In this week’s instalment of What’s Going On, I’ve got two big returns from two very different British acts, two young pop singer/songwriters and a colorful flamboyant group from Canada that loves to bring the funk. As always, if you like what you hear, be sure to follow and support the artists.
TWRP – Canada’s very own TWRP are on a mission to make you groove with ‘Need Each Other’, their new single featuring Oakland trio Planet Booty. The funky piano-heavy single speaks to how important togetherness during trying times, which is an extremely timely message during the pandemic. Inspired by R&B greats D’Angelo and George Benson and funky 70s grooves, ‘Need Each Other’ is going to make you move while you reflect on the importance of sticking together. ‘Need Each Other’ follows up their previous single ‘Only the Best’, with both tracks serving as a taste of what’s to come on TWRP’s new album Over The Top due out on September 25. TWRP consists of Doctor Sung on keys & vocals, Lord Phobos on guitar, Commander Meouch on bass, and Havve Hogan on drums. Their colourful stage personas and costumes have struck a chord with fans around the world. TWRP’s signature blend of levity and honesty make their upcoming album Over The Top one to look out for.
Listen to TWRP’s new single ‘Need Each Other (ft. Planet Booty)’ below.
New Order – Electronic legends New Order are back with ‘Be a Rebel’, their first new single in 5 years. An uplifting dance track with lyrics about finding power in embracing one’s own uniqueness and individuality, ‘Be a Rebel’ sounds like it wouldn’t be out of place on the band’s 2015 album Music Complete. ‘Be a Rebel’ was originally intended to be dropped in conjunction with New Order’s joint tour with Pet Shop Boys that has now been postponed to next year. Frontman Bernard Sumner on why it was important to still release the single now: “In tough times we wanted to reach out with a new song. We can’t play live for a while, but music is still something we can all share together. We hope you enjoy it… until we meet again.” The band has also announced the upcoming box set release of their classic second album Power, Corruption & Lies due out on October 2 with a Peter Saville limited-edition designed box.
Listen to New Order’s new single ‘Be a Rebel’ below.
Steps – British pop group Steps are not messing around. The 90s dance-poppers have dropped a new single ‘What The Future Holds’ and announced the release date for the new album and plans for a 2021 tour. ‘What The Future Holds’ is penned by fellow pop superstar Sia and features the kind of big catchy chorus that listeners have come to expect from Steps. It really is the perfect mix of modern pop sounds with the kitschy kid-friendly pop that catapulted Steps to success in the late 90s. Their new album also titled What The Future Holds is due out on November 27 via BMG and the What The Future Holds 2021 Tour is set to kick off in Sheffield on November 2, 2021. On their excitement for their future, Steps said: “We will never forget the past with Steps, it’s what made us, but we’ve got to look to the future too. We were so thrilled that the last album was a success and it gave us a new lease of life. Performing live has always been our favourite part of being in Steps – we had the most fun of our career on the last tour and we’re already planning for the next one to be our biggest spectacle yet.”
Listen to Steps’ new single ‘What The Future Holds’ below.
FLETCHER – Fletcher has got something to say. The pop singer/songwriter has released the new video for her track ‘Shh… Don’t Say It’ from her new EP The S(EX) TAPES. ‘Shh… Don’t Say It’ is an undeniably sexy song with an infectious hypnotic groove that doesn’t sound like anything else currently on the pop scene. The new single is a great representation of the smart, sexy, honest and subversive writing that Fletcher has become known for. Her new EP is about what it’s like when you find your forever person before you find yourself and needing to explore the parts of you that remain unknown as a result. The video for ‘Shh… Don’t Say It’ was shot by Fletcher’s ex Shannon Beveridge during their time quarantining together as were the rest of the visuals for The S(EX) TAPES. The New Jersey-native has received praise from such outlets as PAPER, TIME, Wonderland, V Magazine, Nylon, Harper’s Bazaar, Interview Magazine and GQ among others. Pop music needs Fletcher.
Listen to FLETCHER’s single ‘Shh… Don’t Say It’ below.
Johnny Orlando – Canadian pop star Johnny Orlando has dropped his new video and single ‘Everybody Wants You’ to the delight of his adoring fans around the world. Orlando got his start doing covers on YouTube and Musical.ly and quickly amassed a rabid social media following. The Toronto-born singer/songwriter worked with Jesse Fink, Kellen Pomeranz and fellow label-mate Soran to craft this pop banger that will be part of Orlando’s upcoming sophomore EP. ‘Everybody Wants You’ is the kind of pop song that will resonate with listeners of all ages. Earlier this year, Orlando re-released his 2018 single ‘What If’ as ‘What If (I Told You I Like You)’ as a result of the song finding new life on TikTok. The song received 12 million video creations resulting in over 5 billion views and was trending in over 15 countries including Germany, UK, Brazil, US, Australia and his home country Canada. A bonafide teen-pop superstar for the TikTok generation, Orlando has the musical chops to back up the viral success.
Listen to Johnny Orlando’s new single ‘Everybody Wants You’ below.