Best Songs I Heard in 2016

Poltergeist“, “Goon Squad“, “976-Evil“-Deftones

“Poltergeist” is a steamroller of a song-frenetic verses and a soaring chorus combine into a relentless song. “Goon Squad”, another track off of Koi No Yokan, starts with a cinematic intro that builds to an eruption, and the song is a hypnotic blast of head nod-inducing guitar. “976-Evil”, dedicated to their original bassist Chi Cheng, who was in a coma for several years before passing away,  is a bittersweet ode awash in melancholy waves of guitar, with a yearning chorus that captures the mood perfectly. It’s on the Diamond Eyes LP.

Daydreaming“-Radiohead

A beautiful, haunting song that in classic Radiohead fashion builds throughout. The chorus opens up in a burst of cautious hope, only to close back into the desolate verse.  Give Thom Yorke a piano and let the other members add their musical flourishes, and the result is a glorious 6 minute subtle but effective landscape that is a definite highlight of A Moon Shaped Pool.

Can’t Stop the Feeling“-Justin Timberlake

An infectious blast of pop perfection. Maybe not the most substantial song but sometimes you just need that danceable summer jam, and this fits the mold perfectly.

Everybody Knows“-Ryan Adams

Off the Easy Tiger album.  Adams doesn’t overstay his welcome-the song clocks in at about 2 1/2 minutes. What it lacks in length it makes up for in its resigned melody and lyrics.

Dazz“-Brick

This song’s been around a while (released in 1976) but is new to me. It’s been sampled several times, most notably by Ice Cube, but since I’ve never heard any of those songs, I was able to appreciate it in its original form.  A funky, jazzy, disco-ish slice of the seventies.

Seagulls (Stop it Now)“-Bad Lip Reading

Sure, you have to watch the video to get the full effect, but the song is still hilarious. My favorite part: “That log had a child”. Makes me laugh every time.

Hardwired to Self-Destruct“-Metallica

I was really excited when I heard this song, in all its punky/thrash glory. Alas, the album ended up being a disappointment to me-I only like 1 other song on it, and I had high hopes, after really liking their last album, Death Magnetic. But I’m still glad that the title track exists.

Best Musical Moment of the Year-1:22 into “Decks Dark” by Radiohead

I know it’s a little odd to pick a musical moment from a song that didn’t make my best of list. But when I was listening to the new Radiohead album, and this song started, I was instantly intrigued. Then when the drums kicked in, I got chills. Even though I don’t like the outro of this song nearly as much as everything that comes before it, those first 15 seconds when the drums come in to me encapsulate everything that is great and epic about Radiohead.

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