“Pour y croire, il faudrait tout oublier.”

“Tout oublier” by Angèle featuring Roméo Elvis | For the past few weeks or so I’ve been on a Belgian radio phase again, which meant rediscovering the quirks of their streams while I’m out and about. As Angèle is Belgian, it’s inevitable this song of hers is on high rotation, although this song has been more prominent than most, as it turns out, making her cross over to actual France for some performances. It is a suitably low-key affair: doesn’t quite push it too far, which I like. (Interesting fact: the featured rapper is her brother. Rapport right there.) Well, it did take me three weeks or so for this song to really plant itself, which goes to show it will take a while for some songs to make it, and we also like it that way. Maybe we’ll hear her more soon? In English? You know how these things go… [NB]


“No voy a perder ni un minuto en volver a pensarte.”

“Malamente” by Rosalía | Still on the “see how late I am” track, well… well, to be fair, considering my listening habits (which, if you’ll put it one way, is too white) I won’t really cross paths with Rosalía unless I really tried, which, in this case, is that James Blake record I reviewed a couple of weeks back. But then, I really first heard her just a few weeks prior, because I have shifted to the European stations and they have “Malamente” on gentle rotation (because, while the album this came out of dropped just last November, this song has been poking around since May or whereabouts). So, now, I’m thinking about how much she contributed to “Barefoot in the Park” and how we tend to forget how sultry Spanish sounds, especially in the right circumstances. But then, this is just me catching up. [NB]

“What I’ve got to give is not enough.”

“Saviour” by George Ezra featuring First Aid Kit | Let me telegraph a few things. I have a couple of long reads planned for the blog, but I’m not sure if I’ll ever get around to writing them, because, as you probably know, (if you bothered to,) I’ve been busy lately. Actually, I forgot to schedule a song for today, so here’s one that’s sort of at the center of one of those planned essays. It’s a song I should’ve known about, considering George Ezra is at my peripheral and First Aid Kit are one of my favorites, but again, I’ve been busy to the point that I only realized this collaboration happened almost a year after it was released, with his recent album Staying at Tamara’s. Sure, they do harmonies mostly (which is one of the things they do best) and don’t really have a solo part, but of course they do well. But this song has some pretty killer lines that tend to just hit you at unknown points. So, yeah, I’m telegraphing a few things. [NB]

“It’s not too late for us to turn it around.”

“U-Bahn (It’s Not Too Late For Us)” by Jonathan Jeremiah | Again, a reminder to myself: Jonathan Jeremiah is British. He’s British, but the vagaries of music charts means he’s a big artist on the Dutch side of Belgium. The first time I wrote about him, four years ago, I heard him on a radio station based in Brussels; same thing for this one, a newer release, from last year’s album Good Day. It’s a nice channeling of that elegiac orchestral sound pop music gravitated towards in the 60s and 70s. Imagine hearing this for the first time, like I did, on an empty bus heading towards the city, feeling a bit uncertain about what lies ahead. Not that I can turn back like this song suggests – I was going to a meeting – but, you know, it all snaps into place. And then the stream buffers and you get annoyed. [NB]

“I might never sleep at all.”

“Closetowhy” by Parcels | Away from the inbox again, because I couldn’t quite get this song out of my head, if I’m being honest. And this isn’t a complex songs by any means; you can argue it’s a bit repetitive, or perhaps I’m saying this because the album version extends for longer than you’d expect. But this track – from Berlin band Parcels – is really a pretty little thing, and one you wouldn’t notice unless you really pay attention. It’s the sort that almost gets away with it until you deliberate get out of the way to pick it up, perhaps with two fingers and a slightly stern tone. And then you realize you’re really just fond of the song and so you play it again, and then you listen to the album, and then you’re in a rabbit hole… [NB]