Coronavirus

First Spin: The Week's Best New Dance Tracks From Fisher, TOKiMONSTA, Don Diablo & More

FISHER
Corey Wilson

FISHER

New Music Friday is intense. Hundreds of songs drop from artists around the world, and you're supposed to somehow find the best ones. It's fun work, but it's time-consuming -- so we at Billboard Dance want to give you a hand. Each week, we sift through the streams and dig in the digital crates to present the absolute must-hears from the wide breadth of jams.

With the coronavirus leading to canceled tours and festivals around the globe, this week saw the world's DJs take their shows online. Alison Wonderland released her 2019 set at Red Rocks; Diplo is doing nightly livestreams from his living room, and although cancelled IRL, Ultra Music Festival is today (March 20) launching a festival-themed Sirius channel featuring sets by artists who were on the lineup the Miami event.

Beyond that, this week there's loads of new music to keep your spirits and your heart rate high during this uncertain time. Let's dig in.

Fisher, "Freaks"

Fisher is back, baby. The Australian phenom delivers the darkly thumping tech house anthem "Freaks," which is heavier than his last single -- 2019's hyphy house hit "You Little Beauty" -- but similarly undeniable in its body-moving effect. The single serves as one half of Fisher's forthcoming Freaks EP, which is due to arrive on March 31 via Astralwerks and Fisher's own Catch & Release imprint. -- KATIE BAIN

Giraffage, “Basketball”

Does Giraffage love basketball? No, not really, but he has always loved the concept of basketball -- the squeak of sneakers across the floor and the rubbery boom of dribbles across the court. He brings his aural obsession to life with a hard-edged techno-inspired track made almost entirely of field recorded basketball sounds. The drums, synths and textures in between are hyper-processed smacks, hits and chirps looped and re-pitched to maddening effect. It's a heavier tune than Giraffage fans are used to, but there's a dream-pop breakdown about halfway through that helps connect the dots. The wavy music video is his handiwork, too. Friendly pick-up game on the dance floor?  -- KAT BEIN

Don Diablo, “Bad”

Guilty pleasures -- we all have them. Sometimes they're songs , sometimes they're food, and sometimes they're people. Whatever the pleasure, we've all found ourselves coming back to something no good. Don Diablo pays homage to that universal truth with a “cheeky” house tune alongside Moroccan-English singer, songwriter and musician Zak Abel.

“Musically speaking, I really wanted to explore different sounds and push my own sonic boundaries as well as a producer,” Diablo is quoted in a press release. “'Bad' is co-written with the super talented Elderbrook and features the vocal talent of Zak Abel. Both have been high on my collaboration wishlist for years. I literally had the best time recording the vocals in my studio in Amsterdam with Zak, and I look forward to performing the song together live for the first time very soon." That's a desire no one has to feel bad about. -- K. Bein

Anabel Englund, “See the Sky”

If Anabel Englund’s last solo single, “Messing With Magic,” painted an image of running into a bleeding sunset, her latest, “See the Sky,” is an ascension into pure-white fluffy clouds, and to a higher, happier plane of consciousness. The singer-songwriter naturally has a soft yet smoky timbre that brushes against the ears like velvet, but “See the Sky” is especially soothing in these anxious times. Atop a rolling house beat and whirring synths, Englund croons her way to the song’s euphoric chorus, at its peak summoning the sun and invoking the entrancing spirit of a ‘90s electronica diva.

“I wanted to ask questions to the listener, enticing them to look deeper within themselves,” Englund said of the song in a press release. “I want to make people think, ‘Am I who I want to be? Am I doing my best? Am I loving people? Have I forgiven? How can I be free?’ I want to connect with people on a deeper level and I want them to know that they are loved.” -- KRYSTAL RODRIGUEZ 

Rudimental & The Martinez Brothers, “Easy on Me”

When British band Rudimental and Nuyoricans The Martinez Brothers first linked up for their 2017 single “No Fear,” it begot a groove worthy of more than just a one-and-done collaboration. Two years passed before they picked back up again on last year’s “Sitigawana,” but today, they’re back together with “Easy on Me” and nary a beat was missed.

Syrupy, swirling and lovelorn, the track again finds the perfect middle ground between the two parties, combining The Martinez Bros’ hip club aesthetic with Rudimental’s catchy vocal finessing. It’s buttery smooth, yet rife with oscillating synths and birdcall-like accents that make you feel like you’re dancing beneath a twinkling starscape. -- K.R.

TOKiMONSTA, "Get Me Some"

The dozen tracks from Tokimonsta's new album, Oasis Nocturno, oscillate between the ephemeral and the funky, with "Get Me Some" strutting happily into the latter category. A collaboration with L.A.-based R&B vocalist Drew Love and Argentine-born Korean/American rapper Dumbfounded, the song is a joyfully catchy party-starter that nonetheless maintains the cool sophistication that has defined Toki's ethos since the early days. Her sixth studio LP, Oasis Nocturno, is out today (March 20) via Toki's own Young Art Records. -- K. Bain

The Glitch Mob, "Chemicals"

The venerable L.A.-based trio return with their Chemicals EP, a three-track affair led by a percussion-focused title track and backed up by the ethereal bass music that's been The Glitch Mob's signature for a decade. The EP comes ahead of the 10 year anniversary of their debut LP, Drink the Sea, which will see a rerelease in May and is their first EP since 2015's Piece of the Indestructible.

“We hope everyone is staying healthy and centered in this current situation," the guys say in a press release. "With the release of this new EP, we have been thinking about how music is medicine and is more important than ever right now. We are going to continue creating and releasing music with the intention to connect us all and to bring some levity to your day.” -- K. Bain

Roger and Brian Eno, "Burnt Umber"

Roger and Brian Eno’s first collaborative album, Mixing Colours, is a staggering blend of ambient melodies and deliberative minimalism. Brian is one of the most inventive and pioneering musicians of any generation, but his lesser known younger brother is an excellent composer in his own right. Together, they use the structures of repetition and pace to concoct an album full of fascinating ideas and haunting compositions.

“Burnt Umber” is built around loping keyboard notes, with various melodic bells enveloping the resonance of each tone. The track moves at a glacial pace, and the result is effortlessly calming. The Enos are masters of restraint, and “Burnt Umber” is perhaps the album’s best example of the duo’s ability to extract maximal emotions out of a few ideas. Brian Eno may be the main attraction here, but Roger’s impact lingers long past the sustained fade of “Burnt Umber” and the entirety of Mixing Colours. -- WILL SCHUBE

R3hab and Gattüso, "Creep"

Spotify's influential electronic playlist Mint today launches its Mint Singles offshoot, which, like its Spotify Singles counterpart, features artists creating music expressly for the platform. Recorded at New York's Electric Lady Studios, the inaugural Mint singles track finds R3hab and Israeli DJ/producer Gattüso covering Radiohead's all-time classic "Creep." The duo get points for their good taste, as airy female vocals replace Thom Yorke's heavy delivery, and guitar crescendos are traded for slick synths. -- K. Bain

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