Looking for some motivation to help power you through the start of another work week? We feel you, and with some stellar new pop tunes, we’ve got you covered.
These 10 tracks from artists including Blood Orange, Emeli Sandé, MAX and Sorry will get you energized to take on the week. Pop any of these gems into your personal playlists — or scroll to the end of the post for a custom playlist of all 10.
Sorry, “Key to the City”
Sorry have recently been sharing previews of sophomore album Anywhere but Here, due out Oct. 7, and each new cut showcases the North London alt-pop group’s ability to mix sardonic gloom with slick, enticing melodies. “Key to the City” basks in pre-breakup bitterness, with Asha Lorenz’s voice echoing and fading as the contours of the song abruptly change, like a lot of Sorry’s best work. – Jason Lipshutz
Mura Masa feat. Erika de Casier, “e-motions”
Producer-songwriter Mura Masa is a master collaborator; Erika de Casier, whose excellent sophomore LP Sensational was released last year, is one of the most exciting voices in alternative R&B. A team-up between the two was always likely to pay dividends, and “e-motions,” from Mura Masa’s upcoming Demon Time album, lives up to the pedigrees of its creators, as de Casier’s graceful tone finds an airy background in the studio whiz’s shuffling beats. – J. Lipshutz
Slaney Bay, “I Could Love You Better”
Sometimes, changing one letter makes all the difference: on the hook to new British trio Slaney Bay’s fuzzed-out synth-rock single “I Could Love You Better,” singer-guitarist Caitlin Whitley declares, “I could love you better, better,” her voice hammering down on each word as if to convince itself. By the next line, she’s more certain — “No, I would love you better, better!” — and the listener has bought into the song’s open-hearted feeling. – J. Lipshutz
Alle Farben & Moss Kena, “Forgot How to Love”
German producer Alle Farben helps rising pop singer-songwriter Moss Kena continue his hot streak with “Forgot How to Love,” a dizzying dance floor offering that aims high with its breathless pace and dramatic strings. Kena is responsible for one of the year’s strongest pop singles with “Primadonna,” and “Forgot How to Love” flaunts more of the charisma that made that earlier single so special. – J. Lipshutz
Abby Sage, “Backwards Directions”
From the moment the fuzzy looped guitar of “Backwards Directions” begins, the quirky, familiar rhythm sets the stage for alt-pop newcomer Abby Sage to have some fun. Her soft vocals grow as the beat picks up, and suddenly she’s delivering a Wet Leg-esque hook no one saw coming. – Lyndsey Havens
MAX ft. Keshi, “It’s You”
Max and Keshi timed the release of their laid-back love song perfectly to the start of sweater weather — the “you” they sing about could just as well be the season of fall. While delivering every lyric in a chill-inducing falsetto, the two still capture a warmth on the track, making it a repeat-worthy listen. – L.H.
Maria Becerra, “Automático”
Don’t let the plinking production that opens “Automático” fool you: the track shows Latin pop artist Maria Becerra at her most menacing and assertive. As the revving engine sounds on the song make clear, Becerra is in the driver’s seat here, and the result is a tight, crisp hit. – L.H.
Emeli Sandé feat. Nile Rodgers, “When Someone Loves You”
A Nile Rodgers collaboration that follows Emeli Sandé’s 2022 album Let’s Say for Instance, “When Someone Loves You” is a peppy and uplifting funk-pop jam (Rodgers’ specialty) about the joy of being loved. The song continues the Scottish singer’s exploration of more pop-friendly territory after making her mark in the world of soul, but even so, there’s an authenticity to her tone and delivery that makes sure the song can lighten your mood without becoming lightweight. – Joe Lynch
Blood Orange, “Jesus Freak Lighter”
Blood Orange, the solo project of singer-songwriter and producer Dev Hynes, has had a busy summer opening for Harry Styles as part of the pop star’s Love On Tour residency at Madison Square Garden. In the midst of the lengthy run, Hynes released the new Blood Orange track, “Jesus Freak Lighter,” which sees the producer issuing his formal introduction to his forthcoming Four Songs EP and combining his signature, synth-heavy style with darker, new wave-inspired instrumental elements. – Starr Bowenbank
BLACKSTARKIDS, beabadoobee, “CYBERKISS 2 U*”
At first glance, BLACKSTARKIDS and beabadoobee might seem like a mismatch, but on “CYBERKISS 2 U*,” the latter’s bubbly, saccharine vocals serve as the perfect complement for the track’s video game-esque instrumentals. Members TheBabeGabe, TyFaizon and Deiondre continue their nostalgic sound and love-referencing lyrics on the upbeat, hyperpop-leaning track (“I just wanna send you a kiss / Going digital with my love.”) – S.B.