By: Danielle Davie, Courtney Miller, Andrew Ringer and Natasha Tar
“Big for Your Boots” – Stormzy
Danielle Davie: The flow reminds me of Big Shaq’s “Man’s Not Hot,” and it’s an overall catchy, upbeat song, but all I can think about is “Man’s Not Hot.”
Natasha Tar: It starts with chipmunks . . . and then it just gets more confusing from there. I think he mentions a corgi though? That’s cool.
Courtney Miller: How dare you make me listen to this, more like. I actually wasn’t hating the weird chipmunks-style intro bit, but now I’m tapping out.
Andrew Ringer: Kanye made the chipmunk sound cool, but it doesn’t feel right here. Way too epic for a song that makes me think of Puss in Boots from Shrek.
“Finesse (Remix)” – Bruno Mars, Cardi B
DD: This is so ‘90s! Cardi B and Bruno Mars sound good together. I’d like to hear more collaborations from them.
NT: This definitely sounds like a song from a couple decades ago, so it’s not too bad. Bruno Mars is actually pretty smooth on this, too. Overall, a fun song.
CM: Yeah, real ‘90s feel for sure. It’s overall fine. Like, there’s nothing wrong with it. There’s also nothing terribly right with it though. It’s background elevator music.
AR: This song is so happy! I don’t know if I like it, but at least it made me smile a little bit. I guess that means I liked it.
“All The Stars” – Kendrick Lamar, SZA
DD: I really like this one. Kendrick, as always, is fantastic. SZA also adds a really nice element with her light, upbeat vocals.
NT: This song is chill. Kinda boring and repetitive, but at least it’s easy on the ears.
CM: SZA is the only reason to listen to this song. Kendrick Lamar just isn’t in my top ten Kendricks and I only know of two. The music is unassuming and boring, so I feel like they could’ve done more with this.
AR: I’ve been meaning to listen to this song since it got released. Not their best work together (“Doves in the Wind” is incredible), but overall it’s pretty good. Probably won’t listen to this song much more, but I’m still a huge fan of both.
“Blame” – Ekali, ZHU
DD: The background is really cool, and the different synth textures that are brought in and out of the song at different parts really stand out to me as the strength of the song.
NT: I mean, it definitely has interesting synths and it’s kind of funky, but as my sister commented, “The singer sounds constipated.”
CM: It’s kind of trippy, but I don’t hate it. The vocals are more of an accompaniment than a feature which is a nice change. Solid beat, fun piano trills, worth listening to more than once.
AR: Woah, those little techno sounding things are dope. This is the kind of song I would only listen to if I had to for this article, or if I gave the AUX to my buddy that goes to a lot of raves. I like it though.
“Filthy” – Justin Timberlake
DD: This sounds quite different from the other Justin Timberlake songs that I’ve heard before. It’s less about the vocals and more about the underlying dark, gritty synthesizer. I wasn’t expecting the song to end the way it did, but I really liked it.
NT: As someone who hasn’t listened to a Timberlake song since “Mirrors,” I’m surprised about the direction he took his music in. That said, I don’t like this song. It’s bordering on annoying.
CM: I don’t like this intro. The rest of the song is alright, but anything that sounds like that overproduced intro makes the song a hard pass for me. I’m sorry, JT, I was hoping you wouldn’t disappoint. Hope is for the weak.
AR: I saw an article last week that claimed that Justin Timberlake is officially no longer cool. I was gonna use this space to agree with it, but that baseline changed my mind. He probably had nothing to do with it, but you’re still in my good books, Justin. That ending proves that Justin still thinks he’s cool.
“If You Leave Me Now” – Charlie Puth, Boyz II Men
DD: This feels like a very generic wannabe young Justin Bieber-type song. It’s not terrible, but nothing about it stands out.
NT: I feel that if I were nine I’d listen to this on repeat.
CM: The intro is very Boyz II Men which bodes well. But the song fizzles out with the lack of excitement with Puth’s contribution. Listen to this if you need help sleeping at night because it’s pretty forgettable.
AR: I don’t listen to this type of music. Now I’m less likely to try.
“Designer” – Lil Pump
DD: This is the SoundCloud rapper that all those dank memes are made about. You know the ones.
NT: The real question is how does one realistically twerk on a stove? Other than that, I agree with Danielle.
CM: Hell no.
AR: I have friends that love Lil Pump in Victoria. That’s 90 per cent of the reason I moved to Vancouver. That being said, this is a song that I think I could pretend to like.
“With You” – Fetty Wap, KDL
DD: I really like this, more than I thought I would. It’s really catchy, upbeat, and makes me think of good times.
NT: I feel like I’d enjoy this song more if I was driving around in a solid gold car while listening to it.
CM: Yeah, came into this expecting to dislike it, which I do, but not as much as I thought I would.
AR: Is Fetty Wap still relevant?
“Kül” – Ediz Hafızoğlu, Birsen Tezer
DD: This song is beautiful. All the elements work together to pull off a very relaxing and mellow feeling.
NT: It’s as if I’m a particularly angry customer who’s been put on hold because the tech support person on the other side of the call needs to go punch a wall.
CM: This is some elevator muzak that hasn’t quite reached the echelon of being hold music. It’s beautiful, but it’s also just kind of there.
AR: I definitely get the “put on hold” vibe here. That being said, if Shaw played this type of stuff, I’d probably be way more likely to call.
“J’aime bien” – RIDSA
DD: I can’t say I’ve ever listened to this genre of music before. I don’t feel strongly about the song. It’s not bad, but nothing really stands out to me as being that interesting.
NT: If this song was in English, I probably wouldn’t like it, but I think I have a soft spot for French rap or whatever this is.
CM: It being in French works in its favour, and the beat is fine, but it’s also nothing new.
AR: The flute is still around! How is this still a thing?
“For You (Fifty Shades Freed)” – Liam Payne, Rita Ora
DD: I feel like I’ve heard this before, or at least some variation on the same theme and chords.
CM: Do people still listen to this kid? Is he the one with a munchkin, or is that a different one? It starts out with the cinematic almost Top Gun/Titanic feel. It’s okay, I guess, because it reminds me of those soundtracks, but otherwise, meh.
AR: I don’t have to listen to all four minutes do I?
“That’s My N****” – Meek Mill, YG, Snoop Dogg
DD: The “Still D.R.E.” sample makes me want to listen to that song instead. But that aside, I do like this song. I really enjoy the panning in the chorus.
NT: Pretty standard rap, I guess. Nothing special as far as I can tell. I could probably mistake it for about every other rap song I’ve ever heard.
CM: As a person, I love Snoop Dogg (and not just because he has a song with Anna Kendrick). As a rapper, I hate him less than I hate most? And that’s about the best thing I can say. This song is hot trash.
AR: Meek Mill keeps recycling classic hip hop beats to stay relevant. That’s so sad. He should listen to the song above. Also, I’m mad that it took almost 20 years to get Snoop Dogg a full verse over those “Still D.R.E.” keys. He probably would’ve done a lot better verse 20 years ago.