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This Week in Music: Charli XCX feat. Troye Sivan, Halsey, Lil Baby and Gunna

Each week, we share a playlist with the songs and artists who are making headlines

Listen to this week’s YouTube Music Playlist here.

Halsey, “Without Me”
Sounds like:A textbook diss for a toxic ex
Perfect for:Establishing your romantic boundaries and your self-worth
Last year, with Hopeless Fountain Kingdom, Halsey gave us a script-flipping take on Romeo & Juliet — and she’s still all about tortured romance on her first solo single since then. “Put you right back on your feet/Just so you could take advantage of me,” she sings on this cool club-pop kiss-off to a toxic ex. In a statement, she said simply, “This record is about understanding your worth.”

Sharon Van Etten, “Comeback Kid”
Sounds like:A dramatic show-stopper straight out of Twin Peaks: The Return
Perfect for:Defying everyone’s expectations
Singer-songwriter Sharon Van Etten wants you to call it a comeback on her first single from Remind Me Tomorrow, her upcoming album. It’s her first full-length in four years, and her life has been full of new developments: She went back to school to study psychology, became a mother and appeared in David Lynch’sTwin Peakssequel. With that much going on, it was time for a sonic makeover and on “Comeback Kid,” Van Etten trades in her guitars for goth synths and a pop sheen.

The Beatles, “Back in the U.S.S.R. (Take 5)”
Sounds like:Four lads having a bit of legendary studio fun
Perfect for:Reminding yourself why the Beatles are the G.O.A.T.
On November 9th, the Beatles will celebrate 50 years of the White Album with a seven-disc deluxe edition that’s full of revelatory demos and alternate takes of their most revolutionary album. To tease the massive set, they’ve released three different versions of “Back in the U.S.S.R,” including “Take 5,” a deliciously rough instrumental-only version of the song, where each member’s musicianship gets time to shine.

Charli XCX feat. Troye Sivan, “1999”
Sounds like:We need these two to remix Britney Spears’ earliest hits ASAP
Perfect for:Posting a #tbt polaroid of that time you dressed up like Neo for Halloween
Charli XCX and Troye Sivan were still in grade school in the year of Britney Spears and The Matrix, but 1999 had a lasting effect on both of them. You can hear touches of that era’s bubblegum-pop turned on its head in the music they’ve each made, and their new collaboration makes it official. It’s a carefree love letter to pre-millennial youth and Jonathan Taylor Thomas’ dreamy eyes.

Lil Baby and Gunna, “Deep End”
Sounds like:A reminder of why Atlanta is rap’s capital
Perfect for:A bit of sad, mid-party self-reflection
Atlanta’s Lil Baby and Gunna are a match made in trap heaven on their collaborative mixtape Drip Harder. Lil Baby hails from Quality Control, the same label that launched Migos and Lil Yachty, while Gunna is one of Young Thug’s proteges; on the mixtape, their individual spins on the Atlanta rap boom come together for a breezy romp through the genre’s biggest trends. Lil Baby’s solo moment “Deep End” mixes drug-addled neuroses with simmering trap drills for a quick and easy schooling in emo-rap excellence.

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