TOP CHILL SONGS: 10 TRACKS TO COOL DOWN TO THIS WEEKEND
Photo by POND Creative
There's a heat wave currently sweeping across Europe, and here in my hometown of London, England, it's the hottest day of the year so far. Basically, I'm sweating in places I never knew I could sweat, which probably explains why I'm extra thankful for the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's Top Chill Songs. Pull on some headphones, then, as it's time to cool down our body temperatures with the following chill vibes from TOLEDO, Joji, ODESZA, and plenty of other favorites!
TOLEDO – L-TRAIN
Coinciding with the announcement of their signing to Grand Jury, TOLEDO's Daniel Álvarez de Toledo and Jordan Dunn-Pilz are unveiling "L-Train." "We had just moved to Bushwick and started playing shows every week. We were drinking and partying and losing sight of ourselves," notes TOLEDO. With their Elliott Smith-like vocal harmonies coming backed by a dose of guitar radiance, "L-Train" has all of the nostalgic, melancholy gorgeosity of a sunset dappling through the trees on a midsummer evening.
JOJI – GLIMPSE OF US
Just a few weeks on from teaming up with Japan's rei brown on the ode to a long-distance lover "Thinking Bout You," Joji is back today with "Glimpse of Us." His first solo material since 2020's Nectar, "Glimpse of Us" is a gutting piano ballad that hears Joji lamenting that he doesn't feel the same connection with his current girlfriend as he did with his ex. "I'm only here passing time in her arms/Hopin' I'll find a glimpse of us," croons Joji in the chorus, his devastating croon tugging at our internal organs.
ODESZA (FEAT. CHARLIE HOUSTON) – WIDE AWAKE
It's no secret we're huge fans of Charlie Houston here at We Are: The Guard, with the Canadian star making perhaps her biggest breakthrough to date on ODESZA's "Wide Awake." "What we like about 'Wide Awake' is it feels like it encapsulates a lot of things we enjoy in one track: lots of percussive elements wrapped in emotive chords, with swirling distorted synths and leads, all centered around Charlie's incredible vocal," notes ODESZA, with the Bellingham act asking us to levitate several feet off the ground.
WET – I'M NOT HER
Back in May, New York City's Wet announced the release of their forthcoming EP, Pink Room, by sharing "Tell Me Why." Fast forward a few weeks, and Kelly Zutrau and company are returning today with "I'm Not Her." Produced alongside Reed Black, "I'm Not Her" hears Wet continuing to pursue a more intimate sound that feels like it came together in a candlelit living room. With Kelly singing to a lover still mourning a previous relationship, "I'm Not Her" is a devastating epiphany that hangs in the emotional abyss.
TIM BERNARDES – ÚLTIMA VEZ
Brazilian singer-songwriter Tim Bernardes recently returned with his sophomore album, Mil Coisas Invisíveis, and to celebrate, the Latin Grammy-nominated artist is unveiling a fourth and final single from the collection, "Última Vez." "It's about that feeling of reconnecting with a person you've been intimate with for a long time and dealing with the symbols that they represent, the chances that they're not what they once were," says Tim of the track, a creakingly intimate lullaby that feels like its made of moonlight.
HEALING POTPOURRI – WIND
Ahead of the release of his sophomore album, Paradise, Healing Potpourri's Simi Sohota is sharing "Wind." Produced alongside Sean O'Hagan of Stereolab, "Wind" hears Simi coming to terms with the dread and isolation of the last couple of years by way of deeply healing, medicinal psychedelic-pop. "A lot of the record is about how bad things are and how I'm angry about it – but I realized that can be Healing Potpourri too," explains Simi, with "Wind" surrounding us like a much-needed comfort blanket.
MILOE – FLOATING
He recently announced he'll be going on tour with COIN, Khalid, and Goth Babe, but before all of that, Congolese-American singer-songwriter Miloe is sharing "floating." The follow-up to "elastic" finds Miloe caught in a state of infatuation, with the Loma Vista signee rendering this through some of his danciest beats to date. "All I know, know, know is when you move like that/You got me floatin'," sings Miloe, eventually giving way to a wonky syncopated climax that could have emerged from the mind of Thom Yorke.
CAVETOWN (FEAT. ORLA GARTLAND) – FALL IN LOVE WITH A GIRL
Earlier this year, Cavetown teamed up with Filipino-British musician beabadoobee on the swirling ode to queer love, "Fall in Love With a Girl," and today, Robin Daniel Skinner is back with an acoustic version featuring Irish singer-songwriter Orla Gartland. While the original had a giddy grungy tension and electricity coursing through its veins, here, "Fall In Love With a Girl" is given a tender, ukulele-laced spin, with Orla's pure dulcet tones sounding as comforting as fresh laundry. Lovely, lovely stuff.
MONTELL FISH – HOLLOW LOVER
Montell Fish is going to be supporting "Take Me Where Your Heart Is" singer-songwriter Q on tour in Europe in a couple of months, but before then, the Pittsburgh act is back with "Hollow Lover." Like "Fall in Love With You" before it, "Hollow Lover" hears Montell continuing to immerse us in his signature spectral echo chamber of gospel, with the TikTok artist sounding more haunting than ever as he pleads with a lover to prove their existence to him: "If you are a ghost/Then please let me know/Please let me go."
CLN (FEAT. HOLLY HEBE) – UNDONE
Last time we heard from Australia's cln, he was offering up his spin on The Kid LAROI and Justin Bieber's "STAY," but today, Callan Alexander is returning the focus to his solo material with "Undone." "'Undone' is the first single from my sophomore album, and it also represents quite a bit of a sonic shift for me," says cln. A collaboration with Holly Hebe, "Undone" is a gentle ode to letting go of a person, feeling, and relationship, with cln's voice and the reverb-drenched keys undulating like ocean waves come the chorus.
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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.