2010 might have been the year where many genres including hip-hop, rock, alternative had gone into underground mode. You have to listen to Linkin Park, Muse, Vampire Weekend, Alicia Keys, etc. in niche radio stations. Because of RnB and stupid electronica in where it is the same cliche in every song. Getting the girl and these songs' never actually contain lyrics. If you listen to Usher's OMG or Cheryl Cole's 3 Words they're just a bunch of pick-up lines piled up to make a song. Not only that, our tastes in music is getting dissed because of one thing... teenagers. THey just want to hear Bieber (and yes boys listen to Bieber to get some pick-up lines from 'Baby') and at times will panic if they hear a guitar riff.
Anyway let's see what is the best songs of 2010. It's really hard to decide but you get the feeling:
10. Gorillaz - On Melacholy Hill
'Up on melacholy hill in a plastic tree/are you here with me?'. Well that's the starting point of Gorillaz, who's concept album Plastic Beach is a wonderful piece to listen. It had been six years since the cartoon band had released some material. But after their success from their song Feel Good Inc., they decide to go experimental with their recent album. If you have bought the album, you'll know the message Gorillaz's trying to deliver. An environmental message about our shores? Close. Beside Melacholy Hill works because of its catchy riff and trippy melodies.
9. LCD Soundsystem - I Can Change
LCD Soundsystem is the survivor of electronica now vague from DJs such as Duck Sauce and Yolanda Be Cool. LCD Soundsystem's album This is Happening might be their very last material they would recored. But their album may have been better. Instead of going into loud beats and one word lyrics, they go into electronic melodies with a deep concept about substance abuse and deep partying. I Can Change is one track I like since it could be darker and deeper with drinking and how its dysfuctions towards relationships.
8. Angus and Julia Stone - Big Jet Plane
Mesmerising and chilly. Two words I wanted to describe about this song. Honestly, Australian music had gone rusty and downgraded. Never had been played on radios since. But this radio-friendly song is almost had us want to ride on a jet plane and want to experience our youth and come back to our home. Gonna take you for a ride on a Big Jet Plane is one lyric way unforgettable and open our imaginations of the skies. Funny and yet weirdly this would have been the song for George Clooney's travel flick Up In The Air.
7. Florence & The Machine - Cosmic Love
The first person I have been fascinated about this year. Florence and The Machine is a powerhouse vocalist adored by the public as the 'next Kate Bush'. Her debut album Lungs was a powerful piece featuring a cover version of "You've got the Love" (was a top 10 hit in Australia) and "Dog Days Are Over". But Cosmic Love is more bellowing with its maleviolent language and issues. If Jeff Buckley had fooled men with lovers, then Florence And The Machine may be it for the girls.
6. My Chemical Romance - Na Na Na Na Na Na
For My Chemical Romance, emo was a trend that had themselves to blame for the suicides of teenage girls (Well only one person died). In Danger Days (The Lives Of The Killjoys... I think?), Na Na Na Na just goes on as a Green Day-lite anthem that kinda upliftingly worked. One of the prime examples of bands leaving their roots out, Romance's anthem actually tells the background of the Killjoys, the band's persona which was the main concept. If this was their American Idiot, this song may be their... well, American Idiot.
5. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
The Suburbs is one album of 2010 that I've been addicted to. Arcade Fire had become the biggest bands in the world... literally. Given how there were 6 members in the band. Arcade Fire is an orchestra, would be Canada's answer to Radiohead. The Suburbs is a concept album about the life in the streets (the surburbs) and since it contains great ambition, it makes this a better album that many mainstream fans can access. The title track has a great opening with its dark yet cheerful tone disguised in the track that is so witty.
4. Cee Lo Green - F**k You!
To me, this is the antithesis of many songs from Bruno Mars, Jason Derulo and especially Justin Bieber. If I meet Bieber on the street, I would tell them to f**k himselves. If people tell me that I listen to my music too much, I would tell them to f**k themselves. But if they hate this song, then go f**k yourself as well. This song has wit. It has a story. And like Kanye West's Gold Digger it shows how women are so misleading these days. If you had enough of voice enhanced songs with pick-up lines then this song is for you.
3. Muse - Exogenesis: Symphony
How I could I hate Muse? It's impossible I wouldn't (yes, I would forgive them for making the theme song for Twilight). What I like about them is that they takes risks like Radiohead. Exogenesis: Symphony to me is like the first song to act as a true orchestra and Bellamy's vocals had turned this into a real concerto. It's like the soundtrack to a grand science fiction epic. The massive highlight from their album The Resistance, it's likely that these rockers would topple U2 and become one of the biggest bands in the world now.
2. Kanye West - Runaway
West would have us speechless with this song. To everyone this might be the true apology for interrupting Taylor Swift's moment. Runaway begins with a chilling piano riff that has West looking down to himself of his behaviour and to people who are the same as him. It is a very progressive song and yet very moving.
Runaway was accompanied with a 35 minute video that may get a chance for the Oscar for Best Short Film. Beautifully directed by Kanye West himself this song is one of the main highlights of his latest masterpiece My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. Runaway is almost a mixture of Late Registration at the beginning and at the end it's 808s & Heartbreak. The song has a story. A persona had expressed regret for destroying a relationship because of his antics. It is self-critical because the lyrics expressed remorse of West's antics at the MTV Awards. Runaway is a blueprint and more importantly it makes hip hop turned into an art form.
To say that Kanye West is a genius would be an exagerration. But we know that he moved on from the incident and his latest album Twisted Fantasy would let us focus on only his music. IF you wouldn't forgive him, here's a line: Let's have a toast to the douche bags/let's have a toast for the assholes
1. Vampire Weekend - Cousins
2010 started off with Vampire Weekend's second album Contra. Released on January 11th, it started off with Cousins, a song so catchy over two minutes and fast paced, it had hipsters dancing... before Bieber crashed. Cousins feels like a song worth celebrating with its continuous guitar riff and drum solo.
Contra feels and kinda looked like an audio equivalent of a Woody Allen film (more specifically Vicky Cristina Barcelona). I can tell. But Cousins has lyrics so smart, so catchy and energetic, it is more catchier than a Black Eyed Peas song. The song deals with being a hipster. Weekend would assume them as cousins. The persona is greatly defined. From Interest in colours I'd discovered myself/ If your art life is gritty you'll be toasting my health to You can turn your bitter back on the bitter world.
If you have a revolt with hipsters, think again. Believe me. Hipsters have brought us the greater things that make us feel good. Movies like (500) Days Of Summer put a smile on my face and this is one of those indie songs that gives us great energy and had us back to our youth. I feel happy when hipsters are around. If Vampire Weekend makes you angry you might have had a hangover.
If these songs are appropriate to you, it doesn't matter. These are my favourite songs and most of these songs have in common. And this is my theory. Since we're all tired from Bieber and such, these kinds of music are the rebellion against the meaninglessness of our self-obssessed, ignorant society.
But what is your favourite music of 2010. Let's discuss
PS- you might not know this people