From the triumphant return of pop’s biggest warbler to the first taster of the new The Hunger Games soundtrack, here’s a look at five of the best tracks to have been unveiled over the past seven days.
Natasha Khan & Jon Hopkins – “Garden’s Heart”
Accompanied by a stunning fantastical promo starring Saoirse Ronan, “Garden’s Heart” sees the artist also known as Bat For Lashes team up with electronic producer Jon Hopkins for a beautifully sparse blend of low-slung bass-lines and brooding melodies which proves that less is sometimes more.
Celine Dion – “Loved Me Back To Life”
A contender for most surprising pop comeback of 2013, Celine Dion ditches her usual MOR power ballad leanings for a contemporary mix of emphatic R&B beats, stuttering vocal loops and dramatic synth-strings. Topped off with a skyscraping chorus and a wailing hair metal guitar solo, the Sia-penned “Loved Me Back To Life” could well give the Canadian her first genuine hit in over a decade.
Sleigh Bells – “Bitter Rivals”
Flitting between seductive minimalistic R&B and the kind of crunching noise-pop that defined their first two albums, Sleigh Bells return with a schizophrenic but hugely enjoyable affair which suggests New York’s most brash and hyperactive duo might just be slightly mellowing.
M.I.A. – “Come Walk With Me”
Lulling listeners into a false sense of security with a simple guitar riff and a pop melody that could almost be described as Disney Channel-esque, “Come Walk With Me” then explodes into a tetchy fusion of dancehall beats, ravey synths and an insane array of samples including the Macbook volume sound and an arcade game punch-up. No one does organised chaos quite like M.I.A.
Coldplay – “Atlas”
Recorded especially for the second big-screen adventure of Katniss Everdeen, Coldplay’s first cinematic offering initially begins as a melancholic piano-led ballad before slowly building up to a suitably epic slice of shimmering indie-rock which could have been lifted from their 2000 debut, Parachutes.