"Have you ever had that moment when you're updating your status, and you realize that every status update is just a variation on a single request: "would someone please acknowledge me?" - Marc Maron.

These are our favourite songs from the past week:


5. DJ Slugo - 'Ghetto'

I'm not sure what to say about this song because it is so nice. The beat and instrumentals, produced by Nicolas Jaar, are sublime; drum sounds rattle around and pulse and bump the track onwards, ethereal chords like the warm breath of heartfelt empathy on the necks of the hopeless, the people and areas that vocalist DJ Slugo aka Thomas Kendricks describes throughout the track. Each description follows with "I am ghetto."

Later in the track, however, the beat becomes less fragmented, the synth grows, a fuzzy melody becomes legible in the gentle shadows of the track. DJ Slugo changes tack, too, speaking not of the problems faced, but of the problems overcome:

From the sounds of guns in the street turned into the beat in my head, tracks laid, bills paid, children graduating to become college students, the truth is, God saw fit to save me. I am now hope.

It was made "in light of recent events" – events that could, can, and very much do make people feel hopeless. DJ Slugo wants people to remember that it's possible not just to live through things like this, but to win, to succeed, to elevate yourself above and beyond your background and become an inspiration.



4. Arca - 'Hips Don't Lie' (Shakira cover)

Fractured frenetic beats pulse throughout this mad cover of 'Hips Don't Lie' by Shakira. Who's done this twisted version? Arca, of course. Vocals, by whom we don't know - maybe they're the originals…? - seem lost in the storm of abrasive synths and noises that seem to be the inner workings and whirrings of machines that don't yet exist, unreal soundtracks to dances of cultures that existed on earth but only in alternate realities. It's a violent onslaught of sound, an exuberant and hallucinatory pop contortion.



3. Earl Sweatshirt and Lil Herb - 'Knucklehead'

Slowly but surely, Chicago-based rapper Lil Herb is making a name for himself. He was featured on the first track of Common's new album Nobody's Smiling, and today he's shared a new collaboration with Earl Sweatshirt titled 'Knucklehead'. The song was produced by Sweatshirt himself and shows off his impeccable production skills once again while keeping Herb's distinct style of rapping in the forefront. It's a part of Red Bull's '20 before 15' series.



2. Purity Ring - 'Push Pull'

This is like a swamp of sadness this track. That said, it's also beautiful. It's by Purity Ring and it's called 'Push Pull'. There's this modulated bass synth rumbling throughout building an ominous edifice that houses Megan's vocals, poetic lyrics (check 'em) sung with clarity and seeming kindheartedness, catching and lightly layered in the chorus, harmonising with satisfying richness later on. All the while, twinkling, stuttering sounds appear overhead, lighting up as if stars gently rocked to the rhythm of the track, all underpinned with a beat pockmarked with thudding kicks and punctuated with the occasional exclamation mark of a snare crashing through the half-light. Stunning, in a word.



1. HOLYCHILD - 'Running Behind'

Another brilliant pop song from HOLYCHILD. Holy, hell.