MUSTAFA – STAY ALIVE
Meet Mustafa, the Canadian activist who's burrowing deep into the soul with the powerfully potent “Stay Alive.” Produced by Simon Hessman, James Blake, Frank Dukes, “Stay Alive” is an emotional ballad about gun violence and the day-to-day struggle of marginalized communities, with the 23-year-old's lyrics ricocheting through the chest long after listening.
DON TOLIVER (FEAT. TRAVIS SCOTT & KAASH PAIGE) – EUPHORIA
Even if you've never touched an illicit substance in your life, Don Toliver will make you feel like you're flying as high as a kite on “Euphoria.” Lifted from the recent Heaven or Hell, it's a hazy chilltrap cut that very much belongs on a late-night Kylie Jenner Instagram story, with Don channeling The Weeknd as filtered through a kaleidoscopic ASTROWORLD lens.
THUNDERCAT (FEAT. TY DOLLA $IGN & LIL B) – FAIR CHANCE
It's not all that often we get to see Thundercat's serious side, but the funk maestro is very much showing it on “Fair Chance.” The follow-up to “Dragonball Durag” is a gorgeously floaty tribute to Mac Miller, with Thundercat cooing in the lush, curlicuing chorus: “So hard to get over it/I've tried to get under it/Stuck in between, it is what it is/Bye, bye, for now.” <3
PORTER ROBINSON – SOMETHING COMFORTING
The world is a hot mess right now, but Porter Robinson is here to help us forget our troubles for five minutes or so with “Something Comforting.” The latest single to be lifted from Nurture after “Get Your Wish” is an infinitely gorgeous, soaring feeler, with profoundly affecting lulls meeting deeply restorative electronic highs for a true slice of sonic escapism.
A.CHAL – PINK DUST
“Girl I'm tryna be your purple rain/The city got us both too far away.” And so begins “Pink Dust,” the intoxicating latest single from Peru's A.CHAL. Written about a date the Latino artist enjoyed with a girl on a beach in Malibu, “Pink Dust” is as engrossing as a late-summer sunset, with A.CHAL's voice swirling like grains of sand around the heady guitars.
FELIX CARTAL & SOPHIE SIMMONS – MINE
Felix Cartal and Sophie Simmons pay tribute to a lost love on the wistfully sweet “Mine.” The song tells a story of a relationship changing and ultimately falling apart over time, with it going from teenage infatuation right through to the struggles of adulthood, with Felix's blend of dance and folk music really allowing Sophie's beautifully nostalgic vocals to shine.
SUFJAN STEVENS & LOWELL BRAMS – CLIMB THAT MOUNTAIN
Following on from the release of “The Runaround,” Sufjan Stevens and Lowell Brams return with another ambient masterpiece in the form of “Climb That Mountain.” As the title suggests, the song really does sound like the audio equivalent of an alpine ascent, with the composition opening to misty arpeggios before the skies clear and Sufjan's calls arrive.
SHALLOU & ZACHARY KNOWLES – MUTUAL LOVE
UGH! Shallou just keeps on getting better and better. Following on from the release of “Forget,” the LA vibe conjurer returns with another tranquil tropical feeler entitled “Mutual Love.” “There's mutual love/It won't work with just one of us,” sings guest Zachary Knowles on the song – an ode to relationship compromise as anchored by Shallou's soothing beats.
Until next week, follow We Are: The Guard's Weekly Chart on Spotify for more. Be well...! 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.