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5 songs you need to hear this week
By
Judith Lynch

Published

August 23, 2016

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Each week, staff from CBC Music, Radio 2, Radio 3, Sonica and CBC regions across the country collect songs they just can't get out of their heads, and make a case for why you should listen, too. Press play below and discover new songs for your listening list.

Let us know via @CBCMusic what catches your ear, or if you have a new song you just can't stop playing.


Pony Girl, ‘Because You Loved Me’

There is a woeful lack of Celine Dion covers by other Canadian musicians. It could be that few dare to touch Celine’s seemingly perfect musical touch. It could be that the publishing rates are outrageous. Or it could be that Celine’s brand of song is so distinctly hers that to go there — all the way there — would be to give up your own style in order to ape hers. Ottawa’s Pony Girl dispenses with all of that. Their cover of "Because You Loved Me" skillfully strips the song of Celine’s trademark super-sized emotion and replaces it with a wicked slow burn that rocks.

— Judith Lynch (@CBCJudith)


Jason Derulo, ‘Kiss the Sky’

I sometimes wonder if Jason Derulo is my guilty pleasure. I get a lot of eyerolls. His music is too accessible, too superficial, too overtly sexy, they seem to be saying. Well, you know what? Those are all good things in my books. His latest track, “Kiss the Sky,” is a highly charged, funk-fuelled pop song with a soulful brass section that will put a smile on the face of anyone old enough to remember the Ohio Players. And Derulo has the best moves, faux-hawk and vocal range in pop music today — all on full display in this song. He’s one habit I’m not about to kick.

— Robert Rowat (@rkhr)


Kirty, “That’s Not Me”

Long before Toronto-based singer-songwriter Kirty was in local band Fast Romantics (who just won SOCAN's Songwriting Prize), she had her own solo career and it's sure nice to see her back at it again. The track oozes summertime and although she self-coined it as a Sheryl Crow-inspired track, I can't help but feel like she's more of a young Kathleen Edwards in the making. Her self-titled record is scheduled to drop Sept. 23 on Postwar Records, you can pre-order here.

— Matt Fisher (@MattRFisher)


Metallica, ‘Hardwired’

It’s been eight years since Metallica released an album. Death Magnetic, released in 2008, was seen as a return to form for the thrash metal pioneers, and demand for a follow-up was high. While the majority of the band were eager to get back into studio, frontman James Hetfield’s reluctance was well-documented. “For us, it’s about moving forward, always, as an artist,” he told us in 2013. With “Hardwired,” from their forthcoming Hardwired … to Self-Destruct, moving forward sounds a lot like recapturing the rawness of their early years, which we’re perfectly fine with. With frantic energy and blistering guitars and drums, Metallica is doing what it does best and giving us golden-era thrash in the process. More importantly, as you can tell by the look on James Hetfield’s face playing “Hardwired” live, they are genuinely having fun.

— Jesse Kinos-Goodin (@JesseKG)


Shawn Mendes, ‘Mercy’

When I first hit play on this track, I thought I had accidentally selected a song by James Blake. The piano opening is accompanied by Mendes simply humming a little melody, but it vaguely reminded me of Blake’s 2013 single, “Retrograde,” which opens in a similar fashion. For a second there I had hope that the teen pop star was going in a strange new experimental direction but alas the song takes a more conventional route with pounding drums and an anthemic chorus that will surely get fans singing along at his stadium shows. “Mercy” is still a catchy pop-rock song, one that continues to show Mendes’ progression into what will likely be a Nick Jonas-meets-John Mayer matured sound in the coming years, but perhaps there is also hope that he will open his music up to something a little darker and weirder, something that will truly separate him from the pack.

— Melody Lamb (@melodylamb)

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