Singles Roundup: Week of April 26

Story posted April 27, 2021 in

Weezer – “I Need Some of That”

After a fortuitous release schedule, Los Angeles rock band Weezer has dropped its newest single for their upcoming album, “Van Weezer.” The Suzy Shinn-produced track is inspired by 1970s and 1980s hard rock and heavy metal bands like Van Halen, to which the album is dedicated.

Directly contrasting their earlier release from the year “OK Human,” “I Need Some of That” trades orchestration for plenty of riff-based guitars. Weezer is at a point in their career where they aren’t afraid to experiment and make the music that they truly want to make. The maximalist, thundering guitars and passionate vocals from Rivers Cuomo show the band to be the most energetic they’ve been in over five years.

It is hard to believe that each member of the band is in their 50s. Although stylistically different from their previous works, each member is putting in all of their best efforts. That is especially true for lead guitarist, Brian Bell, who was criminally underutilized on their previous record. It seems like it has been forever since a guitar solo has been in a Weezer song.

Fans of the band should expect a unique experience with Weezer’s 14th studio album next month. If the whole record is as consistent as this single and the others, they should be in for a real treat. Overall, “I Need Some of That” is an energizing take on the hard rock genre and Weezer’s songwriting process.  —Caelan Chevrier

Ben Platt – “Imagine”

This Tony winner and Broadway musical boy has stepped off the stage and into the recording studio. Known for playing Benji in the “Pitch Perfect” series and starring in Broadway’s “Dear Evan Hansen” and “The Book of Mormon,” Ben Platt is well-known for his vocal talents, mostly from musical-like shows. But this week, he’s showing audiences his versatility as a musician by releasing his first single, “Imagine.”

This pop song is very upbeat and electric. Crying his heart out about how he cannot live without his “perfect one,” Platt delivers a typical teen-pop song about never losing the love of one’s life.

This song is very catchy, and the chorus applies itself to the listener’s brain and stays stuck there all day.  However, “Imagine” is incredibly repetitive. The intro and verses one and two are the same, after all. Repeating lyrics is fine, but it does not show off an artist’s full talent if the song consists of just two verses.

“Imagine” is a good song for Platt’s first original. It does grab and hold listeners’ attention, but the song could have been more fleshed-out. Hopefully Platt’s next venture is equally infectious while also showing off a little more than the same old, same old.  —Cade Miller

Greyson Chance – “Hellboy”

The new single, “Hellboy,” from Greyson Chance’s upcoming album was released Friday. Chance has dropped a few singles such as “Honeysuckle,” “Holy Feeling” and “Bad to Myself” over the past few months since his return album, “Portraits,” was released back in 2019.

“Portraits” is an intimate album full of songs about self-discovery, lost love and home, and all of Chance’s singles since then have reflected similar themes. However, “Hellboy” explores a new musical side of Chance.

“Hellboy” sees Chance replacing his synth-pop sound with an electro-pop inspired dance club anthem, and the lyrics are all about finding confidence and embracing sexuality.

The song reminices another hit song right now, “Montero (Call Me by Your Name)” by Lil Nas X, which is also a dance-pop song about sexual liberation in the LGBTQ+ community.

It will be interesting to see which musical direction Chance will take with his upcoming project with “Hellboy” sounding completely different from all of his past singles.  —Jimmy Lu

The Weeknd ft. Ariana Grande – “Save Your Tears”

The Weeknd and Ariana Grande released a remix to The Weeknd’s “After Hours” song “Save Your Tears” on Thursday.

The remix includes many added harmonies and vocals from Grande, and it adds to the song to give it a lighter atmosphere. Grande also took a verse in this remix that required her to use her lower voice, which is not common for her.

The instrumentals for the remix are not too different from the original song, but the added harmonies complete the song. The lyrics, however, now show two sides of a relationship — one side coming from The Weeknd, and the other from Grande, which the original did not as it was just the Weeknd’s side. In the lyrics, the relationship has ended yet the two individuals seemingly miss each other and wish to reconnect again.

This is not the first time these two stars have collaborated on a song together. In 2014, the collaboration “Love Me Harder” was released as the fourth single of Grande’s album ”My Everything.” They collaborated again in 2020 for Grande’s “Positions” album and created the song “off the table.”  —Kennedy Kollar

 

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

Cade Miller is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email cam7095@psu.edu.

Jimmy (Chien-Hsing) Lu is a senior majoring in telecommunications. To contact him, email jfl5603@psu.edu.

Kennedy Kollar is a freshman studying broadcast journalism. To contact her, email kzk5780@psu.edu.

About the Contributors

Jimmy (Chien-Hsing) Lu's photo

Jimmy (Chien-Hsing) Lu

Senior / Telecommunications

Jimmy (Chien-Hsing) Lu is a senior from Taiwan majoring in telecommunications at Penn State. He is a contributing writer for the CommRadio arts & entertainment department. If you’d like to contact him, please email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Cade Miller's photo

Cade Miller

Freshman / Broadcast Journalism

Cade Miller is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism with a minor in theatre and sports studies at Penn State. He is a writer for the CommRadio Arts & Entertainment department. His writings include newly released album reviews and TV show reviews. Cade is also a host on the podcast “This Is The Way Weekly,” giving listeners a spoiler-filled breakdown of Disney’s “The Mandalorian.” To contact Cade, email him at .(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).

Kennedy Kollar's photo

Kennedy Kollar

Second year / Broadcast Journalism

Kennedy Kollar worked as a student life reporter for The Daily Collegian as a freshman. She is one of the founding staff members of the Centre News Digest.