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Top 50 Songs Of 2016: Part 1

November 28, 2016

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Hey there!  It’s time to start running down my favorite songs and albums (look for this list next week) of the year.  Below you’ll find Part 1 of my Top 50 Songs of 2016 list.  It (and every part that’s coming after today) consists of tracks that I found myself frequently revisiting throughout the year.  Simple!  Enjoy.

PS – One thing is a little different this year – I will not be including any Austin acts in this singles list.  I’m going to be doing a two-part year-ender via 101X Homegrown (my radio show) that will detail my favorite Austin tracks.  Look for Part 1 to air on 12/11, and then Part 2 on 12/18.

PPS – I got a ton of take down notices, so you’ll have to listen via Spotify.

50)  :Sia – Waving Goodbye (Produced by Diplo):  When I saw (and loved) The Neon Demon, I found myself really digging this anthemic number as it blasted over the credits.  Oddly enough, I didn’t even realize it was by Sia until I got home and looked it up.

49)  :Big Baby D.R.A.M. – Cute:  This is such a silly song by D.R.A.M., but it’s so damn catchy that I’ve been unable to escape it for most of 2016.  Just let it take you.

48)  :Polica – Lately:  If you ask me, this is the best song off of Polica’s latest album, United Crushers.  It’s hazy and sparse and the line “seems like we’re too comfortable in love” is a sharp one.

47)  :Father John Misty – Real Love Baby:  Whether you’ve ever fully boarded the Father John Misty hype train or not, it’s hard to deny just how charming this track is on all fronts.

46)  :Pity Sex – Bonhomie:  The boy/girl vocals in this Pity Sex track are so on point.  As is the 90s-lean it carries.  And well, everything else about it.

45)  :Screaming Females – Skeleton:  I sure do love me some Screaming Females.  This track was rightfully cut from 2015′s Rose Mountain, but I’m glad to have it now – it’s unhinged and great.

44)  :LVL UP – Hidden Driver:  You could criticize this LVL UP effort as being too Neutral Milk Hotel-esque, but that would be silly.  It’s just a great song.  Turn it up.

43)  :Forth Wanderers – Slop:  This one from Forth Wanderers has a meandering arrangement and lyrics loaded with obviously-youthful musings – “I love too much/Too hurt this bad” – but I dig it.

42)  :Frightened Rabbit – Death Dream:  I loved Frightened Rabbit, then I veered away, and now this song has brought me back to them.  That’s how stellar it is.

41)  :The Blow – Think About Me:  There’s an early-era Rilo Kiley vibe on display here that I’ve been caught up since I first heard this song.  Thanks for that, The Blow.

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Quickdraw: P.O.S., Black Mountain, Weaves, Pity Sex, Yung

March 7, 2016

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Music!  Enjoy.

:P.O.S – Sleepdrone-Superposition:  Kathleen Hanna, Allan Kingdom, Astronautalis, Eric Mayson, Hard_R, Lydia Liza, Lizzo and Nicholas L. Perez are all listed as contributors on this intense nine-minute monster from P.O.S.  What a way to start the week.  The Sleepdrone/Superposition single is out now via Doomtree.

:Black Mountain – Florian Saucer Attack:  This track is Black Mountain in bizarro mode (I mean, just look at the the video), but I like it.  Judging by the first single and this song, their upcoming album is looking like it’ll be a diverse listen.  IV is due out April 1 via Jagjaguwar.

:Weaves – One More:  There’s something about Jasmyn Burke’s voice that I can’t get enough of.  As you’ll see in this catchy, 90s-esque indie rock tune, it’s just got its own thing going on.  Weaves’ self-titled LP is due out June 17 via Kanine/Memphis Industries/Buzz.

:Pity Sex – Bonhomie:  Here’s a good pop song from Pity Sex.  I especially love the on-point boy/girl vocal combo that slides in around the halfway mark.  White Hot Moon is due out April 29 via Run For Cover.

:Yung – Pills:  Yung (aka Mikkel Holm Silkjaer) has quickly become a real favorite of mine, and I’m hoping I can the act at SXSW.  This new single is pure indie rock goodness.  A Youthful Dream is due out June 10 via Fat Possum.

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Quickdraw: A Giant Dog, Future Of The Left, Pity Sex, St. Vincent, Dana Falconberry And Medicine Bow

February 18, 2016

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Music!  Enjoy.

