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 into the digital crates to present absolute must-hears from the wide breadth of fresh jams.
Camelphat feat. Jem Cooke, “Rabbit Hole”
From EDC Las Vegas to England’s Forbidden Forest, Camelphat spent this festival season rinsing an unidentifiable tune of which dancers could not get enough. After months of anticipation (and a few teasers along the way), the Grammy-nominated UK duo’s new single is here, and it’s a big one.
“Rabbit Hole,” featuring previous collaborator Jem Cooke (“Breathe”), is winding, mysterious and hypnotic, a four-to-the-floor seduction to parts unknown. Cooke’s black-velvet vocals play a large part in the song’s call-of-the-void appeal, with strategically stretched-out syllables that create a swirling vortex in their delivery. Add a well-timed filter effect, and “Rabbit Hole” actually sucks you in. — KRYSTAL RODRIGUEZ
Iza, Ciara & Major Lazer, “Evapora”
Yes, you read that correctly — Diplo, Walshy Fire and Ape Drums have teamed up with Brazilian singer/dancer Iza and R&B goddess Ciara for “Evapora.” The track is a quintessentially Major Lazer affair, with sinewy synth and convivel percussion creating a steamy, celebratory dance track, with Iza and Ciara both belting out lyrics in Portuguese. A corresponding video sets the quartet (with Diplo in full hat-plus-vest-with-no-shirt-underneath cowboy mode) in a desert landscape that’s actually the Vasquez Rocks Natural Park in the outskirts of Los Angeles.
The creation process behind “Evapora” was largely a function of serendibity, with Iza explaining in a statement that, “This song practically asked to be born, because it came to me in an unusual way when I was in the Dominican Republic on my honeymoon. I was already texting with Diplo, but we had not met. Coincidentally, we were in the same hotel and went with him to a show. We decided we would make a song together anyway.” This good fortune continued two months later, when Ciara touched down in Brazil for Carnival and got involved with the song after a surprise meeting with Iza. Meanwhile, the wait continues for Major Lazer’s much-anticipated LP Lazerism, which is due out any minute now. — KATIE BAIN
Audien with Axis, “Dreams”
Nearly a decade after first bursting on the scene, pretty melody maker Audien gives fans a debut full-length album. Escapism is an 11-track collection of feel-good songs mixing big room energy with soft-hue sounds, emotional piano work, uplifting vocals and just a little bit of drum’n’bass. It’s the producer’s big show of all he can do and the core of what he’s always been about. “I’m not reinventing the wheel,” he says in a statement, “but I’m accentuating the art I’ve created for almost a decade. It’s the best form of what I’m known for.”
He teased the release with lead singles “Buzzing” feat. Nevve and “Reach” feat. Jamie Hartman, but of the unreleased cuts, we’re particularly fond of “Dreams” with Axis. It’s the perfect sunburst of sound, a little bit mysterious, playful and full of fantasy. Let it be the beam of golden light your weekend craves. — KAT BEIN
Brux doesn’t GAF about your humblebrags, selfies and social-media flexes. On her new single “B.W.P.,” the Australian singer and producer mixes social commentary with club sonics by taking aim at the often narcissistic and competitive nature of doing it for the ‘gram. “B****es want pictures, the illusion if you’re rich or not,” she sings, “it don’t matter where you are / you gotta get that shot / on your phone, girl, 24/7 now lap it up.”
The production, a chaotic yet playful whirlwind of textured synth lines ranging from electrically charged to celestial, sounds so fun you can’t help but want to get caught up in it. It’s Brux’s sixth single since launching the project last year; her debut EP, she says, is coming “soon.” — K. Rodriguez
Tnght, “First Body”
Do you feel that? It’s the reverberating anticipation over the fortchoming Tnght EP, the second single from which, “First Body,” dropped earlier this week. More flute than one might anticipate from Lunice and Hudson Mohawke is used here to great swaggery effect, with the producers dropping bells, human yelps, what sounds like a clarinet onto the track before finally working in a happily dirty synth. All of these elements are then layered, building into an analog sounding jungle jam that’s simultaneously raucous and spare. The duo’s new project Tnght II, their second EP in seven years, is out next week via Warp and LuckyMe. Prepare thyself. — K. Bain
French 79, “Code Zero”
We have been so excited for French 79’s album Joshua, we can hardly believe it’s here. Lead singles “Hold On” and “Hometown” were delicious little appetizers, but the main course has arrived, and these synths are worth savoring. It’s moody, melodic and full of introspective groove. You can slow dance to it, stalk around the city with it, or drive with the windows down all night. In a final celebration before release, the producer gave the world a look into his process with the “Code Zero” video. It’s as intimate a portrait of the artist as the Joshua album itself. Definitely give the full project a run when you have the chance. — K. Bein
The Chainsmokers, “Push My Luck”
Everyone’s favorite nicotine dependents continue blurring the lines between dance, pop and indie with “Push My Luck,” a plaintive sort of ballad with vocals courtesy of the duo’s own Andrew Taggart. The track features The ‘smokers’ Alex Pall on guitar and drummer Matt McGuire keeping beat, with the trio featured prominently in an artsy, dizzy black and white music video that’s been streamed 334,000 time since its release earlier today (Nov. 8.)
But while “Push My Luck” certainly does push hard into indie pop territory, the fact that this is a Chainsmokers track reveals itself at the 2:08 mark, when the song goes full on EDM, with Taggart’s vocal getting pitched all the way up and the chorus getting an elastic build. Meanwhile, the guys are still on the road behind their massive World War Joy tour, which continues through early December. — K. Bain