Little Simz finally enters the charts, artists fights to keep their spot

Little Simz finally enters the charts, artists fights to keep their spot

Brighid Bandel, Music Director

“KCSU’s Weekly Gems Countdown” is written by the KCSU Music Directors and describes the top artists that your local 90.5 FM DJs are playing this week! This article is posted weekly on Sundays and discussed on their show “KCSU Weekly Gem Countdown” which airs every Monday from 11-noon. During the show, you can learn more about each musician or band before tuning in to the top 10 countdowns on Monday from 11-noon, in which the music directors present to you the latest songs topping the charts and breaking down each song’s sound and feel.

*=brand new to the charts this week!

1.Backseat Lovers – alt/indie – (12 spins of “Growing/Dying” off of the 2022 album, “Waiting to Spill”) The Backseat Lovers have been on our charts for the past 4 weeks! They are from Heber City, Sandy and Ogden, Utah and the members include Jonas Swanson, Joshua Harmon, KJ Ward and Juice Welch. The band gained attention when their song “Kilby Girl” became popular.

“Growing/Dying” was the first single off their new album “Waiting to Spill.” According to the band in an interview with Melodic Magazine, “‘When We Were Friends’ was our first attempt at making an album, and it was essentially recording one song, selling some t-shirts at a show the next month, and being able to record another song. Upon finishing it, we were quickly filled with a strong desire to make something that really flowed together, with each song intentionally placed, creating a cohesion that spans the whole record. Overall though, ‘Waiting to Spill’ really feels like a continuation, the next chapter of our lives.”


2. 100 gecs – electronic – (10 spins of “Torture Me (ft. Skrillex)” off of the 2023 EP “Snake Eyes”) 100 gecs is a viral duo that consists of Dylan Brady and Laura Les. Their music was so different that the genre hyperpop was created to explain their own music. With a 157 BPM, the track has the only feature on the EP and really closes up the short list of songs nicely.



3. Paramore – alt/indie – (9 spins of “C’est Comme Ca” off of the 2023 album, “This is Why”) Paramore is another household name on our charts this week. Consisting of Hayley Williams, Taylor York and Josh Farro, the band became a smash hit during the revival of pop punk in the early 2000s. The band took a a hiatus after their 2017 record, “After Laughter,” but recently came back in late 2022 to drop their first single off their new album, “This is Why.”

“C’est Comme Ca,” meaning “it is what it is,” was the third single the band released. On Genius, Paramore explains that “the song takes direct influence from Talking Heads’ new wave and post-punk sound. For the verses, Williams was inspired by bands Dry Cleaning and Yard Act to adopt a spoken-singing style, also known as Sprechgesang.”


4. *Little Simz – hip hop/rap – (9 spins of “Gorilla” off of the 2023 album, “NO THANK YOU”) Simbiatu “Simbi” Abisola Abiola Ajikawo is a British singer, songwriter, rapper and actress. Simz is bringing a new light to rap – Bristish rap, in specific – with her new flow and unique beats. According to her Spotify, “Hailed as an instant classic, it rocketed Simz from cult hero to international superstar overnight, landing at No. 4 in the UK Official Albums Chart, earning her four BRIT nominations, with nods for Artist of the Year, Mastercard Album of the Year, Hip Hop/Grime/Rap Act and Best New Artist, and making her the first female to sell out three headline shows at the legendary Brixton Academy.”

“Gorilla” is the second track on the album, and the most popular not only here at the station, but on Spotify.


5. SZA – r&b – (8 spins of “Good Days” off of the 2022 album, “SOS”) SZA, real name being Solána Imani Rowe, is one of the most influential R&B singers right now. SZA’s Spotify explains that she “has set herself apart with a vulnerable and casually poetic songwriting style and a voice conveying a multitude of emotions with subtle twists and turns. She established herself with a trio of spaced-out EPs and collaborations with the likes of Kendrick Lamar, Nicki Minaj and Rihanna. She continued her ascent with Ctrl (2017), a Top Ten album that resulted in five Grammy nominations, including Best New Artist.”

“Good Days,” was initially released in 2020, and personally was the light for me during the pandemic. It became a huge hit and single for SZA and was later put on her third studio album, “SOS.”


6. Surf Curse – indie surf rock – (7 spins of “Cathy” off of the 2022 album, “Magic Hour”) Surf Curse is an indie rock band from Nevada that consists of Nick Rattigan, Jacob Rubeck, Henry Dillon and Noah Kholl – the band formed in 2013 to begin the new wave of indie surf rock music we did not know we were missing.

“Cathy” is a love song – it’s about feeling so lucky to be with someone, it feels like an honor to be able to say you love them, almost too good to be true.


7. Afternoon Bike Ride – alt/indie – (5 spins of “Summertime” off of the 2022 album, “Glossover”) Afternoon Bike Ride is a recent personal favorite discovery of mine. Their music is reminiscent of those spring Sundays that begin to feel like summer and you spend all day in the cool sun. The band consists of Lia, David and Éloi, and they describe their music as an audio diary. “Summertime” is the third track off their new album, “Glossover,” and truly makes you feel like you are running around your hometown on a hot July night.


8. Weyes Blood – alt/indie – (5 spins of “Hearts Aglow” off of the 2022 album, “And In The Darkness, Hearts Aglow”) Weyes Blood is a rising alternative singer that is known for her powerful ballets that make you transcend in time and get lost in the music. Even though she is just now getting mainstream attention, Blood has been making music since 2007!

Blood’s newest record, “And In The Darkness, Hearts Aglow” is one of the most aesthetically pleasing albums that came out in 2022 – with the visuals reminiscing Lana Del Rey mixed with a motel neon night in Vegas. In “Hearts Aglow,” a night out with a beloved is enough to stave off the creeping dread of a world in collapse, at least temporarily.


9. Kenny Beats – hip hop/rap – (5 spins of “So They Say” off of the 2022 album, “LOUIE”) Kenny Beats is a notorious producer in the music world who finally made his own album this year. According to GQ, “he’s an in-demand, cross-genre producer, a gifted multi-instrumentalist, and as of a few weeks ago, a critically-acclaimed solo artist with a debut album ‘LOUIE’ that’s a complex tribute to his father.”



10. Robot Tennis Club (local) – alt/indie – (4 spins of “Goatman” off of the 2022 album, “If These Walls Could Talk, You Wouldn’t Listen”) Robot Tennis Club is a CSU student band that just released their debut album! Nina Dorighi and Laura Steadman met in their sophomore year of high school and put together the band after their music teacher told them to start one. Later, when Nina came to CSU, they added in Eli Schulz, finishing the trio. On their website, the trio explains “Laura had been writing songs since middle school, aspiring to the idea that someday they could help her connect with people. Having never written songs before, Nina stepped right up to the plate with lyrics, melodies and guitar parts that she would sing so that Laura could play.”

“Goatman” is the fourth track off the debut album and describes the anger of someone from the past taking something from you but not realizing how much they hurt you.

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