Amanda’s Rad Recs: 5 Songs You Need to Hear Right Now

I hate to admit it, but I’m that friend. You know the one: always listening to new music, sorting it into playlists and demanding the aux cord the second the car doors slam to show off the new tunes they’ve found. 


Spending time listening to new music is a form of self-care for me. I eagerly wait for my new Discover Weekly playlist and listen to it nearly every single Monday, waiting for new gems to add to my endless amounts of already existing playlists. 


So since I hear people asking for song recommendations pretty often, I decided that it’s probably time I share some of my absolute favorite songs that need to be on your playlists now.


1.  “Not Now,” Ally Hills

Aly Hills brings back the ‘80s vibe with this vibrant and colorful bop. The lyrics are just the beginning of what brings this song alive. The production and the unique background with its vocalizations and the driving drum beat help keep the song moving through the instrumental break that many songs on the radio lack, into the flowy, dreamy final chorus and into its destination: your head—for at least the next hour after your first listen. 


Why You Need To Listen Now: The mood that this song will put you in if you give it the treatment it deserves is indescribable. If you pop in your headphones or snuggle up in bed with your laptop, climb under the covers and close your eyes, listening to the building drums and the electric vibe the song brings, you will feel the most intense surge of absolute bliss. There’s no other way for me to describe it; you need to experience it yourself. 


2.  “I Couldn't Be More in Love,” The 1975

This has to be one of my all-time favorite songs by The 1975. The jazzy yet still solemn vibe of this song conveys the feeling of pure unconditional love to me so well. Not the sweet, honeymoon-y love, the unspoken love that we only see represented through cheesy paragraphs on Instagram for anniversaries and other special events. The kind of love that feels so comfortable to just sit in and float through life knowing someone loves you. The guitar and the key changes of this song prove that this band knows their stuff. As a music nerd, it impresses me every time I listen. 


Why You Need To Listen Now: If you aren't listening to the things that The 1975 are putting out, you’re missing out. They’re one of the most innovative artists right now, and no matter the style of music you usually gravitate toward, there’s something in their discography you’ll end up loving. 


3.  “Bloom,” The Paper Kites 

This song screams fall to me. Everything from the subtle guitar and soft voices to the lyrics and just the overall structure of the song. When I listen, I feel like I’m driving, looking out the window, staring at the leaves changing, and if we’re talking about Minnesota, maybe a little snow falling. The song builds well overall and makes me feel really at home in its lyrics. I’ve also known of this song for years, so listening to it brings a lot of nostalgia. 


Why You Need To Listen Now: This song will become a staple in your library. You don’t even need to relate to the love-driven lyrics to find a home in its very warm chords and texture. It’s a great addition to any study playlist or even a cheesy love playlist. You’d probably find it in a rom-com, to be honest. 


4.  “Hate Your Rules,” CRWN, Bronwyn

This is on almost every playlist recommendation I make. I scream the lyrics to this in the car and as a college kid who is still trying to figure my life out, I feel them while I do it. It’s catchier than any song I’ve ever ended up finding on my Discover Weekly and has made its way into my life on so many playlists for so many occasions. It has the same teen/young adult rebellion theme as a lot of other songs, but for some reason it just feels like it’s actually real. It doesn’t feel like it was written by a 35-year-old guy pretending he remembers what it was like to be a young person—it feels like it came from inside an actual young person


Why You Need To Listen Now: This song deserves to be blasted at every party from here on out. I don’t care who you are, this song is a jam. Who doesn’t love screaming about how we wanna be rich but we hate the rules? It can be as simple as the young teenage “my parents don’t get me” or as complex as “the economic system our country executes is set up to watch us fail,” whichever your mood swings most toward. 


5.  “Nice to Meet Ya,” Niall Horan 

Okay, okay. Anyone who knows me will know that this is a completely biased pick; however, that doesn’t mean I don’t recommend it. It’s so easy to fall into the rhythm and forget what you’re doing, so I avoid playing it while I study. I accidentally listened to this song on repeat for an hour and a half and didn’t get sick of it, so that has to tell you something. The overall vibe of this song is very different from anything we hear on the radio right now, but yet it still has the same Top 40 feel, which I think is really hard to do. 


Why You Need To Listen Now: Overall, this song is 100% my favorite right now, and not just because I love Niall Horan. The artistry and the lyric choices are so deliberate, and you can tell that there is passion behind them. Plus, his voice is stunning


Special mention goes out to “Lights Up” by Harry Styles, “Chemicals” by Dean Lewis, “Grow” by Conan Gray and “In My Head” by James Bay. If you have more time to give a listen to these four, they definitely deserve it. 


There’s a whole world of music out there waiting to be listened to. If you’re ever searching for new songs, check your Discover Weekly for Spotify users or ask your friends what their favorite songs are, especially the ones who don’t share your music taste—you’ll be pleasantly surprised!