In need of some new LGBTQ songs to help get you through your time in lockdown? Billboard Pride is here to help with First Out, our weekly roundup of some of the best new weekly music releases from LGBTQ artists.
Big Freedia, “Pipe That” (ft. Icona Pop & The Soul Rebels)
The Queen of Bounce is back to give you a new visual to dance along to! In the self-isolated video for Freedia’s track “Pipe That,” the rapper teams up with collaborators Icona Pop and New Orleans brass ensemble The Soul Rebels to get fans shaking their goodies from the comfort of their own living rooms. If you’re looking for a song to help get your heart rate up over the weekend, then listen to Big Freedia as she instructs you to “bend it, twist it, flip it like you mopping the floor.”
Alma, Have U Seen Her?
After four years of singles, song packs and EPs, Finnish alt-pop star Alma has finally arrived with her debut full-length album Have U Seen Her? Oscillating between groovy pop bangers (“Bad News Baby”), smooth down-tempo tracks (“My Girl”), deep house jams (“Nightmare”) and much more, the 24-year-old’s new album brings a little something for everyone, while also establishing the singer as a rising force to be reckoned with in the pop music scene.
Donna Missal, “Let You Let Me Down”
Fool her once, shame on you. But fool alt rocker Donna Missal twice, and she’s only got herself to shame, as the star explains on her latest track “Let You Let Me Down.” The pulsating pop-rock track sees Missal telling her ex that “the worst part is that I let you into my heart/ So you can build me up to break me,” taking responsibility for herself. The new song also comes with a shot-at-home video, where the star even offers her own take on Shania Twain’s classic leopard print bodysuit as she rages against her own poor judgement.
Perfume Genius, Set My Heart on Fire Immediately
For the last decade, Mike Hadreas (known by his stage name Perfume Genius) has been singing about growing up. But with his fifth studio album Set My Heart on Fire Immediately, Hadreas is grown up and flexing his matured musical muscles. The beguiling album shows Hadreas at his most musically flexible, as he drifts between blends of folk-rock jams (“Describe”), ethereally avant-garde pieces (“Moonbend”) and the lo-fi pop rock (“On the Floor”) that’s helped build his name in the industry. Hadreas may be asking asking us to set his heart on fire, but it’s our hearts that are burning in flames thanks to this new album.
Fletcher, “Bitter” (ft. Kito)
If you’re feeling particularly angry this week, then pop singer Fletcher has got the track just for you. On “Bitter,” the singer burns her former lover to the ground, letting them know that no, she’s not interested in staying friends. “Yeah, I know you think about me when you kiss her,” she seethes over some hard-hitting production courtesy of Kito. “I left a taste in your mouth, can she taste me now?/ I’m bitter.”
Girl in Red, “Say It” (Maggie Rogers cover)
On her new collaboration with Spotify’s Studio Oyster, Norwegian bedroom pop singer Girl in Red took one of her favorite songs of late, Maggie Rogers’ “Say It,” and gave it her own special lo-fi treatment. Complete with the hyperactive drums and dreamy guitars that have helped shape her own sound, Girl in Red makes the Heard It In a Past Life deep cut sound like it was her own composition, while also maintaining the inherent beauty Rogers’ original piece.
Zee Machine, “Stealing Candy”
In his latest video “Stealing Candy,” Zee Machine takes a swift turn into pop territory as he sings to his ex about trying to move on from their broken relationship. The mind-bending visual shows a distorted version of the singer with his face blurred by static as he stumbles around a downtown area, trying to “keep my sanity through the afternoon/ When I lose it all ’cause I thought of you.” The infectious track, paired with the retro-inspired clip makes for a musical experience you’ll want to be a part of.
Rett Madison, “Shame Is a River”
23-year-old folk singer Rett Madison paints a vivid portrait of the nature of shame with her new single “Shame Is A River.” Performed over a simmering guitar melody, Madison’s vocals evoke pain and passion as she compares shame to a powerful stream that you must cross before arriving at your final destination. “Hope is on the other side/ But I got guilt tied like bricks to my feet,” she croons.
Dance Loud, “Why Lie”
“You have to stand out in order to stand a chance these days,” female dance duo Dance Loud tells Billboard of their evocative new single, “Why Lie.” “There is more hate than love so we are here to spread it in hopes everyone will reach a higher frequency.” That’s certainly true of the entrancing new single, which asks listeners to embrace honestly and vulnerability over face-saving tactics meant to preserve someone’s own self-image.
Drake Jensen, “Burn the Floor”
If you thought that modern country and queer clubbing don’t go together, you thought wrong. In his new video for “Burn the Floor,” Canadian country singer Drake Jensen chooses a seemingly typical country bar as the backdrop to his country-twinged song, but with various members of the LGBTQ club community taking over to have the night of their lives and, yes, “Burn the Floor.”