From across the wide world of dance, we deliver the best, the bounciest and the bass-iest new music of the week. Let’s dig in.
Muzi, “I Know It”
If a tree falls in the forest and no one posts it on TikTok, did it even happen? On Muzi’s new song “I Know It,” the South African producer and vocalist considers what it’s like to be in a co-dependent relationship with his phone and the faceless social media audience living in its apps. His raps about data bundles and taking cute pics — which flow with a quiet casualness, as if he’s simply talking — hang low over a swinging house groove (drumbeat courtesy of Kaytranada) with clipped vocal riffs and a little bit of shimmer. At points, he rattles off disconnected words and phrases with the speed of someone scrolling their home feed. “Am I real to you if I don’t post?” he repeats. “Did I do it well if I don’t boast?” “I Know It” is the latest single from Muzi’s upcoming fourth album Interblaktic, which drops on October 1. — KRYSTAL RODRIGUEZ
박혜진 Park Hye Jin, “Never Die”
In 2018, 박혜진 Park Hye Jin sang “I wanna be a star” on her song “Be a Star.” Three years later, she’s pretty close. After signing with Ninja Tune and sharing her How Can I EP last year, she’s today (Sept. 10) releasing her debut album Before I Die. The LP continues the expansion of 박혜진 Park Hye Jin’s creative universe into dusky downtempo (“Before I Die”) and harder-hitting hip-hop (“Whatchu Doin Later”) territory without fully leaving behind the four-on-the-floor that got her noticed.
Whereas 박혜진 Park Hye Jin’s voice is the centerpiece of many of these tracks, it’s simply another instrument to manipulate and layer on the new “Never Die.” A whirlwind of a club track, “Never Die” sounds like how it feels to be wrapped up in your own existential anxieties: sweaty, adrenaline-jacking and echoing into infinity. 박혜진 Park Hye Jin’s vocals are mostly chopped and blended into the production here, but they break free of that orbit in the end to repeat in full the titular phrase: “Never die.” The air of defiance makes the sentiment feel non-negotiable. When you’re a star, a part of you does indeed live forever. — K.R.
Austin Millz feat. Aluna, “Gold”
The best partnerships are the kind that bring the best out in you. Whether we’re talking friendship, romance or studio sessions, the soul staring back at you best be ready to receive and respect your best. Thankfully, Austin Millz and Aluna get that, and this cross-Atlantic collab is nothing but smooth and solid “Gold.” “When someone comes into your life like ‘God’s gift,’ they better do some magic,” Aluna tweeted in regards to the track — and we’re certainly under the spell on this funk-laced disco chorus. “Gold” serves as the main single for a forthcoming Austin Millz EP titled Midas. Trust the touch. — KAT BEIN
Sven Väth, “Feiern”
Techno icon Sven Väth hasn’t released original music in 15 years, but that ends today! The pandemic shut down the German producer’s tour schedule, giving him time to hole up in the studio and make magic. The first single from these lockdown sessions is “Feiern,” which shimmers, seduces and serves as a welcome reminder why Väth has earned such a hardcore global fanbase during his 40-year career. The lead single from Väth’s forthcoming LP Catharsis, “Feirn” (the German word for “celebrate”), is intended to make you do exactly that — with a buzzy, bumping bassline topped with increasing layers of shimmering synth. Catharsis, made with veteran producer (and Vath’s dear friend) Gregor Tresher, is set to drop later this year. — KATIE BAIN
Hybrid Minds Feat. Everyone You Know, “Dance Forever”
We’re absolute suckers for any piece of art that captures the ambience of a real moment in time, so when we heard U.K. drum & bass duo Hybrid Minds’ “Dance Forever” start with far-away festival DJ calls and a clip from this insane video of U.K. ravers dancing to nothing after an all-night field party, they had us in the bag. Things only got better when the euphoric synth melody kicked in over breakbeat bliss. London brothers Everyone You Know take things to the next level with lyrics that run like a play-by-play of the best Friday night ever, y’know, like the one each of us has had a million times, blurring into one perfect dancefloor memory. It’s exactly the kind of song a year of lockdown demands, and it feels like a cult classic already. — K. Bein
Paraleven feat. Fractures, “In My Head”
The debut Paraleven album, Apollo, launches today via Rüfüs Du Sol’s Rose Avenue imprint. Falling squarely into the high-vibe sunrise ambience of Rüfüs and many of the other Rose Avenue artists, the 10-track Apollo is a transportive, sophisticated melodic house long player populated with vocalists, including Australian Liza Flume and fellow Aussie Fractures, who adds a ghostly falsetto to standout track “In My Head.” A press release notes that it was “a psychedelic ego death experience at 21 revealed the transcendent nature of music” to the fellow Australian producer, and for as heady and esoteric as that statement is, you can also hear its meaning throughout this debut. — K. Bain
soul, classic soul, motown,