With the new year comes new music, so why not freshen up your listening habits for 2022 with some new jams from your favorite queer artists? Billboard Pride is here to help with First Out, our weekly roundup of some of the best new music releases from LGBTQ artists.
From Halsey’s bonus track off her latest album, to Aurora’s otherworldly new single, check out just a few of our favorite releases from this week below:
Halsey, “People Disappear Here”
On this haunting new bonus track off of the “extended” version of their 2021 album If I Can’t Have Love, I Want Power, Halsey lets her demons show. “People Disappear Here” sounds as though you are stepping into a dark dream — not quite the “Nightmare” that’s also included on her deluxe offering — where her voice serves as a warning of ill omen. A smooth baseline mixed with the singer’s laser-focused vocals makes for a chilling offering, as she sings “I tried to let her be someone/ Hoping when the morning comes/ She’s not another hit and run but everybody knows/ The people disappear here.”
Aurora, “A Dangerous Thing”
Ever met someone new and known, deep down, that they would hurt you one day? Aurora can relate with her new single “A Dangerous Thing,” in which the Norwegian pop singer narrates a blossoming new relationship that is doomed for disaster. Aurora’s ethereal vocals remain fully intact throughout the breathless song, while her production style gets a quiet shake-up, with her typical, glittering synths now replaced by the strings of a plaintive guitar. Sure, love might be “A Dangerous Thing,” but Aurora is willing to take that risk to feel something even better.
Michelle, “Expiration Date”
NYC music collective Michelle is ready for love with their smooth new single “Expiration Date.” The grooving R&B jam sees the band contemplating a new relationship, knowing it’s not going to go the distance, yet simply not caring. Shimmering with low-key production value and an indie sensibility that will have you grooving along while going about your day, “Expiration Date” is the exact kind of feel-good vibe that’ll help you get your 2021 off to a fabulous start.
Wrabel, “Wish You Well (Stripped)”
Along with unveiling a new music video for his original track, Wrabel is gifting fans with a “stripped” acoustic version of his These Words Are All For You single. The new version of “Wish You Well” drives home the song’s emotional core, replacing booming synths and melodramatic strings with a simple piano melody as Wrabel makes sure that each of the lyrics hit home, singing “I’m letting go in this tug-of-war/ Moving on, wanted you to know/ I hope you find what you’re looking for/ I wish you well, the ones I loved before.”
As RuPaul’s Drag Race graces our televisions with a new season today, RuPaul is also ready to grace your ears with a brand new album. Throughout Mamaru, the “Supermodel” star delivers what fans have come to expect from her — fun, danceable singles that are made for you to strut to. Some songs like “Blame It on the Edit” and “Pretty Pretty Gang Gang” see Ru leaning into a slightly edgier, updated hip-hop sound, but others like “Catwalk” see the star capitalizing on the pop that made her a superstar.