Spring into new music

Spring is a time of change; people begin to clean out their closets, flowers start to bloom and artists release tons of new music. Here are some of my favorite from this spring, and tracks to look out for.

Of course, Harry Style’s new single “Sign of the Times” is No. 1 on my list. I am proud of him for breaking out of the teeny-bopper sound of One Direction and going in his own direction, even if his own direction includes songs that drag on forever and only use three chords. For someone coming out of such a repetitive genre, I was very impressed with how complex his song managed to be while still maintaining some of his sound from One Direction. I also admire what he said about his teenage fans, because music is always better when you know the person behind it appreciates their listeners.

It was difficult to choose just one song from Pentatonix’s new EP “PTX Vol. IV.” Since they’re all covers of classics, reasonably I could only put one track on this playlist. I chose their cover of “Imagine,” although it just barely beat out “Bohemian Rhapsody.” In addition to just being musically concrete and committed to maintaining the emotion John Lennon put in, “Imagine” has an incredibly moving music video to go along with the cover that rivals the original sentimentality of the song.

Two of my favorite artists randomly dropped singles in late March, both which are strikingly similar. Hayley Kiyoko’s “Sleepover” is the most recent in an onslaught of new music that she has been working on, following the release of her EP “Citrine.” Although I’ll admit that I love every single song she puts out, “Sleepover” has a more mellow vibe than most of her songs, and as always the drumline drives the track in a way that has the listener tapping their foot for hours after (she’s also coming to St. Louis this summer, so if you like her music I recommend you go see her in person). Kiiara, an artist I wrote about awhile back, released “Heavy” with Linkin Park, which combines her modern electronic vibe with Linkin Park’s matured sound.

Syd, an artist who just broke off from her longtime band and is pursuing a solo career, released the single “All About Me” this year. Filled with thick jazz vibes interlaced with modern R&B, it is clear that Syd is still trying to find her own sound. While I do expect a lot of development from her, “All About Me” and her subsequent album “Fin” are not lacking in complexity and musical genius, instead they show her raw confusion in a vulnerable mix of her old sound and a new, jazzier Syd that I hope to see a lot from in the future.

As for music to look out for, the top of my list is Avi Kaplan’s (yes, the incredible bass singer from Pentatonix) upcoming EP “Avriel and the Sequoias.” He has one of the lowest voices I’ve ever heard, and I can’t wait to hear what he can do when he’s not just riffing in the background of covers. Preorder the album here.

From covers of classic songs to up-and-coming artists releasing their first music, this playlist has it all. Take some time outside to admire the blooming flowers, take a break from studying for finals and enjoy all the new music this spring.