Hard to choose a track off his brilliant album R Plus Seven which is a real grower, Daniel Lopatin’s 4th under the moniker OneOhTrix Point Never. Not squelchy furry breathing electronica (Jon Hopkins, Daniel Avery, Tim Hecker), but sharp, shapely and often actually human. Fantastic sounds within. I think he’s very good indeed, but you may file under “pretentious” if you wish.
#29 Zebra – OneOhTrix Point Never
sorry no link
My favourite house track in a year where 80s Chicago Jackmaster groove was a massive influence (once again) on people as diverse as Kany West and Disclosure. This is outta New York, breakthrough artist, his first single, and I don’t know who is singing. And it’s a fan video I think. But : TUNE
#30 So Good To Me – Chris Malinchak
been a good year for hip hop, best I can remember. Maybe that’s just me waking up again. But I suspect Eminem and Kanye will both feature in the top 3 albums of the year overall. Loads of others too – ASAP Rocky, J Cole, Pusha T, Earl Sweatshirt, Chance The Rapper, all guys, where are the women ? Anyways this was proper old skool rap music by Killer Mike and EL-P otherwise known as Run The Jewels. No – no idea what it means.
#31 Run The Jewels – Run The Jewels
This album slipped out without me noticing, if you miss a Jools there’s really little other TV exposure for new music which is weird I think. I find most stuff online. Where I found this – Her first album was amazing, I think this may be the best thing since Felt Mountain. From Tales Of Us, Goldfrapp
#32 Drew – Goldfrapp
They’re growing on me is all I can say. I have spent all year rejecting this band only to place them in my top 50 songs come December. But there you go, music is a fickle mistress. This song is good, if full of the irritating slightly strident and rhythmically odd quirks that make Haim so totally overwhelmingly successful. They don’t sound like Fleetwood Mac to me.
#33 Don’t Save Me – Haim
Never mind the hype she still didn’t sell that many albums, and neither did Bowie, Elton or Daft Punk – because no one is buying anymore. So hype away and we’ll just check out the songs and download if we like ’em. We like this one – classic rock pop rock and a video that caused even more hype from Sinead O Connor and others who felt that Miley was a victim of the industry. I’d like to think that she makes her own decisions. Like we all do right ?
#34 Wrecking Ball – Miley Cyrus
English singer-songwriter with guitar alert. Passionate and anthemic. No it’s not Jake Bugg or Mumford and Sons. But this young man will be just as big as them if there’s any justice. He made the BBC Sound of 2014 List though, so it’s not just me liking. But there ain’t no justice. Just this.
#35 Nothing Stays The Same – Luke Sital Singh
Thundercat is an LA-based experimental electronic groover and top bass player who works a lot with Flying Lotus
and makes ace videos – sadly there isn’t one for this song, but have a search for the rest, they’re fun, weird and witty. This is my favourite cut from Apocalypse his sprawling restless debut because I’m a sucker for vocal harmony and we need more of it.
#36 Tron Song – Thundercat
Original, funny, musical, story-telling, confessional. As a follow-up to Queen Of Denmark this album wandered away from folk straight into electronic synths. Like a mountain man Pet Shop Boy John Grant lit up 2014 and shone a light for all who had lost a relationship and felt angry and alone. Oh and – middle eight of the year ? : “I should have practised my scales, I should not be attracted to males, but you said that I should learn to love myself, make up your mind Dr Frankenstein.” Brilliant stuff.
#37 GMF – John Grant
There’s something raggy and wild and chaotic about Danny Brown, which puts him in a league of his own. I have’t enjoyed a rapper this much since Busta Rhymes years ago. Great album, this has a verse from ASAP Rocky who also dropped a great album of his own, but there isn’t space for everyone ! Can I squeeze Earl Sweatshirt and Pusha T into the list ?
#38 Kush Coma – Danny Brown ft A$AP Rocky
Meanwhile on this side of the Atlantic Kano had a huge year of his own, Mercedes commercial (what ?) Top Boy, guesting with Wiley, Skepta and Lethal Bizzle. And this. Benga, who in 2012 announced that he was stopping calling his music dubstep – a move which infuriated fans – dropped his third solo album in 7 years (confusingly called Chapter Two) from whence this song comes. This is the sound of East London, thrilling, dark and uncompromised. I’m a Grime Forefather. “chandeliers in council flats”
#39 Forefather – Benga ft Kano
Everyone fell in love with these brothers from Surrey this year. After remixing Jessie Ware’s Running last year, and having a smash with Latch, their album arrived in the spring to huge huge acclaim. It was 90s house music for the kids, those of us old enough could be reminded of Craig David all over your *.
This is a weird cut, Eliza Doolittle sings the vocal and a fella called Flume does a very daring remix. Check it out.
#40 You & Me – Disclosure ft Eliza Doolittle (Flume Remix)
nearly done. 2013 saw the release of Elton John’s 30th solo album, produced by T-Bone Burnett with just piano bass and drums and none of his usual band members. It’s the best thing he’s done for years, back to his classic 70s sound. This is the title track
#41 The Diving Board – Elton John
Best young hip hopper of the year was Chance The Rapper
whose debut Acid Rain was full of unusual imagery and words. ‘Back when Mike Jackson was still Jesus’. Original shit.
#42 Acid Rain – Chance The Rapper
Saw this fella at The Greys in Brighton, he’d come all the way from Los Angeles and was punting his new album The Owl and The Full Moon. One song stood out for me for original lyrics alone, I offer it below.
#43 No One’s Gonna Hear This Song – Adam Marsland
Is this breakthrough artist of 2013 ? Didn’t like his name, didn’t check him out. Heard a song on Radio 1 on the way to ASDA, thought it was ace. Something inside me went “I bet that’s Jake Bugg”. And it was. Cah !
#44 Slumville Sunrise – Jake Bugg
Rizzle Kicks are slowly conquering the world. Did anyone see them on Buzzcocks ? They’ll be Ant and Dec if they’re not careful. Meanwhile Abum number two dropped and had this hit single. Shades of The Specials. Not John Terry or Jeremy Kyle’s best friends. Good lads.
#45 Lost Generation – Rizzle Kicks
last few. I’ve loved absolutely everything John Legend has done. He is ace. Old-school soul man, doing it properly. Bought his new album Love In The Future on the day it came out and gave it to Jen, who loves him more than I do. Why was this song so low ?
#46 Made To Love – John Legend
Love the Africa Express project which is a bunch of western musicians travelling to africa to create with local musicians. Brianchild of one Damon Albarn. Good doc here – oh – if I post a link here it becomes a bloody great file, so I’ll leave it to the curious to seek out ‘The Story So Far’. It’s really good stuff. Song below is from the latest project which has only been out a week or so. Can’t say I’m not up to date !
#47 Rapou Kanou – Tal B Halala
No apologies for including a child of Bob Marley preaching rastafari and love. Apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. This is Kymani Marley.
#48 Greet You With Love – Kymani Marley
Parental advisory : this song is not to be played to children. I think we all know how K.Michelle feels when she sings “I just wanna fuck, and not fall in love, that don’t make me no slut, I have my needs, so don’t you go catching feelings, for tonight I want sex that doesn’t mean a thing.” Been waiting for the next Millie Jackson.
#49 I Just Wanna – K Michelle
didn’t think I was gonna let a top 50 go by without Queens Of The Stone Age didja ? New album was great, back to their (almost) best. So that completes my seasonal list. Thanks for listening, and commenting.
#50 My God Is The Sun – Queens Of The Stone Age
Thanks for reading, please add your comments below, like and rate, much appreciated
RB Dec 2013