Wednesday, December 12, 2018


the penultimate batch...

21. Good Form (Nicki Minaj):

Nicki makes her mark yet again in hip hop history with a song that is essentially an ode to female empowerment and women simply being confident in themselves enough to demand that their significant other eats their “cookie” as it’s good for them. Nicki never shys away from sexual provocativeness and delights on the fact that her famous derriere can shake in multiple ways, and this same formula – which caught the eyes of the world in 2014 when she released ‘Anaconda’ – has worked again – the Nicki Effect. (THEDGESUSU)

22. ShenYeng Anthem (Shenseea):

while Spice continues to embarrass herself in haste of popularity, newer, younger girls are emerging with anthems that hit Lady Saw-era heights.

23. Mystery Of Love (Sufjan Stevens):

A charming, airy time capsule of ’80s European synth-pop and bittersweet modern orchestral compositions, peppered with Stevens’ patented tenderness. (COS)

24. Fast Slow Disco (St. Vincent):

another reworked track, this time utterly flawlessly pretty.

25. Your Teeth In My Neck (Kali Uchis):

a deceptively perky indictment of industry vampires, labor exploitation, and general inequity, with a live-jazz backing by Los Angeles’ Wldrness. “What do you do it for, rich man keeps getting richer taking from the poor,” she sings, her voice a soaring scold. “You gotta get right.” (PITCHFORK)

26. True Original (Five Steez & Mordecai):

Steez can pull off these jams in his sleep by now but things are elevated to new heights as he careens through that second verse.

27. When You’re Wrong (Twin Shadow):

the certifiable crowd-pleasing banger that the album is crying out for. Densely packed beats and a popping bass line chisel out a groove ready to raise the tempo on any tightly packed dance floor. (POPMATTERS)

28. All Wordz Are Made Up (The Voidz):

verging on the territory carved out by LCD Soundsystem but the band’s originality utterly seeps through.

29. Kites (N.E.R.D feat. Kendrick Lamar & M.I.A):

I’ve always wondered what would happen if Lamar and M.I.A ever converged on a track together…needless to say I was not disappointed.

30. Venice Beach (Lana del Rey):

Four years ago, the world might not have been ready for a nearly 10-minute Lana Del Rey song called “Venice Bitch.” But since Lana Del Rey has spent the later half of the 2010s leaning into her own persona, that “Venice Bitch” feels like the full realization of Lana Del Rey she’s been building up to. The song finds itself in a gentle groove, and spends the next nine minutes there, exploring with distorted guitars, trickling acoustics, and Lana’s haunting, wistful vocals. She’s at her most confident referencing Robert Frost, film noir, and her own doomed love. (ESQUIRE)

31. Valentine (What's It Gonna Be) (Rina Sawayama):

an anti-Valentine song for those who want a little no-strings-attached action on a day that perpetuates the boring age old narrative of heterosexual monogamy," says Sawayama of the '90s-flecked track, which combines retro R&B glossiness with her bristly, erratic future-pop stylings. (THELINEOFBESTFIT)

32. This Is America (Childish Gambino):

The sheer scope of Donald Glover’s body of artistic work is so incredible that he even made it into a gag in his opening monologue on Saturday Night Live. Music, movies, TV, unmade cartoons, writing—the list of his talents goes on and on. Starting as a playful hip-hop moniker, Glover’s Childish Gambino persona has evolved into something completely unexpected with his Grammy-winning third album, Awaken, My Love. On that release, he moved from rap to a falsetto-led collection of soul and R&B. But after the success of that pivot, he does so again with the jarring and brilliant “This Is America.” The song, and its accompanying video, is a surreal critique of race and violence in this country. (ESQUIRE)

33. No Tears Left To Cry (Ariana Grande):

a song of healing, written in response to the terrorist attack that took place near the end of Ariana Grande's 2017 concert in Manchester, claiming the lives of nearly two dozen people. The horror of that night, of course, deeply shook Grande. But half a billion streams later, it's clear that the song also speaks to a universal pain, a desire to move on, to reclaim happiness, sanity, a sense of self. "I'm lovin', I'm livin', I'm pickin' it up," she sings. And as we sing along, we hope we get there, too — at least for the next three-and-a-half minutes. (NPR)

34. Python (Miguel):

it may take a few spins for you to realize how stunning this track is but it only took me 30 seconds. Miguel’s next move might be checkmate.

35. Rosebud (US Girls):

"What is your Rosebud, you've got to know," asks the chorus of U.S. Girls' "Rosebud." It may be a reference to Orson Welles's Citizen Kane, in which a sled named "Rosebud" represented the abandoned innocence and happiness of Charles Foster Kane. This song itself has a haunting vocal aspect to it, like half-forgotten memories are worming their way into your subconscious. (ESQUIRE)

36. 4th Dimension (Kid See Ghosts feat, Louis Prima):

a crazy sample yes but here at last is the genius at work.

37. Rental (Brockhampton):

the crisp beats literally snap.

38. All The Stars (Kendrick Lamar & SZA):

For both artists, "All the Stars" is anomalous in its relative lack of self-consciousness: what happens when an awkward girl from New Jersey and rap's superstar nihilist 'do Hollywood'. The marching drums, the slow-climbing strings, the hook's expectant refrain that success may just be within reach, ring in affinity with the film's arc of triumph over adversity. (THELINEOFBESTFIT)

39. Make It Out Alive (Nao):

taking her cues from Kelela last year, Nao pours the soul deep in ths R&B jam deep.

40. Nappy Wonder (Blood Orange):

On the track, Dev Hynes looks back with slightly blurred feelings of nostalgia and despair as he flits between his past and present perspective. “I bust it up on Ilford Lane / A pleasure flip up to my grade”, he recalls as he sandwiches the innocence of his skateboarding youth between a chorus which provides apt commentary on past cultural norms; “feelings never had no ethics/feelings never have been ethical”. (THELINEOFBESTFIT)