Bop Shop: Songs From Kali Uchis, Libianca, Caroline Rose, And More

One song for fellowship, one for heartbreak, one for expectation, and more

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.

Caroline Rose: “Miami”

A wounded love story as twisted as the bent guitar notes throughout, “Miami” unfolds with Austin’s Caroline Rose laying everything bare at the painful end. “I wish I could collect all of the subtle rejections,” they sing. “Wrap them all up in a bow, say, ‘Thank you, nice to know you, I loved all of our time. Maybe I'll see you down the line.’” Complete with a stunningly cinematic video that plays out backwards, “Miami” is a Moment. Call it what it is. —Patrick Hosken

Surf Mesa, Selah Sol: “City of Love”

If at any point in the last couple of years you’ve had “I love you baby, and if it’s quite alright, I need you baby to warm these lonely nights” stuck in your head, that was most likely thanks to Surf Mesa. His remix of the Frankie Valli classic “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” went viral on TikTok. The electronic musician is back with another feel-good bop, “City of Love,” featuring the vocals of Selah Sol. Even if the lyrics tell a story of loneliness, the song starts off calming, with an immediate feeling of freedom, and as the pop melody grows, it begins to feel subtly electric. Once the consistent electro beat kicks in, you can’t help but feel like you should be riding in a car, windows down, arms in the air, letting go of all your problems, no matter what city you’re in. A perfect song for the warmer months ahead. —Alissa Godwin

Libianca: “People (Check on Me)”

U.S.-based Cameroonian singer Libianca recently released emotive visuals for her global anthem "People (Check on Me)." The tune is certainly catchy, but the message makes this song so meaningful. The title implies that you can endure such suffering internally, yet "people," i.e., those you come into contact with, will not know what's happening. We all are so wrapped up in our worlds that sometimes we're too aloof to recognize when even the person next to us is suffering. It still rings true: Check on your friends — your funny friends, intelligent friends, goal-oriented friends, popular friends, independent friends, and got-it-all-together friends — because depression doesn't discriminate. It could save their life, and Libianca conveys that message through her song. —Sunni Anderson

Kali Uchis: “I Wish You Roses”

We all know our Cancer Queen Kali Uchis loves “as deep as the ocean,” but she’s far more merciful than any sea. The “Dead to Me” singer has traded completely cutting off her exes to offering them a compassionate separation. In her latest lo-fi single, the Columbian-American beauty writhes in rose petals and drips in morning dew, singing not of sweet forgiveness but of delicate understanding. Her devotion may be indelible in her lost love’s memory, but her fresh bouquet of well wishes will wilt over time. —Gwyn Cutler

Truth Club: “It’s Time”

Just when you think you’re locked in, Raleigh band Truth Club switches it up again. On the blazing “It’s Time,” the four-piece melds post-punk with specks of math rock to dizzying results, flexing the prowess that’s made them North Carolina breakouts like their peers Wednesday and Indigo de Souza. They’ve promised more to come on a new album later this year. —Patrick Hosken

Softcult: “Dress”

As a purely auditory experience, “Dress,” the dreamy new tune from the indie duo Softcult (who make “music for mall goths”), checks every box — hazy, vaporous, immensely satisfying. But digging deeper into the lyrics and the accompanying video, “Dress” becomes a rallying cry against sexual assault. Its refrain, “It’s a dress, not a ‘yes,’” remains empowering even as the final lines — “I won’t ever feel the same again” — are chilling and haunting. —Patrick Hosken

Elmiene: “Endless No Mores”

Elmiene is aching over an agonizing loss, but his breathtaking voice never breaks. Besides his sensational vocals, what hits the hardest is his bridge and its stark yet simplistic shift. It removes you from the anticipated rhythm and surprises you with a string of stinging staccato statements before bringing you back to its despaired chorus. It reminds me a lot of the transition from Frank Ocean to Andre 3000 on “Pink Matter,” and if anyone knows me, that’s a top-tier compliment.  —Gwyn Cutler

Aly & AJ: “Baby Lay Your Head Down”

The first new song from Aly & AJ since their technicolor 2021 pop explosion is a side-step away from glimmery dance-floor goodness. Instead, “Baby Lay Your Head Down” embraces a wizened, slightly weary approach, channeling the heartland yearning of Springsteen’s Tunnel of Love as it looks inward. —Patrick Hosken

Lucinda Chua: “Echo”

Never has reverberation felt so cathartic until Lucinda Chua’s release of “Echo.” Chua’s introspective, liminal music is exquisite enough for her to open for FKA Twigs. Her muse in this rumination is her refusal to be the shadow of someone else by abandoning herself to carry their shame. Her persona is no replica — she’s idiosyncratic and full of substance. It would be a bigger shame to diminish her artistry to an echo of another. Her forthcoming album Yian drops March 24. —Gwyn Cutler

Shak SYrn: “Cosmo Kid”

Shak SYrn is ready to share her mind, body, soul, and spirit with a “Cosmo Kid,” one she describes as “the sun in the sky setting into night.” This otherworldly wordsmith recites what sounds like a Renaissance sonnet with its romantic lyrics and string plucks, yet it's entirely modern in its essence. She sings softly of passionate play and sacral chakras, spawning a mystic intimacy that’s equally entrancing as it is alleviating. —Gwyn Cutler

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