Saturday, January 7, 2012

Hot Mix 2011: #30 to 21

"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 |

30 Rival Schools “Shot After Shot”
Remember Jimmy Eat World? We assumed Rival Schools' comeback single was a forgotten track from the same era that produced albums like Clarity and Designing A Nervous Breakdown, but the band have confirmed that all 10 songs on 2011's Petals are recently written material. If they can tap into their old ways so effortlessly, this gives us hope that a Quicksand reunion would blow minds apart.

29 A$AP Rocky “Peso”
Slooow-burn. We appreciate the codeine-swag thing, but really this song is here because of the hypnotic beat. Lava-lamp psychedelia. Welcome back, New York hiphop. We missed you.

28 Jay-Z & Kanye West “Why I Love You”
We love love love the back-and-forth rhymes between Jay and Kanye, and the chorus is fun to scream/sing along. However, like many of 2011’s best songs, the major flaw was its coda. Neither weak nor unnecessarily elongated like the year’s worst culprits, the last 30 seconds of “Why I Love You” was still an awkward way to close Watch The Throne. It kinda sounds unfinished or leading up to an anticlimax...

27 Foster The People “Pumped Up Kicks”
#studlydudes #donjohnson #indierockdreamboats The band got its name because the lead singer’s name is Foster. (Gross.) The outro is about two minutes too long. Also, whistling is the anti-handclaps. (Handclaps are super-fun, which means whistling is anti-fun.) “Young Folks” could’ve been huge if Peter Bjorn & John looked like The Backstreet Boys. With that said, even though the vocal effect on the verses sounds like shit, we still love the first 2:30 of “Pumped Up Kicks” enough for it to place here: #1 The “hair’s on fire” part (totally underrated), #2 Awesome hazy keyboard lightly seeping into the intro section, and obviously #3 the earworm chorus. Apparently the lyrics are about going on a hipster killing spree, or something... But thanks to their marketing and promotion - suggesting anything but sincerity - they might as well be singing “Give me just one night, una noche” for all we care...

26 Mr Dream. “Trash Hit”
“Rock journalists are failed musicians.” We’ve been hearing that a lot lately. Mr. Dream are actually successful at both... 2 of the 3 band members have written for Pitchfork. “Trash Hit” and “Walter” are probably the two songs on their newest album that merit The Jesus Lizard comparisons. “Winners” even suggests some Big Black influence, although the last song on their album is way too similar to Shellac’s “A Prayer To God” to not raise suspicions. Either way, we’re happy that rock’s balls are finally growing back. Death to the glockenspiel. Praise Jesus.

25 Yuck “Holing Out”
We’ve begun taking offense to the “retro 90’s” tag because most rock-journos seem to use it with a scoffing undercurrent, quietly projecting negative connotations. Yuck’s songwriting and production are no more influenced by 90’s rock than a large majority of current widely-known indie-bands. It’s odd to us that the only ones singled out also play loud guitar chords...

“Holing Out” is the one song on Yuck’s self-titled where we stopped for a second and thought “Wait a sec, this one actually sounds 90’s.” The chorus modulation is our favorite part, straight-up Yo La Tengo/Dino Jr awesomeness. (By the way, YLT and Dinosaur have both been around since the 80’s and are still releasing music, so singling out their sound as 90’s just makes reviewers sound ignorant.)

24 Big Sean featuring Nicki Minaj “Dance (A$$) (Remix)”
#HotAssBeatClap #HAMMER! We haven’t heard a massive-beat/massive-lolz combo like this since Ying Yang Twins whispered “Wait’ll you see my dick.” We’re guessing Big Sean and his producer-bros were all “stoned off their ass” in the studio at 4AM when out of nowhere they just all started chanting “ASS ASS ASS ASS ASS ASS ASS,” cracking themselves up, clapping and headbanging, and started cracking up even more when they realized it had hit potential. That part when Nicki Minaj is like “Wakikiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii” is the real Nicki. She should stick to more stupid fun shit on her guest-spots instead of obnoxiousness like the uber-lame fake-British accent that kicks off My Beautiful Dark Twisted Bunghole. We never really enjoyed her before she freed herself from the “I’m trying way too hard” motif.

23 The Drums “Book of Revelation”
We assumed there was something deeper here than “another song about religion” but The Drums confirmed that it’s pretty much about aetheism. But how can we be sure? There’s no way to know?! Also The Drums are American. (LAME.) Regarding "The Book of Revelation" itself, it wouldn't have been 2011 if we didn't have at least 3 instances when "the end of the world" was supposed to happen. Too much excitement. Maybe 2012 will be boring. We can only hope...

22 Guided By Voices “The Unsinkable Fats Domino”
GBV are still drunk. Bass player bro ate shit on Letterman the other night, and the show producers were all like “we can make it look like that never happened” but instead the band was like “nah bro, leave it, that shit’s LMAO.”

21 Frank Ocean “Novacane” / Jay-Z & Kanye West featuring Frank Ocean "No Church In The Wild"
Odd Future always fronts. Tyler often raps about weed and coke, but he can’t touch the stuff due to medical conditions. Frank also fronts on “Novacane.” Songs about “pain” don’t score hits on hiphop stations as often, but “Novacane” might have been the beginning of a new trend where rappers and singers are preferring to discuss drug use itself as opposed to “we got pies flyin out da spot!” and “just bought a caddalick!”

It wouldn't surprise us if Kanye was directly influenced by "Novacane" when "No Church In The Wild" was getting put together, since the two are so similar in texture. The druggy/psychedelic guitar sample has a tendency to get stubbornly brainlodged.

| Continue to Page 9 |

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

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