L7’s Anti-Trump Anthem, “Dispatch From Mar-A-Lago”: The Week In Music

By P. Claire Dodson

This week’s new music was feeling a little sleepy, and then I found out L7 had returned for their first new music in this century. The silly, biting “Dispatch From Mar-A-Lago” is the perfect piece of Trump-era resistance art that doesn’t feel too heavy-handed. It’s rock! Let’s stomp around! Join me for this week’s playlist recommendations to get you through the week ahead.


Track 1: L7, “Dispatch From Mar-A-Lago”

This administration needed some more rock ‘n roll, and art-rock band L7 is back from an 18-year-long hiatus to fucking provide. This scratching, teasing, blasphemous song is the kind of food that tastes good and is good for you. Plus, L7 found the most catchy way to have you screaming “Mar-A-Lago.” Sample lyric: “S.O.S. from the golden throne / ‘Mogul’s’ in deep shit, he’s all alone / It’s not good, a riot in fact / The whole friggin’ country club is under attack.”

It’s practically meditative.

Track 2: Cécile McLorin Salvant, “Mad About the Boy”

Conetemporary jazz vocalist Cécile McLorin Salvant’s take on composer Noel Coward’s original 1932 song “Mad About the Boy” is such a chasmic, haunting track expertly timed for overcast fall days. Check out the rest of her new record, Dreams and Daggers, out today.


Track 3: Demi Lovato, “Ruin The Friendship”

I love a pop song with a good gimmick, and Demi tends to succeed consistently on that front (“Cool for the Summer” is still a bop, guys). This slow-burning track from her just-released album Tell Me You Love Me is less bombastic than Demi’s usual fare, and it’s better off for it. Also, props to her for fanning the fan fiction flames of a Nick Jonas/Demi Lovato friendship with a wink and an in-song giggle.

Track 4: Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile, “Continental Breakfast”

Indie darlings Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile are teaming up for a new collaborative album called Lotta Sea Lice, and the second single released is the breezy “Continental Breakfast.” It’s a low-key, acoustic dreamscape of a song that conjures up images of motel cheese danishes. Yummy.

Track 5: Shania Twain, “Let’s Kiss and Make Up”

This song has everything: tropical house beats, bouncy trumpets, and that synth-and-chill thing that is so pervasive in pop today. It’s a very 2017 song, which definitely feels weird with Shania’s voice. It’s not great, but also wouldn’t we rather hear Shania’s voice over his kind of track rather than whichever Halsey knockoff we’re on now? This is the kind of song you’d hear on a cruise ship commercial, but compared to other cruise ship commercials (aka that awful Pitbull song “Freedom”) it’s…palatable. I guess what I’m saying is that it’s competitively OK. And it’s on this list because SHANIA, ok?


See you next week!




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