Massive hits are a blessing and a curse for the artists behind them. Sure, a ubiquitous song can provide plenty of rewards, but a megahit is also a difficult act to follow—and some artists spend their entire careers trying to live up to one big song’s success. Canada’s Carly Rae Jepsen might be forever remembered for 2011 worldwide smash “Call Me Maybe.” New Zealand’s Lorde is similarly closely tied to her 2013 international chart-topper “Royals.” This week, both artists have new tracks they hope will eclipse their signature songs.
Carly Rae Jepsen
“Cut to the Feeling”
This buoyant slice of summery pop is just what the world needs in the wake of the heartbreak and tragedy of the Manchester bombing that resulted in 22 deaths at Ariana Grande’s May 22 concert. With its euphoric soaring chorus and its sample of Madonna’s “Lucky Star,” the song expresses just the right amount of what one critic called “poptimism” for a world in desperate need of some uplifting emotion.
Carly is clearly feeling inspired as she works on material for her next album. The 31-year-old star tweeted that after writing 50 songs she holidayed in Italy and joked that she may never return.
She writes something like 50 tunes for her next album, takes a break in Italy and- plot twist.... never comes back ✌ pic.twitter.com/fyNixrAOTY
— Carly Rae Jepsen (@carlyraejepsen) May 24, 2017
“Green Light” – Chromeo remix
Lorde is busy working on a followup album to her acclaimed Pure Heroine release of 2013. Her first single from the new album gets a funkified remix by Chromeo, the Canadian electronic duo made up of David Macklovitch and Patrick Gemayel. “The song is about a heartbreak,” says Lorde. “It’s very different and kinda unexpected. It’s complex and funny and sad and joyous and it’ll make you DANCE.”
Meanwhile, Lorde joined the chorus of messages expressing grief over the bombing, tweeting her love to Manchester and Ariana Grande.
every musician feels sick & responsible tonight—shows should be safe for you. truly a worst nightmare. sending love to manchester & ari
— Lorde (@lorde) May 23, 2017
Hello music columnist Nicholas Jennings surveys the pop landscape each week to find the most dynamic tracks to add to your playlist.