In this week’s instalment of What’s Going On, I’ve got the newest single from Megan Thee Stallion who is currently on top of the music world, the latest release from Montreal indie-rock veterans Plants and Animals, and tracks from three new artists on the rise. As always, if you dig what you’re hearing, be sure to stream and follow these artists.
Megan Thee Stallion – With her official debut album due for release this fall, rap’s current it girl Megan Thee Stallion has dropped ‘Don’t Stop’, her new single with Young Thug. With it’s relentless pounding beat and Megan’s signature brand of sexually liberated lyrics, ‘Don’t Stop’ is sure to be another major anthem for the Houston MC. The ‘Don’t Stop’ music video sees Megan team up again with director Colin Tilley, the same creative mind that directed the ‘WAP’ music video for Megan and Cardi B. Megan and Young Thug take a trip through a fantastical land with references to Alice in Wonderland and Edward Scissorhands. The video also features voguers Honey Balenciaga and Makayla Lanvin, two competitors from HBO’s voguing competition show Legendary of which Megan was a judge. Having recently been honored as part of TIME’S TIME100 and receiving eight BET Hip Hop Award nominations, Megan Thee Stallion’s reign doesn’t seem like it’ll be letting up any time soon.
Listen to Megan Thee Stallion’s new single ‘Don’t Stop’ below.
Command Sisters – Toronto sisters Charlotte and Sarah Command are back with ‘Lonely Lullaby’, their latest single via 21 Entertainment/Republic Records/Universal Music Canada. ‘Lonely Lullaby’ follows up previous singles ‘I Can Do What I Want To’ and ‘I Like It’ in giving us a taste of what to expect from their upcoming debut EP, set for an early-2021 release. ‘Lonely Lullaby’ features an insanely catchy bassline and a chorus that is sure to be an earworm: “Ecstasy…’Cause I love the way that you’re bad for me.” Command Sisters cite guitar gods Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, and Orianthi among their influences as well as pop greats Sia and The Weeknd, which you can hear in their musical output. On the meaning behind ‘Lonely Lullaby’, Command Sisters say: “‘Lonely Lullaby’ is about those chaotic and addictive relationships most of us have in our early 20s…you know you need to leave, but you stay. It’s toxic, yet you only find comfort from the one that causes you pain. They are your ‘reason and your remedy.’ They are your ‘Lonely Lullaby.’”
Listen to Command Sisters’ new single ‘Lonely Lullaby’ below.
Plants and Animals – Montreal indie-rock outfit Plants and Animals are back with a new single ‘Love That Boy’ and an accompanying music video. ‘Love That Boy’ is about reflecting on childhood and how family changes over time. With it’s intimate lyrics and gorgeous instrumentation, it’s the type of song that stays with you after listening. On the meaning behind the song, the band’s Warren Spicer says: “It’s a song about my family, present and past, but it feels more like a meditation. I was upset, frustrated and feeling like no one knew me—the kid me, the me I still feel I am. And then writing the song chilled me out and put me right. It was a way to connect with my dead parents and with my new life as a dad, and to give everyone a proper hug.” The music video, inspired by Spicer’s childhood memories, was directed by Yann-Manuel Hernandez. The band’s upcoming fifth album The Jungle is due to be released on October 23 via Secret City Records.
Listen to Plants and Animals’ new single ‘Love That Boy’ below.
COMPASS – There’s nothing that COMPASS can’t do. The London-based producer, songwriter & composer is out with ‘Hypocrite’, his debut single. COMPASS has previously worked with artists like FKA Twigs, Tinashe, Snoh Aalegra and Jorja Smith, so it’s no surprise that he wrote, produced, mixed and arranged his debut single himself. The sparse production, melancholy vibe & COMPASS’ falsetto vocals make ‘Hypocrite’ the perfect slice of lo-fi R&B. There’s an air of mystery surrounding COMPASS as his face isn’t visible on the cover art for his single nor in the accompanying music video, wanting the music to be the focus. On the inspiration behind the music video, COMPASS says: “Shot this visual in the place I met the person I wrote it about. This song is very personal and I wanted to create a setting that allows the song to remain in center with a visual that feels authentic to the story.”
Listen to COMPASS’ new single ‘Hypocrite’ below.
Oliver Malcolm – Remember the name Oliver Malcolm. The Sweden-born, London-based artist taught himself how to DJ at the age of 12 before eventually learning how to produce music on his own. Oliver has worked with such luminaries as IDK, Aluna George, Joey Bada$$, Jay Rock, Masego Tinashe. Now 20, Oliver produces, writes, engineers, mixes and masters his own music as a solo artist, including ‘Outside’ his newest single. ‘Outside’ is a beautiful and reflective tune with Oliver crooning about the ironic loneliness of celebrity. On the inspiration behind ‘Outside’, Oliver says: “At the time of writing ‘Outside’ I was watching a lot of old documentaries on music and legends of the past. Artists of all different genres but predominantly rock n roll. The common theme which threaded through the different stories was that of a twisted, dark side of fame which the artists happened to find themselves in. They either hadn’t anticipated it or they hadn’t known it was there because on the outside it always seems as if the positive attributes of fame outweigh the burdens of it. This was really interesting to me because I’d never thought about this or explored this idea at depth and although I’m not famous I thought it would be interesting to write a song from the perspective of one of these rock stars.”
Listen to Oliver Malcolm’s new single ‘Outside’ below.