OK OK OK! There were 112 amazing songs released in 2019 (or, erm, released earlier but I just listened to them a lot this year), and here is the definitive, objective and scientifically proven ranking. You can disagree all you want, just remember your disagreement is merely an opinion and this list is fact.
Or maybe not. I made a big change of tablet and therefore music player this year, and I might not have remembered all of the songs I deemed to be Legit Bosses earlier in the year. But whatever, here are 112 amazing songs, here’s the YouTube list and here’s the Spotify playlist, now please leave me alone, yeah?
Starting at number 112 wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiith…
Zzzzzzzzzzzzum, weeeeeeeeeeeear-kazummazum… Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzum-wenkwenkwenk, zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzdoo-baba-doo-baba-doo-baba-doo-baba. Sing along at the back.
‘Metamorphosis’ is a stunning 20 minutes of the most lushly created electronic music you’re likely to hear in 2019. I don’t want to be ‘that guy*’ again, but it’s really a piece of work that needs to be consumed through headphones (consumed… through headphones…?) to really appreciate the power and complexity of the music. Listening to the layered quasi-ambient beauty of ‘Metamorphosis’ you appreciate how far Blank Banshee has come since he was originally considered within the constraints of Vaporwave (or, indeed, ‘Vaportrap‘).
(*’that guy’ being someone who just points out facts. Don’t you fucking hate that guy??)
Yeah. How’s about that. Some proper fucking writing there, huh??
You know what? I’ve got a funny feeling that this might not be my last chance to talk about him before this list is done, so I’m wary of squeezing out all my Kanye Juice before the real party starts. ‘Yandhi’ was the album that he was going to release as his follow up to last year’s ‘Ye‘ (I’m sorry, haterz/liberals, but ‘Ye’ was a pretty fine album, as were most of the eighty four records he released last year, let’s not let our reactions to his general behavior colour the history), but then it was delayed, then cancelled, then briefly revived with Ashton Kutcher playing the role of Kanye West, then delayed, then its name was changed to ‘Spunk Muffin and the Dudes With Attitude’, then it was cancelled again, then it was changed to ‘Jesus Is King’, then it was revealed that it wasn’t actually a name change but a completely separate record, then that record was delayed, then it was delayed again, until, finally, it was released, and Yandhi was cancelled, only briefly being released (seriously) as ringtones. Quite straightforward as Kanye West album launches go, really. I actually only sought out ‘Yandhi’ because I assumed it would contain intriguing scrappy demos of whatever tracks Kanye was working on for his next record (which at that point had been delayed so many times I assumed this would be the closest we’d get to a Kanye album this year), but it’s shocking to hear quite how complete a lot of songs on here are, and how realised many ideas are. New Body in particular sounds less than a tweak away from being a hit single, Nicki Minaj feature and all. Later, it was shocking how few of the songs and ideas on ‘Yandhi’ made it to ‘Jesus is King’. Like, pretty much none of it. Nicki Minaj? She’s gone. Hey, Kanye, maybe stay focused on one thing for more than three minutes? Might result in better albums? Perhaps I’ll get to debate this further later.
Hmmm, this album presents a bit of a problem for me in respect to me writing any sort of a coherent piece on it. I mean, sure, I haven’t really written a coherent piece yet in 386* blog posts, but this one is, like, far less likely to be coherent than most, yeah?
(*actual number, fact fans! Maybe the thousandth post is the one where I live stream my suicide? Considering it’s taken me three years to reach 384, it should take me, what, about six more to reach 1000? I’ll be in my forties by that point, and as a result almost definitely praying for death. Only if I get enough readers though. Make sure you all hit subscribe)
In 1974 Al Pacino gave one of the all time best cinema performances in ‘Godfather Part II’, exhibiting a subtly and nuance that would later desert him, and managing to captivate the audience to such an extent few even noticed the film lasted 200 freaking minutes. the Oscar for best actor was never in doubt
Unfortunately, The Academy- a retirement home for aged white former cinematic plantation owners who compensate for their loss of bowel control by annually celebrating their favourite shit- was having one of those years where they decide to become completely (instead of generally) impervious to actual quality in the face of unbearable tweeness and overwhelming schmaltz, and awarded the best actor Oscar to Art Carney for ‘Harry and Tonto’, a film about an old man and a fucking cat
The Academy soon realised they’d made a mistake though, it soon became apparent that they’d ignored an historic and legendary performance in favour of a disposable piece of nonsense that everybody had already forgotten about. They owed Al Pacino an Oscar
‘Call Me Maybe‘ was one of those extraordinarily rare things: a pop song that was absolutely ubiquitous and inescapable and yet not universally hated, perhaps because it’s absolute pop perfection. Following that monster hit can be unnerving, but CRJ’s second album is a triumph of capitalist cynicism: more than two hundred songs were eventually whittled down to the 12 here that some boardroom somewhere decided were absolute best to further the ‘Carly Rae Jepson’ brand (collaborations with guaranteed hit makers such as Max Martin and Jack Antonoff were scrapped). And by God it works! Musically there isn’t a wrong step here, with every song being as perfect as the last (with one exception being slightly more perfect). The only problem lies with Carly herself, who is such a vacuum of personality that it’s near disastrous. What is Carly Rae Jepson? There have been absolutely no hints of any sort of personality behind those gorgeous big eyes (and no Carly, telling The Guardian you ‘spent an entire week vaping’ to get your voice ‘gritty’ for one track absolutely doesn’t count). Recently Katy Perry launched her comeback in a leopard print leotard shouting at tigers in the jungle, Rihanna played up her bad-girl image with ‘Bitch Betta Have My Money‘, Miley was dancing with bunnies and spelling ‘twerk’ out in alphabetti spaghetti, while Carly was… er… Carly was telling Tom Hanks that she really liked him. Even Charli XCX opens a song this year with ‘You have an ugly tattoo and fucking cheap perfume’, but you couldn’t imagine CRJ being even that interesting. ‘E•MO•TION’ is an absolutely amazing album, but if it came over the pub speakers I’d struggle to remember who sang it.
‘Fun’ Fact: Carly Rae Jepson is 30 years old, which is totally age-appropriate for me and it wouldn’t be at all weird if we were to get married and have lots of little babies together. If you’re reading this Carly why not lift that restraining order? Can’t we be adults about this?
Great, 12 tracks that aren’t as good as ‘Call Me Maybe‘, why bother? You’re so cynical! Opener ‘Run Away With Me‘ is at least as amazing as that albatross, as perfect a pop song as you’re likely to hear, it opens the album so impressively that most albums would struggle to follow it.