I have seriously had this song on repeat since it came out this summer. Though Sleigh Bells is very much loud, noisy grunge pop – think Amy Millan of Stars singing over the Ramones – I wasn’t expecting a relatively slow, summery song with a finger-snapping accompaniment. If you ever sat under the bleachers in high school watching your best friend walk away from you for someone “cooler” this song is exactly what that moment sounds like.
Thankfully, although they share a title, this song has nothing to do with the atrocious Avril Lavigne song from when I was in middle school. While the melody and lyrics are remarkably simple for such a highly praised indie band, that takes away nothing from the song, which is the perfect soundtrack for when you’re lying in bed wishing a certain someone would be there next to you. Lo-fi stoner surf rock at its best.
Yes, it’s the “Show Me Love” one-hit wonder chick. And yes, she has staying power in the music industry. In my humble opinion, she’s on the same level of perfecting pop music as our lady Gaga herself. “Dancing On My Own” is a single from her flawless album Body Talk and exudes a level of emotion not heard in any dancey pop song in recent years.
It’s rare that a verse by a relative newcomer eclipses the raps of industry pros, but Nicki Minaj made it happen. She, in less than two minutes, practically curb-stomps Kanye West, Jay-Z, and Rick Ross, and she does it in killer heels too. Her debut album may have been less than impressive, but as long as Nicki keeps contributing guest verses that kick this much ass, the day of the female MC may one day come again.
While I generally disapprove of K-Perry (I don’t care if “Firework” is supposed to be an LGBT anthem, this is the woman who brought us the bisexuality-as-a-trend anthem “I Kissed A Girl) I can’t deny I spent my whole summer singing this at the top of my lungs. It definitely deserves the title of the best pop song produced in the States this year. Then again, what’s the competition? Ke$ha?
The best not-really-country country singer of the year. Lissie (real name Elisabeth Maurus) has a wonderfully organic-sounding voice – that’s right, no autotune here – and a style of songwriting that makes you feel like you’re flipping through your diary. When I hear this, I want to get in a car, roll the windows down, and drive somewhere, blasting “Cuckoo” at high volume all the way.