Orion Sun’s Planetary Love Songs Will Transport You

Orion Sun contains multitudes. “I definitely exist in both optimism and nihilism,” the Philadelphia-based singer-songwriter, born Tiffany Majette, told MTV News recently during a conversation about her bracing new album Hold Space for Me. Even the word “bracing” at first feels at odds with this silken collection of moony R&B-pop. But as she looks skyward for romantic metaphors — “You move me like a moonbeam,” she sings on “Ne Me Quitte Pas (Don’t Leave Me)” — Majette gathers a storm, unspooling her own history losing her home and the death of a close friend.

“I understand a nihilist perspective, but I’m able to understand it and then turn it into an optimistic perspective,” she said. “I do feel like I’m an optimistic person. I mean, kind of have to be to decide to keep going and to have this sort of tenacity that I don’t know where it comes from.”

It might come from the stars. As her moniker suggests, Majette has long taken inspiration from space pioneers like Mae Jemison and even wanted to be an astronaut as a kid. Her music as Orion Sun often evokes the planetary pull also found in love. “Swear you came down like a comet,” she offers one minute, then moves on to burning desire a tune later: “Holy, warm like the sun be.” She packs Hold Space for Me with simple images of the natural world — songs called “Lightning” and “Golden Hour” — alongside the immense weight of human consequence. She’s looking up, but she’s still bound by gravity.

Majette titles one wiggly groove “Grim Reaper” and finds an earthen delivery, quaking a message to someone gone before their time: “If I had it my way, I’d take your place.” She’s an explorer picking through smoldering wreckage, finding the bits that still gleam. Sometimes this is literal. Her “Coffee for Dinner” video, in which she gets a creative director credit, finds her playing a Twilight Zone-inspired lone wanderer in a space suit. In an era when album launches feel increasingly like cold data delivery, Orion Sun is thinking cinematically.

“A lot of the music that I make is very visual. It stems from a place in my brain where I’m like, OK, what does this feeling look like sonically? What color is it?” she said. “What do I hear when I’m looking at something, like an old picture, or [when I’m] YouTubing travel videos, those 4K videos, walking back through Japan or just places that I want to go? And I’m just looking at people, like, what are they listening to when they make something?”

Hold Space for Me is unmistakably insular, unwittingly perfect for our current collective moment of self-isolation. “I’m not even going to lie: I’m not doing anything too different than before with this whole sort of staying inside thing,” Majette said. Her indoor music longs to know more than what a window offers. The album finds Marjette aching for the comfort of another voice and a whiff of the nighttime air. That’s why one of its most memorable moments comes when she suits up to spit a few bars.

“I feel like A$AP Rocky, bitches on my jockey,” she smirks, joyriding on “El Camino.” Soon after, she shouts out one of her inspirations in all but name: “Money make you go from College Dropout to Yandhi.” Marjette has cited Kanye West’s 808s & Heartbreak as a key influence, plus The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. In this age of daily livestream performances, she wishes she could see Billie Holiday on Instagram Live. “Maybe it’s because I just read her book and I’m just very obsessed at the moment,” she said.

Last month, before everyone had to be inside all the time, Marjette was posting dreamy musical dispatches from her bedroom floor; she’s since shared two more. She writes a lot on guitar, though she’s self-taught on piano and ukulele as well. She makes beats. In the past, Majette has been so pumped to share a recently completed song that she’d post them right away. Her previous project, A Collection of Fleeting Moments and Daydreams, was exactly that. Hold Space for Me, however, was meant to feel more intentional.

“I sat with each [song] and really just marinated and wasn’t so quick to be like, this is it, this is done,” she said. “Really just wanted to make sure and see that each song felt complete to me. And I like that patience that I gained, because I really do think it’s made a difference.”

It’s the patience to trace her own history on “Golden Hour” in a quick cadence — “I left home, no money coming in / Had to get a job, music wasn’t getting spins” — and then pull away to let the gravity of her story linger over a subdued beat reminiscent of leaky pipes. She views the vulnerability inherent in poetry, her “first love in the arts world,” as a key tool to use in songwriting. Still, she knows better than to share too much of herself in her music, even as she’s spinning a story ripped directly from her own life.

“It’s pretty fun to find ways to sort of get my message across but still feel protected and not too exposed,” she said. “But I’m like that outside of my artist bag. I’m very cautious.”

Cautiously optimistic, then, feels right for Hold Space for Me, an album that fittingly concludes with Marjette sleeping late, frustrating the birds outside her window, but ultimately waking with clear eyes and a vision of warmth. “I found my destiny,” she intones, “and it’s holding onto your heart.”

