Our EIC and arts editor are back at it again
Aly Murphy — Arts editor
When no one picked up our weekly new music column for this week, I was admittedly a little intimidated. I don’t always keep the best track of new releases: I tend to find things I like and then listen to them on repeat for months on end.
Then Taylor Swift announced yet another surprise single release.
She picked a great week to do it.
As the Fulc’s resident Swiftie, I paired up once more with our editor-in-chief Charley Dutil to take a blast to the past with this week’s selected hits.
Sorry, Charley, in advance.
Single of the Week: “You All Over Me” by Taylor Swift (feat. Maren Morris)
Aly – 3/5
I’m really, really excited for Tay’s Fearless re-record, which drops on April 9. So when I heard she was prematurely releasing one of her “from the vault” songs, a collaboration with country legend Maren Morris, I was admittedly pretty stoked.
This song, for me, is just ok. The production is solid, but the lyrics are as cheesy as ever. Commendably, the track does indeed take us right back into Swift’s Fearless sound and style: there’s jangly guitar, adolescent metaphors, and a killer hook. You can hear Aaron Dessner’s producing influence, too — he’s done a great job mixing the vocals to make Swift and Morris sound clean and in sync.
But the song is lackluster after nearly a year of Swift’s folklore era. I found myself missing, in this track, the evocative storytelling skills Swift’s so mastered over the course of her more recent albums. This song is fine, but it’s pretty forgettable.
Charley – 0/5
The question here: from what song did Taylor Swift and Maren Morris (who?) lift the repeating guitar riff? The Pixies’ “Where is My Mind” or the Smashing Pumpkins’ “Today?” Your guess is just as good as mine.
I’m not even going to get into the lyrics.
Album of the Week: The Bitter Truth by Evanescence
Aly – 3/5
Whoa. 2003 called and they want their band back.
Haha. Just kidding.
But wow, Evanescence has not aged at ALL. Their new release is that same brooding, haunting soprano we came to know and love on tracks like “Bring Me To Life” and “My Immortal” from the band’s first smash album, Fallen.
“Yeah Right” shows a little stylistic growth, with a more prominent percussion line and a more 2020s style, for lack of a better term. Most of this album, though, seems to pick up right where the band left off in 2006 with their album The Open Door.
Evanescence has barely changed: for die-hard fans, that’ll be an exciting treat, but for me, a middle-school-aged angst machine turned slightly-more-mature university student, the stagnation in style and lyricism feels a little odd.
Charley — 1/5
I was never an Evanescence fan, but, you know, I thought “Bring Me To Life” was a banger.
But The Bitter Truth is that this album is boring. It lacks any semblance of a single and it is repetitive as hell. The vocals are depressing, the guitars are in drop D, and it’s monotone.
There are a couple of nice guitar tones, but that’s about it, honestly.
It’s not for me.
New discovery: Forever Halloween by The Maine
Aly – 5/5
This album’s artwork alone may remind you of past summers spent at Warped Tour, with its Twenty One Pilots-esque skulls and Hot Topic font.
But this album is so, so good.
The Maine blends styles effortlessly, leaning into the occasional acoustic lament when the lyrics call for it. “Take What You Can Carry,” a jaunty first track, gives way to the more mellow “Birthday in Los Angeles” and regretful “These Four Words.”
The album, released in 2013, has aged beautifully, not at all sounding like a product of its pop-punk context. This band was a joy to discover, and I look forward to doing so further in the coming weeks.
New discovery: “Drinking in L.A.” by Bran Van 3000
Charley — 5/5
I was scrolling through my feed on TikTok last week, like a real GenZ’er, when I came across this song, and I was like, “damn, this fucking slaps.”
So, I looked it up on Spotify and gave it a listen, and it was amazing. The vibes it gave off were immaculate. The chorus is so catchy, as I’m writing this, all I can think about is “What the hell am I doing drinking in L.A./At twenty six?”.
So, being me and curious as fuck, I decided to look up everything about Bran Van 3000. This is when I sadly realized that they have never actually written anything good since. But I did find some interesting things: for example, they don’t have a set genre and all their songs are super different from each other. They’re also from Montreal, and refer to themselves as a music collective rather than a band – probably the most Montreal thing I’ve ever heard.
So yeah, credits to TikTok for giving me a song that I can vibe to while in the shower. Thanks.