the king ep is my #1 album :)
― The Reverend, Thursday, 5 January 2012 12:41 (1 year ago) Permalink
is there no place to buy it as a physical item?
― TracerHandVEVO (Tracer Hand), Thursday, 5 January 2012 12:43 (1 year ago) Permalink
i don't think so
― The Reverend, Thursday, 5 January 2012 13:12 (1 year ago) Permalink
i've been meaning to make a king thread all year :/
― The Reverend, Thursday, 5 January 2012 13:13 (1 year ago) Permalink
so excited to read this, tim!
― max, Thursday, 5 January 2012 13:53 (1 year ago) Permalink
ok wow that King record is amazing
― TracerHandVEVO (Tracer Hand), Thursday, January 5, 2012 12:36 PM (1 hour ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink
― questino (seandalai), Thursday, 5 January 2012 13:57 (1 year ago) Permalink
unbelievable remix of "hey hey" as well - i think this is the first time i've liked moombahton!
― TracerHandVEVO (Tracer Hand), Friday, 6 January 2012 12:04 (1 year ago) Permalink
60. TOK ft. Sleepy Hallowtips - Heroin Needle
Thanks to r|t|c (surprise!) for "Heroin Needle", which must have been the scariest fake Ward 21 track of 2011 from the masters of fake Ward 21 isms (to the point where I'm half inclined to accuse Ward 21 of fake TOK isms): a relentless onslaught of knocking beats and sawing cellos and horns and of course TOK themselves. As always, the primary appeal of TOK (together with Sleepy Hallowtips here) is how each of their voices is so utterly different from the others, from baritone grunt to snitchy high-pitched squeal to strained holler to methodical menace - but whoever is rapping here, they sound like they plan to ride right over the listener with a kind of dogged determination that requires neither rhythm or rhyme. That they manage to hold onto both is as remarkable as the beat managing to keep it together; none of these things seem assured while you're listening. One thing I love about dancehall is how unproblematic the contrast of voices on a tune like this is taken to be. It's tempting to say that TOK don't sound like they really care about convincing the listener. This isn't quite right: they care, but it's what they want to convince you of that's slightly different - on "Heroin Needle" all they demand of you is a generalised suspension of disbelief, a willingness to sacrifice yourself to the torrent of their overlapping voices for barely more than two minutes.z
59. Sess 4-5 and Keedy Black - I Luv Dat Boy
"I Luv Dat Boy" is bounce rap X R&B I guess, but something about its delirious, unsettling artificiality reminds me most of Swizz Beats' populist tracks circa 1999 - "Gotta Man" and "Girls' Best Friend" etc, those tunes that at once were addictively charming and yet somehow unreal and dangerous, like a sugary treat banned in most first world countries for causing sugar high mania. I also flash on the first wave of crunk&b, especially fake examples like Houston's "I Like That", tunes so impressed with their ingeniously smooth blending of lightness and lasciviousness that they ended up sounding like one long smirk (only a smirk that you want to smirk along with). Chalk it up to the song's sickly-sweet female chorus and blunt stuttering kicks, not to mention Sess 4-5's sturdy collection of sex jokes and metaphors (let alone Keedy's own rap: "he fuck me like he should... I love that mushy stuff... Oooooooh and I like it"). But most of all, just its general too-intense joie de vivre, handily lifting it above and beyond its constituent parts. "I luv dat boy! / he make me feel!" Keedy sighs inanely and somewhat out-of-tune-ly on the chorus, like an expiring lovestruck animaniac. It's a pose I unexpectedly identify with. NB. Deej got me onto this, as well as the marvelous mix-tape N.O. to the B.R. which houses it and heaps of other fabulous tunes besides - definitely one of my favourite "albums" of 2011.
58. Phaze 2 - Spaceship (Billy Kenny Remix)
I'm not sure if this is considered Bassline? But I heard it on DJ Q's excellent BBC 1xtra show, so mentally I class it that way. I suspect Kenny is actually one of those disloyal grasping types operating in some kind of dutch house / bassline / pop-grime / commercial club urban interzone. But what is it really? What indeed: how do you square its snapping shares, oddly slow and stalking creep that steals just enough from 2-step to get away with the theft entirely, and that ridiculous bassline, not actually like "Bassline" at all (more on that later)? It doesn't really matter, given "Spaceship" is congenial enough to slide cleanly into just about any setting. A masterpiece of construction, from the opening blade-like synth slashes to the wonderfully awful lyrics courtesy of Phaze 2's original tune ("This ship was built by NASA, baby / new improved sexual arousal / show me your planet, lady / allow my tongue to orbit all around you..."), into the discombobulated bassline, bouncing around like some kind of damaged android comprising no head and six thighs struggling to do up its zipper on the dancefloor. And then the most gorgeous, scintillating, live-feeling syncopated electro arpeggio imaginable, the kind of thing you might expect to Isolee to unleash if Isolee was in the habit of making tunes for Tinie Tempah and the like.
