Ricky’s Favourite Songs of the Year

Hatchie, March 15, 2018

I feel like this year my list should come up with an asterisk, as I pretty much stopped absorbing new music when I had to take a 2 month work+fun trip in September to various parts of the world.

Still, up until then it was pretty good. Here are some songs I really enjoyed this year in no particular order.

Karen O & Michael Kiwanuka – O My Saint
This track was penned by Karen O for some Kenzo commercial, further cementing Karen O’s marriage of music and fashion. Yet this is clearly not a YYY song, with it’s slow build and the intertwining vocals between Karen and Michael. The results are memorable

Superorganism – Everybody Wants to be Famous
Probably my most listened to song of the year, this song is just catchy and fun. You would think a song peppered with so many sound effects and somewhat gimmicky sounds wouldn’t work, but somehow it all comes together in a fun and enjoyable package.

Lana Del Rey – Mariners Apartment Complex
An argument can be made that all of Lana Del Rey’s songs sound very similar, but I think that’s just her voice and delivery style. This track is her first with producer du jour Jack Antonoff and I’m not a big enough Lana fan to know if it made any real difference. Either way, I really like the first two lines of this song “You took my sadness out of context / At the Mariners Apartment Complex” and generally find myself enjoying this song.

Let’s Eat Grandma – It’s Not Just Me
Let’s Eat Grandma’s debut record was enjoyably weird. Something changed in the past two years and the duo decided to make ear-worm pop anthems with this year’s release of I’m All Ears. I’m not going to complain.

IDLES – Great
Definitely one of the most universally hyped and loved bands this year, IDLES rode the tidal wave of momentum from their SXSW showcases right into the consciousness of all punk rockers in 2018. The album tries it’s best to translate their energetic and exhaustive live show into a digestible format and it does a good job. GREAT is among a handful of GREAT songs that showcase this band’s ferocious energy and penchant for quality song writing. Don’t sleep on these guys

Sundara Karma – One Last Night On This Earth
I think I’m one of five people in North America who likes Sundara Karma. Anyways, these guys seem like the Rifles before them, intent on bringing back Brit pop. Unlike the Rifles, these guys do it with a heavy dose of glam and attitude. I, for one, am ready for a Britpop revival. Maybe these guys will chaperone it in.

Gang of Youths – My Heart is a Muscle
Well, technically this was released in 2017, but only in Australia so it doesn’t really count. I was describing Gang of Youths to someone the other day and they were like ‘oh, so they are posi-core?’. Is that a genre? I don’t even know. Gang of Youths are a happy band that was made to send out positive vibes. Their music reflects that and it’s weird because you don’t hear that many songs today like that. I don’t know why. Anyways, think anthemic rock that you want to jump up and down to while singing along. That’s them. It’s great.

Starcrawler – I Love LA
You listen to this song and you totally know it’s from LA. It’s guitars and just the right amount of detached coolness to it. Also, it has the word LA. I think I like this song more because of their live show, but it’s a good tune.

St. Vincent – Fast Slow Disco
This pop reworking of Slow Disco was released this July and man, it’s a delicious pop song that probably lit up dance floors this summer (I don’t go to these places). It’s a wonderful lesson to all artists – don’t be afraid to review your old tunes (even if it’s just one year ago) and rework them.

Shame – One Rizla
Shame or Idles. Seems like this year saw the rise of two rock bands from the UK of a similar aesthetic. Both have many things to say and quite the rambunctious rock shows. As is typical of the UK press, there is some notion that there is a competition. I say you don’t have to choose between the two. Don’t cling to conflict and just let go, just let go.

Lucy Dacus – Night Shift
This may or may not be my favourite song of the year. I always like songs with a slow build and this breakup song starts off in familiar singer/songwriter territory before exploding into something else and it’s great.

John Prine – Summer’s End
This song could have been in 1959, 1989 or 1999 – it has a timeless sound. I’m new to John Prine but apparently he’s quite popular in the folk world. This song is about the opioid crisis but its message should resonate with anyone.

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Posted on by Ricky in Everything

About Ricky

Britpop lovin Chinaman, consumer of all things irrelevant. Toronto Raptors fan.

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