Image description: Assorted lines of musical notation floating across a purple-pink, inky background. End ID
Image description: Assorted lines of musical notation floating across a purple-pink, inky background. End ID

Illustration by Shahd Nigim

Music Column: B-Side, Track 2

The Music Column is back to regular programming with recommendations for newly released albums, throwback EPs, and an upcoming instant classic (hopefully).

Oct 8, 2023

As we have all now settled back into the NYU Abu Dhabi routine, it is time for me to bring the music column back to regular programming. If exam season is stressing you out too much and you are looking for solace… you are in the wrong place. I can only provide you with 10 to 40 minutes of distraction, but at least the quality of your procrastination session is guaranteed with this week’s music recommendations.
New Release
softscars by yeule
If you want to earn the honor to call yourselves the first yeule superfans, you cannot skip this recommendation. The up-and-coming Singaporean artist is redefining the genres of pop and EDM. softscars is a great introduction to their craft: mixing elements of glitch, ambient, Asian post-pop, and cyberpunk, yeule creates a whole music world of their own. Listening to softscars is a very personal experience and is perfect for study and therapy sessions with friends. The album stuns with a seamless production and perfect arrangement of lyrics, sounds, and emotions. My personal favorite tracks are “ghosts,” “sulky baby,” and “software update,” but I am pretty sure after each listen, the list will change. This is absolutely an album with many re-listenability qualities.
EP2 by FKA twigs (released Sept. 17, 2013)
I cannot miss a chance to talk about FKA twigs. She is one of the most exciting contemporary artists who creates whole soundscapes, not merely songs. You can experience this only in the first 10 seconds of “How’s That,” the opening track of EP2. Considering this was the second ever body of work FKA twigs ever released, one is taken aback by the courage and desire to experiment so freely. From the very beginning, she sets firm boundaries that she would only create songs not for an audience, but for her own cathartic release of emotion, trauma, and energy. FKA twigs has also always been a performer and a big portion of her work is dedicated to the exploration of body and self through experimental dance. This seems to be foundational to EP2, which sounds as if she created music to dance to, and the rhythm is definitely infectious, especially in “Papi Pacify.” The EP is only 4 tracks long, but hitting the replay button for hours is a new favorite pastime of mine that I recommend you try.
White Roses by Flyte (released Sept. 20, 2019)
To make it a full throwback album recommendation, I suggest you listen to Flyte’s EP White Roses right after FKA twigs’s (if you are not one to listen to the same four songs on repeat for days on end). This is a feel-good, homey vibes indie EP: 11 minutes of peace, calm and cozy melancholy. If FKA Twigs’s EP2 gets you too into the “feels,” then Flyte’s White Roses is the type of EP that brings you back to the center, grounds you, and soothes you. It is one of those simpler musical delights that asks nothing of you as a listener. Listen to it in order, backwards or all shuffled up — it does not matter; it will sound great and achieve its purpose of bringing you peace of mind either way.
Paint My Room Black by Holly Humberstone (to be released Oct. 13)
The first time I listened to Holly Humberstone was by accident. I had just exited Weyes Blood’s set at a summer music festival and was so hyped up that I did the only sane thing an insane person could do — walk straight to the next musical set. It was Holly’s. I would not say it was love at first hearing, at least not the kind of obsessive and all-engulfing love. Rather it was an “intrigued at first sight” type of love. There is nothing surprising, spectacular, or never done before in Holly Humberstone’s music, but there is clearly a deep love for music and fresh energy that makes her songs stand out. It is the type of music that all of us wished we could write in high school. So, on Oct. 13, I suggest you go live your dreams vicariously through Holly Humberstone’s latest project Paint My Room Black.
Yana Peeva is Senior Columns Editor. Email them at
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