― Tim F, Wednesday, 18 January 2012 10:41 (1 year ago) Permalink
Best EOY list.
Looking forward to more. Thanks Tim!
― MikoMcha, Wednesday, 18 January 2012 15:59 (1 year ago) Permalink
Soz for the delay everyone.
57. Beth Ditto - Do You Need Someone?
I liked all of Ditto's sparkling nu-disco eponymous EP, but this final tune far and away most of all, in part because it's the one that drifts furthest from Ditto's habitual self-sufficiency into territory that emphasises the unknowable darkness of the idea of pop she's playing with as well as its sweetness. Beth offers herself up to a taken guy while scorning his girlfriend, in lyrics that could have been written by Taylor Swift, but I suspect there's a qualitative difference to this presentation of quasi-delusional devotion in such a glamorous electronic setting, Beth appearing as unreal as the dude she slavers over. While the lyrics cast her on the ground looking up, she sings from the stage looking down, a glassy diva backed by a kaleidoscopic swirl of rhythms, hooks and effects, the rococo overproduction as much 1985 as it is 1982, a shifting pattern of garish wall-hangings masking the ministrations of a master manipulator. It's really that dense, heady arrangement - together with Beth's distant, perfect chorus - that makes this, so carefully sculpted and pruned that turning down its open invitation would seem a calculated affront to beauty.
56. Yelawolf ft. Trae The Truth - Shit I Seen
"Shit I Seen" almost makes me wish that Yelawolf would go down that louche cinematic route of Rick Ross from a few years back. I'm talking about backing music not flow obv, since in so many ways Ross and Yelawolf could hardly be more different. This partly can be discerned in what a louche cinematic sound means for each of them; hardly celebratory or triumphant or even in control, "Shit I Seen" sounds jittery and nervous - somehow a more extreme adjective for rap than "paranoid" - the cocaine glitter already implying its flipside truth that things aren't what they seem, today's glossy drama the direct result of yesterday's loss-filled trauma, unable to compensate for it (Yelawolf of course is an expert at nursing grudges; he can't rise above anything). It helps that for such an expensive-sounding arrangement (trilling flutes, harps, calm trumpet refrains) "Shit I Seen" is so tense and portentous, its rolls of kicks hurtling towards a big crunch that makes even Yelawolf's most ego-puncturing stories (like when a friend brings a gun into the club and while his crew is all laughing Yelawolf is "scared as fuck") seem like epic revelations.
55. Danny Daze ft. Louisahhh - Your Everything
When I started this poll I already expected "Your Everything" to carry the burden of standing in for Lee Foss' brooding "Keep My Cool". Then Infinity Ink's gorgeous "Games" came out and I had no space for it, so now the tune basically has to act as representative of everything great about Hot Creations' seemingly endless parade of ludicrously bottom-heavy disco-house efforts. Wallowing in their big basslines and dreamy synth chords like hippopotami, each of these tunes in their own way recalls the scintillating, spacious surround-sound disco aesthetic of early Get Physical, tunes like DJ T's "Freemind" and M.A.N.D.Y.'s "Our World (Our People)". If eight years or so seems too soon for a revival, remember that those particular tunes, for all their modishness within the exploding electro-house scene, were most remarkable for how they gestured towards something timeless and idealised in the disco-to-house continuum, perfectly empty prisms for house is a feeling expansiveness. Hot Natured releases can be a little bit more camp than that, a little more perverse: on "Your Everything" the lugubriously swampy bassline pounds home a world-wearied whispery baritone while the beats rip and tear around them and descending clouds of moans and sighs drag the groove down into a bottomless well; but this perversity, such as it is, is also formalised, stylised, a tribute to its own inescapable intertwining within house music's ever-regenerating DNA.
