Saweetie, "Nani"

Saweetie's latest single is a blast of sing-songy, candy-coated pop that sounds tailor-made for summer. "Two shows, one night, what's that? A hundred-plus," she boasts on the verse, but otherwise it's a track more about leisurely strutting one's stuff than hustling. "I'm bougie, moody, tanning in my Louis," she raps. "It's a privilege just to say you knew me."


John Cale, "Shark-Shark"

Eighty-two years old and still making bops like this? May we all be so blessed. Droning guitars, a hypnotic melody, percussion that sounds like someone drumming on a trash can — this single from his forthcoming album "Poptical Illusion" is classic John Cale.


Little Feat, "Why People Like That"

Little Feat, the Los Angeles band whose blues-rock-country-funk hybrid was Americana long before the category was named, takes a break from songwriting on its new album, "Sam's Place." It's a collection of blues covers sung by its percussionist, Sam Clayton. The band dug out deep cuts like "Why Are People Like That" by the Louisiana swamp-rock songwriter Bobby Charles. The band lightens up Charles' version, summoning a New Orleans strut, underpinned by Bill Payne's two-fisted piano. But Charles' bitter complaint about greed is still all too relevant: "They take your house and your home/They take the flesh from your bones," Clayton growls. "Why people like that?"

JON PARELES, New York Times

Milton Nascimento and Esperanza Spalding, "Outubro"

The ever-surprising bassist and singer persuaded the mystical and ingeniously tuneful Brazilian songwriter Nascimento, 81, to collaborate on a full album due in August. Its preview single is "Outubro" ("October"), a song that Nascimento originally wrote and recorded in the 1960s. Its asymmetrical melody carries lyrics that reflect on solitude, mortality and the possibility of joy. Nascimento no longer has the pure, otherworldly vocal tone of his youth, but Spalding bolsters him, singing in Portuguese alongside him and probing the harmonies with springy bass lines. Near the end, she comes up with a leaping, scat-singing line that he eventually joins, still enjoying what his composition can inspire.

JON PARELES, New York Times


Carly Pearce, "Fault Line"

There's a throwback charm to much of the music made by Carly Pearce, a millennial country star with a flair for good, old-fashioned craftsmanship. I hear a little Loretta Lynn in this fiery and clever ditty about a relationship on the rocks: "We should probably go and find a 'For Sale' sign," she sings, "'Cause we're livin' on a fault line, and the fault is always mine."



Rapsody featuring Erykah Badu, "3:AM"

Enough about breakups, though: Let's end on this swooning, openhearted love song from the North Carolina rapper Rapsody's latest album, "Please Don't Cry." Featuring a buttery hook from Erykah Badu, Rapsody expresses devotion to her partner with a winning mix of vulnerability and wit. "Every day you make me feel like a princess," she raps before clarifying, "Tiana, the Black one at Disney."


New releases

Crowded House, "Gravity Stairs"

Ben Platt, "Honeymind"

Maya Hawke, "Chaos Angel"

Bat for Lashes, "The Dream of Delphi"