With just a few weeks of Pride Month left, make sure you’re hearing the latest from your favorite queer artists. Billboard Pride is proud to present the latest edition of First Out, our weekly roundup of some of the best new music releases from LGBTQ artists.
From Claud’s euphoric new track, to Perfume Genius’s experimental new album, check out just a few of our favorite releases from this week below.
Claud, “Go Home”
In their short time on the scene, bedroom-pop sensation Claud has established their particular brand of the burgeoning genre by creating songs that are lyrically dark, yet sonically effervescent. There are few examples quite as well-crafted as “Go Home!” — on this sunny, blissful-sounding new single, Claud gets real about feeling out of place. Yearning for the creature comforts of their own space, Claud exudes the dissociative energy so many of us have felt over these last few years and sounds great while doing it.
Perfume Genius, Ugly Season
Never one for doing the same thing twice, Perfume Genius is ready to make you feel something on their cryptic new project. Ugly Season offers a sampling of experimental pop, as Mike Hadreas refuses to allow the sound to be pinned down to anything concrete throughout the album’s 10 songs. In the hands of a less-capable artist, Ugly Season could quickly become messy or disorienting. In Hadreas’s, though, the LP feels fresh, exciting, and perfectly rendered.
Hercules & Love Affair, In Amber
Over the course of the last five years, a lot has changed for the world, and much of it has been to its own detriment. During that time, Andy Butler, the world-renowned artist behind Hercules & Love Affair, has been crafting his new album In Amber. Filled to brim with dark, brooding reflections on the state of our collective consciousness, Butler tries out some new sounds veering away from the dance genre that gave him his fame — and he luckily brings his day-one collaborator Anohni along for the ride, making In Amber a must-listen from the moment it starts to its final strains.
Miki Ratsula, “Steal My Girl (Gender Neutral Version)”
After centuries of songs featuring lyrics with gendered pronouns, pop artist Miki Ratsula is taking a second look at just a fraction of them and reimagining what they could sound like with non-binary people in mind. “Steal My Girl,” the latest cover off of their upcoming Made For Them EP, sees Ratsula taking the One Direction classic and swapping each reference to the binary for “they/them” pronouns and neutral nouns. In the process, though, they took a fan-beloved single and gave it a modernized, indie-pop twist that adds a touch of sentimentality, making 1D’s romantic jam even more tender.
Ryan Cassata feat. Hello Noon, Clayton Bryant, “We March (Stronger Together)”
As bills continue to pass around the country aimed specifically at limiting the rights of transgender people, Ryan Cassata is making sure that his voice is heard, loud and clear. On “We March,” Cassata, joined by artists Clayton Bryant and Hello Noon, calls on his community to come together and fight back against the powers that be. With a chorus of voices at his back, the singer states proudly: “We will keep marching ’til freedom is ours/ We’re stronger together than we are apart.”