54. Big K.R.I.T. ft. 2 Chainz, 8Ball & MJG - Money on the Floor
I was too young (or rather, too young and Australian) for any original g-funk except for "Gin & Juice" and "Regulate", and a decent chunk of my rap listening since has been some kind of half-conscious process of compensation, frequently drawn only to the smoothest, slivery synth efforts smothered with the slickness of dudes who know they don't have to work hard to get what they want, be that housed in actual g-funk revivalism or in other more new-fangled styles that just happen to facilitate that vibe. "Money on the Floor" is my favourite take on this general idea in ages, its throbbing creep (stop/start bass, shimmering guitar, gorgeously probing synth lines) and sliding chorus evoking impossible analogies of cords of soft metal burnished to a deep gleam twisting around one another. Big K.R.I.T. sounds indifferent to the majesty of the beat, or rather he simply takes it in stride, his verse accelerating and decelerating easily and seductively. The succession of guests here also is so perfect, each of 8Ball, MJG (especially) and 2 Chainz's voices upping the ante merely by grabbing the camera and pointing it to yet another corner of irresistible debauchery; but somehow the heavy inevitability of the slowed-down sampled vocals in the chorus seem most delightful of all. The video is perfectly judged as well.
― Tim F, Friday, 3 February 2012 09:58 (1 year ago) Permalink
― etc, Friday, 3 February 2012 11:32 (1 year ago) Permalink
― uberweiss, Friday, 3 February 2012 15:13 (1 year ago) Permalink
Looking forward to more of this, but I do feel for Tim having to live up to the standards he sets himself.
― MikoMcha, Tuesday, 7 February 2012 15:31 (1 year ago) Permalink
Is more of this happening? I'm curious to see how it ends!
― Somewhere between Fergie and Jesus (Alex in Montreal), Saturday, 17 March 2012 23:05 (1 year ago) Permalink
The list is done and several of the pieces are half-written, but I keep on having to put it aside for actual deadline work (of a music writing and non music writing variety).
― Tim F, Saturday, 17 March 2012 23:06 (1 year ago) Permalink
could you post the rest of the list tim?
― groovemaaan, Sunday, 29 April 2012 10:18 (1 year ago) Permalink
― r|t|c, Tuesday, 1 May 2012 13:59 (1 year ago) Permalink
heh i think maybe in the future tim should think about STARTING with #1 and then seeing how far he can work his way down the list from there
― some dude, Tuesday, 1 May 2012 14:08 (1 year ago) Permalink
― hologram ned raggett (The Reverend), Tuesday, 1 May 2012 19:16 (1 year ago) Permalink
I would still prefer to do the write-ups as that was the point of it more than the list itself. OTOH it seems the choices generate some reaction whereas what is said about them generates little if any (not a complaint: it seems typical of ILX really), so maybe I'm just being precious.
I don't think i will do the list next year though, time to let the concept retire.
― Tim F, Tuesday, 1 May 2012 22:56 (1 year ago) Permalink
― ♆ (gr8080), Wednesday, 2 May 2012 02:26 (1 year ago) Permalink
― frogbs in the trap (J0rdan S.), Wednesday, 2 May 2012 03:00 (1 year ago) Permalink
print & bind them & ship them by march 2013 along w/ an accompanying youtube playlist or w/e and i'm in for... $20? $30?
― frogbs in the trap (J0rdan S.), Wednesday, 2 May 2012 03:01 (1 year ago) Permalink
hand made wooden box
― ♆ (gr8080), Wednesday, 2 May 2012 04:30 (1 year ago) Permalink
srsly, i enjoy reading tim at least as much as listening to any boring ol records, and no more year-end lists is a dismal prospect given the ailing blog. if there was a coffee table book that you could plug an audio cable into, the world would maybe be ready for this - actually, come to think of it the technology is already more or less there:
― lucas pine, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 05:25 (1 year ago) Permalink
It doesn't have to be a top 101 though, why not slim it down?
― MikoMcha, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 06:28 (1 year ago) Permalink
presumably slimming it down would take a lot of decision time that could just as well be spent writing (or doing other, non end-of-year-best-of, things, if such things even exist).
― c sharp major, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 07:52 (1 year ago) Permalink
Well, in the future, I mean. iirc weren't older versions less a countdown and more of a collection of genres and styles?
― MikoMcha, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 08:37 (1 year ago) Permalink
i think obviously people would like the write-ups above all but since it had been understandably assumed that there wasnt to be any more of anything at this point closure was sought in the form of just the list.
however i am glad to see you arent making any complaints regarding reactions as any expectancies however latent would plainly have been misguided.
personally speaking as someone generally harbouring opinions4u and being unlikely to find something i hadn't already heard before it's difficult to really add anything further constructive to the blurbs given you tend to be almost monotonously spot-on and encapsulate a given track's merits beautifully. and obviously in doing so this rather elides the usual eoy chart kerfuffle of arguing the toss about what places where and what deserves more or deserves less.
