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Mac DeMarco, Jessie Reyez, Tyler Shaw and more: songs you need to hear this week

Editorial Staff

Each week, CBC Music producers come together to highlight Canada's best new tracks.

This week, songs by Mac DeMarco, Jessie Reyez, F--ked Up, Tyler Shaw, a l l i e, Paul Brandt and Lindsay Ell grabbed our attention. Scroll down to find out why you need to hear them.

What new Canadian tunes are you currently obsessed with? Share them with us on Twitter @CBCMusic.

‘Body Count (Remix),’ Jessie Reyez feat. Normani & Kehlani

While Jessie Reyez, Normani and Kehlani are great artists on their own, there is a beautiful soulful moment of harmony on the remix of Reyez’s song, “Body Count,” that immediately conjures up dreams of the ultimate girl group. (Of course Normani has been there, done that already with Fifth Harmony.) “Body Count (Remix)” finds even more strength in numbers as each vocalist flexes pride in her relationship history. “It’s not fair that women almost are not encouraged to hold the amount of people that they’ve had sex with proudly, whereas men are,” Reyez explained to Genius. Here, Reyez, Normani and Kehlani ride the song’s simple riff with confidence, taking turns transforming the phrase, “I dodge dick on the daily,” into a mantra worth shouting from the rooftop.

— Melody Lau

‘Honey Moon,’ Mac DeMarco

Mac DeMarco’s cover of Japanese icon Haruomi Hosono’s 1975 single "Honey Moon” officially hit streaming services Friday, after the artist uploaded it to his secret YouTube channel back in July. In typical DeMarco fashion, the sleepy, soft, guitar-driven ballad is the musical equivalent of a summer evening swing in a hammock — even ending in a little whistle outro to help you nod right off.

— Jess Huddleston

‘Oowee,’ a l l i e and the Kount

Euphoria is the apt title of the new EP from Toronto R&B artist allie and producer the Kount. Its four rhapsodic, contrasting tracks comprise a really satisfying suite, with “Oowee” standing out for its empowering message. “Middle fingers up if they don’t like us/ We don’t need no validation from outside us,” goes the couplet that replays in your head when the song’s jazzy piano strains have died away. Oh, and that rap verse she casually tosses off? More of that, please!

— Robert Rowat

Editor’s note: strong language warning.

Hear a l l i e and all your favourite R&B and soul musicians on CBC Music's Marvin's Room with host Amanda Parris.

‘Wanted,’ Tyler Shaw

There comes a time in every young musician’s life where they need to grow, adapt, and change. Unlike his wholesome 2012 hit "Kiss Goodnight," Tyler Shaw’s new track "Wanted" showcases this shift into a more mature, edgy tone. The song leaves behind clean-cut love stories, and instead depicts the messy, complicated power relations we encounter with those we love. Similarly to his recent sultry, Riverdale-inspired tune "Cautious," "Wanted" demonstrates the artist's development. From the passionate, charged lyrics to the striking crimson cover art, this new track will captivate you. As we await his sophomore album Intuition, one thing is for certain — this isn't the same fresh-faced, small-town B.C. boy any more.

— Natasha Ramoutar

‘Normal People,’ F--ked Up

Upon releasing his band’s latest single, “Normal People,” Damian Abraham took to Twitter to proclaim, “I kinda think this may be the best F--ked Up song ever?” And while that can be debated, it is undoubtedly a highlight of one of the most anticipated Canadian releases of the year. “Normal People,” off the band’s upcoming album Dose Your Dreams, juggles quite a few elements: Abraham’s gruff howls, Jonah Falco’s more melodic delivery, spoken word by John Southworth, all set against a backdrop of slicing rock riffs. Oh, and somewhere in there is a pretty incredible saxophone part too. That may all sound overwhelming, but it coalesces into something that truly works. It’s a track that’s tough to categorize but that’s not the point of “Normal People,” as Abraham asserts: “I don’t fit in, but I don’t feel bad.” — ML

‘Bittersweet,’ Paul Brandt feat. Lindsay Ell

Long-standing Canadian country artist Paul Brandt returns with the summery first single off his upcoming release The Journey BNA: Vol. 2, his second six-single EP of 2018. Co-written by High Valley’s Brad Rempel and featuring 2018 CCMA performer Lindsay Ell on electric guitar, the upbeat “Bittersweet” points out life’s many highs and lows — urging us to try to find "the beauty between." — JH


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