PM Picks Winona Oak
Photo: Cover of Winona Oak's "Island of the Sun"

Best New Songs: Winona Oak, Allegories, Navy, Banji

The PM Picks playlist spotlights the best new songs across the varied genres we cover. Today features Winona Oak, Allegories, Navy, Banji, and more.

Scandipop’s Winona Oak released the stunning “SHE” last year, and it was an earworm of the highest order with a killer melody and humorous, clever lyrics. That was an absolute electro banger, but Oak’s range is vast in emotional expression and musical ideas. Her latest, “Island of the Sun”, slows things down for a dreamy, introspective number ruminating on lost love, nostalgically recalling better days in the past. The actual place is Solleron, set deep in Sweden’s forests, also the singer’s hometown.

Hear these songs on the PM Picks Spotify playlist.

Hamilton, Ontario’s Allegories are an up-and-coming electropop duo with a warm and melodic aesthetic. Their third single, “Constant”, gently builds momentum as it emerges lethargically, with the synthesizers and vocals growing in intensity as the track develops. It’s a gorgeous song without a single wasted note, so perfectly composed as it is.

Dominican singer-songwriter Navy blends Caribbean vibes with endlessly appealing pop/R&B on her new song, “Love Life”. The tune generates serious heat through Navy’s effortless, comforting voice, loungey grooves, and delicate beats. It’s paired with an incredible video highlighting the beauty of both the music and the Dominican landscape.

Dutch indie rockers Banji are sick and tired of narcissistic people, fakers, and showboats. “Chatterbox” is a takedown of the know-it-alls, the braggarts, and the bloviators. With a pounding beat and hyperintensity, Banji eviscerate those annoying people who never ask about you, but just broadcast about themselves 24/7. You aren’t their friend; you are their audience. If you know anyone like this and don’t know how to tell them, play “Chatterbox” for them.

Canada’s Deanna Petcoff is an indie rocker with an anthemic sound and a sharp tongue as she tells her lover that they are “Devastatingly Mediocre”. Petcoff’s music is confessional and personal, and it hits with a powerful rock punch. Her debut album, To Hell With You, I Love You, releases on 8 April via Royal Mountain Records and focuses on the up and downs of relationships. “Devastatingly Mediocre” is an impressive statement of intent as her music gets you right in the gut.

New York City’s Rebounder build upon the city’s pop/rock sounds of the 2000s with influences from groups like the Strokes and Vampire Weekend. “Premium Fantasy” is their uber-catchy new single with a memorable chorus reflecting upon onscreen fantasy as seen in TV, movies, and games and how it never happens in real life. Real-life is dissatisfying because consumerism has built mountains of desire that can never be fulfilled. The narrator prefers a “Premium Fantasy” that actually lives up to your dreams.

Neo-funk’s Farees has a new LP, Galactic Africa, coming out on 3 June, and he’s teasing it with “Mercury / Orgullosamente”. The Afrobeats artist creates a propulsive track full of rhythmic complexity, almost recalling footwork’s in some of its moments. It attacks cultural imperialism and appropriations: “Everybody wanna dance like Africans / Be tough be cool like Africans / Sing and shout and play like Africans / Smooth like Africans / Tryna look like Africans, talk like Africans, walk like Africans / But you’ll never be real like Africans / Now hit the drum like Africans.”

Argentine superstar TINI teams with another South American luminary in Colombian Beéle for the charming “Fantasi”. It’s genuinely romantic as two strangers from different places fall in love, and it’s set in the lush environs of Iguazu Falls in Argentina. Tropical textures and dembow rhythms drive the track alongside its hook-filled verses and choruses.

Hear these songs on the PM Picks Spotify playlist.

Follow the curator, Editor-in-Chief Sarah Zupko on Twitter at @PopSarah.