Galactic Shootouts, Skeletal Seduction: What’s Going On In Rita Ora’s ‘How To Be Lonely’ Video?

Once you recover from the mindfuck that is Rita Ora‘s new video for “How to Be Lonely,” you’ll have a lot of questions, with these three probably being the most important to get answered. First, what did I just watch? Second, how did they film that scene with the eggs? And, lastly, did she really fall in love with a skeleton!?

Who knows if they’ll ever get answered. But Ora’s visual for the song that she released earlier this month is ridiculously wild, inventive, and hair-raising at times. If you’re not scratching your head after watching it, we must not have seen the same thing.

‘How to Be Lonely” finds Ora pondering what it feels like to have no one in her corner. She’s in a relationship, walking on eggshells because her current situation isn’t making her too happy. So in the video when we see her, literally, tip-toeing across hundred of eggs, it’s an awesome nod to the song itself that makes you think that the entire video will follow its stirring lyrics.

But that changes quickly.

There’s so much going on in here that it’s nearly impossible to explain. Ora finds herself alone in a sea of kissing couples, nervously looking around for her partner. Pretty normal scene right? Welp, there’s another one soon after involving Ora getting cozy with a grizzly bear, then, another where the singer gets close and comfy with a skeleton. Yeah.

These are far from some of the weirdest scenes here. An explosion sends Ora flying through the sky during one clip, followed by one where she bathes in liquid gold. After banging a wall with a bat while dressed as a ghost, she invades a planet and gets into a galactic shootout with its inhabitants.

It’s truly the freakiest video you’ll see in 2020 by far. But that’s what makes it so awesome. You literally never know what is going to be coming next as it cycles between its scenes. Director Dave Meyers explained the meaning behind the visual’s wild clips in a statement obtained by Rolling Stone“This video explores, abstractly, the emotions one feels when going through a breakup,” he said. “It’s anger, longing, comfort, retreat, falling and, of course, loneliness. Ultimately suggesting that this is a necessary healing process that leads to the reawakening of one’s true self.”

“How to Be Lonely” is widely believed to be the first single from Ora’s yet-to-be-announced third album. Her last LP was 2018’s Phoenix

Watch Ora’s wild ride of a video for “How to Be Lonely” up above.

Future Must Have Done His Taxes, Because He’s Too Turned Up In ‘Tycoon’

Future‘s first solo release of 2020 is here. “Tycoon” is a promise to keep going up until a toe tag is placed on the veteran rapper. It feels like a valedictorian’s speech at a high school graduation, directly before caps are tossed in the air. You have to respect and admire Future’s determination.

“Tycoon” is defined by Merriam-Webster as “a businessperson of exceptional wealth, power, and influence.” Future dedicates his not-flexing bars here to showing off this tycoon status, explaining the level of sway that he has with the people around him. Aside from promising to live “until I’m like 80,” Future explains his security detail for anyone who would possibly think of testing him. To summarize two verses, please don’t even think about it.

Its video follows two parallel stories. One is of Future and his girlfriend who are living the good life, preparing to board a plane, while the second one follows a group of masked men preparing for a robbery at what looks to be Future’s house. The rapper’s trip happens successfully, as we see him help his partner onboard, while the criminals fail miserably. When they break into the house, there’s someone waiting for them with a weapon pointed their direction. So, in the end, the good guys prevail and the bad guys lose.

Earlier this year, Future dropped a few songs with Drake: “Desires” and “Life Is Good” along with its remix that features DaBaby and Lil Baby. Prior to that, he shared the Save Me EP last June, which followed his seventh studio album, The Wizrd, that came out that January.

Check out Future’s video for “Tycoon” up above.

Bop Shop: Songs From Stray Kids, Alana Springsteen, NLE Choppa, And More

Stray Kids kicked off a new era last December with the release of “Gone Days,” a mellow mix of trap and charisma — an otherwise offbeat entry in a discography pulsating with boisterous bops. But the Korean group’s latest mixtape drop, “On Track,” is more contemplative than uninhibited, keeping in tune with their uplifting and oftentimes hopeful message while also digging deeper. It’s a song about losing your way and finding the courage to pursue a dream again — or a person, as hinted at by the central love triangle in the high school-set music video. Member Changbin, known for his biting flow and playful personality, contributed to the lyrics and composition of this soothing track. “Even a fool knows this,” he sings. “You’re the best thing I’ve got / Once again towards you / One more step, I will never stop / I shouldn’t turn away.”

