New Music Friday | The best releases out on July 21

New Jeans press photo
The latest EP from NewJeans, Get Up, is on our shortlist of the best releases out on July 21. ADOR/Courtesy of the artist

NewJeans has only been putting out music for about a year, but is already taking a serious run at K-pop domination, partly by subverting the genre’s conventions. On the group’s second EP, Get Up, the songs do lean heavily into cute, sugary sweet dance pop, but leave the edges a bit more ragged with a warmer, more genuine sound. On this week’s show, we talk about how the group pulls it off, with NPR Music editors Hazel Cills and Sheldon Pearce, WXPN‘s John Morrison and host Robin Hilton.

We’ve also got a beautifully bucolic instrumental album from Andrew Bird, a sometimes terrifying but utterly captivating album from Fatboi Sharif and Steel Tipped Dove, a newly unearthed recording of Nina Simone performing at the Newport Jazz festival in 1966 and, oh yeah, that super-stacked Barbie soundtrack.

Featured Albums:

  1. NewJeans — Get Up
    Featured Songs: “ETA,” “Super Shy,” “ASAP”
  2. Fatboi Sharif & Steel Tipped Dove — Decay
    Featured Songs: “Designer Drugs,” “Phantasm,” “The 6th Floor,” “Dimethyltryptamine,” “Green Winged Shoulder Padding”
  3. Andrew Bird — Outside Problems
    Featured Songs: “Festivus,” “Mormon House Party,” “Mancey”
  4. Various — Barbie The Album
    Featured Songs: Dua Lipa, “Dance the Night”; Lizzo, “Pink”; Sam Smith, “Man I Am”; GAYLE, “butterflies”; Billie Eilish, “What Was I Made For”; Nicki Minaj & Ice Spice (with Aqua), “Barbie World”
  5. Nina Simone — You’ve Got to Learn
    Featured Songs: “Blues for Mama,” “Mississippi Goddamn,” “You’ve Got to Learn”

Lightning Round:

  • Blur — The Ballad of Darren
  • Lucki — s*x m*ney dr*gs (released July 14)
  • MJ Lenderman — “Rudolph” (Single)
  • Mother Tongues — Love in a Vicious Way

Other notable releases for July 21:

  • Allegra Krieger — I Keep My Feet on the Fragile Plane
  • Babyface Ray — Summer’s Mine
  • Guided By Voices — Welshpool Frillies
  • Greta Van Fleet — Starcatcher
  • Mehmet Ali Sanlıkol & Whatsnext? — Turkish Hipster: Tales From Swing To Psychedelic
  • Nils Lofgren — Mountains
  • Paris Texas — MID AIR
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