Happy Monday! It’s a slightly delayed edition of Weekend Replay today, but I couldn’t let the week pass without highlighting these three standout releases.
“Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” – Backstreet Boys
When a band like the Backstreet Boys releases new music 25 years after their creation, it could come off as a desperate attempt to stay relevant—but only for those who haven’t been paying attention. With a newly extended Las Vegas residency, a short touring stint coming this summer, and a new album hinted to be released later in the year, this band hasn’t stopped. “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” is everything fans love about the Backstreet Boys: the sincerity of the lyrics is an ’00s boy band hallmark, but the falsetto tones and contemporary beats propel it into 2018.
“Never Sure” – Mayday Parade
It’s been 5 years since Mayday Parade released an album, and over 10 years since the success of their first studio album, A Lesson In Romantics. But the pop punk band is poised to release their sixth album, Sunnyland, mid-June. Where “Piece of Your Heart,” the first single off of Sunnyland, leaned close to adult contemporary, “Never Sure” is more guitar-driven, but hardly lacking in feeling. One of Mayday Parade’s greatest strengths has always been packing emotion and all its nuances into the simplest of lyrical phrases, and “Never Sure” is no exception. It’s pop punk adapted for the post-pop punk era, making sure it won’t be forgotten.
“Wanderlust” – James Bay
When James Bay‘s “Let It Go” came out back in 2014, it was an immediate radio success and made him a name in indie pop. Now, four years later, he’s ditched the hat and long hair and embraced a variety of new sounds for his newest album, Electric Light. Cautiously upbeat, “Wanderlust” is an unexpected standout, playing with catchy synth-influenced guitar riffs.