The best new tracks, picked by our staff

Rated by The Face: a playlist featuring Dua Lipa, sim0ne, Ken Carson and Meekz.

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Ken Carson – Overseas

A confession: when I first checked out the roster on Playboi Carti’s Opium label, my first impression was that I was just listening to a bunch of unimaginative Carti clones. But my mind was changed by Ken Carson’s 2023 impressive album A Great Chaos, on which the Atlanta artist penned a couple of infectious anthems and dragged the scuzzy rage rap sound in new directions. Carson doesn’t break new ground lyrically on Overseas (it’s about sex and shopping), but his voice soars over dirty, psychedelic synths in a way which feels strangely epic. The Opium movement still has some gas in the tank. DR

Meekz – Mini Me’s

UK rap is a crowded market. But when masked Mancunian rapper Meekz drops, fans of the scene tend to take notice. Hi haters, back from a hiatus,” Meekz raps on his first release since December – which feels like aeons in the current era of relentless content. On Mini Me’s, Meekz takes the opportunity to vent about the sorry state of the music biz and copycat rappers (“Industry’s fucked, only real ones givin’ me love… I see em’ runnin’ with my style and they ain’t give me a cut”). You can look forward to more angry bars on Meekz mixtape Tru, which drops next month. DR

Shaybo – Get It

After a brief hiatus, Shaybo is back and ready to reclaim her title as the Queen of the South”. And new track Get It pulls no punches when it comes to reasserting her status: They know that I’m the queen I conquer /​I’m living like a real rockstar /​Chat shit Ima block your number”. With production by Legundary Beatz, the Nigerian duo behind Wizkid’s Essence, the track has a slightly nostalgic old-school vibe, pairing a bouncy, boom bap-esque beat with the rapper’s razor-sharp flow. OP

Dua Lipa – Illusion

There are two things that Dua Lipa loves: a good holiday and a good dance track. She must have had the time of her life, then, on set for the music video for new single Illusion, which was filmed at the Piscina Municipal de Montjuïc in Barcelona (the same location used for Kylie’s genuinely iconic Slow video), complete with synchronised swimmers and a view of the Sagrada Familia. As for the song, it’s the classic Dua formula, a proper party girl track with a solid house beat and anthemic synths. One for the Pyramid stage… OP

sim0ne — work it

This is a slammer from rising Scottish DJ and producer sim0ne (who also came fifth place in the season 11 of Britain’s Next Top Model, wouldn’t you know?). work it has all the makings of a raunchy club smash, bringing trance and techno together to create pure adrenaline. We can’t wait to hear it playing from the biggest speakers possible. JW

Say Lou Lou — Dust

Say Lou Lou are back with new music after a five year hiatus. Dust feels like the appropriate song to symbolise their return: it has an pleasant retro pop vibe that’s complemented by smooth vocals that call Kylie Minogue to mind, as the twins sing about the perils of loneliness, computer screens and when you can’t even recognise the person you were once in love with. Oof. JW

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