The five best things we heard this week.

By Eli EnisMarcus Jones and Alex Suskind
August 07, 2020 at 08:25 PM EDT
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Matthew Baker/Getty Images; Steven Ferdman/Getty Images; Kevin Mazur/Getty Images; Steven Ferdman/Getty Images; Scott Dudelson/WireImage

Every Friday, EW’s music team runs down the five best songs of the week. In today’s edition, Victoria Monét pulls listeners in on "Jaguar," 2 Chainz reunites with Lil Wayne, Kelly Lee Owens teams with John Cale, Griselda continues to run the table, and Bon Iver denounces capitalism. 

"Jaguar" — Victoria Monét

On the title track for her new EP, singer-songwriter Victoria Monét demonstrates a level of musicality similar to icons Janet Jackson and Diana Ross. The three women each have Calm app-approved speaking voices, but sing in a melodious siren call that pulls listeners in. "Jaguar" certainly distinguishes Monét from the poppier breakout songs she wrote with Ariana Grande, with the horns, strings, and pitter-pattering drums serving as more a revival of '70s-era funk/soul music. —Marcus Jones

"Money Maker" — 2 Chainz feat. Lil Wayne

Rapper 2 Chainz may not have won the popular vote in his Verzuz battle against Rick Ross, but this new single shows why he deserved a spot there in the first place. The College Park, Ga., native uses a beat built off the rich history of HBCU marching band arrangements of iconic R&B hits. In this case, it’s Southern University and A&M College Human Jukebox’s take on “Piece of My Love” by Guy. In teaming up with Lil Wayne, Chainz delivers a banger that will have people bucking low to the ground like a majorette team. —MJ

"AUATC" – Bon Iver

Justin Vernon opts for half-helium vocals on this gospel-inflected single about the evils of capitalism. That approach sounds gimmicky on paper but it fits the mood — a warbling, shaky voice lost in a sea of anxiety and inequality. "Ate up all their cake/And they drank their own wine," he sings, directing his ire toward "the wealthy and the elite, and the predatory corporations," as the Bon Iver singer put it in a statement accompanying the song's release. He came with backup too: Bruce Springsteen, Jenny Lewis, Jenn Wasner, and Elsa Jensen all appear as guest vocalists. —Alex Suskind

"Lemon" – Conway the Machine feat. Method Man

The last 18 months worth of releases from Buffalo’s Griselda squad have felt like a passing freight train: sturdy, steady, and seemingly endless. Conway the Machine has already put out two albums this year, but this week he announced a third and previewed it with another reliably gritty joint called “Lemon." On it, the 38-year-old offers a sobering anecdote about the life he left behind. He thinks about a friend who won’t get to see his kids grow up because he’s serving time for murder (“His mama ain’t shed a tear, she know that come with this life”) and identifies that as his reason for grinding so hard in the rap game. He’s joined by Method Man, who delivers a whole verse of brain-tickling wordplay that self-references “that old Meth." —Eli Enis

"Corner of My Sky" – Kelly Lee Owens feat. John Cale

The upcoming sophomore album by the London producer Kelly Lee Owens is a truly spectacular combination of pulsing techno, vivid power ambient, and even a reimagined Radiohead cover. Its latest single is a beautiful collaboration with Velvet Underground co-founder John Cale that sounds a bit like Nick Cave channeled through the densely textured ambience of Tim Hecker. Cale speak-sings a poem about the rain over a quietly purring synth melody that gradually crescendos like a person’s breathing pattern when a familiar face enters the room. Owens’ production is clean and crisp, and the two have a natural chemistry that makes you question whether the song was built around Cale’s vocals or vice versa. —EE

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