09 December 2012

From Tulle to Tweed's Top 20 Songs of 2012 (20-15)

As someone who avidly consumes information from music blogs, I have always been a bit wary of 'best of lists'. Something about the format seems to imply neutrality, an objective ranking of one song as being above another. Rarely is my #1 anyone else's, and even when this is the case, #2-#10 may be contrary to my opinion. There is something self-centered about 'best of lists'. But I love the idea of sharing my favorite songs with my readers and so present my list. Agree, disagree, love it or hate it, I would love to hear your comments in the blog, as I certainly don't hold back from offering my own!

20.  Purity Ring-Belispeak
2012 was the year of ethereal female pop vocals overlapping strong electronic sounds. One of the most understated acts of the year was Purity Ring. Considered by most to be part of the sub-genre witch-house, Purity Ring evokes images of a supernatural dance party.

19. G-Dragon-Crayon
While this year introduced the world to K-pop via Gangnam Style, Big Bang frontman G-Dragon was busy songwriting and performing. Named Korea's Star News's number one songwriter for 2012, G-Dragon penned 17 hit songs in one year.  Crayon is from G-Dragon's second solo album, One of a Kind. Fans of hip hop and EDM should take note of G-Dragon, a bold musical pioneer who is creating a new frontier in Korean pop music.

18. Hot Chip-Night & Day
From the group that brought us the indie dance hit, Ready for the Floor, comes a science fiction inspired delight. With plenty of bleeps and samples, the song is just enough to make you rock on your feet without breaking too much of a sweat. Added bonus for the line: do I look like a rapper?

17. Twin Shadow-Five Seconds 
Almost perfect execution of eighties A.M. radio from a Hispanic indie rock star. George Lewis Jr. is one of the most interesting indie rockers in the current scene, with his stint on Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations being one of my favorite episodes.  Five Seconds is a soaring, epic song. The guitar riffs inspire me to put on leotards along with my leg warmers and begin Jazzercize warmups. 

16. Super Junior-SPY
It comes as no surprise to those who have read From Tulle to Tweed that I am a fan of K-pop.  However, when it comes to the big three Korean pop music agencies (SM, YG, and JYP Entertainment), I have never been a huge fan of SM artists. I once read an article comparing SM artists (SM Town) to the popular girls and boys at school who you love to hate. Differences aside, I was pleasantly surprised by Super Junior's SPY. The song merges elements of electro-swing, sixties spy music, hip hop, and pop. Extra bonus for being able to see Leetuk, Siwon, and Donghae looking dapper in their vintage inspired suits and tuxedos.

15. Ellie Goulding-High for This (Weeknd Cover)
2012 was Ellie Goulding's year.  The song Lights had been known by indie pop fans for some time but this was the year mainstream pop listeners heard her sweet, angelic voice. The antithesis of Lights is High for This, where Goulding maintains the cynicism that made this Weeknd song so eerily catchy.

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