Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Top Songs of 2014: 41-60

60. "7:30 am" by Slothrust (from Of Course You Do)
"You're gonna walk right out that door / I'm gonna watch you walk away"

Aided by being the theme song to You're the Worst, which started slowly but became one of the better TV shows of the year.

59. "Moving to the Left" by Woods (from With Light and With Love)
"It feels strange / it feels the same"

Woods has released 5 albums in 6 years and has made this list each time. Each release is never any less than pleasant, but rarely much more than that.  
58. "Plymouth" by Strand of Oaks (from HEAL)
"Comfort doesn't mean you're better off"

So weary. We like weary. 
57. "Do It Again" by Röyksopp & Robyn (from Do It Again EP)

Every year we allow ourselves one mulligan for lyrics that we just don't feel like spotlighting. By coincidence, last year it was the #57 song as well. 

56. "Riptide" by Vance Joy (from Dream Your Life Away)
"I got a lump in my throat because / you're gonna sing the words wrong"

There is a fine line between multi-instrument folk(ish) acts that we like unreservedly (Beirut, Fanfarlo) and those that we find a bit derivative/dull (Lumineers, Of Monsters and Men). This is the Mumford line, and Vance Joy just set up shop right on top of it. 

55. "Never Work for Free" by Tennis (from Ritual in Repeat)
"I can't live on metaphors"

Wonderfully classic girl group sound to the chorus, even if Tennis is a one woman (and one husband) show. 

54. "Pascualita" by The Derevoltions (single)
"I switching prose like the button on the sink in your kitchen"

Still waiting on a full album from these guys; the Soundcloud posts will have to be enough in the interim. Not on Spotify, so use the Soundcloud link. 

53. "Tough Love" by Jessie Ware (from Tough Love)
"So you want to be a man about it / do you have to?"

Ware's debut placed a song in our top 20 in 2012, but Tough Love is a stronger album overall. 

52. "Collard Greens" by Schoolboy Q w/ Kendrick Lamar (from Oxymoron)
"Sword in my hand I'll fight like this / and I'm more than a man, I'm a GOD / bitch, touche en garde"

Oxymoron needs more Menomena samples.

51. "I Need You" by M83 (from Divergent OS)
"We are cold and see-through"

It’s hard not to lose sight of the music and want to dock this one a bit for being the musical accompaniment to the lamest scene in an already not very good movie.

50. "Torrent" by Ásgeir (from In the Silence)
"Gods of iron clashing, wind in battle through the night"

Even a casual listen to the In the Silence makes it pretty obvious that the album was translated somewhat literally (rather than artfully) from Icelandic. Really, its jarring how ill suited the English lyrics seem (see above). But the music + voice make this a pretty decent Bon Iver clone.  
49. "Bone Digger" by Bear Hands (from Distraction)
"I'm flipping through noble burials now"

This is about as much as we can like a song and still have almost no interest in learning any more about the band and/or their music.

48. "Simple and Sure" by Pains of Being Pure at Heart (from Days of Abandon)
"She's in love with a complicated man"

A bit of a comedown after "Belong" was the #3 song of 2011.

47. "Chorus" by Moonbabies (single)
"No one will see my laugh 'til its funny"

Aptly titled, as the song's strengths are in the layered vocals of the chorus. Downloaded on Dec 8, this is the last song added to the list this year.

46. "Johnny and Mary" by Todd Terje w/ Bryan Ferry  (from It's Album Time)
<Robert Palmer cover>

Typically it is more of a negative when our favorite song sounds absolutely nothing like the rest of the album.  But the techno disco of the rest album is pretty good, albeit requiring a certain mood.
45. "Hero" by Frank Ocean / Diplo / Mick Jones and Paul Simonon (single)
"I'm a bad boy / I'm a punk / I'm a black man / I can dunk"

We should focus on the positives of this track, which combines the strengths of its 3 contributors better than any of Converse's 3 Artists. One Song releases to date. But hearing what may be first new track featuring two key members of The Clash in nearly 30 years, it is also a reminder how fucking depressing it is that Strummer died so young. 

44. "Honest Season" by The Hood Internet (single)
<Future vs. Future Islands mashup>

For purposes of the One Artist rule, this is a Future song , leaving Future Islands free to appear again (foreshadowing!). Track is not on Spotify, so stream/download here. Also: Onions!
43. "Awake" by Tycho (from Awake)

No lyrics to decipher!
42. "XO" by Beyoncé (from Beyoncé)
"Baby love me lights out"

Since everyone seems cool about ignoring the fact that this came out in very late 2013.  Not our favorite genre of song by a long shot, but a pretty top notch example of it.

41. "Berlin Story" by Nicholas Scribner (from Wroclaw)
"And I still wear it / the one you gave me under the wall"

Just another track we almost certainly would not have heard without the consistently excellent Music for Ants blog, where Taylor is as close to a musical-taste-doppleganger as we've been able to find. Not on Spotify, see link above. 

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