September 6 was a strong day for new music. Three singles from big name artists who are at different stages of their careers provided a small sample of a promising crop of albums. Indie goddess St. Vincent, the prolific Beck, and Irish rock staple U2 all released singles ahead of new records that are due out in October and December.
“Los Ageless,” St. Vincent – St. Vincent dropped her second single, “Los Ageless,” on the same day that she announced her forthcoming record, Masseduction. The radio-made single is a follow-up to her profane “New York” and indicates that the new record may have an eclectic sound with at least some mainstream leanings. While the amazing ballad “New York” felt like an alt-rock spin on a Broadway tune, “Los Ageless” starts with a fashion runway style electro-beat before transitioning to a synth-heavy chorus. St. Vincent crafted Masseduction with producer du jour Jack Antonoff (Taylor Swift, Lorde). The record will be St. Vincent’s fifth album and is set to be released on October 13.
“Up All Night,” Beck – Even though Beck frequently changes the type of album that he puts outs, ranging from hip-hop, rock, and acoustic music, the overall blend of his work is a recognizable signature sound. This quality is on display for his most recent single “Up All Night,” which is a dance-friendly track that is distinguished by its vintage Beck Beat. The song is another insta-hit for Beck and promises to be a Top 40 and festival mainstay for quite some time. “Up All Night” is the third official single for his new album, Colors. The record has been a long time in the making. The previous two singles, “Dreams” and “Wow” were put out in 2015 and 2016, respectively. Colors is Beck's 13th record and will be released on October 13.
“You’re The Best Thing About Me,” U2 – Despite being one of the most established rock bands in the world, U2 is in a relative tweener phase. The band were lambasted for giving an album away for free and recently embarked on an anniversary tour for their timeless 1987 record The Joshua Tree. Although they have received some moderate radio play, U2 have not released an enduring single since 2005’s How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb. Despite this unusual phase for U2, the band is continuing to reach for the higher moment and will release Songs of Experience. The first single for the record is “You’re The Best Thing About Me,” an enjoyable track that starts with a simple guitar hook and features a self-aware Bono singing “Shooting off my mouth, that’s another great thing about me.” Songs of Experience will be the 14th studio album for U2. It is scheduled to hit stores (or iPhones) on December 1.