Those themes of perseverance and forging ahead are familiar territory for Stray Kids. It’s where they feel most comfortable. Yet “On Track” also evokes a sense of longing and awareness that feels indicative of where they’re going next. It’s representative of their maturity as artists and young adults navigating their emotions the only way they know how: through music. Plus, it’s perfect to listen to when you’re stuck inside and in your feelings. —Crystal Bell

Khalid Lords Over A Colorful Dance Party In ‘Know Your Worth’ Video

Leave it to Khalid and his megawatt smile to usher us into the weekend.

On Friday (March 27), the Free Spirit singer shared the video for “Know Your Worth,” his recent reunion with Disclosure. It’s a bouncy, electro-R&B pep talk about deserving someone who “will put you first” and “loves you at your worst.” Those upbeat vibes seep over into the accompanying visual, which is one big, colorful dance party.

As Khalid urges, “Gotta keep, gotta keep, gotta keep your head up,” we see a diverse group of dancers soak up the positivity by breaking out their fanciest moves. There’s a lot of monochromatic ‘fits and ’90s-style tracksuits, but all eyes are on the (shockingly flexible) dancers themselves. That is, until Khalid swings through to stun us with the ultimate dad dance move: the sprinkler. See it all go down in the vid below.

“Know Your Worth” is Khalid’s second collaboration with British production duo Disclosure, following last year’s Grammy-nominated hit “Talk.” The Texas singer has kept busy since releasing his sophomore album, Free Spirit, last year — he dropped the wistful “Eleven” in January and the mellow “Up All Night” at the end of last year. Let’s hope that momentum keeps rolling on through 2020.

Ava Max Is A Royal Guitar Hero In ‘Kings & Queens’ Video

Earlier this month, Ava Max teased her “Kings & Queens” visual by telling MTV News that it would be “very colorful, super fun, crazy dancing, and a big celebration. Imagine a rainbow being in a music video.” Now, we finally get to see that grandiose vision in full — the vibrant clip arrived on Friday (March 27) to show us exactly “how a real queen behaves.”

The vid opens on Ava playfully wielding a sword between her legs as she assumes her golden throne. As she sings about raising a toast to women everywhere, we see her throwing a rowdy, champagne-fueled feast inside her glamorous palace, before leading her loyal subjects in a killer dance sequence. They even bust out some electric axes for that pre-bridge hair metal guitar solo (as only real queens can do).

“Kings & Queens” is Ava’s first solo release of 2020 and the official lead single for her upcoming debut album. She recently told us that the anthem sets the tone for the rest of the project, explaining, “It’s such a celebration track that starts the album with a bang. It really resembles the time and feels like a good introduction.”

She continued, “I want people to hear the album when they’re going to the gym and feel motivated, or when they’re maybe wanting to get hired for a certain job and they want to be feel empowered. I think that’s really what the feel of the album is.”

Check out the “Kings & Queens” video above — there’s even a dancing parrot in it!

Nav, Gunna, And Travis Scott Compete To Out-Brag Each Other On ‘Turks’

Nav‘s a wealthy dinosaur, crunching fake diamonds and cheap bills underneath his clawed feet in “Turks.” Flanking him on both sides are Travis Scott and Gunna who are equally as hungry for blue hundreds. They roar flexes about lifestyles of luxury that are meant to inspire. Or they could just be wagging their tongues at us, bragging. Either way, “Turks” sounds like a victory march.

The sun shines high in Nav’s world. When he isn’t roaring on top of a cliff, he’s living a good life. $20,000? What’s that, lunch money? Where’s the latest issue of Vogue because Nav swipes right out of that, not some free smartphone app. If the word “cool” had a picture as its definition, it would be of Nav, brandishing his bedazzled pinky rings and hiding his face behind enormous shades.

Gunna, the tranquil flexosaurus, gently boasts about his own endless pockets. He jumps out of Rolls Royce Wraiths like it’s nothing and for his girlfriend’s birthday, he brought her a birthday cake…and a Hermès Birkin bag. He throws in at the end that he’s working on wrapping his bank account’s hands around a billion dollars so be on the lookout for the ultimate brag from him in the future.

Scott rounds things out by doing his best to outdo the boasting efforts of his peers. Nav has $20,000 to buy a few burgers? That’s laughable. Scott’s pulling up to the scene with two jets packed to the brim with ladies. He’s out on the islands, decked up in his Cactus Jack record label’s merch. Life can’t get any better.

Based on these three accounts of wealthy living, we have to hand it to Nav for the championship belt. He sounds the most relaxed with his casual bragging and it makes us want to emulate this lifestyle so much more. Being able to spend $20,000 on cheeseburgers and Ring Pops if we wanted to sounds like an awesome feeling.

Check out “Turks” up above and decide for yourself which of the three rappers has the best collection of brags.

