Friday, December 30, 2011

Hot Mix 2011: #70 to 61

"Hot Mix 2011" On Spotify

| #100 - 91 | #90 - 81 | #80 - 71 | #70 - 61 | #60 - 51 |
| #50 - 41 | #40 - 31 | #30 - 21 | #20 - 11 | #10 - 1 |

70 Broken Water “Normal Never Happened”
More monster/end-of-the-world jams from Olympia. The “A” section is the tearing-down-buildings part, followed by the “B” section in which pensive-Godzilla wonders about why he exists and the greater questions of life...

69 Frank Ocean “Thinking About You”
“Do you not think so far ahead? ‘Cause I’ve been thinking ‘bout forever...” Lonely 2AM... The fadeout after only 3 minutes suggests the ambien mercifully kicked in rather quickly. We haven’t heard a soulful falsetto like this since young Al Green. (Give him some time; he might actually reach “mature Al Green” caliber.) We’re confused about the lack of a second Frank Ocean mixtape including this song and “Swim Good.” (Wikipedia reveals “Thinking About You” was actually written for a female R&B singer who renamed it “Thinking About Forever...” Ehh... Frank’s version is WAY better...)

68 Kavinsky “Nightcall”
We very badly wanted to love CSS’s latest LP... We’re hoping they can bring back the excitement from their self-titled at some point, but in the meantime, we have “Nightcall.” Huge 2011 trend: Dark, lonely songs about delirious late-night drunk dialing someone you miss terribly. This one got backed by some hot Boards Of Canada beats. Also we wish we were watching Drive right now.

67 Panda Bear “Slow Motion”
Sounds like he might be singing about drowning? We’ve been reassessing Person Pitch throughout 2011, and it’s way better than we originally thought. (It appeared in our favorite 2007 albums somewhere around #23, and it should’ve been top 3.) Part of the reason why we gave it another chance arrived after we heard Tomboy and surprisingly wished that it sounded as trippy as Person Pitch. Depending on our POV, “Slow Motion” was the obvious album highlight. (Pitchfork didn’t think so, but what do they know...)

66 Metronomy “She Wants”
We probably would have loved Metronomy’s The English Rivera even more if there were more songs like “She Wants,” which appears to be an homage to Wire’s Chairs Missing and 154 (two of the greatest albums ever). Also the “noooo” part (or was it "ohhhh") towards the end is like straight-up gangsta shit.

65 The Weeknd “High For This”
This might be the first year when so many free unofficial “mixtape” releases have been considered for such high acolades, such as Frank Ocean’s Nostalgia, Ultra and The Weeknd’s House Of Balloons. The Weeknd especially evokes a raunchy darkness that we never realized was so essential to modern music, as if 90’s R Kelly collaborated for some slow jams with Keith Flint, the spikey-haired “lead singer” character from Prodigy’s “Firestarter” and “Breathe” videos.

64 Smith Westerns “Only One”
#ImpossibleToReview As much as we appreciate the strong hooks on Dye It Blonde, Smith Westerns are still another one of those bands that sound like Wincing The Night Away (like Surfer Blood but better) with a style as generic as indie-rock gets these days, making it nearly impossible to generate any type of unique or interesting critique. Nothing too crazy... Just good songs.

63 Diehard “Barflies”
Diehard's DIY-funded The Times We Didn’t Have Fun accordingly presents a progression in songwriting and production from their first 2 EPs, leaving a path wide open for even more seriously ass-kicking loud-rock on future releases. The songs “Diehard,” “Christine,” and “Barflies” (among others) seem to totally point in that direction, with the latter striking us as a favorite mostly because we’re suckers for bass distortion and the frequent-yet-subtle “shit” and “fuck” in the lyrics.

62 Meek Mill featuring Rick Ross “Ima Boss”
VH1’s 2-hour special on crack’s association with hiphop was one of our favorite TV moments of the year, partially because it included interviews with “Freeway” Ricky Ross, who expressed disdain for the rapper who he claims stole his identity. A lot of people who love 90’s hiphop are probably not enjoying the current era of mainstream rap that Rick Ross’s Maybach Music branding has partially ushered, but from where we stand, 2011 introduced more fresh talent and hope than almost any year since the mid-90’s.

61 Beyonce featuring Kanye West & Andre 3000 “Party”
Andre, come back... We need that dude. “Party” sounds sorta-90’s to us. Overall, it’s probably the least-party-sounding song with the word “Party” in its title from 2011. It’s closer to a 30-something get-together where people who secretly wish they were more adventurous drink champagne and discuss stock options, and then later they get down and dirty for some boring-ass 30-something missionary. But at least they’re getting laid. “Internet buzz” suggests that Beyonce fans consider this a weak single-choice, which makes us love it even more. (The hugely overrated “Countdown” was seemingly only enjoyed by music critics with a throbbing hardon for Beyonce. Someone had to say it.)

| Continue to Page 5 |

| #100 - 91 | #90 - 81 | #80 - 71 | #70 - 61 | #60 - 51 |
| #50 - 41 | #40 - 31 | #30 - 21 | #20 - 11 | #10 - 1 |

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