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Taylor Swift’s Chilly Affair, ‘Paradise’ By Way Of Eric Nam, And More Songs We Love

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Taylor Swift’s Chilly Affair, ‘Paradise’ By Way Of Eric Nam, And More Songs We Love


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The search for the ever-elusive “bop” is difficult. Playlists and streaming-service recommendations can only do so much. They often leave a lingering question: Are these songs really good, or are they just new?

Enter Bop Shop, a hand-picked selection of songs from the MTV News team. This weekly collection doesn’t discriminate by genre and can include anything — it’s a snapshot of what’s on our minds and what sounds good. We’ll keep it fresh with the latest music, but expect a few oldies (but goodies) every once in a while, too. Get ready: The Bop Shop is now open for business.

  • Rilo Kiley: “Frug”

    In 1999, a new Los Angeles four-piece called Rilo Kiley recorded their self-titled debut and sold it at their earliest shows, available only on CD. It featured the charming, widescreen indie-pop sound that they’d later hone in a way that set the stage. As Jenny Lewis lists off which specific dances she can’t do on “Frug,” the music becomes a sunny sock-hop soundtrack — ready to be played loudly when the Rilo Kiley reissue hits streaming (and gets a vinyl release) on October 2. —Patrick Hosken

  • Eric Nam: “Paradise”

    As we near day 150 of this lockdown, new music releases are one of my main methods of escaping the four walls of my NYC apartment. Enter Korean-American singer-songwriter Eric Nam with “Paradise.” Co-written by DAY6’s Young K, it’s the lead single off Nam’s fifth comeback, The Other Side. This cut’s about breaking free from your monotonous disposition, whatever that may be. Nam reminds us that “this too shall pass” and not to worry, because each of us was “born to fly.” So perk up, buttercup, and know that you’ve got this. Let Nam’s “Paradise” wash over you in all its synth-pop glory as you dance your fears away. —Daniel Head

  • Vincint: “Hard 2 Forget”

    Disco-infused pop is the sound du jour, and Vincint got the memo. The singer-songwriter gives us his all in “Hard 2 Forget,” an infectious, dance floor-ready new bop with a hook that is “so easy to love / So hard to forget.” It’s a standout track from a rising pop artist with impressive connections (he released his last track, “Be Me,” with Netflix for Queer Eye Season 5) and even more impressive vocal chops. I can’t hit the club anytime soon, but I can have a solo dance party to this song in my apartment, which is the next best thing. Pass the champagne! —Sam Manzella

  • Nicholas Braun: “Antibodies (Do You Have the)”

    Cousin Greg dropped a banger. Succession star Nicholas Braun followed up news of his Emmy nomination with “Antibodies,” an honest-to-goodness rock anthem that encourages safe and responsible sexual activity during the pandemic. It’s also a total cruncher, with Braun adopting an appropriate faux-British pop-punk sneer on its wonderfully ridiculous chorus. There’s only one question left to ask: Do you have the antibodies? —Patrick Hosken

  • Taylor Swift: “Illicit Affairs”

    Ask me which track off of Taylor Swift’s Folklore is my favorite, and you’ll get a different answer depending on the day (or the weather, or the amount of candles I may or may not be burning). Today, it’s “Illicit Affairs,” a slow-building ballad about a secret tryst that is both undeniably Taylor and distinctly Folklore. Prolific producer-sound engineer Jack Antonoff’s influence is there, but Swift’s poignant songwriting dazzles in its own right: “And you wanna scream, don’t call me kid / Don’t call me baby / Look at this godforsaken mess that you’ve made me / You showed me colors you know I can’t see with anyone else.” Chills, mama. Where’s my cardigan? —Sam Manzella

  • Mxmtoon: “Bon Iver”

    What a week for Justin Vernon. Last Friday, he popped up on Taylor Swift’s Folklore track “Exile,” and this week, he lends his project’s name to the latest from Mxmtoon. “Playing Bon Iver on late-night drives / The window, moon, and fireflies,” the young singer-songwriter exhales on a dreamy chorus accentuated by spindly string plucks. The pretty tune is endlessly replayable — spin it 22, [or] a million times. (I am not sorry.) —Patrick Hosken

  • Caylee Hammack: “Redhead”

    Rising country music star Caylee Hammack is raising a little hell with her fiery new single “Redhead,” featuring guest vocals from the genre’s original rose-haired vixen, Reba McEntire. Hammack releases her debut album, If It Wasn’t For You, on August 14 and, if this song is any indication, it’ll be full of scorching rock tunes that will have you stomping your cowboy boots and cranking up the volume. Forget blondes, Caylee makes it look like redheads have the most fun. I’m suddenly itching to dye my hair.—Chris Rudolph

  • S.G. Goodman: “Space and Time”

    Western Kentucky singer-songwriter S.G. Goodman reflects on impermanence in the quietly dazzling “Space and Time” video, where animals and objects evaporate like steam. Her voice is haunting and wonderful anyway as she sings of fellowship — “I never wanna leave this world / Without saying I love you” — something she delves into in a recent World Cafe appearance, complete with all the energy of her powerful debut LP, Old Time Feeling. —Patrick Hosken

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