December 15, 2017


This week has flown by, hasn’t it?

This is technically day 3 of the cmd+vent calendar. Nothing new from your typical Friday cmd+f letter, but altogether still very special. I’ve had some wonderful feedback on the first two days, so shout out to Ana and Christina for sharing their 2017 music experiences! A brand new letter by another reader drops tomorrow–be sure to tell your friends.

The five songs I’ve plucked for you this week all vary in genres/moods/tones, and I can assure you they’re all excellent.

Please reach out to me via the handy dandy contact page on the cmd+f website, or on Twitter with your thoughts about any of the tracks I’ve selected this week. As you already know, I love chatting about music. Let me in on your new favorite band; they’re looking for new fans, too!

As always, you know the drill: if you like what you hear, spread the cheer. Tell your friends about the songs you liked in this letter, but most importantly, let the artists know. There’s a good chance they’ll see your comments. Let them know how good their tunes are, and they’ll crank out even more magic.

P.S. If you would like to have this letter sent to your email every Friday, please head over to this link right here to subscribe to never miss a weekly roundup!


“Elton John” - LIL PHAG feat. Hoodie Allen and Dr. Woke | I could have never foreseen bumping a gag tune by an internet sensation, but, here we are. Internet’s golden gay and former mayor of Hell, Elijah Daniel, has thrown the towel on his stint as a politician, a religious leader, and has now moved on to be the next best thing: a rapper. When I heard about his latest evolution as an internet personality, I figured “Lil Phag” would be a complete wash. His first single “Elton John” slaps down an irresistible, drowsy hook that inspires an interest piqued for the most PopArt-esque, slice of cultural relevance. The tune is laced with Weezy-worthy puns (“Flyer than Harry Potter/JK, I’m rollin’ harder”) over a Soundcloud trap beat. Give this a few spins and soon y’all be boppin' with your “clout goggles on” and “feel like Elton John (Elton John).” Listen here

“Nothing’s Gonna Hurt You Baby” -  Cara Salimando | I’ve been sitting on this song for a few weeks, just sinking further into the cinematic, heart-stopping drums and twinkling guitars. “Nothing’s Gonna Hurt You Baby” sounds like a false promise, a deep apology scrambling to make up for sorrow inflicted. The retro vibe teeters on the verge of sounding purely like a Lana Del Rey worthy tear-jerker. As the song pulls up into its own  strength toward the end, it stands tall on its own two feet. Listen here

“I Love LA” - Starcrawler | Armed with the devil-may-care attitude of Cherie Currie’s vocals for The Runaways, LA band Starcrawler are chugging out REAL hardass rock n’ roll tunes. I stumbled across their hilariously glampy music video for “I Love LA” on YouTube a couple weeks ago. It’s always refreshing to see that side of LA that looks and feels so distinctively LA for those who live here– a bit of a dump that’s crawling with crusty 24-hour Chinese Food/Donut shops that haven’t closed their doors for 40 years (and they definitely look like it). It’s a side most non-natives or transplants ever anticipate associating with Los Angeles when they’re so used to the veneers of reality TV that’s all filmed in the same 5 mile radius of Beverly Hills. As for Starcrawler’s musical integrity, they’re really know how to fuckin’ shred. Listen here

“tokyo” -  joan | Pop duo joan dropped their debut single “take me on” earlier this year and managed to slide onto the fifth cmd+f letter. They’ve evolved on the teen-lusty vibe I noted in February, pushing a graceful 90s R&B vocal overlaid across an enormous 80s pop instrumental. “tokyo” sounds like a The 1975 b-side (with much clearer vocals [soz, Matty]). The more I listen to this, the more I find it fresh. I’m so excited to hear where joan are going next. Listen here

“BIG BAD BITTER” - Adelén | Now I present to you my Scandinavian Pop Tune of the Month: “BIG BAD BITTER” has been my Big Mood of the week. Opening with “Don’t mean to be a buzzkill/Should have stayed home” and devolving into a brutally honest declaration of social anxiety in the middle of a club. The lyrics layout a night from hell: “Stepping on my shoes now/Invasion of my space/Asking where I come from/”Do I come here often?” No I don’t, so do one!” The pre-chorus heeds warning: “So before I start drinking too much, get me out of this club!/These people talking too much!” The delicious irony is I cannot NOT dance for my LIFE when this turns on. Listen here


  • The latest evolution of pop music has arrived: Charli XCX’s Pop 2 dropped today, and the Carly Rae Jepsen collab is even more wild than I could have imagined.  Listen here

  • Tove Stykre has covered Lorde’s “Liability” and it is [chef’s kiss] Listen here

  • The new G-Eazy album The Beautiful & Damned is stacked with hits and complete misses. Be sure to tune in on the hits, because they’re really fucking good: “No Less” feat. SG Lewis and Louis Mattrs, “No Limit” feat. Cardi B and A$AP Rocky, “Pick Me Up” feat. Anna of the North Listen here

  • N.E.R.D. have a new album today and it’s got a bzillion high profile collabs on it including two Kendrick Lamar features, an Ed Sheeran drop, and appearance by Andre 3000 Listen here

  • Niall Horan has released a Spotify Singles recording of the 1D-hit-that-was-never-given-its-due-diligence, “Fools Gold,” and I am so proud of Niall showing some potential. He's doing this solo thing, stepping out here with adequate vocal rest and showing off what his (likely better and more qualified than whomever was with him while in 1D) vocal coach has gotten out of him. Listen here

  • MGMT have released a new 60s rock-washed neo-goth tune, “When You Die,” and it’s incredible. MORE OF THIS! PLEASE! Listen here

  • The new The Neighbourhood single “Stuck with Me” sounds like it’d fit in well in the Season 2 Stranger Things score Listen here

  • New Lily Allen song “Trigger Bang” featuring Giggs is highly listenable. Grateful we all made it through her Sheezus phase in one piece. Back to bops, Lily! Listen here


If you’re interested in hearing what else I’ve been rinsing this month (aside from the tracks listed above), peep my personal December 2017 playlist. There I will be dumping in new (and occasionally throw back) tracks as the month carries on. You can dive into the cmd+f archive to hear what I’ve been listening to in previous months this year.

A(lmost a)ll of the tracks I’ve shared this week and past cmd+f newsletters are archived into a single playlist on Spotify for you to follow here. You’re welcome.

See you next week!