Emerging Picks of the Week: Death From Above 1979, James Bay & More
As we move into autumn, we've rounded up our favorite tracks that have gained on the Billboard + Twitter Emerging Artists chart. Our first three picks capture an international scope, featuring performers from Canada, Australia and Great Britain (with Scotland still intact). And, just in time for the iPhone 6, our final pick is a hip-hop message aimed at the current landscape dominated by technology and social media. Enjoy.
Death From Above 1979 – "Trainwreck 1979"
The Canadian punk-rock duo returned from an eight-year hiatus with "Trainwreck 1979," the pair's first new music since 2006. Though the single was released earlier this summer, its video (premiered Sept. 11) causes a re-entry on the weekly Emerging Artists chart at No. 9. The video features a young girl learning to play bass and skateboarding through town, scattered between the band's performances of the song in concert. The single previewed the band's album, The Physical World, which debuts on the Sept. 27 Billboard 200 at No. 28.
Flight Facilities featuring Emma Louise – "Two Bodies"
The lead single from the Australian duo's upcoming release Down to Earth debuts on the weekly Emerging Artists chart at No. 5 after the Sept. 9 debut of its official music video on YouTube. The clip (also featured in this week's Tomorrow's Hits spotlight) tells the story of a nearly-nude man and woman in an extended dance routine as they explore each other's physiques and sort out their emotions in the midst of Emma Louise's haunting, vocal delivery atop a consistent, danceable drum beat. Down to Earth will be released Oct. 28.
James Bay – "Let It Go"
"Let It Go" is our third pick, from British singer/songwriter James Bay, whose performance in the BBC Live Lounge on Sept. 16 triggered a resurgence in the song, sending it to No. 2 on the Billboard + Twitter Trending 140. A student of Bob Dylan and Carole King, Bay showcases the depth and passion in his voice as he strums along on his guitar, pleading with his lover to "Let it go / just let it be / Why don't you be you / and I'll be me." The single is the title track from Bay's newest EP, and even caught the attention of actor/director Zach Braff, who wrote on Twitter, "A friend just played me James Bay's song 'Let it Go' (no... not the one from Frozen.) It's now on repeat. Try it. It will give u a sad."
Ryshon Jones – "iHate Noise"
There's no shortage of songs that reference hot social media apps, but Ryshon Jones' "iHate Noise" asks us to weigh the negative effects of their consistent use. In particular, Jones calls out users' fleeting interest in important issues, noting, "It's a lot of ills going on these days / that'll still go on when it's not a hot topic on Twitter / It's like awareness don't matter no more." Partnered with a thumping drum beat interlaced with piano, "Noise" makes for a catchy number. But don't let that supplant the message, Jones says. He closes with, "You can bounce to this, but listen, do me a favor / Let it sink in, find the truth in it later." The social rap track reached No. 10 on the Trending 140 on Sept. 18.