BEST CHILL SONGS - WEEK 46
If you regularly read this column, then you'll know that I'm a big fan of fall. I love the golden leaves, the cozy sweaters, and the proliferation of pumpkin spice. There's no about it, however, that the cold days and the dark nights can leave even the most enthusiastic autumnphile feeling tired and cranky. On that note, as the weekend approaches, why not join the team and me in taking a moment to recharge this Friday with the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's Best Chill Songs? Featuring FKJ, Abraham Tilbury, Frida Sundemo, and more, the following playlist has something for everyone!
FKJ – YLANG YLANG
FKJ is filling me with a bittersweet nostalgia with this cut from his recent EP of the same name. Built around a piano line that sounds like it was sampled straight from a Disney movie, “Ylang Ylang” is a deeply swooning, romantic piece of music that still manages to stay relevant in 2019 thanks to its use of lo-fi study beats.
ABRAHAM TILBURY – SO RIGHT
It's been two years since we last heard from Abraham Tilbury, but the R&B artist returns today with a much-needed slice of Australian sunshine in the form of “So Right.” It's a hazy, mellow dream of a song that was produced by Amy Axegale, with warm trap beats enveloping Abraham as he sings from what feels like a higher level of consciousness.
SEA LION – SOME PEACE AT ALL
This is utterly charming. Sweden's Sea Lion is taking me back to a better time on her latest single “some peace at all,” with the blend of gently whimsical acoustics and innocent vocals evoking the feeling of watching a grainy home movie shot during childhood, when summers seemed to last forever and safety could be found in the arms of a loved one.
FREE NATIONALS (FEAT. SYD) – SHIBUYA
There's no better way to spend the weekend than in bed with your lover. Just ask Anderson .Paak's friends Free Nationals, who have dedicated an entire song to the activity in the form of “Shibuya,” a smooth disco groove that features the pillowy soft vocals of The Internet's Syd: “Saturday/'Cause you ain't gotta work tomorrow anyway/Do you babe?”
BILLIE EILISH – EVERYTHING I WANTED
Billie Eilish meditates on her newfound fame on her latest single “everything i wanted.” It's a whisper-soft reverie that touches on the 17-year-old's struggles with mental health and suicide ideation, with Billie crystallizing her pain into something truly beautiful come the chorus, where she pays tribute to her brother FINNEAS for supporting her through it all.
TINASHE & 6LACK – TOUCH & GO
Following on from the release of the Ms Banks-featuring club anthem “Die a Little Bit,” Tinashe is returning to her more R&B-oriented roots today with “Touch & Go.” It's a hazy, smoky duet with 6LACK, with both artists bringing to life the push and pull of a relationship on the edge over a darkly trap-leaning production that sounds fit for the boudoir.
FRIDA SUNDEMO – NOTHING CAN HURT ME
It doesn't matter who you are. It's impossible to not be moved by this lush latest single from Frida Sundemo. There's something about the vocal fragility combined with the lyrical devastation that just makes “Nothing Can Hurt Me” aim straight for the emotional core, with the military drums lending the song an additional sense a cinematic tension.
BORA YORK – EMOTION VERTIGO
Clocking in at under two minutes, “Emotion Vertigo” by Bora York is as fleeting as a faded memory. That's doesn't mean that it isn't entirely affecting, however, with the Minneapolis husband-and-wife duo's fractured, fragmented collage of sound stirring up all kinds of senses and feelings in its incredibly short runtime.
BIIG PIIG – ROSES AND GOLD
Enter into the sumptuous world of Biig Piig. The British rapper Jess Smyth has completely won me over with her latest single “Roses and Gold, a slow-burning slice of opulent trip-hop that hears Biig Piig singing in both English and Spanish about obsession, infatuation, and “the importance of holding on to what really matters in these tumultuous times.”
BRAHNY – SUNBURN, AZ
Close your eyes and feel the summer rays on your skin as you listen to “sunburn, AZ” by Brahny. Featured on the Canadian artist's recent EP moon, “sunburn, AZ” is a psychedelic mirage of a song that was inspired by a family vacation to Arizona, with Brahny's vocals shimmering and rippling like heat haze over a blend of jazzy guitars and groovy basslines.
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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.