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“[to ‘live in the metaverse’], as a statement, more or less demands poetic interpretation… Because otherwise, it’s, you know. Stupid. Because your body won’t fit inside the wires.”



It’s never enough to predict the future one time, eh?

At one point in time, argue amongst yourselves when, Grimes HAD IT. Whatever “it” was- the outsider electronica dabbles, the chibi-sweet chirping vocals, the grungy art-kid look, the incendiary social media quotables- Claire Boucher had it had it had it, that cool new thing that could be your life, that “your favorite artist’s favorite new artist” JE NE SAIS QUOI. But points in time pass, the oh-so-forward-thinking dazzle of today becomes the stale gimmickry of tomorrow, and people start to notice things they didn’t at first. That firebrand eclecticism starts to look more like indecision or even rote copyism, those arresting timbres grow grating with repeat use, the tenuously-radical optics, when inspected closely, reveal only empty provocation (oh why EVER can’t we just “allow individual companies to… power our lives”). Newer newnesses show up hawking bolder and brighter and better builds of your shit (t. Kero Kero Bonito, Charli XCX, literally any artist describable as “hyperpop”), and suddenly here we are: a once-ahead-of-the-curve mood board dilettante reduced to (or revealed as?) the most exhausting, vapid techno-fetishist NFT shill in music. Like the web3 snake oil salesmen that have seemingly eaten her entire brain, Boucher cannot move on from selling us the future…

Outside of “Blue Monday” being Orgy’s universally acknowledged claim to fame, the band very rarely come up in music discourse. There’s obviously good reason for that; the band fell into the NU-metal whirlpool at the height of the genre’s popularity and were quicky chewed out with the slew of other bands clambering to make a decent name for themselves. Unlike most bands in that scene though, I always lamented the unharnessed potential Orgy wielded in the early noughties. Candyass and Vapour Transmission were really solid albums, and, while far from perfect, demonstrated a competent blend of NU-metal and industrial in a way that gave them an edge over their peers – their own inimitable identity. Unfortunately, the band were never able to make that potential truly flourish, as their third album, Punk Statik Paranoia, sealed their own demise (at least until their return in 2015).  It was a record that stripped the band of their fundamental qualities in favour of derivative trend chasing, which ultimately finished the band off in the process.

Since their return in 2015, the band have followed suit in a way that feels as though they never really left or learned from their previous shortcomings – that glaring wound of unfettered, untouched potential staring back at me as they bleed generic dance beats and vapid pop melodies into my ears. This new single, “Empty”, stays the course in this vein, vomiting autotune and scintillatingly optimistic electronics with the only consistent thing…

New year 2010 pinned on noticeboard 2010 pinned on noticeboard 2010 stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images

I’ve always been a huge fan of two things: playlists and nostalgia. Lo and behold, I present to you that point of intersection! Since I first became an avid consumer of music back in 2010, I’ve been secretly compiling “greatest hits” versions of each year I’ve been on Sputnikmusic (I’m not counting 2008 or 2009 because I was barely present). It’s a hobby, sure, but it’s also a superhighway to connect me to any given point in time within the last decade or so. It goes without saying that these installments will be subjective in every conceivable way, but I also think that listeners – particularly on this website – might get something out these posts because my taste in music is essentially a product of what I’ve discovered on Sputnikmusic. I invite you to click ‘play’ on my selective 25-song 2010 playlist and get whisked away to some twelve year old memories. Because it obviously will not be the same as your 2010 experience, I invite you to share your own favorite songs in the comments below. Thanks for listening!

Regardless of your political stance on treating boys like sluts, daine’s ability to fit the lyrics “treat that boy like a slut” into the first second of ‘boythots’ is highly impressive. Moreover, it signals a gratifying shift in the Filipino-Australian artist’s style: where her previous output largely mimicked Lil Peep-isms by combining trap beats with spaced out twinkly riffs, this brand new single is much more energetic and immediate. Trading melodrama for drama, daine finds a newfound sense of life in wonderful lines like “Steppin’ in the club in my vegan Uggs / Slappin’ all these hoes in my Prada puff” and her crystal clear goal of, yes, treating a boy like a slut. It’s ambitious yet firmly embedded within reality; aware of limitations and more than willing to face them. 

While it’s a highly delicate exercise in vulgarity and meditation, ‘boythots’ also manages to be highly self aware. It’s snappy; it knows precisely what it’s doing. Clocking in at just over two minutes, the song delivers its message without overstaying its welcome or dragging at any point. Its framework comprises an addictively pulsating beat and enough ethereal qualities to feel like a natural progression from daine’s past output; nothing more, nothing less. While ‘boythots’ might last as long as its subject matter, it manages to feel much more satisfying and complete. 


