The first week of February 2021 brought about some interesting releases and happenings in the music world. Hayley Williams of Paramore released her second solo studio album within a year’s time, the Weeknd released a greatest hits album in preparation for his Super Bowl Performance, and Phoebe Bridgers smashed her guitar to close out her Saturday Night Live debut. However, if you only have limited time to listen to new music this week, here are the three projects you should check out.
Freddie Gibbs – Gang Signs (feat. Schoolboy Q)
Freddie Gibbs has been on a roll that has seemingly lasted his entire career. In 2019, Gibbs released the collaborative project Bandana with producer Madlib, and he followed it up in 2020 with the Alchemist-produced album Alfredo. Both projects exemplify the Indiana rapper’s creative and lyrical best. With “Gang Signs”, it seems that Gibbs has not missed a beat in the time since the release of Alfredo. Enlisting Top Dawg Entertainment signee Schoolboy Q for the track is a match made in rap heaven as the two share verses in a lyrical-centric epic. Watch the video for “Gang Signs” below.
Foo Fighters – Medicine at Midnight
Foo Fighters’ frontman Dave Grohl shared that their 10th studio album, Medicine at Midnight, was recorded with the spirit of a new groove the band found within themselves. Inspired by legendary acts like ABBA, Prince, and Nile Rodgers, the new full-length album from the Seattle rock legends is packed full of stadium anthems, slow burns, and calls to the dancefloor. Looking back on the album’s recording process, Grohl shared, “In some sort of attempt at longevity, you have to be able to reach out and try things you’ve never done before.” Listen to the album’s opening track “Making a Fire” below.
Black Country, New Road – For the First Time
The Cambridge post-punk outfit Black Country, New Road held back zero punches and let their influences become apparent with the release of their debut studio album, For the First Time. Crossing genres throughout the album, songs like “Track X” blend emo-rock guitar riffs with jazz-rock accents as frontman Isaac Wood speak-sings in an honest manner about his memories of past loves. Each song on For the First Time shows the band stepping in a different direction and proving their wide varieties of talent as a collective. Watch the music video for “Track X” below.