Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Usher, Halle, Marley Bleu, And More New R&B To Survive The Venus Retrograde

Are you questioning if you and an estranged lover are still good? Or are you instead trying to figure out if someone’s love is intentional? Would you rather question if you’re ready for more or are you opting to rid yourself of everything and just go?

Regardless of the questions running rampant in your mind, this week’s new releases will get you right. Halle Bailey and Marley Bleu have shared their respective debut singles, where one is for self-love and the other is dedicated to romantic love. VIBE’s latest digital cover star Usher joined forces with 21 Savage and Summer Walker for his latest single, “Good Good,” which is a very different sound from his prior release, “GLU.”

Jordan Ward, Snoh Aalegra, and Jorja Smith have issued new singles from their forthcoming full-length projects while No Guidnce continues the reign as the next boy band while following in the footsteps of Boyz II Men and Jodeci.

Find your groove of choice in this week’s top new R&B picks.

Usher Feat. Summer Walker and 21 Savage – “Good Good”

Usher has linked up with Summer Walker and 21 Savage for his newest single, “Good Good.” It’s the first offering to follow the lead single, “GLU,” from his highly-anticipated new album. The LP is set to arrive this Fall under mega, the music collective founded by the crooner and L.A. Reid in their partnership with Larry Jackson’s gamma.

Unlike the sensual ballad that was first teased on Valentine’s Day, “Good Good” is a bop about regret and a love that could’ve been great if the timing had been better. Ursher sings, “Right one, right place, wrong time/ Can’t say we didn’t try/ But you always been a real one/ Even though we ain’t together/ It was real love, and baby, it’s still love.”

Following the new single, Usher will head to Paris for a limited European run his domestic residency before it returns to Vegas in October.

Halle – “Angel”

After the blockbuster success of The Little Mermaid, Halle’s making her solo debut with her new single, “Angel.”

“This song for me is so very special and near and dear to my heart,” expressed Halle in a statement. “With everything I’ve gone through the past 3-4 years, suddenly finding myself in this bubble of all these eyes and new opinions, it was easy for me to feel doubt in myself and who I was. This song for me was my climb out of those feelings, a mantra and promise to myself that the work I’m doing here on earth matters and that I matter. I wanted to be able to embrace and be proud of myself and who I am naturally through and through. I hope other brown and black girls and everyone in general feel embraced, respected, and inspired hearing the words of this song.”

The empowering ballad and self-proclaimed “Black girl anthem” flawlessly displays her dynamic vocal range and can easily be a sister track to Chlöe’s “Pray It Away” and Beyoncé’s “Bigger.” On the Neff-U-produced song, Halle sings, “Black girl here, Black girl with the Black girl hair/ Took a little sunkiss just to look like this/ God-sent, you’re an angel.”

Marley Bleu Feat. Pink Sweat$ – “unintentional”

Marley Bleu’s covers are in constant rotation on TikTok and now the rising phenom has released her debut single, “unintentional,” featuring Pink Sweat$.

As an ode to how falling in love can happen when you least expect it, Bleu teased the record incessantly before revealing that it transformed into a collaboration with the Philly-bred crooner. As she sings, “Wrong time, I think I found the right one/ You’re here, don’t know where you came from/ What we got is unintentional/ But your love is so intentional,” Pink jumps in with, “Always on my mind, you’re so steady/ Rest your heart on mine when you’re ready/ If you walk away, don’t forget me, no.”

Bleu comes from a musical family with her great-great uncle being Chuck Berry and her father being the accomplished bassist Al Berry.

Snoh Aalegra – “Sweet Tea”

On the heels of Snoh Aalegra’s “Be My Summer” comes her new “spiritual” single, “Sweet Tea.”

As equally soothing and dreamy, the record is admittedly one of Aalegra’s favorites. She told Eddie Francis of Apple Music 1, “I wrote it prior to kind of finishing up the production and once it was completed, it just really felt really spiritual in a way. It also has one of my favorite bridges I’ve ever written, and that bridge really takes me to another place in the song.”

The Iranian-Swedish songbird made magic with Greg Phillinganes and No I.D. for this track and she basks in a love that’s peaceful and pure.

No Guidnce – “Let It Rain”

No Guidnce is on such a high right now. The budding quartet kicked off the summer with her debut EP, Is It A Crime?, and already has returned with their new single, “Let It Rain.”

Though the group has already sparked comparisons to R&B group icons like Boyz II Men and Jodeci, their newfound success is still all their own. “We made our most dramatic number yet, ‘Let It Rain,’ with LunchMoney Lewis, Ben Billions and Tracksion out in Miami,” the group shared. “We’re bringing singing-in-the-rain R&B back with this one—hope you enjoy it!”

Kevin Ross Feat. Eric Bellinger – “Ready For It”

Kevin Ross and Eric Bellinger share a feel-good bop for R&B lovers worldwide. It’s the first stand-alone single from Ross’s Midnight Microdose Vol. 2.

“I just wanted to make a bop that wasn’t completely toxic. Men can still be clear in their intentions for love without it being perceived as soft or corny,” said the crooner about the record. It’s a romantic one that exudes warmth and charm with Bellinger adding the perfect touch.

Aryeè The Gem – “Mirror”

Aryeè The Gem is a thriving sensation hailing from Atlanta with a sound that feels like an influence from Victoria Monét, Syd, Ari Lennox, or Solange.

With her new single, “Mirror,” Aryeè is ridding herself of old baggage, discovering how to trust herself, and seizing new beginnings. “The lyrics beautifully encapsulate the essence of growth and the beauty that unfolds when we embrace our true selves and remain open to love and reciprocation through our connections with others,” she explained in a statement.

When speaking to the track’s instrumentation, she added, “Drum & Bass unite people globally and transcends language and cultural barriers. I am an ARTist deeply influenced by music that moves people physically and emotionally, so when Trak sent me the track, it pulsated with energy and vibrancy. I hope my music resonates with individuals from all walks of life, reminding them of our shared humanity and interconnectedness.”

We’re excited to see how this single lays the foundation for a full-length project.

Jordan Ward Feat. 6LACK – “MUSTARD”

Jordan Ward isn’t playing around. Following his critically-acclaimed album, FORWARD, Ward is ready to embark on a new chapter with the deluxe version of the LP. His sleek new record, “MUSTARD,” featuring 6LACK is a nod to his search for consistency within a romantic relationship.

Ward told VIBE about the LP, “This album was to be honest with people listening, to provide a chapter of my life that represents who I truly am. I’m not this L.A. dude, no offense to them, but St. Louis is my heart, where my story begins — and this record is definitely a tribute to that.”

The deluxe edition, moreward(FORWARD), will continue that narrative upon its releases on August 25 and he will later join 6LACK on the road for his ‘Since I Have A Lover Tour.’

Jorja Smith – “Go Go Go”

Jorja Smith has unveiled the third single, “GO GO GO,” from her upcoming new album, Falling Or Flying. The commanding track is more pop-leaning as Smith taps into her inner rockstar.

“’GO GO GO’ is kind of a [f**k] you song. Why do people have to kiss and tell, kind of vibe,” she shared in a statement. “I’m in my little alternative bag, but I’ve always kind of been in it. People might be like, ‘I didn’t expect this’, but I’m like: ‘well, I would!’” 

As for her new album overall, Smith adds, “I like this world that I’ve just come into. And I’m still figuring things out. Always figuring things out. This is the first time I’m putting stuff out there that I can connect with right now.” The new LP is set for a September 29 release.


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