This year was quite interesting to me. In fact, i may make the argument that it was more challenging and with a lot more changes than 2020. As someone who craves stability in life, 2021 was about as stable as a small ship in the ocean in the middle of a hurricane. Exciting, but sometimes a little bit too exciting.
The previous sentence is indeed just a protracted excuse to justify my horrible taste in music.
The Hooters - Satellite
Starting off with a song I was already inordinately fond off. This was apparently my top played song this year. Just a great solid song shitting on televangelists and prosperity gospel. Lord knows we need more of those anyway.
Eric Clapton - She's waiting
From that weird Eric Clapton point between rocking Cream
-era Clapton and bearded acoustic Tears in Heaven
Clapton. It was written around the time he was separating from Pattie Boyd and produced by a certain Phil Collins. The slower pace and background vocals make me prefer it over the lead single of the Album, Forever Man
Daft Punk - Voyager
On last year's list, I mentioned that Daft Punk produced the one album on which I really liked every single song. Needless to say, their announcement of disbandment back in February came as a small blow. I had to put something in here. And, let me just say it, the reason I took so long to post my list was literally just choosing what I think was my favorite Daft Punk song. It took literal days, devolving into nitpicking some of my favorite songs of all time (Verdis Quo
goes for just a little bit too long, Giorgio by Moroder
starts off a bit too slow, the break in Short Circuit
is just a little bit too disjointed. Touch
should be two songs, Robot Rock
is probably destined to be better known as a sample...)
To make a long story short, it became a four way battle between Verdis Quo, Instant Crush (!), Voyager,
and Around the World
. Voyager won despite the fact it also starts a bit too slow, but ultimately to me it is the zenith of the sound associated with the band. Au Revoir
Daft Punk, you are already missed.
Danny Elfman - Happy
This is odd, as this is a song that I don't actually like all that much. Released in 2020, Happy was the opening salvo of Danny Elfman's return to non-soundtrack music since 1995's Oingo Boingo farewell concert. It seems a pandemic was enough to get his creative juices flowing in that direction. I had high expectations from the song. It was a bit heavy for my taste, but I could see the evolution of his sound and looked forward to it.
Unfortunately, Big Mess
didn't quite turn out how I expected. Happy ended up being my favorite song from it and probably the only one I would choose to listen. We'll see if he decides to keep recording non-comissioned music in future. At the very least, I remain expectant.
Frank Sinatra - Luck Be A Lady
So, as I said, my year was much less stable than the last couple of ones, so this turning up on the playlist every now and then was somewhat amusing and comforting.
Celebrate the Nun - Don't You Go
It wasn't a single and the band split in 1992. Their entire catalog disappeared from shelves until we didn't need them anymore and reappeared in iTunes in 2009. I discovered it through an AMV when those were a thing that people used to do and wouldn't be immediately claimed to oblivion. It's the little song that could on this list
Breakwater - Say you love me girl
Or is it this one? Breakwater's music is nowadays mostly sample fodder, but one day listening to internet radio this came up on the playlist and found it refreshingly chill. Imagine my surprise when I discover the album it came from also has the sample that would later be used for Robot Rock,
that song I said would be doomed to be a sample itself.
Chicane feat. Moya Brennan - Saltwater
A Trance song? On my list? It's more likely than you think. Especially if it is the shorter radio edit.
Romeo Void - Never Say Never
I actually discovered the Julien K version of this song first. And it was fine. However, a cursory search told me that it was a cover. And when I listened to the original, I had to conclude that the original was better.
Bee Gees - If I can't have you
I was watching a documentary on the Bee Gees the other day, and when this song came on. I realized that I not only hadn't heard it in a while, but it's actually one of the better ones from their catalog (More than a woman may top that list, I'm not sure). Bring on the chest hair and the crazy cool medallions.
Hanson - Penny and me
Yes, indeed. Turns out the mmmBop kids eventually did music that you would actually choose to listen. Puberty helped immensely.
Icehouse - Electric Blue
I don't have an explanation of this one. I like it. The song was also inordinately popular in Honduras much in the same way Designer Music was strangely popular in Mexico.
Aztec Camera - Jump
It's like a Richard Cheese song that you can enjoy unironically.
David Lindley - Mercury Blues
A late entry on the list, I was only made aware of it when I was discussing compiling a list of older music for my sister, who seems to have an ever-expanding music interest list. It showed up, I liked it so much I put it on my rotation.
Bobby Brown - On Our Own
Stories tell about a time when the movie singles were likely to outshine the movie itself. This is a product of that time. And with the new Ghostbusters movie out, it seems like the music algorithms picked up the buzz and began presenting this song to me. It's one of the rare cases where I had no problem with it.
The Church - Under the milky way
You know that song that you like, then repetition means you find it okay, then you stop hearing it for a while, and then it comes back better than it was when you first listen to it? That's this one.
Weezer - Island in the Sun
Island in the Sun is wonderfully chill. To me, it achieves a strange feat in managing to be the perfect song for its title. Listen to it on a negative mindset and it may help you relax. Listen to it on a positive one and you may indeed be transported to a place without any problems, where the sea breeze is cool and the sand is hot and the phone is on Airplane Mode.
Weird Al - Everything you know is wrong
Do I really need a reason for this one? It's Weird Al and the song absolutely *leafs through zoomer dictionary* slaps.
Hall and Oates - Adult Education
Does anyone know why the songs are now credited as "Daryl Hall and John Oates" on most streaming services? Anyway, this was actually the A-side to the much more popular Maneater
(or Can't Go for That
on the UK), and when it was dropped on a compilation album, it was overshadowed by Say it Isn't So, Kiss on My List, You Make My Dreams,
and Private Eyes
. But it's a good song on its own right.
Alphaville - Big in Japan
So, funny story, I had never actually heard this song before this year. I heard the remasters, which seem to have been mixed on some misguided loudness wars attempt to make them cleaner, reduce the reverb, and remove an entire synth line, but clearly it was all for naught as this version is far superior.
Honorable Mention: "Definitive Daft Punk" by Cameron Adams
. You know how hard it was to pick a single one of their songs? Do you want to hear most of their pre-2013 output distilled into an excellent mix? Click the link for it on glorious HTML5 visualization form