― r|t|c, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 10:28 (1 year ago) Permalink
fwiw in particular i was genuinely delighted to see 'dip it low' called meaningless and be exalted for it; cosign in blood straight from the heart as the saying goes.
― r|t|c, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 10:35 (1 year ago) Permalink
haha. I do increasingly try not to have expectations about reactions (let alone endorsements) because I see how petulant it looks when others demand it.
If there has been a broader point behind doing this each year, it's been motivated by finding the aesthetics of ILXOR posters in aggregate (yes, what they like, but more specifically what they like about what they like) really fascinating, so doing my own self-involved thread is kind of a reverse tribute to that. But more than doing this thread I wish there were more threads like the J0rdan Listening Club, which is actually less interesting for its stated purpose ("lets foist X on j0rdan and see what he thinks) than for people really thinking about another poster's taste in a manner that isn't just for servicing zings or their own narc of sd.
Would start such threads myself except that if the thread fails then it's not only embarrassing but also creepy and obsessive-looking.
― Tim F, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 10:55 (1 year ago) Permalink
I didn't notice it before, so glad to see your thread alive again! I was afraid it was lost to sandbox forever
― V79, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 11:33 (1 year ago) Permalink
― Tim F, Tuesday, May 1, 2012 6:56 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink
― ♆ (gr8080), Tuesday, May 1, 2012 10:26 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink
― karl...arlk...rlka...lkar..., Wednesday, 2 May 2012 13:51 (1 year ago) Permalink
the people have their hand out and refuse to retract it.
― r|t|c, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 14:13 (1 year ago) Permalink
if tim threatens that he's going to stop doing it for free enough, some editor will comission him do the 2012 one for their pub/site, i'm sure
― Neil Young’s social media channels (some dude), Wednesday, 2 May 2012 14:20 (1 year ago) Permalink
tim you should totally try and get paid for this, i've always been amazed that you put so much effort in for free.
that, or just recast it as a rolling thread - people can be a bit burnt out on talking when EOY stuff comes around. for almost all of these i've either agreed with you throughout the year and you've crystallised it best, or i've disagreed with you throughout the year and dredging up an argument we've done isn't a ideal
― liberté, égalité, beyoncé (lex pretend), Wednesday, 2 May 2012 16:46 (1 year ago) Permalink
― flopson, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 18:23 (1 year ago) Permalink
Who had the 10 millionth post on ILX?
― flopson, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 20:42 (1 year ago) Permalink
― r|t|c, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 20:51 (1 year ago) Permalink
does the suicide bomber still blow up the store if he gets the millionth customer award? tune in next week folks
― r|t|c, Wednesday, 2 May 2012 20:57 (1 year ago) Permalink
53. Nick Hannam - Love You Girl
Hannam's rumbling bass-driven house remix of Thicke's "Wanna Love You Girl" is so congenial, so easy to introduce into any context and claim it has been there all along, I'm surprised it hasn't generated more momentum. On the other hand, maybe its congeniality works against it: Hannam's greatness is the kind you take for granted, he makes everything sound so easy, thoughtless even. Indeed, the specific genius of "Love You Girl" is realising that, while Thicke's vocals capture perfectly that vibe of murmuring romantic bs on the edge of sleep or waking up, the Neptunes' chilled production was still not chilled enough. So while "Love You Girl" is a bit faster than the original, it appropriately manages to feel more lethargic, more sluggish and enervated. Hannam has one great trick - or two, perhaps, but we'll come to the second in a bit - being the way his quiet bass riffs always seem to suggest something more exciting around the corner that never quite arrives, but instead hangs over the tune like portentous thunder clouds. That's the difference between lethargic and lazy: "Love You Girl" is a lion on a hill, considering whether to pounce. UPDATE: Hannam's 2012 "hit" "You Want Me" is just as good if not better, and listening to it together with "Love You Girl" confirms that Hannam's second trick is his great appreciation for vocals declaring depthless obsession while sounding like they're lying on hotel beds by themselves watching adult movies.
