Music Scene

New music from pop superstars

POP/ SOUNDTRACK.
POP/ SOUNDTRACK.

This month's selections include new music from some of contemporary pop world's most prominent stars - albums from Justin Bieber, Halsey and Kesha, as well as the newest James Bond theme song from recent multiple Grammy winner Billie Eilish.

1 POP/ SOUNDTRACK

NO TIME TO DIE

Billie Eilish

Hear it on: Spotify, Apple Music and other online music platforms

Watch it on: YouTube

Teenage pop wunderkind Billie Eilish's (left) first new track since her history-making Grammy wins is the theme song for the upcoming James Bond flick, No Time To Die.

At 18, she is the youngest artist to write and record a James Bond theme song, joining iconic artists of the past such as Louis Armstrong, Paul McCartney and Shirley Bassey.

Like her previous songs, the haunting tune is recorded with her brother Finneas, also a Grammy winner, in a bedroom studio.


2 POP/R&B

CHANGES

Justin Bieber

Hear it on: Spotify, Apple Music and other online music platforms

Watch it on: YouTube

Canadian pop prince Justin Bieber's (above) fifth album, Changes, comes five years after the last one, Purpose.

It includes two pre-album singles, Intentions (featuring American rapper Quavo) and Yummy, which have racked up half a billion streams, making him the current No. 1 artist on Spotify.

Besides Quavo, the 16-track album also features other prominent hip-hop and R&B artists such as Post Malone, Travis Scott and Kehlani.


3 POP

HIGH ROAD

Kesha

Hear it on: Spotify, Apple Music and other online music platforms

Watch it on: YouTube

American pop singer Kesha (above) returns to her pop roots in High Road, her fourth album that also sees her taking on the role of executive producer.

The 15 tracks include Resentment, a ballad that features Beach Boys legend Brian Wilson, country music singer-songwriter Sturgill Simpson and singer-songwriter Wrabel.


4 PSYCHEDELIC ROCK/POP

THE SLOW RUSH

Tame Impala

Hear it on: Spotify, Apple Music and other online music platforms

Watch it on: YouTube

Australian psychedelic giants Tame Impala, the musical project led by singer, songwriter and musician Kevin Parker (above), tap into ethereal disco and funk in The Slow Rush, their fourth album.

The new batch of songs comes five years after their third album, Currents, which was nominated for Best Alternative Music Album at the 2016 Grammys.


5 R&B/POP/SOUL

CIRCLES

Mac Miller

Hear it on: Spotify, Apple Music and other online music platforms

Watch it on: YouTube

Circles is the sixth and last album from US rapper Mac Miller (above), who died tragically from an accidental drug overdose at the age of 26 in 2018.

Multi-instrumentalist Jon Brion, who worked on the songs with the rapper before his untimely death, finished up the recordings, a follow-up to 2018's Grammy-nominated album Swimming.

Full of deeply contemplative songs, Miller mulls over life's travails and complexities, shedding light on his fragile mental health. Moving even further from his hip-hop roots, the tunes see him take flight as a soulful singer-songwriter.


6 POP PUNK

FATHER OF ALL...

Green Day

Hear it on: Spotify, Apple Music and other online music platforms

Watch it on: YouTube

American pop punk stalwarts Green Day (above) - still the world's most successful punk band - have released Father Of All..., their 13th album.

The trio of singer/guitarist Billie Joe Armstrong, bassist Mike Dirnt and drummer Tre Cool does not mess much with the formula, filling the album with short but sharp tunes.

They are set to return to Singapore and perform at the Singapore Indoor Stadium on March 8.


7 POP/DANCE

REACT

The Pussycat Dolls

Hear it on: Spotify, Apple Music and other online music platforms

Watch it on: YouTube

The Pussycat Dolls make their return with React, their first new song after more than a decade.

The Nicole Scherzinger-fronted group might be down to a quintet - original member Melody Thornton left in 2010 to focus on a solo career - but their trademark sensual dance-pop essence is still strong on the new tune. The Los Angeles group is also set to embark on a British tour.


8 ALTERNATIVE POP/INDIE ROCK

SILVER TONGUE

Torres

Hear it on: Spotify, Apple Music and other online music platforms

Watch it on: YouTube

Silver Tongue is the fourth full album from Nashville-based singer-songwriter Mackenzie Scott, who performs under the nom de plume Torres.

The artist produced and played most of the instruments herself on the nine tracks that document the vagaries of falling in love.


9 POP

MANIC

Halsey

Hear it on: Spotify, Apple Music and other online music platforms

Watch it on: YouTube

Manic, American pop singer Halsey's third album, is a self-analytical work that is the 25-year-old's most honest batch of songs to date.

Guest artists such as Alanis Morissette (Alanis' Interlude) and BTS' Suga (Suga's Interlude) enhance the album's diverse musical landscape, which straddles genres such as alternative pop, Americana and R&B.


10 ALTERNATIVE COUNTRY

THE UNRAVELING

Drive-By Truckers

Hear it on: Spotify, Apple Music and other online music platforms

Watch it on: YouTube American alternative country/Southern rock band Drive-By Truckers' 12th album, The Unraveling, was recorded in Memphis.

The band, fronted by singer-songwriter Mike Cooley, fill the album with songs that lament issues plaguing the United States, from school shootings to unfair labour practices.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 20, 2020, with the headline 'New music from pop superstars'. Print Edition | Subscribe