:A Giant Dog – Sex And Drugs:  Austin’s own A Giant Dog will be putting out their new album via the mighty Merge Records, and that’s just snazzy as hell.  This first single is like all of their other tunes – fiery. Pile is due out May 6.

:Future Of The Left – The Limits Of Battleships:  Andrew Falkous and the gang have rallied up a new Future Of The Left album.  I’m really into how groovy and infectious this first single is.  The Peace & Truce Of Future Of The Left is due out April 8 via Prescriptions Music.

:Pity Sex – Burden You:  Pity Sex really caught my attention with this new song of theirs.  It’s a perfect little slice of 90s-enthused shoegaze.  White Hot Moon is due out April 29 via Run For Cover.

:St. Vincent – Emotional Rescue (Rolling Stones Cover):  This cover that St. Vincent did for Luca Guadagnino’s new film is slinky and weird (even for her), and I can’t stop listening to it.  The soundtrack for A Bigger Splash is due out tomorrow.

:Dana Falconberry and Medicine Bow – Dolomite:  Here’s a very headphone-worthy new one from Dana Falconberry And Medicine Bow, a long time Austin-based favorite of mine.  From The Forest Came The Fire is due out April 1 via Modern Outsider.  You’ll be able to see Dana at the Stateside Theater on April 2.

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Quickdraw: The Mantles, Protomartyr, Pujol, Pity Sex, Expert Alterations

September 29, 2015

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Music!  Enjoy.

:The Mantles – Hate To See You Go:  The Mantles have a way of drawing me in and holding tight.  Hard to tell whether it’s more their familiar-feeling music or the stellar songwriting.  All Odds End is due out October 16 via Slumberland.

:Protomartyr – I Forgive You:  This is one rambly, Parquet Courts-esque track, and it’s great.  I can’t wait to spend a lot of time with Protomartyr’s upcoming album.  The Agent Intellect is due out October 9 via Hardly Art.

:Pujol – Sleepy Doni:  I had this new Pujol single stuck in my head before I even got done listening to it for the first time.  It’s a slice more playful than his usual stuff.  The Kisses EP is due out November 27 via Bartertown CO-OP.

:Pity Sex – What Might Soothe You?:  Judging only by this track, Pity Sex seem to be aiming for a bigger, better and crisper sound on their upcoming LP.  That’s exciting.  White Hot Moon will be out in 2016 via Run For Cover Records.

:Expert Alterations – You Can’t Always Be Liked:  First of all, I love the title of this track (it’s also what the album is called).  Secondly, Expert Alterations are one of the best new bands to come out of 2015.  I’m fully expecting their debut LP to be stellar.  You Can’t Always Be Liked is due out October 30 via Kanine.

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Quickdraw: Bass Drum Of Death, Pity Sex, Happy Diving, Little Big League, King Tuff

September 15, 2014

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Music!  Enjoy.

:Bass Drum Of Death – For Blood:  The press releases for the new Bass Drum Of Death album have been interesting in that they blatantly admit the band’s goal is to land a mainstream audience.  It’s sort of refreshing, really.  There’s usually some elaborate story that details how a “cleaned up sound” came about, but here it’s just simply because the band wants more fans.  I can respect that.  Rip This is due October 7 via Innovative Leisure.

:Pity Sex – Acid Reflex:  For some reason it’s taken an eternity for me to fully come around on Pity Sex.  They totally have that 90s rock sound that I adore on an almost obsessive level, so I don’t know what I’ve been waiting for.  The band’s split 7″ with Adventures is due out October 7 via Run For Cover Records.

:Happy Diving – Sad Planet:  Happy Diving are a band out of the Bay Area that I like a lot.  This new track of theirs sees them giving a bit of a shout out to the Weezer from way back, and I think it’s pretty rad.  Look for Big World to be released on October 21 via Father/Daughter Records.

:Little Big League – Tropical Jinx:  I haven’t at all been on the hunt for a warmer version of Speedy Ortiz, but Little Big League are exactly that and somehow I feel like it’s exactly what I’ve been waiting for.  I blame Michelle Zauner’s alluring voice for all of it.  Tropical Jinx will be released on October 14 via Run For Cover Records.

:King Tuff – Headbanger:  This song features some immensely goofy/lame songwriting, but it’s catchy and fun so I’m sharing it.  On a related note, I can’t wait to hear slick rock numbers like this one played alongside King Tuff’s older, more psychedelic efforts.   Sub Pop will release Black Moon Spell on September 23.

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