52. Denyque - When We Touch
Given the ubiquity of Dawn Penn's "No No No", it's surprising that you don't see more lugubrious female reggae-pop rising to the top (or at least middle) of the charts; who could deny those luxurious vybez? "When We Touch" is a bit smoother and shinier than that, more depressive than mournful, but its neatly packaged heart rests in the same place, its lilt and soft bounce speaking of desire and disenchantment and the desire that survives beyond disenchantment, worming its way through yr heart long after its final destination has skipped town. I like how sculpted "When We Touch" is (so sculpted in fact that it's hard to believe the arrangement supports a host of dancehall performances - I have banished all memory of alternate versions from my mind in some meaningless pledge of fidelity to Denyque), its urgency and bite deriving less from Denyque's restrained emoting than the calm, studied pirouettes of her auto-harmonised choruses, Denyque a ghostly everywoman simultaneously speaking from and to every listener. "I know that it's wrong to love you / so why can't I just let go of you": pop is rarely so eloquent as when it captures the longing that the singer cannot understand, the touch that you shrink away from but still slide towards again and again.
51. Mano Le Tough - Let's Not Talk About Love
So much Le Tough to love in 2011, but "Let's Not Talk About Love" towered above nearly every other contender (by Le Tough or by anyone else) by virtue if its sheer nonchalant perfection. And perhaps by virtue of this thing that Le Tough does that I think deserves special mention: at 1:25 of this already supremely sexy house tune there arrives a kind of metallic synth riff echoing and scraping in time and in tune with the bassline in a manner that somehow becomes the unlikeliest of oversexed seduction routines in a year with a fair number of them. Less than a minute later Le Tough grows bored of this (never mind that it's one of my favourite "sounds" of 2011) and opts for twinkling steel drums instead. Whatever particular foliage it pushes to the front, "Let's Not Talk About Love" simply takes for granted that you've already swooned, already succumbed to its charms such that it no longer has to work for your attention. I'm tempted to use the word "swagger", but even that suggests a certain energetic effort that is out of step with the unconcerned glide Le Tough adopts so naturally and so effectively here. Even the title's polite demurral carries a coy double meaning: this music hardly needs to talk about love when it wins it so easily. My only regret is not having heard the tune played out, as that metallic scrape-riff would be perfect for shape throwing.
50. Todd Terje - Snooze 4 Love
"Snooze 4 Love" slides forward without friction, even its ear-tickling delays and hesitations only reinforcing the sense of the ground flowing inexorably beneath and behind you, the tonal colour of trees and stop signs and houses and people whipping past the car window, their immediate obsolescence even as they first come into view simply underscoring the importance of the journey itself, on which there are no breaks or detours or diversions. Given the majesty of Gottsching's "E2-E4", you'd think there'd be heaps of miniature tributes along these lines (at or about the original's becalmed tempo, at any rate), except that "Snooze 4 Love" actually reminds me that Underworld (used to) do this quite often, by virtue of sounding something like a missing link between those two points, all surround-sound panoramic vision and house-as-trance-as-inevitability, dance music's logic of build-ups and breakdowns submerged within an endlessly unfurling vista, a descent into a sun-filled valley in the middle of winter (has this tune been optioned for a car advertisement yet?). The only real problem with "Snooze 4 Love" is that it reminds me of my latent desire for oxycontin, which re-emerges any time I lie on my bed, dead tired, and listen to tunes like this. Luckily then this is filled with moments - like when a resonant horn line is dispelled like mist by the reemergence of the throbbing bassline - that provide their own sense of chemical immersion.
49. Fatima Al-Qadiri - D-Medley
"Vatican Vibes" may be the most startling, fascinating Fatima tune, and the one that caught my ear first and hardest, but "D-Medley" has been the tune that I've continually returned to. In part, for how in its twinkling, chiming simplicity, it imagines so many alternate universes simultaneously: LTJ Bukem making gothic ambient, perhaps, or Bel Canto discovering the Caribbean some seven years before they actually did (seriously, this could be the great lost instrumental from White-Out Conditions). In a crowded field of post-grime-whatever practitioners Fatima is distinguished by her lack of fear of big, solemn gestures, and "D-Medley" is Fatima at her most solemn, the rippling steel drum melody and choral harmonies and ominous bass thrums evoking a sense of the world's hugeness and terrifying indifference to your fate with a precision that never feels like precision (after all, in its indifference the world cares not whether and how you perceive it). It's the kind of music that demands fruity critical overreach: imagine being trapped in a snow-storm on a glacier, or lost in an endless underground cavern surrounded by glowing stalactites. The very fact that "D-Medley" demands this kind of reaction perhaps rightly prompts a certain skepticism, a desire to resist the premeditated strategy behind its charms. But I've never claimed to be a strong person.
― Tim F, Sunday, 3 June 2012 05:30 (1 year ago) Permalink
Just love love love reading these.
Surely there is a kickstarter project in this?
― toby, Sunday, 3 June 2012 14:24 (1 year ago) Permalink
The wait has been so epic this round, but still worth it!
