Another week, another opportunity to rock out to some of your favorite LGBTQ artists! Billboard Pride is proud to present the latest edition of Queer Jams of the Week, our roundup of some of the best new music releases from LGBTQ artists.
From Sam Smith’s glorious new album to PVRIS’s scintillating new single, check out just a few of our favorite releases from this week below:
Sam Smith, Gloria
The old Sam Smith can’t come to the phone right now. Gloria, the long-awaited new album from the British pop phenomenon, is a full-on reinvention for Smith as they take a bold step into a new musical (and personal) era. Sure, there may be a few leftover heartbreak songs that fans have come to associate with the singer (“How to Cry,” in particular, stands out) — but the majority of Gloria revels in playing with new topics and new genres, from seductive disco anthems (“I’m Not Here to Make Friends”) to electro-pop pleas (“Lose You”) to chorales of self-worth (“Gloria”). With a bolstered sense of raw confidence, Smith sounds as though they’ve reached a new artistic breakthrough with Gloria — and we can’t wait to hear where it takes them next.
Lynn Gunn is done waiting around for anyone’s respect — on PVRIS’s thrilling new single “Goddess,” the lead singer let’s her divine side out, excoriating the standards she’s expected to uphold. The relentless drums keep the song constantly moving, while a blown-out guitar line adds the urgency to the throbbing track. It’s Gunn’s killer voice, though, that makes “Goddess” so endlessly entertaining, as she growls out lyrics like, “I’ve been iconic since I started/ I keep climbing and clawing/ This s–t is so exhausting.”
Adam Lambert, “Getting Older” (Billie Eilish cover)
While Adam Lambert has made a habit out of covering old-school rockers and iconic divas, his latest rendition sees the American Idol alum taking on a newer sound to cover Billie Eilish’s “Getting Older.” For the majority of the track, Lambert remains largely faithful to Eilish’s original, adding in some drums and guitars for a little extra glam kick. But by the time he reaches the song’s bridge, Lambert goes all-out with his stratospheric voice, making the song sound entirely his own with some pure rock flair.
Khai Dreams, Absolute Heartbreak
To call Khai Dreams’ music “bedroom pop” feels incredibly reductive — “bedroom chaos” feels like a more appropriate descriptor. Nowhere is that more present than on Absolute Heartbreak, the rising singer-songwriter’s debut album; Dreams’ songs run the musical gamit from folksy ballads (“Panic Attack”) to pop-punk anthems (“May”), all while maintaining a cohesive identity under the banner of the LP. It may be named after romantic anguish, but make no mistake; Absolute Heartbreak will make you fall in love with Khai Dreams.
While some other artist may write songs about aiming their romantic sights as high as humanly possible, indie up-and-comer Blondshell is perfectly content writing about a whirlwind romance founded near a dumpster. “Joiner” basks in the messy parts of romance, as Sabrina Teitelbaum knocks her distant, mesmerizing vocal performance out of the park.
Jordy, “Story of a Boy”
As interpolations and samples continue to flood our new music feeds every week, it’s nice to find one that feels like a genuine tribute to the original. Jordy’s “Story of a Boy” takes the iconic chorus of Nine Days’ 2000 hit single “Absolutely (Story of a Girl)” and retrofits it with some queer messaging. Now detailing Jordy’s long-term, constant infatuation with a guy who simply doesn’t know he exists. It’s the kind of sweet-but-sad single that Jordy has already proven to be a master of, now with a smartly-chosen nostalgic twist to get you listening ASAP.
Dakota Jones, “Sugar Pie”
Let’s get some good old-fashioned funk in here: Brooklyn-based funk four-piece Dakota Jones’ new single “Sugar Pie” sees the band hitting their stride with a deliciously smooth sound. Bringing all of the drums, organs and bass together is lead singer Tristan Carter-Jones’ sultry alto tones, crooning about “sweet songs since day one” in a way that feels timeless and up-to-date all at the same time.
Check out all of our picks on Billboard’s Queer Jams of the Week playlist below: