Welcome back to INTO’s Queer Music Mixtape, your #1 hub for all things new LGBTQ+ music. Here, we’re covering the hottest releases of the week in one handy guide.
This week’s mixtape features hot singles from familiar favorites, a few lovely EPs from some fresh voices, and a powerful new album as gentle as it is euphoric. Whether you’re looking for an easy thing or a full-on car crash dream, this eclectic mix should have you covered.
We’ve included Instagram links in each byline, streaming links below for your convenience, and a full Queer Music Mixtape playlist from our Spotify page to keep you rocking out for hours to come!
Pop in this week’s Queer Music Mixtape:
“Easy Thing” by Snail Mail
Ahead of the release of her upcoming EP — a collection of demos from her critically acclaimed 2021 sophomore album Valentine — indie darling Snail Mail is giving fans a brand new tune to love. This previously unreleased song features the simple, longing spirit present in much of the artist’s most popular work with lines like “Was there really something there or were we just drunk?/ And ain’t I that same girl that loves you?” Meanwhile, whether fans are more excited about this release or the new Snail Mail plush is entirely up for debate.
“Born For Loving You” by Big Thief
Following the viral success of their lovesick anthem “Vampire Empire”, Big Thief is bringing the romantic tension to a satisfying conclusion on B-side track “Born For Loving You”. This latest song’s pure feel-good vibes offer a perfect counterpart to the whirling strife of the previous release, with Adrienne Lenker’s light voice breezing through lines like “From my first steps to my first words/ To waddlin’ around, lookin’ at birds/ To the teenage nightmare, mine and yours/ Thank god we made it through”.
“Nothing Works” by Declan McKenna
Declan McKenna’s latest single is a playful, indignant response to some very unwelcome artistic input, at once rollicking and incensed. “’Nothing Works’ came out of the frustration of feeling boxed in and tied to expectation, but it is a euphoric tune,” McKenna explains to Line of Best Fit. “I often feel like nothing works when you’re trying to match norms or expectations because you can never please everyone, but if you trust your gut and your own motivations in any aspect of life, the parameters for feeling good in yourself are much simpler and more powerful.”
The bicurious anthem was inspired by a rendezvous with another famous woman.
“You, Me, Lonely” by FIZZ
The release of FIZZ’s debut album The Secret to Life may have been delayed a good six weeks (now due out October 27), but the supergroup has offered this serene, dodie-focused ballad to tide fans over in the meantime. In “You, Me, Lonely”, dodie muses on the lovelorn space just before a breakup to a chorus of moony harmonies. This track softens the tone the band has set in previous singles like “High In Brighton” and “Hell Of A Ride”, showing off the range of their increasingly anticipated LP.
Sorry I Haven’t Called by Vagabon
Vagabon’s new album Sorry I Haven’t Called explores grief and escapism from it with interesting, often unexpected sounds throughout its run, and the Mariah Carey-inspired focus track “Lexicon” is no exception. It joins songs like “Can I Talk My Shit”. and “Carpenter” in a kind of subdued celebration, embracing life after personal tragedy and the trauma of the pandemic. “This record feels like what I’ve been working towards,” the singer explains. “When I think of this album, I think of playfulness. It’s completely euphoric. It’s because things were dark that this record is so full of life and energy. It’s a reaction to what I was experiencing at the time, not a document of it.”
Backstage at the VMAs, trouble was brewing, as a video showed what looked like an argument between Megan Thee Stallion and Justin Timberlake.
flat earth romcom by June Henry
Despite its short runtime, the latest surprise EP from self-professed “boygirl anti-folk” singer June Henry is another gorgeously stripped-down look into the artist’s raw emotional vulnerability. The closing track “couldn’t anything?” is especially gripping, with its plaintive “Couldn’t anything change?” refrain and callbacks to the 2022 class pet track “moonsick”. In lines like “I remember when she said she could try to be my friend/ But she couldn’t anymore stand to be my lover”, Henry’s penchant for tugging at the heartstrings is as evident as ever.
“Hot Scars, Pretty Lies” by Gregory Dillon
Up-and-coming pop artist and producer Gregory Dillon continues his steady string of boppable singles with “Hot Scars, Pretty Lies”, a tell-off ode to the city it was born in. “I wrote and produced it in LA when everything seemed to be falling down around me,” Dillon recounts. “For every dreamer who’s been sidelined, this song is your reminder to get back up and move on. To Hollywood, this love letter is for you…penned with a clenched fist.”
“Phantom Limb” by FIIZ
Following their über-romantic sapphic single “Lungs”, rising pop duo FIIZ — Fiona (FI) and Isabelle (IZ) — is delving deeper into the melancholic side of their artistry. “Phantom Limb” sees the two taking on a darker sound and evaluating a connection well past its end. “Missing a friend isn’t a pain that you ever forget,” Fiona says. “We wanted to write about the aftermath when time has passed and healing has begun but maybe there will never be closure,” Isabelle adds.
“Love You More” by Dream Wife
Recorded during the sessions for their recent third album Social Lubrication, London-based rock trio Dream Wife is bringing Pixies-inspired self-love on new single “Love You More”. The band describes the track as “a love song to the self and choosing to love perfectly imperfect bodies” that “explores the relationship between the self and both the body and the earth as experiences of home, as a vessel for feeling.”
Ready to die for her
I Sleep Fine Now by Gatlin
Singer-songwriter Gatlin treks her way through the all-too-familiar stages of grief in her new EP I Sleep Fine Now. After driving through a rollercoaster of emotion of tracks like “Paris” and “When You’re Breaking My Heart”, the project comes to a held breath at the intro of “How Do You Sleep At Night?” before blooming into a tumultuous, powerful release. Of the EP’s message, Gatlin simply says, “Whatever emotion you’re feeling? Feel it deeply. Don’t numb it out.”
“CAR CRASH DREAMS” by Julianna Joy
“Cherry Bomb” singer Julianna Joy is back with another deeply romantic little ditty. From the first line (“I feel your arms squeeze around me like a child with a temper”), Joy’s writing invokes the gentle desperation of young, blooming romance. In an Instagram post for the song, the singer writes that she “wanted more of a 1975 vibe”, but “Car Crash Dreams” has a level of touching sincerity to it that definitely surpasses the inspiration.
Widen your lexicon this week and join us back here next weekend for another Queer Music Mixtape!
Keep the tunes going with our official Queer Music Mixtape playlist: