Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Bloggy's Favorite Songs of 2013

Last week I posted my Favorite Releases of 2013 now let's talk about individual songs. I do things a little differently with this list. If an artist made my favorite albums list then I don't include an individual song from that artist on this list. For instance, I love the song 24 Hours by Sky Ferreira but since Night Time, My Time was one of my favorite LPs, 24 Hours isn't on this list.

This year I did a lot more listening via Soundcloud and I wanted my songs list to reflect that. So, with the majority of the songs on this list if you click the song's title it will take you to that track on Soundcloud. If you click the artist's name it takes you to their Facebook page. The songs listed that are not available on Soundcloud will take you to Spotify.

Subscribe to the Favorite Songs of 2013 playlist on Spotify now!

  1. Ciara - Body Party
  2. Cloud Boat - Youthern (Ghosting Season remix)
  3. JD Samson & MEN - Making Art
  4. Vampire Weekend - Step
  5. Jay-Z - Tom Ford
  6. Isaac Delusion - Supernova
  7. Ducktails - Honey Tiger Eyes
  8. Blouse - No Shelter
  9. Golden Grrrls - We've Got...
  10. Wild Nothing - A Dancing Shell
  11. Jagwar Ma - Come Save Me
  12. Mariah Carey ft. Miguel - #Beautiful
  13. Jon Hopkins ft. Purity Ring - Breathe This Air
  14. Jessy Lanza - Kathy Lee
  15. Hospitality - I Miss Your Bones
  16. Neko Case - Man
  17. Yuck - Lose My Breath
  18. Arctic Monkeys - Do I Wanna Know?
  19. The National - Don't Swallow the Cap
  20. Daft Punk ft. Panda Bear - Doin' it Right
  21. Beyonce - Haunted
  22. Katy Perry - Roar
  23. Justin Timberlake - Mirrors
  24. James Blake - Retrograde
  25. Lorde - Royals
  26. POLIÇA - Chain My Name
  27. Dead Gaze - Breathing Creatures
  28. Suburban Living - Always Eyes
  29. Vox Mod - Iridescent Asteroid Mists
  30. North Highlands - I'll Do My Best
  31. Thumpers - Unkinder (A Tougher Love)
  32. Thee Oh Sees - Toe Cutter - Thumb Buster
  33. Jessie Ware - Running
  34. Duke Dumont - Need U (100%)
  35. Oscar Key Sung - All I Could Do
  36. Widowspeak - Ballad of the Golden Hour
  37. Temples - Shelter Song
  38. Frankie Rose - Sorrow
  39. Bonobo - Cirrus
  40. Drake - Hold On, We're Going Home
  41. Minks - Painted Indian
  42. Aluna George - Attracting Flies
  43. Yujen - Try It Over
  44. Still Corners - Berlin Lovers
  45. Generationals - Put a Light On
  46. Movement - Feel Real
  47. Zebra Katz - Ima Read (Sister Bliss Main Mix)
  48. Sevyn Streeter - It Won't Stop
  49. Miley Cyrus - We Can't Stop
  50. Mister Lies ft. Knower - Magichour

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Monday, December 16, 2013

Review : Perfect Pussy

Last night I caught a very brief set from Perfect Pussy on the Mohawk's inside stage. All I really knew about this band wass that they played CMJ a few months ago and the internet had been a flutter ever since. All they have released so far is 13 minutes of fury entitled, I have lost all desire for feeling. The recording is full of noise and energy and the band's live performance is even louder and more energetic. The set started in a really interesting way. The band was setting up and appeared to be adjusting their levels. Lead singer Meredith Graves was talking with the sound man explaining that she couldn't really see the sound man and that he sounded like the teacher from Charlie Brown. She spoke into the microphone fairly meekly saying, I hope this is loud enough. People from the crowd responded by saying it should be louder to which Meredith replied, "Don't worry I've got loud in my back pocket." Next thing I knew all of the instruments swelled into a caucophonous feedback swirl out of which a beat emerged. Meredith began doing some ballet poses and then the band launched into their first song.

The lead singer of Perfect Pussy is such a live wire it's difficult to not stare at her the entire time. She flails, she poses, she smirks, she scowls, she throws her mic at the guitar while the guitarist is playing. I thought she might jump into the crowd but that didn't happen. With all of the energy Meredith exudes it's tough to not think that she is what makes this band so great and she is BUT she's not the only thing.

I like to stand at the back of a show so I can observe everything and in a moment of consciously trying to look at band members other than the singer I noticed the guy on the far left with the keyboard stand. He was staring out at the crowd, watching them, watching Meredith and he looked like he was in some sort of a trance. Then I tried to tune my ears to hear exactly what he was doing and that's when I realized that he was adding harmonic feedback waves into the songs.

Since the set just emerged out of a soundcheck there were people in the crowd who thought that the ringing feedback throughout the first song was an accident. I thought so at first as well because it seemed to be a constant ringing tone but then I realized the pitch of the tone was changing. If I hadn't been wearing earplugs I might not have been able to hear the shifts in the sound of the feedback but once I noticed I was completely intrigued.

Perfect Pussy's set was an aural assault, partly because the songs themselves are rooted in hardcore, partly because of lead-singer Meredith's scream but mostly because keyboardist Shaun is creating a sonic swirl of noise on top of everything you're hearing. The band's set wasn't even 15 minutes long but that was long enough for me to get really excited and curious about what they were doing up there. They ended the set in a similarly performance-art way. The drummer was bagging up his cymbals while the song continued to scream out of the amplifiers. The bass player and guitarist unplugged as well but Shaun and Meredith continued on. Shaun played a very simple beaet that Meredith did more ballet poses to until the noise finally subsided and the room cleared out.

I saw my friend Pooneh after the set and I asked her about the harmonic feedback loops. I was curious if anyone else heard or noticed. She wasn't wearing earplugs and said that she didn't really notice. At that point my curiosity had gotten the better of me so I walked up the side of the stage with the keyboard and asked if I could bother him for a few minutes. He said sure come on up so I jumped up on the stage and stared down at the equipment he was using then blathered on for about five minutes explaining my theory that the keyboardist is the one responsible for creating the sonic chaos. He was very nice and basically confirmed what I thought. He has effects peddles and a sampling keyboard and he just creates noise. He admitted that often times he can't really hear what he is doing because of earplugs or the sound of a room but his M.O. is adding a layer of noise. He actually performs solo "noise sets" and works with some noise duos as well.

If you missed last night's show, and chances are you did, Perfect Pussy will be back for SXSW and chances are they'll be one of the buzziest acts of the festival. If you have a chance to see them, I implore you to wear earplugs not only will it protect your hearing it was enable you to hear everything going on. This band isn't re-inventing the wheel or anything but they are much smarter and more deliberate than they appear on the surface and they are definitely artists to keep your eye on.

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