Music Staff Selection for January 2023

Don’t know what to listen to? Stanford Daily is here to help. We’ve put together a playlist of our staff’s latest performances. Hear our picks and check out our article to learn more about recommendations.

Blvck Hippie – If you feel lonely at parties (Recommended by Richard Coca)

“If You Feel Alone at Parties” feels like a time capsule of a song. Between Blvck Hippie’s melancholic lyrics and an upbeat drum pattern paired with a gentle guitar riff, this song draws heavily on nostalgia. On first listen, this song transported me back to when Stanford was fun. With lyrics that most college students will surely relate to, Blvck Hippie somehow paints the most beautiful image of someone dancing at a party, looking at their situation, feeling like they don’t know anyone at the party, and embracing that loneliness.

Topaz Jones – Broke ft. Elujay (recommended by Nick Sligh)

Beautiful, melodic, energizing music from start to finish. Elujay’s vocals sound divine at every point of the song. Topaz Jones’ lone verse shines brightly with clever, innocent and introspective wordplay. This is a song I can (and will) keep in my music rotation forever because it’s so smooth and enjoyable.

Bad Bunny – La Corriente ft. Tony Dize (recommended by Ximena Sanchez Martinez)

Bad Bunny kills. La Corriente makes me want to dance every time I hear it. Take a study break and dance to Bad Bunny! The beats and rhythm of his songs hits.

Lizzie McAlpine – In What World (recommended by Theo Baker)

This song is killing me. Every time. Lizzy is such a phenomenally talented singer and songwriter; her lyricism is striking, her voice is perfect, her instrumentation is intriguing and captivating. This – and really all of her songs – are so hard not to love. Lizzy will make you cry.

Mido and Falasol – Superstar (recommended by Kelly Wang)

Yes, this song is from a K-drama OST collection (hospital playlist). Yes, everything is in Korean. But don’t let a different language stop you from enjoying such an encouraging song. No, I don’t really understand the lyrics except “괜찮아” (gwaenchanha) which means “it’s good/good”. But I assure you, the bright guitar and upbeat beat will see you through a slower, sluggish morning. It’s one thing to hear a singer/songwriter pour his heart out to cheer you up. It’s another thing to hear these actors who play accomplished doctors tell you that everything is going to be okay. They carry the melody while jumping between well-balanced head and chest voices in such a way that you think there are a lot of people who believe in you and talk to you. Personally, this song has the power to turn down the volume of discouraging voices in my mind, and I encourage you to listen to it too.

The Beach Boys — God Only Knows (recommended by Ananya Udaygiri)

Come on everybody. One word: swoon

JID — 2007 (recommended by Nick Sly)

JID’s “The Forever Story” is still in heavy rotation, as it should be, considering it was the best hip-hop album of 2022. “2007” might be one of the best outros of the entire history of hip-hop, with a level of elite and delicate storytelling and sophistication that is virtually unmatched. In a journey that spans several decades and even more beat switches, this track is the ultimate modern-classical album finale and the ultimate statement of who JID is as an artist.

Rina Sawayama — Tunnel Vision ft. Shamir (recommended by Blyss Cleveland)

Before Rina graced the world with two flawless albums, she released a sensational EP featuring this duet, in which she and Shamir sing about distinctly contemporary issues—bottom scrolling and social media-induced anxiety—over vintage ’90s R&B music . Uniting to sing about loneliness? Absolutely brilliant.

SZA – Forgiveless ft. Ol’ Dirty Bastard (recommended by Nick Sligh)

SZA rap with ODB sample opening and closing song? Now I feel like I need a whole album with this. The performance was amazing from front to back. SZA really brings out a side we rarely see of her on this track, providing bars, tempo and energy that are absolutely infectious and captivating. A fantastic closer to SZA’s long-awaited comeback with “SOS”.

Stella Donnelly – Cold (Recommended by Sofia Gonzalez-Rodriguez)

This song was the perfect ending to Stella Donnelly’s latest album, Flood. Following the soulful—and often sad—musical journey of the ten tracks that precede it, “Cold” opens with a charming piano melody accompanied by an upbeat drum beat. Then comes the undeniable sweetness of Donnelly’s voice, which gives the song a thoughtful and heartfelt quality. Befitting the high lyrical caliber of the rest of the album, she paints vivid scenes and ends with a heartbreaking chant that never fails to stop me in my tracks: “You’re not big enough for my love.”

Editor’s Note: This article is a review and includes subjective opinions, thoughts and criticisms.

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