Sputnik Singles Chart:

  1. Blut Aus Nord – “That Cannot Be Dreamed” (3.9)
  2. Regina Spektor – “Becoming All Alone” (3.9)

“Oldest Daughter” finds The Wonder Years both maturing and, um, dematuring. “Oldest Daughter” sees the pop punk powerhouses return to the generation of The Greatest Generation in more ways than one. The track is a direct sequel to that album’s acoustic number “Madelyn” and, musically, this is the most pop punk they’ve sounded since The Greatest Generation (arguably since Suburbia). The structure is that of a classic pop punk song: Verse -> pre-chorus -> chorus -> repeat -> bridge -> end with a chorus. The chorus rips, there’s a chugging guitar riff, there are some sing-a-long echoes, and it never slows down for a “quiet” section. In other words, “Oldest Daughter” sounds like everything you would want from a pop-punk song in 2012, just a decade too late. 

Yet, somehow, “Oldest Daughter” is also maybe the most mature that The Wonder Years have ever sounded. Dan Campbell has developed a deeper control of his voice since the release of Sister Cities five years ago (the vibrato!). The production sounds much cleaner than their previous two releases, yet still rough enough that it avoids sounding sterile (the harmonies!). Campbell has also clearly taken some influence from Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties in his lyrics, as the storytelling style that The Wonder Years already lean into is transformed into an even more literal style, sharing the heartbreaking story of what Madelyn’s life has turned into in the ten years since (the imagery!). 

“Oldest Daughter” is a great band returning to

“Sidelines” is the new song by the music artist Phoebe Bridgers. You know who she is, glad to be on the same page. Is it a good song? It recalls the minimalist keyboards of the title-track of her 2020 phenomenon  statement zeitgeister meme album Punisher, but where that song’s progression was intricate, fragile and full of intrigue, this one follows butterfingered plinky-plonks and emointense study beats and an antidynamic chord pattern so tepid Aaron Dessner would doze into his decaf chaipalace eyemask latte over it. Bridgers’ vocal performance peaks when she channels Imogen Heap on the occasional high note, and it dips when she mumbles some bollocks about personifying her houseplants instead of objectifying herself to the chonk of that babysnare. Is this a little cruel? To the lyrics: oh okay, Phoebe Bridgers is using the first song released from her new(ish)found platform of supercelebdom to affirm the confidence she’s found to leave her house, all while weighing up a fresh stint at Berklee (hardly unwarranted by this song’s sclerotic arrangement)? She is dealing with fame marvelously, and you can tell this because she grounds it in sly Bright Eyes references. All things considered, this is a guaranteed live kicker and I can’t wait to hear some tosspot in a suit promote their insurance company over its opening stanza the next time I open a Youtube video 10/10 well played.

Score: 2/5

Sputnik Singles Chart:

  1. Blut Aus Nord – “That Cannot Be Dreamed” (4.0)
  2. Regina Spektor – “Becoming All Alone” (3.9)
  3. Yeule –

Arcade Fire are back. Does lightning strike twice? Are once-great bands entitled to a second lease on life in the same way cats are an additional eight? Are we excited? I dunno, excitement’s a pretty hot commodity with this band. Much as I love vintage Arcade Fire, I never found the inclination to listen to Everything Now in its entirety: 2013’s Reflektor had already exhausted much of my patience with its inflated mishmash of arthouse flim over occasionally decent songs that insisted both on taking an eternity to end and on orbiting incremental degrees of pastichey conceptual bollocks. I had no desire whatsoever to hear those wavelengths aggressively reconfigured into a smug “expose” of the Gritty Realities Of Everyday Life. Maybe this was unfair, maybe apathy won and society died, maybe I was spending my time listening to better music – we’ll never know.

What I do know for sure is that “The Lightning I, II” is every inch The Song Destined To Make Me Believe In This Band Again – that is, insofar as it goes through all the motions that persuaded anyone to believe in them to begin with minus, unironically enough, a crucial pinch of electricity. As many have pointed out, it more or less sounds like one of the Suburbs‘ more expansive cuts (though I hear a subtle measure of Reflektor in the ’80s-tastic booming chords and twinkling accents of Régine Chassagne’s piano) – far as Canadian megaindie goes, this is all welcome but older hat than Kevin Drew’s baseball cap. The music video is also entirely appropriate for an Arcade…

I haven’t had what I’d consider a true nightmare in at least a decade. I still have the occasional dream where something happens that makes me upset – perhaps I forget something important, or my car breaks down on the way to a big meeting – but the sort of haunting images that used to cross my mind when I was younger have entirely dissipated. No more shadowy figures standing at the foot of my bed, no more quiet laughter coming from downstairs, no more sitting straight up in bed after some kind of malformed, upright animal charges me in my own bedroom. Generally speaking, most people outgrow those kinds of fears – monsters and ghosts are replaced by adult stressors, and your dreams grow with you by reflecting those concerns.

