Aural Fixation: 7/22 (Music You Need To Know)

Sorry I’m a bit late this Monday, darlings—I’ve been off having fun in the sun shade on South Padre Island (you know how I feel about the beach), and travel really takes it out of you!

But not to fret: I’ve found some great things to share with you all this week, from new Panic! At The Disco (!) to a peek at John Mayer‘s new album. As always, feel free to read along with my comments about each song, just pop on the playlist to listen while you’re at work, or enjoy them each by themselves one by one.


— @Litzwich


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Panic! At The Disco feat. Lolo: “Miss Jackson”

Don’t worry—it’s not an OutKast cover.

Damn, is it good to have these guys back. I, for one, have always been a pretty big Panic! circumference fan. There’s just something great about their eerie spook-pop sound that really works for them, and “Miss Jackson” is no exception. There’s certainly more than a little Fall Out Boy lean to the track (the band toured with FOB frontman Patrick Stump in 2011, so it’s without a doubt friendly influence), but that doesn’t stop it from being a triumphant return for the band. “Miss Jackson” goes hard, and for me, it feels exactly like repolished Panic! should.

To listen to this week’s full playlist, click here.

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Fifth Harmony: “Me & My Girls”

A far stronger showing than their last taste of their new material, Fifth Harmony‘s “Me & My Girls” (the title track off their forthcoming album) is a lot of things “Miss Movin’ On” wasn’t: fun, young, fresh. It’s a little silly and over-the-top, sure, but that’s also part of the whole gleeful abandon of the song—the same sugary, adolescent thrill of the Queen Bey, Britney, Demi, One Direction, Bieber name drops, set to a melody born to be shouted at sleepovers. Best of all, the song doesn’t veer into territory that’s too kiddy, with a tongue-in-cheek hood drop with some dirty bass and a bridge that showcases the truly sensational harmonies these girls are capable of.

But it’s always nice to know they can put out some damn good pop, too.

To listen to this week’s full playlist, click here.

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Kings Of Leon: “Supersoaker”

I don’t imagine most people need to hear much more than “new Kings of Leon” to give this a go—their appeal is pretty widespread, and “Supersoaker” doesn’t do that injustice. As the title indicates, it’s summer-centric rock, with every bit of bounce you’d expect. The Kings have certainly made some accommodations in adapting to radio’s current sound with “Supersoaker,” but it doesn’t feel like we’re being cheated—it’s still great stuff, and it’s great to have them back.

To listen to this week’s full playlist, click here.

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Grandtheft & Skratch Bastid: “Miley”

Y’all, point blank, no irony: I love Miley Cyrus. Why not? She’s cool, she’s down-to-earth, she’s great at what she does, and she’s not taking herself or the industry too seriously. She’s become a bit of a cultural phenomenon lately, igniting pretty sensational buzz just by twerking in a unicorn costume. She followed it up with her killer single and Aural Fixation feature “We Can’t Stop,” which is setting fire to the Billboard Hot 100 at No. 3 in the country, and her divisive video for the song already has over 90 MILLION views on YouTube. Even Jay-Z namedropped her in a verse on “Somewhere In America,” off his recently released ‘Magna Carta Holy Grail‘: “Somewhere in America / Miley Cyrus is still twerkin’.”

And now, Grandtheft & Skratch Bastid have continued the Miley craze and made a mix of—you guessed it—only the twerking/Miley reference from Jay’s track. And it’s… awesome.

It’s good enough to make you wish it was actually Jay’s track. Do the Miley Cyrus.

To listen to this week’s full playlist, click here.

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Boyce Avenue & Fifth Harmony: “When I Was Your Man” (DJ KiLLO Reggae Mix)

Alright, you’re going to have to trust me on this one, because I’m breaking not one, but two of my soft rules in posting it. Normally, I try my best to avoid posting multiple songs from one artist in a single week, and I also tend to reserve covers for when we do cover-specific editions of Aural Fixation, which we run occasionally.

But this is totally worth it. I really love everything about this, and with the reggae audio underneath the acoustic vocals, it sounds like a sharp and record-ready version of the Bruno Mars single. The call-and-response format takes the song’s narrative to a whole new level, stirring up even more emotion, and every single one of the girls (aided by the BAMF boys of Boyce Avenue) sounds absolutely professional and lovely. Love, love, love this.

To listen to this week’s full playlist, click here.

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John Mayer: “Wildfire”

“Wildfire” is John Mayer at his best. It’s sunny, Southern summer blues-rock with all kinds of feel-good grooves, proving that he’s not out of the hit-making game just yet. It’s undeniably appealing, with all of the easygoing heartbreaker charm he’s known for—but as he matures, it seems like the pompous air that bothers some people is dissipating. Regardless, it’s a cool and breezy cut, just right for late July.

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Check out my review of Selena Gomez’s new album ‘Stars Dance‘ here on Literally, Darling tomorrow.

Aural Fixation runs new music every Monday. 

Tweet and follow me on Twitter @Litzwich to give your feedback, comment on the column, or just to share your favorite Britney .gif.


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