What’s Going On: Lauren Spencer Smith, Chiiild, Django Django, Mathew V, BENEE

In this week’s edition of What’s Going On, we’ve got hot new singles from homegrown Canadian talents Lauren Spencer Smith, Chiiild, and Mathew V. Plus, the latest from BENEE, and Django Django. As always, if you dig what you hear, be sure to stream and follow the artists.

Lauren Spencer Smith – 2023 is off to a great start for breakout Canadian singer-songwriter Lauren Spencer Smith. One of the most buzzworthy rising stars on the Canadian music scene last year, Lauren picked up two 2023 JUNO Award nominations in the Artist of the Year and Fan Choice categories. The 19-year-old Vancouver Island phenom just dropped her new single “Best Friend Breakup”, out now via Island Records/Republic Records. An all-too-relatable tale of a falling out between friends, “Best Friend Breakup” is sure to hit listeners right in the feels thanks to the song’s unfiltered lyrics and Lauren’s soaring vocals. Lauren Spencer Smith’s debut album is in the works. Stay tuned to What’s Going On for more info on that.

Listen to Lauren Spencer Smith’s new single “Best Friend Breakup” below.

Chiiild – Genre-defiant artist Chiiild is out now with “Antidote,” his latest single on Avant Garden/4th & Broadway (Def Jam Recordings, Inc.)/Universal Music Canada. The heartfelt track is the latest release from Chiiild’s forthcoming album Better Luck in the Next Life, which is set to drop March 3. Chiiild’s vocals bring the song’s sweet and genuine sense of longing to life. What’s “Antidote” all about? Chiiild states: “’Antidote’ is about being enamoured by a person. It describes the infatuation of watching someone live life optimistically and simply wanting a piece of that because they symbolize the light for you. It is a representation of the idea that this person could save me from any emotional or physical struggle.”

Listen to Chiiild’s new single “Antidote” below.

Django Django – UK quartet Django Django have a new album on the way. Off Planet will be rolled out in four parts, with a full release coming on June 16 via Because Music. With a focus on new collaborations and experimentation, Django Django are set to take their sound on their forthcoming fifth studio album to new heights. The leadoff single from Off Planet has arrived in the form of “Complete Me,” featuring indie superstar Self Esteem aka Rebecca Lucy Taylor. A melding of sensibilities, “Complete Me” integrates Self Esteem’s pop hooks into the intricate production that fans have come to love from Django Django.

Talking about how “Complete Me” came to be, Django Django co-founder Dave Maclean explains: “The instrumental for ‘Complete Me’ was made sometime in 2020 or 21 when the world was in lockdown and I was making music in my garden shed studio. It was a dance track that I didn’t really know what to do with. I sent it to Rebecca and she loved the vibe of it and really quickly came up with some vocal ideas that kind of stuck straight away and locked well with the track. The production was inspired by a lot of ‘90s breakbeat house and hip-house records that I’ve always been really into and loved Djing with over the years.”

Listen to Django Django’s new single “”Complete Me” ft. Self Esteem below.

Mathew V – Vancouver-based crooner Mathew V is queering up the classics with his forthcoming album Anything Goes. Due out on April 14 on 604 Records, Anything Goes sees Mathew V taking on songs from the Great American Songbook but presenting them from a queer perspective. The first taste of what you can expect from the project is his gorgeous take on George Gershwin’s jazz standard “The Man I Love.” Speaking on why he chose that record, Mathew V says: “It’s been exciting choosing songs like ‘The Man I Love,’ which a man like me may not have been able to sing when these songs were written. I’m at a place in my career and in my life that I not only want to sing at my highest caliber, but I want that music to come from my heart. I owe that to the little Mathew that was looking for this record all those years ago.” 

Listen to Mathew V’s rendition of “The Man I Love” below.

BENEE – New Zealand alt-pop sensation BENEE was recently announced for this year’s Coachella, which will be her first time performing at the prestigious musical festival. Keeping that excitement going, BENEE has released her new single “Green Honda” via Republic Records. The relentless and attitude-soaked track takes listeners on a frenetic ride thanks to its fast-paced and heavy production from Elvira Anderfjärd and Luka Kloser. BENEE really did have her own green Honda. The singer explains: “There is a personal history to the Green Honda story… my green Honda was my first car, passed on to me by my grandmother when she gave up driving. I call him ‘Steve’, and he’s on the cover of my ‘STELLA & STEVE’ EP. We’ve had lots of adventures together.”

Listen to BENEE’s new single “Green Honda” below.

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