BTS, The 1975, Charli XCX, And More Will Pack Twitch Stream Aid’s Epic Fundraiser

In the past few weeks, artists have taken to different social platforms for livestreamed performances, candid Q&As, and intimate talk-show chats, letting fans into their worlds during a time of uncertainty. This weekend, everything levels up.

On Saturday (March 28), you can catch some of the biggest musicians and celebrities around the globe on a 12-hour livestream and help people impacted by the coronavirus pandemic at the same time. It sounds like the perfect way to spend a socially isolated Saturday, right?

Twitch Stream Aid, a fundraising event co-presented with Amazon Music, runs from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. PST, and all the proceeds go to the World Health Organization. Artists who’ll be streaming include The 1975, BTS, Charli XCX, Charlie Puth, Camila Cabello, Childish Gambino, The Chainsmokers, Lauv, Diplo, Brendon Urie, Blink-182, Lil Yachty, Zedd, and more.

And that’s not all. You can catch folks like Jimmy Fallon, Shaquille O’Neal, John Legend and more popping up as well. The full list can be found over at Twitch Stream Aid’s official website.

All proceeds from this massive event will go to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for the World Health Organization. While you’re tuned in, you’ll be able to donate throughout the stream.

The breakdown is simple: Along with set hourlong blocks of performances, the stream will also showcase gaming competitions of Fortnite, Uno, and more. The best part is that you can tune in from the comfort of your couch.

Find more information about Twitch Stream Aid, including where to watch, right here.

You can help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Not everyone has the option to stay at home, but if you can, you should! Social distancing is the new normal, and we’re here to help. 

Let’s Talk About Sex: Ari Lennox And Doja Cat Bring Steamy ‘BMO (Remix)’ To Life

The remix to Ari Lennox‘s “BMO” is here and, with it, comes a fresh wave of lip-biting pandemonium. It features a cackling witch-like verse from Doja Cat who gets creative with her rapidly spit delivery for a brief, memorable escapade. Together these two are unstoppable. And extremely aroused.

Ari Lennox’s opening and first verse will never get old. You can feel her shoulders rolling, the thermostat going up, and the sweat beginning to materialize on your brow as she practically sighs a “U up?” text into your ears. Imagine hearing, “That body’s on fire/ Oh, love me long/ Until you get tired,” through warm breaths rubbing your eardrums. You’d melt into a Jamba Juice smoothie.

Straight off of a broomstick is Doja Cat for a rapidly rapped verse through pursed lips. She’s similarly ready to hop under the sheets with her crush, so much so that she’s ready to cast a spell and turn herself into a candy bar. “Break me off/ Break it like a Kit-Kat, taste it all,” she demands lustfully. She’s in charge of the mood tonight, clearly.

Lennox’s “BMO (Remix)” comes from her Shea Butter Baby Remix EP that dropped today (March 27). It features two other switched up tracks: “I Been (Remix),” with a guest verse from Smino, and “Facetime (Remix)” that brings along singer Durand Bernarr.

The original Shea Butter Babyher debut studio album, dropped last May. “BMO” was one of its central tunes along with its title track that featured J. Cole and another sexy midnight jam, “Up Late.”

Take a listen to Lennox and Doja Cat’s requests for some late night fun in “BMO (Remix)” up above.

Little Mix Expertly Shake Off Their Exes On The Shimmering ‘Break Up Song’

Dua Lipa isn’t the only one serving up ’80s-tastic pop vibes today. Little Mix, Britain’s biggest girl group (this is a facts-only zone), officially launched a new era on Friday with the shimmering, shake-him-off anthem “Break Up Song.”

“This is not a second chance, no, no, baby,” Leigh-Anne Pinnock sings on the opening line, setting the song’s defiant tone. Her girls chime in with equally spunky sentiments, vowing to leave their heartbreak in the dust. “So tonight, I’ll sing another, another break-up song / So turn it up, let it play on, and on, and on, and on,” they belt. “For all of the times they screwed us over / Let it play on and on and on.” It’s a high-gloss single that fuses the perkiness of “Black Magic” and the blissful liberation of “Shout Out To My Ex” — and it’s a promising sign of things to come.

Earlier this month, Little Mix released the music video for fan-favorite track “Wasabi” off their 2018 album, LM5. That clip ended with a blank screen and the message “new era pending.” With “Break Up Song,” Leigh-Anne, Jesy, Jade, and Perrie have officially launched the countdown for their sixth album, which marks their first release since splitting from Simon Cowell’s record label, Syco. In the past year, the group has released a couple of loosies: the criminally underrated “Bounce Back” and the festive bop “One I’ve Been Missing.” Consider us thoroughly hyped for the girls’ next chapter.