― MikoMcha, Sunday, 3 June 2012 14:49 (1 year ago) Permalink
― just sayin, Monday, 4 June 2012 10:38 (1 year ago) Permalink
echoing the love
― Fas Ro Duh (Gukbe), Monday, 4 June 2012 15:49 (1 year ago) Permalink
The only real problem with "Snooze 4 Love" is that it reminds me of my latent desire for oxycontin, which re-emerges any time I lie on my bed, dead tired, and listen to tunes like this. Luckily then this is filled with moments - like when a resonant horn line is dispelled like mist by the reemergence of the throbbing bassline - that provide their own sense of chemical immersion.
I haven't wanted any oxycontin since I threw away the last of my post-surgery ones two years ago, but this almost makes them tempting again.
― toby, Monday, 4 June 2012 16:55 (1 year ago) Permalink
48. Nadia Oh - Taking Over The Dancefloor (Kate Middleton)
Probably my most hated act of the 00s was Vandalism, a local post-electro-house duo who took the affected disaffection of Who Said Funk's already-dispiriting "Shiny Disco Balls" to a grim and gruesome nadir with the bored, nasal recitations of their irritating debut "I Might Like You Better (If We Slept Together)", the painful intensification of the blueprint on follow-up "Smash Disco" and the apocalyptically awful zenith of "Creeps (Get On The Dancefloor)", the capacity of which to harangue the listener while still sounding utterly disinterested in itself making it a deserving nominee for the decade's worst tune, worse still because, by mutilating the barely-dead corpse of Steve Bug's remix of Freaks' "The Creeps", Vandalism managed to compress an entire depressing three-book tale of electro-house's decline and fall into four grisly minutes. Here we must distinguish between affected disaffection - the limited creative potential of which the past decade has thoroughly depleted - and the disaffection of the singer who doesn't realise they're meant to sound like they care. This too must be distinguished from the further avenue of affectlessness - the sheer absence of emotion one hears in some (though only some) post-autotune pop, which can seem to move beyond questions of caring or a lack thereof - leaving us with a surprisingly thin strip of pop where the singer actually sounds like they'd rather be sleeping off their comedown (even Paris Hilton mined this territory only occasionally). What makes Nadia Oh appealing to me is how effectively her nonchalance walks the tightrope between disaffection and affectlessness, her robo-frankenstein's bride chants of "we gon' take your money", "throw your wallets in the sky" and "SWAG!" suggesting she's "just like that", the kind of person who says everything in a voice implying sarcastic deadpan even when she's being totally sincere. In fact Nadia still might not be that appealing except that her persona offers the perfect foil for the euro-moombahton backing track, its efficient compression-packed travel bag of whistles and sirens and handclaps and rave synths and most of all its monolithic yet slothful beat suggesting a dance that goes through the motions in a manner that ought not be satisfying but absolutely is. And even leaving aside all of the above, "Taking Over The Dancefloor" would deserve this position due to the marvelous yet too-brief new keyboard melody that lays siege to the outro.
47. Vybz Kartel - Coloring Book
For the most part I was left a bit cold by Vybz's swing circa Pon Di Gaza towards downbeat but sweet autotuned balladry, not so much in and for itself but because over multiple tracks (and especially in the context of an entire album) I find the cumulative effect kind of oppressive (and certainly depressive), the moistly thick plod-throb of the riddims and Vybz's dreary half-sung melodies always putting me in mind of that suffocating, disoriented feeling I get after falling asleep in the afternoon. "Coloring Book" is in this vein yet not, its stuttering piano groove and eerie violin sweeps thoroughly lachrymose and yet utterly sharp and crystalline, the sadness now piercing and even chilling. It's matched well to Vybz's ambivalent ode to his tattoo obsession, which peddles a sad tale of addiction even as it implores listeners to get their own inks. "When the tattoo needle start fi bun / Mi kill off the pain with Street Vybz rum" he quasi-boasts in deadened fashion, but he also seems to need the pain: "Stylist push the needle through the epidermis / hotter than a macka hype bun you like a furnace / pretty when it finish but it hot when it a service / you only hear the needle go so "eeennn" and get nervous / from me start me cant stop, everyday me say dis a last two..." As much as anything, "Coloring Book" derives its power from Vybz's vocal range, veering from deep baritone to adenoidal tenor and back again as if to observe his fixation from every possible angle, from pride to anxiety to hardened bossman indifference. And if he wasn't truly scared of himself, why did he choose to tell this story over such a consummately melancholy riddim? Whatever his motivations, "Coloring Book" is one of very few tunes of last year that can leave me feeling sad some time after it finishes.
