We’re more than halfway through Summer 2016, and so far the season has seen some pretty stellar queer music released. From newly discovered talent and buzz-worthy artists to a big name on a big soundtrack, these are the tracks you need to add to your summer playlist.
Brendan MacLean: “Free To Love”
Brendan MacLean is unquestionably one of the most titanic new queer talents out there. The Australian singer-songwriter released a new EP, funbang1, last month featuring stellar tracks “Hugs Not Drugs (Or Both)” and “Techtonic,” plus a guest appearance by Amanda Palmer. The deluxe edition, featuring remixes by Kristian Nairn (Hodor!) is available now via Bandcamp. In the video for his latest single, “Free to Love,” MacLean busts out some serious dance moves, giving us his best Sam Sparro-meets-Michael Jackson. It’s a soulfully funky track you’ll definitely want on your Summer Jams playlist.
Mister Wallace: “It Girl”
Speaking of summer jams… With breakout single “It Girl,” queer rapper Mister Wallace aims to give you life! As he told Fader last week, the track was in part inspired by the rise of Black Live Matter: “It became clear to me that before I could realize any dream of being a successful artist, I was more likely to become world famous for being gunned down by a racist cop under the protection of the law. I started to imagine how my image would be used by the media to perpetuate this horrific narrative to younger people and it sent me over the edge. ‘It Girl’ became my anthem.” Punctuated by effects that sound like police sirens, the song builds to frenzy that’s sure to turn dance floor across the country into late night runways.
Blood Orange: Freetown Sound
One of the most innovative and buzzed-about albums of the summer, British singer-songwriter-producer Dev Hynes Freetown Sound is packed with neo-R&B tracks to funk up your summer. File these under Summer Slow Jams, the kind of songs that make for the perfect soundtrack to a romantic tiki torch-lit evening by the pool.
Wilder Daze: “Summer of Love”
The second single from singer-songwriter Wilder Daze’s upcoming debut album starts out lush and dreamy, but gets an emphatic jolt from techno beats that kick in at the chorus. This song — and the accompanying video — about halcyon days gone by takes kind of a rosy view of teenage summer shenanigans, but like the “cotton candy skies” referenced in the lyrics, it’s a sugary bit of summer confection.
Kylie Minogue: “This Wheel’s On Fire”
Does the cosmic collision of divine faggotry happening with this one even need to be explained? Kylie. Doing the Ab Fab theme. Put this on your playlist now! Don’t question me.