Singles Roundup: Week of Dec. 14

Story posted December 15, 2020 in Arts & Entertainment by CommRadio Arts & Entertainment Staff.

Elle King – “Another You”

Country rock artist Elle King released her new single “Another You” on Dec. 9.

King is most known for her hit song “Ex’s & Oh’s” that came out in 2014. Since then, she has released two studio albums and several singles and EPs.

“Another You” features King’s signature raspy voice and her unapologetic lyrics. King recently went through a public divorce, and the song is a statement of her success in moving on from her heartbreak.

The best part about this new single is the build-up to the chorus and King’s strong vocal performance. Her voice has a unique country twang and rock growl, but the tone of her voice remains sweet. The combination is perfect for dissing her ex in this song.

“Another You” is more of a ballad than King’s usual upbeat singles, but the music matches the emotion in her voice perfectly.

Listeners going through breakups will hopefully find King’s message empowering because she has certainly proved to be a badass independent woman in this new song.  —Courtney Benedetto

Russ – “Hard for Me”

Releasing an album earlier in the year and an EP just last month, rapper and R&B artist Russ has ensured his fans have ample music to enjoy during these trying times. To further satisfy his listeners, a new single, “Hard for Me,” was dropped this past Friday.

Being known for incorporating some sort of singing into his music, a majority of this song is sung. A few moments where the beat picks up leaves room for some rapping, but for the most part, the melancholy vibe is consistent in his voice and the instrumentals.

A powerful yet soothing piano chord introduces the track, and the addition of a simple beat in the background allows the message of the song to be the main focus.

Seizing the opportunity, Russ takes the entire track to talk about the frustrations of unloyal people in his life. He mentions how he is too blinded by love to realize his actions were not always reciprocated, repeatedly asking for someone to “go hard for me,” hence the title.

Despite the topic, the track is still catchy in a relaxed and comforting way. With a mellow sound and defeated lyrics, this song will definitely find itself being added to bag playlists all over the world.  —Megan Kelby

Noah Cyrus – “All Three”

“All Three” is the latest single from Noah Cyrus. This is Cyrus’ first release since being nominated for Best New Artist at the Grammys. This song is similar to “July,” which was Cyrus’ breakout song, and it’s her best song to date.

Cyrus sounds incredible in this song, especially in the pre-chorus. Her voice evokes a lot of emotion. It is a very raw performance, and it is obvious that each word she sings she truly means. Her voice is also powerful enough to carry the longer notes that appear toward the end of the song.

The lyrics in this song are also very interesting. Cyrus creates an interesting metaphor that is totally original and works really well with the tone of the song. The lyrics are also super catchy. 

The instrumentation in “All Three” is also excellent. Cyrus has also been excellent at adding harmonies, and in this song, they truly shine. In addition, the bridge is lovely with all of the instruments coming together. They add a ton of charm to the song, which is needed and deserved.

Overall, “All Three” is a solid track by Cyrus. It is catchy, she sounds beautiful, and the lyrics are really intriguing. If anyone is a fan of Cyrus and her songs like “July” or “Young and Sad,” then they should definitely check this track out.  —Jack Freiser

Taylor Swift – “willow”

No one was expecting Taylor Swift to come back so soon, yet here she is with her second surprise album of 2020, “evermore.”

The lead single “willow” is a whimsical, folksy daydream that encapsulates the entire listening experience of Swift throughout 2020. The story follows a woman hopelessly in love who’s been tricked and beaten down in the past but still fights effortlessly for a fairy tale romance. It’s an evergreen Swift song that never goes out of style.

Swift’s vocals are balanced perfectly throughout the album. For the verses, the singer opts for a lower tone that she’s been utilizing throughout “folklore” and now “evermore.” Yet, she lightens the mood throughout the chorus with a light, airy sound that encapsulates the pure feeling of a new love.

When the song and album dropped together at midnight on Dec. 11, Swift released a music video alongside “willow.” It picked up right where “cardigan” left off, the lead single of “folklore.” Swift finds herself in a cabin following the golden string to wherever love can take her. The videos imply the two songs are connected in a way.

The open-ended finale of the video leaves room for the possibility of a third lead single to potentially conclude the story of young love. Maybe in a couple of months, there will be a third surprise album.  —Jade Campos

 

Courtney Benedetto is a freshman majoring in print/digital journalism. To contact her, email cmb7747@psu.edu.

Jack Freiser is a freshman majoring in either media studies or telecommunications. To contact him, email jef5614@psu.edu.

Megan Kelby is a freshman majoring in communications. To contact her, email mkk5701@psu.edu.

Jade Campos is a junior majoring in print/digital journalism. To contact her, email jmc7727@psu.edu.

About the Contributors

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Jade Campos

Junior / Print/Digital Journalism

Jade Campos is a junior from Caroline, Virginia. She is a director of the arts and entertainment department of CommRadio and a co-host on the talk show The Nittany Record Club alongside Colton Pleslusky and David Fortunato. Along with CommRadio, Jade is currently the assistant lifestyle editor for the Daily Collegian. In the past, she has interned with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. To contact her, email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Courtney Benedetto's photo

Courtney Benedetto

Freshman / Print/Digital Journalism

Courtney Benedetto is from Dover, Delaware. She is a freshman pursuing a print/digital journalism major and a creative writing minor. Courtney is a member of the arts & entertainment department of CommRadio as well as a lifestyle candidate for the Daily Collegian. To contact her, email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Jack Freiser's photo

Jack Freiser

Freshman / Telecommunications

Jack Freiser is a caring and creative people-person who loves music and film. He aspires to impact the music business as a successful A+R by signing artists who will be culturally relevant and will leave an impact on the world, and through keeping a strong relationship with the artist and their team. Email him at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Megan Kelby's photo

Megan Kelby

Freshman / Communications

Megan Kelby is a freshman from Newark, Delaware majoring in communications at Penn State. She is a member of the arts & entertainment department for CommRadio. To contact her, email her at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).