Thursday, December 8, 2016

2016 Favorite Songs (Numbers 20-11)

Getting closer to the top:

20. Frank Ocean - "Nights"

I am not a huge fan of his album Blond, and I think I must be one of the few that was immune to it. With that said, this song was what I wanted the album to be, emotionally grounded and yet experimental. This track can be listened to here on Spotify.

19. A Tribe Called Quest - "We the People..."

So glad these guys are back. And this song speaks to the times we live in.

18. Ariana Grande - "Thinking About You"

I went with this song because it showcases her amazing vocal range and, also, it is a fucking killer ballad.

17. Beacon - "Escapements"

Icy synth pop that still has a human heart beating underneath.

16. Totemo - "Prime"

Totemo has a way of making her songs feel like inhabitable dwellings. You feel the creak of floors, the shutting of doors. This song feels like a journey from dark corners into the light of day.

15. Róisín Murphy - "Thoughts Wasted"

Amazingly quirky pop song from the incomparable Ms. Murphy. The spoken word interlude is devastating.

14. The Weeknd - "Secrets"

This track can be listened to here on Spotify.

One of the best pop tracks of the year. I love how he keeps his voice in a lower register. And the sample of Tears for Fears' "Pale Shelter" is killer.

13. Local Natives - "Fountain of Youth"

This song gives me goosebumps every time.

12. Warpaint - "New Song"

"Because of you/I am where I belong."

11. Alicia Keys - "In Common"

Alicia Keys definitely makes a dysfunctional relationship sound sexy.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

2016 Favorite Songs (Numbers 30-21)

Inching closer to the top of my countdown:

30. Solange ft. Sampha - "Don't Touch My Hair"

Stunning highlight from her masterful record A Seat at the Table.

29. Balance and Composure - "Postcard"

For me, this was a weak year for guitar based records, however, songs like this got me through.

28. The Big Pink - "Hightimes"

Fitting to its title, this song churns along on a druggy vibe.

27. Cubicolor - "One False Step"

Gorgeous electronica; love how the vocals and synths reach soaring heights at the end.

26. AlunaGeorge - "Hold Your Head High"

Awesome banger from the UK duo.

25. Broods - "Worth the Fight"

Touching song about trying to save a relationship.

24. Trentemøller ft. Jehnny Beth - "River in Me"

Gothy goodness.

23. Delorean - "Muzik"

All parties must come to an end, and this is the soundtrack to the Uber ride home.

22. Beyonce - "Sorry"

A literal middle finger to all cheating spouses, and the awakening of a new feminist anthem.

21. Banks & Steelz - "Can't Hardly Feel"

On paper, this collaboration should be a disaster, however, I was amazed at how many times I went back to this record and found something new. I love this lonely little track, and you just feel a palpable sense of loss.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

2016 Favorite Songs (Numbers 40-31)

Continuing the countdown to my favorite song of the year:

40. Gojira - "Low Lands"

This slow burner from Gojira shows them in full mastery of their craft.

39. Nerve Leak - "DR34M5"

Atmospheric track that lingers long in the brain.

38. Tegan and Sara - "U-Turn"

There were almost too many songs I would have put on here from their album Love You to Death, but this one always got a smile on my face and my booty shaking.

37. EZA - "Eyes for You"

The ache in her voice gets me every time.

36. Usher - "Make U A Believer"

I love all the different textures and layers going on in this track.

35. Boxed In - "Up to You/Down to Me"

There is just something warm and inviting about a Boxed In track, and this one is no exception.

34. Psychic Twin - "Chase You"

I am always fascinated by contrasts. Psychic Twin's evocative and aching vocals mixed with the churn and grind of electronics is particularly striking.

33. Wild Beasts - "Alpha Female"

Wild Beasts amp up the synths and sleaze in this banger.

32. Blood Orange ft. Empress Of - "Best to You"

Their voices complement each other perfectly. I would love for them to do more work together.

31. How to Dress Well - "Lost Youth/Lost You"

I just love the lyrics to this song: "I say I think I know what love is now/I think I kinda figured it out/But then the second that I open my mouth/Gonna change my heart again."

Monday, December 5, 2016

2016 Favorite Songs (Numbers 50-41)

Once again, it is that time for end of the year lists. It was a really good year for music, which made it even more difficult to come up with my choices. This week I will be counting down to my favorite song of the year. Here are my selections for 2016, starting with numbers 50-41:

50. Blaqk Audio - "First to Love"

Since Depeche Mode still refuses to up the BPMs on their songs, we have to get our dance floor slammers from Blaqk Audio.

49. M83 - "Solitude"

Though the album Junk pretty much lives up to its title, this track is a gorgeous, cinematic stunner.

48. Underworld - "Low Burn"

Love the build up on this track; it's a great driving song.

47. Pantha du Prince - "Frau Im Mond, Sterne Laufen"

The only way to describe this song is techno lullaby.

46. FFX - "Little Boy"

Thumpingly good bass track from German duo FFX.

45. Deftones - "Prayers/Triangles"

Another amazing single from Deftones that perfectly meshes the atmospheric with the pummeling.

44. Braille Face - "Backwards/Medicated"

Haunting bedroom pop track from Braille Face.

43. David Bowie - "Lazarus"

David Bowie left this earth a better place with his music. His final album was truly brilliant, and this lead single was quite magical; a fitting rumination on aging and death.

42. Rihanna ft. SZA - "Consideration"

Sometimes simple is best. Over a skeleton beat and minimal musical backing, Rihanna and SZA's verses flow and intertwine with one another.

41. Clams Casino ft. Kelela - "A Breath Away"

Gorgeous future R&B from Clams Casino, featuring the emotive vocals of Kelela.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Jam of the Day: The Weeknd - "Secrets"

Awesome track from The Weeknd's brilliant pop opus Starboy. Love the use of the Tears for Fears' sample. You can listen to the track here on Spotify.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Jam of the Day: Sleigh Bells - "Loyal For"

Four albums in and Sleigh Bells still find ways to tinker with their sound. While Jessica Rabbit is not their most consistent record, it has lots of killer moments on it, including this stunning track.