Billie Eilish, I Beg to Differ: There's Always Time to Die


Oh, why not: Billie Eilish, “No Time to Die”: Another day, another string-forward ballad meant to accompany the overly long opening credits to another James Bond movie! This time around, Billie Eilish is doing her whisper-vocals on a song that is largely boring, but also, at this current time, I’d take “boring” over anything else, just to have a nice reprieve from the chaos that is the news cycle right now. So, with that in mind, I am no longer a hater and will listen to this song with pleasure or something approaching it. Hurray. —Megan Reynolds

It’s cute, fine, whatever: Halsey, “929” – I think it is very strange—and potentially, extremely egotistical—to release a music video named after the time and date of your birth, on your 29th birthday, celebrating yourself, but sometimes symbology is charming? Halsey’s “929” music video features private footage of young Ashley throughout her three decades, a real treat for her diehard fans, and a look into a side of the singer that only exists off stage. Her stans will cry; the rest of us will be moved to call our parents. That’s a win-win. —Maria Sherman

Maren Morris has entered the resistance: Maren Morris, “Better Than We Found It” – I believe it was Jamie Foxx in the film Dreamgirls who said message songs don’t sell records. Whoever wrote that line was probably looking into the future at this number from Morris, which wants the listener to know that the responsibility for social change is on the individual (and babies?) and not on a few very specific groups that actively work to uphold white supremacy. But the cameo from her son Hayes in the video was nice. —Shannon Melero

Only because he’s hot to me: Shawn Mendes, “Wonder”: What I have gleaned from this new song by Mr. Camila Cabello is that being in a relationship with her is like riding a train through the set of The Polar Express and ending up in Fern Gully. Is that right? Unfortunately, the song isn’t great, but I’ll let it slide because other Shawn Mendes songs, like “There’s Nothing Holding Me Back,” work for me because I think he’s hot. Not particularly in this video, but I have a vague memory of him being drenched in water at a MTV awards show, and that is a nice thing to hold onto. This song? Eh. —MR

Y: Nothing, “Bernie Sanders” – While it feels a bit futile, now, to think about a reality where Bernie Sanders could’ve been some kind of salvation for this country, it’s impossible not to consider what could’ve been. But Philly shoegaze greats Nothing aren’t asking for a lifeline on “Bernie Sanders,” their track named after the politician. Instead, they’re lost—in a wall of noise, in a sprawl of synth—searching for what optimism once felt like. It’s also one of their more pop-y songs, perhaps alluding to some remaining ounce of hope in what otherwise feels like oversaturated devastation. And it’s a reminder to vote, so, uh, go do that. —MS

Duh: Suzie True, “Bailey” – Thank god for Southern California sunshine, because without it, charming indie pop-punk like Suzie True might’ve gone extinct. “Bailey” is a deviation from everyday hell, a tune stuffed to the brim with youthful abandon and all the rush of a high school crush. Upon first listen, it reads like a love song for a best friend, and I certainly hope that is the case. (If not, don’t tell me. I need this.) For fans of Diet Cig, undoubtedly, but also, like, Josie and the Pussycats. —MS

A retroactive Y: Neneh Cherry, “I’ve Got You Under My Skin (Blacksmith Brixton Bass Version)” – This is a newly released cut of a 30-year-old video from the Red Hot + Blue compilation done as an AIDS benefit. The album featured artists reinterpreting Cole Porter tunes, though as you can hear in this one, a loose interpretation was all that was needed. I love a Brixton remix, though—the style tended to keep things chill while beefing up the bass with a nice swing (see also these Salt-n-Pepa and Mary J. Blige remixes). —Rich Juzwiak

Y: Romy, “Lifetime” – The solo debut from xx singer Romy Madley Croft zooms back to the days when pop-rave got airplay even in the United States. This sounds like euphoria and freedom. —RJ

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