Emma Off The Record: New Releases

The age of social distancing has had its fair share of low moments. All of the anxiety, fear, sadness, loneliness, and worry have been driving nearly everyone mad. While some people are going with the flow and riding this wave gracefully, others (including myself) feel like they have sailed straight into a storm and are trying their best to stay afloat. Yet, there is one shining metaphorical lighthouse that looks like it might just be able to guide us out of this: musicians. Has anyone else noticed that lots of artists have been particularly generous about releasing new music as of late? Well, I certainly have and I cannot thank the music gods enough for blessing us with all these new releases. 



The New Abnormal is out now. Cover Painting “Bird on Money” by Jean-Michel Basquiat #thenewabnormal

A post shared by The Strokes (@thestrokes) on

As I have explained on numerous occasions, music has a curative effect on me. When I’m down in the dirtiest of dumps, the lowest of lows, the moodiest of moods, music always offers me a helping hand. No motivation to do any work because you’re wondering what’s the point of it anyway? Queue: Now Or Never by Kendrick Lamar ft. Mary J. Blige. Not feeling the self-love and finding every which way to criticize your body? Queue: Whipped Cream by Ari Lennox. FaceTime crashed because your internet bandwidth is trash and you want to channel your loneliness through awkward dancing? Queue: 911/Mr. Lonely by Tyler, The Creator ft. Steve Lacy and Frank Ocean (what a trio). 

Last week was a great time for music buffs like myself because everyone and their band members decided to drop some incredible new material out there. Thundercat dropped a fantastic sophomore album called It Is What It Is that quite literally soothed my soul with every bass lick and falsetto riff. Sven from Still Woozy put out an extremely lovable cover of “Feels Like We Only Go Backwards” by Tame Impala on Instagram Live. Omar Apollo released a new single called “Imagine U” that is going to be the ultimate summer bop (you heard it here first, folks). And as if my weeks couldn’t get better, The Strokes, yes THE Strokes, finally put out their new album aptly titled The New Abnormal and it has surpassed all my expectations. Honestly, I’m still speechless. So speechless that I figured I would just let the music speak for itself. This week’s playlist features bits and pieces from these new releases and a few extra songs from each artist because they deserve all the streams for what they’ve done for the world this week.

Lessons learned this week: new music = instant mood boost. Now, this isn’t a fool-proof declaration because, of course, I let myself feel negative emotions from time to time. For me personally, shoving these feelings into a corner of my brain doesn’t help me keep them in check; it just makes them that much stronger when they come back. Fortunately, I have music to help me along the way so when I really want to lean into my emotions I can throw on some Blonde as a nice soundtrack to bawl out to. But in all seriousness, music has an uplifting power that I rely on quite frequently to pick me up when I’m feeling low, so when artists release the work that they’ve poured their heart and soul into, I truly feel grateful for them.

Hopefully, other artists pick up on this trend soon since they can see that it’s bringing lots of joy and comfort into this world during these stressful times *cough, cough Rihanna*...



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