“That Cannot Be Dreamed” is the closest I’ve come to experiencing that sort of terror again. Don’t get me wrong, it’s an exhilarating terror – but still quite spooky. I’m admittedly not the most well-versed in Blut aus Nord’s expansive discography, or even black metal for that matter, but I’ve heard enough of them both to know “That Cannot Be Dreamed” is exceptional. It evokes the sort of hellish imagery that other bands strive for with twice the effort and half the affect – resulting in an eerily powerful blend of avant-garde metal and industrialized dissonance. Despite the visceral, primitive fear that the song invites, it also manages to be majestic, beautiful, and meditative –…

At the outset of Weezer’s career, The Blue Album and Pinkerton established them as one of the greatest new rock acts of their time. However, a run of six LPs from 2001-2010 saw their reputation tarnished by music that was occasionally good enough, but all too often disappointing. After a decade of mixed results, it seemed that Weezer had adopted a new identity – not one that wanted to please their loyal fanbase, but rather one that used meme-worthy album art and was obsessed with fame.

On the heels of 2014’s Everything Will Be Alright in the End and 2016’s The White Album, it seemed like Weezer had finally reclaimed control of their destiny. However, as with history, Weezer seems to repeat itself. Just as those two albums rekindled Weezer’s magic, we once again found/find ourselves mired in another excessive run of mediocrity. Pacific Daydream, The Black Album, and Van Weezer were all pretty bad, while The Teal Album gets a bit of a pass because it was a gimmicky covers album. OK Human has really been the band’s only post-2016 saving grace, and even that record – while quite beautiful at times – didn’t quite capture the full essence of Weezer. It was like Weezer does the Beach Boys (not that I’m complaining personally), sans any of the grittier punk/rock elements to keep them grounded.

So where does that leave us in 2022? Well, Weezer is embarking upon an ambitious…

“Why doesn’t it get better with time?”, a forlorn Regina Spektor asks God. The two are sitting down at a bar across from a corner deli, beers in hand. You might not have taken God for the drinking type, but it was actually his idea. After encountering her while she was walking home one night, he suggests that the two grab a beer and relax a bit. That’s about where God’s portion of the dialogue ends, however; he strikes up this fun idea, and then leaves Regina alone with her thoughts. “Let the ones who want it bad get all the things that make them better”, she wishes. Then, as if talking to a wall: “Let the ones who don’t care feel a thrill.” You can sense the desperation in her voice growing with each verse. On the other side of the table, an expressionless face stares onward, refusing to respond. “And I just want to ride, but this whole world — it makes me carsick” Regina continues, at this point probably aware that God has completely tuned her out. “I’m becoming all alone again…stay” she pleads. As the camera pans out, Spektor indeed finds herself completely alone again. By the end of the song, the dialogue is reversed: this time it’s Spektor seeking God out, asking him to join her for a beer while singing “It’s awful late…I know you’re here.” No response is given, and he never shows.…

It was only through watching the bland music video to Red Hot Chili Peppers’ new single, “Black Summer”, that I remembered John Frusciante had rejoined the band (again). The results are pretty evident of this reformation as well, because let’s be honest here – the band haven’t written a great song with Frusciante behind the wheel since By the Way. I know, I know, I’m probably sounding a little harsh here, but know that I don’t facetiously parade my sentiment around with no meaning behind it. It might sound like a knee-jerk reaction, but the thing is, when I realised John had returned (again), all of those emotions from Josh Klinghoffer’s firing came flooding back. The thing is, I wouldn’t even say that I’m a fan of the band – I really enjoy some of their albums, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to put one of them on – however, I can affirm one thing with certainty: The Getaway was the best thing the band had done since By the Way, and that was with the help of Josh. Yeah, I’m With You sucks, but I put that down to Josh getting a feel for his surroundings before easing himself into the writing process.

So, it goes without saying that I was a little disappointed Josh had been ripped from the band at a pivotal point in his tenure, as we could have potentially seen an incline in untapped potential within the band post The Getaway,…


Lol what the fuck okay no haha quirky


Literally death-god (死神), a Shinigami is a supernatural figure from Japanese mythology. They don’t spark joy and you do not want to meet one. They are the Grim Reaper, but in accordance of the ancient doctrine of thing, but Japanese, somehow better.


