London Grammar - Hey Now (Sasha Remix)

I still haven’t gotten into London Grammar’s original stuff, either because of laziness or because I prefer Hannah Reid’s gorgeous voice in dance settings (like this remix, or “Help My Lose My Mind”). Sasha’s remix is far more subdued than the more popular rendering by Arty, and it’s more effective for it. Give the build some patience, and you’re rewarded with a sublime breakdown that leads into a drop that is intermittently glitchy, but mostly lush.

Songs That I Like in 2014: A Memorandum

Well, we’re 57.8% through the year, so it seems like the perfect time to list out some songs that I like enough to put on a running year-end playlist. Listed alphabetically by artist, just to keep you guessing ;)))

  1. Ace Wilder - Busy Doin’ Nothin’
  2. Alex Banks ft. Elizabeth Burnholz - Be the One
  3. Alexandra Stan - Cherry Pop
  4. Ariana Grande ft. Zedd - Break Free
  5. Betty Who - Heartbreak Dream
  6. Clean Bandit ft. Jess Glynne - Rather Be (Jack LNDN Remix)
  7. Coldplay - A Sky Full of Stars
  8. Colony House - Lose Control
  9. Deadmau5 ft. Colleen D’Agostino - Seeya
  10. Duke Dumont ft. Kelli-Leigh - I Got U
  11. Foster the People - Coming of Age
  12. Foxes - Let Go For Tonight (High Contrast Remix)
  13. Future ft. Pharrell, Pusha T & Casino - Move That Dope
  14. GRL - Show Me What You Got
  15. Hundred Waters - Out Alee
  16. Kate Boy - Self Control
  17. Katy B - Blue Eyes
  18. Kira Isabella - Quarterback
  19. Lana Del Rey - Brooklyn Baby
  20. LIZ - Turn Around
  21. Monarchy - Living Without You
  22. Ms. D - My Pen
  23. Neon Jungle - Braveheart
  24. Neon Trees - Sleeping With a Friend
  25. Paramore - Ain’t It Fun
  26. Polly Scattergood - Subsequently Lost
  27. RAC ft. Body Language - Ello Ello
  28. The Raveonettes - Summer Ends
  29. Rita Ora - I Will Never Let You Down
  30. Röyksopp & Robyn - Sayit
  31. Sakanaction - Eureka
  32. Seven Lions ft. Kerli - Worlds Apart
  33. Softengine - Something Better
  34. SOHN - Artifice
  35. Tiësto & Hardwell ft. Matthew Koma - Written In Reverse
  36. Tokyo Police Club - Miserable
  37. Vic Mensa - Down On My Luck
  38. Victoria Duffield - More Than Friends
  39. Warpaint - Drive
  40. Yelle - Bouquet Final

Kate Boy - Self Control

I was fine with this new release — it’s that familiar icy sound, the same vocal affect from Kate Akhurst, the same ruminations on human potential — but then the second half of the chorus came around: “Self! Control! Self! Control!” and I fell in love. Where the term is often discussed in negative lights (i.e. wishing one had self-control to refrain from alcohol or chocolate covered raisins), Kate Boy flips it to be a powerful expression of individualism. A line like, “don’t let nobody take control” would sound weak, but when delivered with Akhurst’s roaring vocal and the thumping beats, it’s life-affirming.

Clean Bandit ft. Jess Glynne - Rather Be (Jack LNDN Remix)

Conversely, this remix (which I only just discovered; it was under my nose the whole time) is so lush and gorgeous I might prefer it to the original. Progressive trance often bleeds into deep house, and this is a lovely example of that. It’s all about those close seventh chords, plucked out over a more forlorn chord progression, that give this remix such a warmth. My favorite feature is how the vocals and strings bubble up to the surface during the breakdowns like champagne.





Will Adams: has always reveled in crassness, injecting it into every aspect of his career: lyrically, with lovely lady lumps, boobies like wow-o-wow, boners; sonically, by shamelessly chasing whatever pop trend is in vogue to the point of straight-up plagiarism; and visually, by playing a sperm, popping out of a woman’s uterus like he’s Alien spawn, and posing alongside relentless product placement. The crassness could be tolerable alone, but will marries it with an insane ego that tells him to just keep churning out the same uninspired crap. That same ego also tells will to prop up someone like Cody Wise, who’s at least three years of vocal coaching away from showing any promise. I always think that has reached his nadir, but “It’s My Birthday” manages — from the hyperactive video to the song’s mindless repetition — to out-crass even his worst tendencies.

[Read and comment on The Singles Jukebox ]

My final screed on Anything further will only get snarky one-liners (or, alternately, resentment that he shares my name).