46. Groove Theory - Tell Me (George Fitzgerald Remix)
I always adored the louche grace of the original "Tell Me", which never fails to bring to mind Amel Larrieux in the video clip, bobbing her head and swinging her hands back and forth in almost absent-minded time with the beat. Aside from the fact that it's a great song, "Tell Me" doesn't necessary seem like the perfect fit for a post-dubstep syncopated house reworking (if you'd pitched it to me I would have been slightly scared), but from its first seconds - the insistent kicks, the gorgeously throbbing synth-chords, Amel's slightly pitched up vocal now signifiying impatient need as much as boundless generosity - Fitzgerald's effort is so thoroughly right-seeming that even the memory of doubts is banished alongside the doubts themselves: this was always meant to be, and always meant to be perfect. Much like the 2012 work of Disclosure, Fitzgerald's bubbly, hesitant remix offers yet another reimagination of the meaning of "garage", its trebly delicacy and pillowy atmospherics and sensuous, meticulously timed percussion (the hi-hats alone are unbelievably beautiful) simultaneously recalling Deep Dish's remix of De'Lacy's "Hideaway" and Dreem Teem's remix of Amira's "My Desire" in its evocation of an intoxicating vulnerability, a desire constantly falling forward yet deeper into itself, Amel's sighs laying her bare before you while the music promises understanding and empathy without limitation. There's nothing street about it: just desire as champagne bloodrush, ecstatic and overwhelmed and utterly impossible.
― Tim F, Monday, 18 June 2012 13:33 (1 year ago) Permalink
― karl...arlk...rlka...lkar..., Monday, 18 June 2012 23:41 (1 year ago) Permalink
only 45 left to go!
― D-40, Sunday, 25 November 2012 22:41 (6 months ago) Permalink
― r|t|c, Sunday, 25 November 2012 22:46 (6 months ago) Permalink
the worst thing is that it's always tim's MOST FAVOURITE tracks that get shafted
― #YOLO ONO (lex pretend), Monday, 26 November 2012 12:50 (6 months ago) Permalink
heh i'm sure tim's wouldnt have been boring but generally this dreary awards season would most likely be much improved if everyone were forced to only discuss their top 20-50
― r|t|c, Monday, 26 November 2012 15:45 (6 months ago) Permalink
probably true of every year really
― #YOLO ONO (lex pretend), Monday, 26 November 2012 16:06 (6 months ago) Permalink
Let's get 2011 out of the way. This is just what the balance of my 2011 list has been since the beginning of the year, haven't really thought about its currency now but it looks pretty sympathetic to Nov 2012 me:
1. Diddy-Dirty Money - Sade / No Ordinary Love2. Beyonce - Schoolin Life / Countdown3. Fuzzy Logick ft. Myshy - Playground4. Toddla T - Take It Back (Dillon Francis Remix) / CSS - Hits Me Like A Rock (Dillon Francis Remix)5. Nicki Minaj ft. Esther Dean - Super Bass6. Gucci Mane - Brrr! (Supa Cold)7. Funkystepz - Warrior + various remixes eulogising8. Konshens - Nuh Pull It Up9. Ill Blu - Monsta10. Laza Morgan ft. Mavado - One By One11. Royal-T - Cool Down12. Desloc Piccalo ft. Adiah - Drums13. Artful - Could Just Be The Bassline (ArtOfficial Club Mix)14. Schoolboy Q ft. Jhene Aiko - Fantasy15. Britney Spears ft. Nicki Minaj & Ke$ha - Till The World Ends (Remix)16. Purpl Pop - The Way (The Living Graham Bond Dub)17. S.E.C.T. ft. Ben Westbeech - In The Park18. Kelly Rowland ft. Lil' Wayne - Motivation19. Terror Danjah ft. Ruby Lee Ryder - Full Attention20. Dead Rose Music Company - Never Gonna Stop21. Don P The Panhandle King - Gone Do22. Dawn Richard - Broken Record23. Busy Signal - Pon Dem24. Meek Mill ft. Rick Ross - Ima Boss25. Invisible Conga People - In A Hole26. Cherine Anderson - Make Up Sex27. Champion ft. Ruby Lee Ryder - Sensitivity28. Toi - You'll Be Mine29. Alexis Jordan - Good Girl30. Matthew Kyle - Off My Mind31. DJ Q ft. Louise Williams - Over Me32. Jordanne Patrice - Ready When Yuh Ready33. Benoit & Sergio - Everybody34. Pitbull ft. Ne-Yo, Nayer & Afrojack - Give Me Everything35. Natalie May - Clothes Off 36. Tanya Stephens - Shame On You37. Selena Gomez & The Scene - Love You Like A Love Song38. Jesse Boykins III - I Can't Stay39. Lloyd ft. Awesome Jones - Cupid40. S-X - Wooo! Riddim (DJ Q Refix)41. Aisha Davis - My Loving42. JoJo - Marvin's Room (Can't Do Better)43. Scottie B ft. Jae Elle - Feel Nice, Feel Right44. The Wideboys - Shopaholic (Future Garage Remix)45. Popcaan - Raving
I post this despite thinking that lists by themselves are kinda boring, so if anyone actually wants a spiel for any of these in particular let me know.