In the anime Death Note, the Shinigami have magic eyes that display the exact convenient predetermined time of each individual human’s lovely death like a floaty alarm clock from the future. If they kill someone before they’re destined to die, they get to steal their remaining lifespan. Shinigami are very good at killing humans because they have long nails and magic powers and freaky makeup. They are death gods.


This infodump is important and necessary because it’s the only way anyone will ever be able to extract a fraction of substance from Grimes’ doss of a new single. It is not good and probably kinda bad. There is little to analyse, which suits me just fine. Grimes wastes everything she learnt between Art Angels and Miss Anthropocene as a producer on a cut/paste kick-clap beat that has no opportunity to support a single good hook. She wastes everything she clearly didn’t learn from the “Kill vs. Maim” video’s cyberpunk death dream of definitely cultural probably appropriation on, like, the same shit but with longer nails. And different coloured eyes. The way she delivers the words Shinigami eyes gives me flashbacks to aural readings of My

While Shinedown’s post-Sound of Madness career has been anything but consistent, they’ve still managed to outlast most of their grunge/rock peers thanks to Brent Smith, who is easily one of the most talented vocalists in the mainstream sector of those genres. His ability to transition from raw, gritty barks to soaring melodic choruses is something special, and for the majority of Shinedown’s existence, it has allowed listeners to overlook some of the band’s other glaring deficiencies.

A lot of folks will be bothered by ‘Planet Zero’s apparently right-winged lyrical content, but the truth is that political affiliation alone doesn’t make a song bad or good. Revealing your political affiliation like a series of low-end YouTube comments, on the other hand, does: [I think we’ve reached the ceiling / They’re canceling your feelings], [Shut the door, say a prayer, kill the lights / Bite your tongue ’cause it might save your life], [Better pray that you’re not erased…On your knees or you’ll be replaced]. It doesn’t take long to realize that they’re criticizing cancel culture, and to be more accurate, beating you over the head with it. You can be for or against these lyrics — that’s your prerogative — but a less meme-worthy set of verses would have gone a long way in establishing ‘Planet Zero’s concept as possessing enough depth to actually convince someone on the other side of the aisle to pay attention. Instead, this just plays out like a poorly thought-out Facebook…

Hell has frozen over, Sputnikmusic has acknowledged singles as a legitimate artform, and Yeule has dropped a song we can dance to. From the comfort of our bedrooms. With or more likely without company. Under whatever concentration of serotonin. All. the. time.

Backed with a jungle beat courtesy of Danny L Harle, “Too Dead Inside” is as close as we’ve heard from Yeule to an upbeat pop song. The comatose dream pop they perfected on 2019’s Serotonin II is vaguely residual here, but it upends that album’s dissociated reverie into a more driving self-confrontation. Shock horror, it’s a dark one: too dead inside is less about getting lost in an apathetic wallow than scrutinising the root of that feeling as a coping mechanism for trauma.

Yeule’s vocals, typically indicative of some kind of digital ghost, take on a more urgent whisper-rap style throughout the verses, but they revert to a more familiar style as they hang every line in the chorus off the end of the one before. It’s like a waterpixelfall of uncertainty, and Yeule’s knack for keeping this kind of fragmentary delivery on personal footing is masterful. They also go above and beyond the call of duty by throwing in a surprise one-off prechorus before the second chorus that just so happens to contain the track’s most critical lyric (It’s not so hollow, I’m chasing […] my own shadow) and its best melody. Digression: count the number of pop-affiliates you’ve heard in the last five years who’ve done anything more with the space after their first chorus than copy/paste the same…

Where did this come from? Bad Omens – once a generic Bring Me the Horizon wannabe band – are set to drop their most ambitious album to date on February 24th; and they are poised to make, dare I say, the best core album in a very long time – if we’re judging The Death of Peace of Mind on its current string of singles. The eclectic spray of styles from this album’s line-up of promotional tracks is both eye-bulgingly impressive and exhilarating to behold. Not only is Noah taking his vocal capabilities to unprecedented levels, the band are taking their talents to new and exciting pastures. This is coming from someone who rolls his eyes at the flaccid state of metalcore, and generally avoids the style like the plague at this point. Nevertheless, I can’t help but feel a sense of overwhelming excitement for this album’s potential and the good it will bring the genre as a whole if they pull it off.

Ironically, this is probably not the best single to showcase on the Sputnik Singles series, as I would consider it to be their weakest track from the four singles released thus far, showcasing the most derivative qualities of the band. However, with all of that said, “Like a Villain” still manages to be a bloody good song in its own right. I would concede that “Like a Villain” rides dangerously close to a BMTH track from the Sempiternal era, but I still think there’s enough…

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