Singles Roundup: Week of Nov. 23

Story posted November 26, 2020 in Arts & Entertainment by CommRadio Arts & Entertainment Staff.

girl in red – “two queens in a king size bed”

Ringing in the holiday season with a new single, Marie Ulven, better known as girl in red, released her new track, “two queens in a king size bed,” on Wednesday.

Continuing with her lo-fi indie and bedroom pop style, Ulven constructs a Christmas love story through her lyrics, accompanied by a soft piano melody that is eventually joined by sleigh bells and other percussion.

Repeated verses and airy vocalizations allow the first person narrative to unfold around two girls in love during the holiday season. With mentions of mistletoe, snow angels and talks of gift giving, hints of classic Christmas symbols are sprinkled throughout the single adding a cozy feel to Ulven’s already soothing voice.

Though most wouldn’t fight for this song to become the new “All I Want for Christmas Is You,” many fans of girl in red and others in her genre will wholeheartedly accept it. The use of a holiday-type tune and incorporation of winter themes to accentuate a love story will definitely get this track added onto many playlists this holiday season.  —Megan Kelby

Shawn Mendes & Justin Bieber – “Monster”

A dynamic collaboration between Shawn Mendes and Justin Bieber is just what the world needs right now.

“Monster” highlights the pressures of fame and the standards that celebrities face starting from a young age—both Bieber and Mendes started their music careers early.

Bieber has been in the limelight since he was 13 years old and has received harsh criticism throughout his career. His experiences contrast highly with Mendes’ clean slate in the eyes of the media.

Mendes expresses that he struggles with the idea of tainting his perfect image, while Bieber is still recovering from the backlash of his past.

The song has a laid-back pop beat that lets the powerful lyrics about fame shine through.

The vocals are raw and real. Listeners will resonate with the emotional tone of the song and hopefully remind themselves that celebrities are allowed to make mistakes.  —Courtney Benedetto

Marina – “Man’s World”

Former singer of the band Marina and the Diamonds and pop vocalist, Marina, just released her new song, “Man’s World” on Nov. 18. The singer released her first solo album, “Love + Fear,” a little over a year ago.

The song was written with all female collaborators in hopes to show girl power within the music industry. The new music drop also included a new video to go along with the single.

The video is a vibrant, girl-focused visual taking place in what looks like a canyon. In the beginning, they are all wearing masks (except Marina) and continue to dance and stand powerful around her. They are all wearing Greek-inspired vibrant clothing, which follows her Greek ancestry.

The song explains issues going on in the world and how many men are behind them. The chorus repeats, “I don’t want to live in a man’s world anymore.” The most powerful line is the last one in the song: “Don’t punish me for not being a man.”

This song is a great feminist, LGBTQ+ and climate-change activist anthem. This new hit is very relevant to what has been going on in the world recently.

Marina is expected to release a new album following this single in the near future.  —Payton Steckroat

iann dior – "Holding On"

iann dior has become one of 2020’s most popular artists of the year, especially with his breakout hit “Mood” with 24kGoldn, hitting the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100 for four weeks. He continues to strive in his newest single "Holding On," proving that he is the real deal.

Similar to “Mood,” the song instrumentally is based on very wavy guitar chords drenched in reverb and classic trap drums. The production is also very clean. It’s surprising that this song wasn’t geared to release next summer, as it just radiates warmth.

dior sounds great as well, singing and rapping about not being able to find love wherever he goes. “I don't know what to do/Got nothin’ left to lose,” he exclaims on the bridge where he truly stands out. He seems to glide over the beat freely, and his rap verse shows his versatility as well.

It is very easy to blow up on the internet. Luckily, iann dior is just as talented as his songs are catchy. "Holding On" is a straightforward, enjoyable song for longtime fans and new listeners alike, and it may be a display of what more is to come from the young Puerto Rican artist.  —Caelan Chevrier

Peach Tree Rascals – “Fumari”

Peach Tree Rascals released their new song “Fumari” Thursday about the struggle of being young and not knowing what to do.

In the first verse, Peach Tree Rascals mention chasing miracles and forever running as well as never giving up or letting go of memories. This is all part of the process of growing up that leads to the chorus of talking about forever searching for the light or the answers of transitioning into becoming an adult.

The next verse is Peach Tree Rascals rapping about the constant struggles of growing up, making your own decisions and not listening to other people trying to tell them how to live.

“Fumari” ends with Peach Tree Rascals repeating the chorus of searching for the light and waiting for the time.

Throughout the song, the band has a relaxing beat with ukulele chords as well as a drumline providing the tempo.

Peach Tree Rascals are well known for a relaxing pop style beat, mixed in with an indie style of music, and that is shown throughout the entirety of “Fumari,” switching up the norms of mainstream indie music.

“Fumari” is Peach Tree Rascals’ first release since August, showing their fans that there is more new music to come in their future. This release could pave the path to Peach Tree Rascals’ first ever album release.  —Nicholas Mancuso

 

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

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

Payton Steckroat is a freshman majoring in journalism. To contact her, email pesteckroat@gmail.com.

Caelan Chevrier is a freshman majoring in journalism. To contact him, email cjc6789@psu.edu.

Nicholas Mancuso is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email nbm9@psu.edu.

About the Contributors

Nicholas Mancuso's photo

Nicholas Mancuso

Junior / Broadcast Journalism

Nicholas Mancuso is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism.

Payton Steckroat's photo

Payton Steckroat

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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).

Caelan Chevrier's photo

Caelan Chevrier

Freshman / Journalism

Caelan Chevrier is a first-year student in the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications at Penn State University studying broadcast journalism with the goal of graduating with a bachelor’s degree in four years. His plan is to get involved in numerous media-related clubs during his stay. His career goal is to spread informative, meaningful and entertaining content across various platforms and to be a positive impact on the community. If you’d like to contact him, email him at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or .(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).