Illustration by Sevinch Rakhmon-Zoda

Your Weekly Playlist Recs

Welcome to the Music Corner! For any of you looking for new music to vibe to during study time at the Library, please enjoy the read.

Sep 26, 2022

There is a Bulgarian saying that goes “New year, new luck.” While it is usually used in the context of New Year’s Eve, it can also be a great motto for every new beginning. There is wonderful news from the music industry to discuss this week, exceptional throwbacks to celebrate and quirky music recommendations to dig up from the backrooms. Let’s start this party off right with a fresh selection of tunes released between Sept. 14 and Sept. 21 to add to your “Favorites” playlist…
New Releases
rising (the deluxe) by mxmtoon
This album is just an endless indie TikTok sound. Full of happy vibes and soft jingles, the music transports you to the pastel world in which Katy Perry filmed “California Gurls” back in 2010.
Yet, the lyrics reveal a lot about the zeitgeist of our generation. The combination of overly optimistic melodies and fairly dark anxiety-filled lyrics really emphasize a key aspect of being Gen Z: we make fun of our problems, but at least we talk about them openly.
The vulnerability and honesty of “victim of nostalgia”, a song about the fear of missing out (a recurring theme in this issue), and of “sad disco” and “florida”, strike enough chords on one’s heart strings without being overwhelming tear-jerkers.
Musically, the album is one of the most diverse in the indie pop charts with clear influences from several genres, including reggae, funk, Americana folk, 2010s pop rock and 90s hip hop. A sophisticated yet delightful energizer, this album boosts productivity to the maximum, and that’s experimentally proven.
Earlier Releases (Sept. 9)
Albums that are just too good to ignore.
As Above, So Below by Sampa the Great
Sampa Tembo returns to reclaim her name as The Great. The Zambian singer-rapper-songwriter has not come to play, she has come to revolutionize the world music scene.
Mixing traditional Zambian rhythms and melodies for the backing vocals with the latest trends in pop and rap, Sampa the Great single-handedly wrecks all expectations, limitations and hesitations for other artists from her genre(s) and background.
The confident and provocative lyrics of the tracks are timely yet timeless, combining prog-rap phrases and near-academic statements, thus telling stories of doubt, hurt, and injustice, but also of empowerment, new beginnings and hope.
age/sx/location* by Ari Lennox
Since we’re talking about luck, this album was truly a lucky find. An easy listen, the twelve RnB tracks Ari Lennox serves us this week are the perfect addition to any new-wave feminist’s catwalking playlist.
Funeral by Arcade Fire (release date: Sept. 14, 2004)
Amidst the accusations against lead vocalist Win Butler for sexual assault, it is difficult to praise an Arcade Fire album, even though it has really stood the test of time. Funeral remains a quintessential playlist pick for any alternative rock fan and is revered by many as a foundational album for this genre as well. But today it only makes us raise important questions: can we separate art from the artist and, if yes, in what cases? Can we still go on appreciating the work of a band if one of their members is accused of such a crime? And who decides what the correct answers are?
SZNZ: Autumn by Weezer
Alright, Weezer have long ago lost their musical merit in the public eye, agreed. Their meme merit, though, has peaked this year with the creation of a cycle of four albums, which take inspiration from Antonio Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. The musical series SZNZ has already brought us incredible lyrics like “Shakespeare makes me happy” to the tune of a country-esque version of Vivaldi’s “Spring” and “Hey, guys why don’t we torture the humans/ Yes, why don’t we do it for entertainment?” in the heavy metal rendition of “Summer.” So look out this week for more content from Weezer’s Monty Python-inspired era.
Yana Peeva is Deputy Columns Editor. Email her at
gazelle logo