― Tim F, Tuesday, 27 November 2012 10:45 (6 months ago) Permalink
Nick Hannam & Tom Garenett ft Tom Zanetti - You Want MeTerri Walker - He Loves Me (Artful Mix)Pyper ft Kt Forrester - Dagger To The HeartVybz Kartel - Lip GlossTanya Stephens - Take Good Care Of My Man
yeah can you do these please :]
― r|t|c, Tuesday, 27 November 2012 11:04 (6 months ago) Permalink
Haha, there's a reason I'm getting 2011 out of the way.
― Tim F, Tuesday, 27 November 2012 11:30 (6 months ago) Permalink
lol knew you'd bottle it
― r|t|c, Tuesday, 27 November 2012 11:34 (6 months ago) Permalink
that finneyana reign just wont let up
― r|t|c, Tuesday, 27 November 2012 11:38 (6 months ago) Permalink
Ha. Selfishly wouldn't mind a gloss on the Dillon Francis, as I didn't see many others write about moombahton (didn't catch on around here, and I think uh trap has colonised any potentially sympathetic spaces). & "One By One" for general life-affirmation.
― etc, Wednesday, 28 November 2012 01:21 (6 months ago) Permalink
― flopson, Wednesday, 28 November 2012 14:59 (6 months ago) Permalink
Don P The Panhandle King - Gone Do
Wish I could find an MP3 of this. Great track.
― MikoMcha, Wednesday, 28 November 2012 19:35 (6 months ago) Permalink
shoutout to brainwasher for that 1
― D-40, Wednesday, 28 November 2012 20:43 (6 months ago) Permalink
Yeah Deej hipped me to that, it was the last thing I heard to make my list I think.
― Tim F, Wednesday, 28 November 2012 21:05 (6 months ago) Permalink
― MikoMcha, Tuesday, 18 December 2012 12:15 (6 months ago) Permalink
― Tim F, Tuesday, 18 December 2012 13:23 (6 months ago) Permalink
looking forward to it!
― toby, Tuesday, 18 December 2012 13:45 (6 months ago) Permalink
you should try to get a publication to pick up on it tim - 1) it's good enough (obviously) 2) it feels weird and wrong expecting someone to be doing something this detailed unpaid 3) it would make you finish it
― lex pretend, Tuesday, 18 December 2012 13:47 (6 months ago) Permalink
― frogbs in the trap (J0rdan S.), Tuesday, May 1, 2012 5:00 PM (7 months ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink
― frogbs in the trap (J0rdan S.), Tuesday, May 1, 2012 5:01 PM (7 months ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink
― ❏❐❑❒ (gr8080), Tuesday, 18 December 2012 18:35 (6 months ago) Permalink
― toby, Tuesday, 18 December 2012 21:49 (6 months ago) Permalink
Yeah, feels weird sort of harassing you for it, but it's clearly a highlight of the EOY... I would pay for the zine version.
― MikoMcha, Tuesday, 18 December 2012 23:23 (6 months ago) Permalink
I would pay $s for just an emailed version (with e.g. youtube links for listening). But yes, obviously this is a bit weird, apologies etc.
― toby, Tuesday, 18 December 2012 23:32 (6 months ago) Permalink
Basically my aversion to that kind of thing is the need to organise myself. The level of organisation required at work is already almost more than I can handle.
However I have been thinking of some sort of zine idea for a while, not for this EOY but for something next year.
― Tim F, Tuesday, 18 December 2012 23:50 (6 months ago) Permalink
man richelle are still something else... you hear album upon album less transportive than these here 5 minutes
― r|t|c, Saturday, 23 March 2013 22:59 (2 months ago) Permalink
Tim do you like 'Drink and Rave'?
― Matt DC, Thursday, 11 April 2013 18:02 (2 months ago) Permalink