The 10 best synthpop songs of April 2024

Counting down my favorite synthpop, futurepop, and darkwave songs of the month.


Here are my favorite songs of the month in synthpop, futurepop, darkwave, and adjacent genres. If you want to follow my music discovery this year, subscribe to my 2024 playlist on Spotify. New songs are added every Friday. Sort by “Date Added” to see new tracks appear at the top of the playlist.

10. Current One – “How to Change My Mind”

Sweden’s Current One—my best new artist of 2022—returns with a new collection of songs called Postludium that further Markus Enström’s gift for spirited synth riffs and confessional storytelling. Opening track “How to Change My Mind” has a bouncy beat and face-paced delivery that makes it my favorite from the set.

9. EMMON – “Devil’s On Your Back”

Sweden’s electro queen EMMON cranks up the gloom on new single “Devil’s On Your Back,” which finds the artist trading in her hard-hitting techno elements for immersive atmosphere and melodic song structure. The track’s poignant lyrics tackle those self-sabotaging thoughts many of us struggle to shake.

8. Bedless Bones – “Burying the Carnival”

Less than six months after the release of her deeply seductive album Mire of Mercury, Estonian artist Bedless Bones already has a new song out. She says “Burying the Carnival” was recorded for 2021’s Bending The Iron Bough but didn’t fit the album. I can see why she’s releasing it now. It’s a fiery thumper full of mesmerizing soundcraft.

7. Pet Shop Boys – “New London Boy”

For their 15th studio album, Pet Shop Boys embrace lush orchestral arrangements that feel lackluster and majestic in equal measure. The album’s best track by far, “New London Boy,” is a blast of nostalgia that recalls some of their finest moments—the queer storytelling of “Being Boring” and especially the spoken-word euphoria of “West End Girls.”

6. Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross – “Compress/Repress”

No, I did not expect to see the Nine Inch Nails guys here either. Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross have spent the last decade composing award-winning instrumental scores for movies like The Social Network and Pixar’s Soul. Their latest soundtrack—for the tennis drama Challengers—includes an unexpected vocal number called “Compress/Repress” that was reportedly written by director Luca Guadagnino. Its sound is an exquisite throwback to the electronic heyday of NIN and easily their best song in 20 years.

5. Pale Meridians – “Solitary Heart”

Emerging artist Pale Meridians continues to hone their craft on the way to completing their debut album—which hopefully arrives this year. Part of that process includes re-recording their first song, “Solitary Heart,” and giving it a fresh coat of paint that captures the band’s current vibe. It’s catchy, classy synthpop that whets our appetite for much more to come.

4. BLACKBOOK – “Out With a Bang”

Swiss duo BLACKBOOK remain the masters of trickery. Their just-released sophomore album, Radio Strange, is accompanied by a new single called “Out With a Bang” that is among their best bangers. It seems like a party anthem with a massive hook: “LET’S GO OUT!” But listen carefully—this is an anti-establishment song that celebrates society’s outcasts, the prevailing theme of Radio Strange.

3. KLACK – “Weight of the World”

Wisconsin duo KLACK have a knack for combining the sounds of body music, New Beat, techno, and synthpop into a singular force. “Weight of the World,” from their mini-album Modern Production, finds the band at their most synthpop, due to the harmonious vocals of Eric Oehler and traditional verse-chorus-verse structure. It still KLACKs though thanks to thumping new beats, glorious chimes, and those enticing media samples.

2. Male Tears – “Regret 4 Nothing”

California’s Male Tears undergoes personnel changes—they’re now a quartet—and leans heavily into the plinky Italo sounds that are all the rage with darkwave bands like Nuovo Testamento. “Regret 4 Nothing” is a sugary confection that would amp up your local goth club or roller rink. Along with previous single, “Sex on Drugs,” their forthcoming album Parad​í​sco is shaping up to be the perfect soundtrack for a night of debauchery.

1. Kite – “Losing”

The best synthpop band in the world keeps getting better. On “Losing,” Kite creates one of the most affecting builds I’ve ever heard in song. It starts with a single, echoey note followed by the unmistakable cry of Nicklas Stenemo, then gradually topples into an avalanche of voices and sounds that concludes with Swedish singer Anna von Hausswolff’s dramatic howl. I sit in awe every time I listen to it.

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