Since 2002, I have obsessively tracked and categorized the music I listen to. It started as a way to share the songs and artists I discovered while working in college radio with friends. I would regularly rip audio files, make quarterly Windows Media playlists and even burn CD’s.
Now-a-days , I use Spotify and YouTube to organize these MixTapes. Still, at the end of every year, I track my stats, use a little (okay a lot) of emotion, and craft a list. It usually takes several drafts and a lot of reorganizing but at some point I end up with this. Thank you for following along!
PART THREE: 30-21 [and the other songs]
Why do I prefer to share YouTube clips instead of making a playlist? Well, first off I will be posting a playlist on my Spotify soon. Second, I still appreciate the art of the music video which a few of these songs have nailed.
Let’s continue the countdown!
30) The Strokes – OBLIVIUS (Moretti Remix)
ALBUM Future Present Past
2016 brought us some new music from The Strokes and this remix set the tone for my summer.
29) Blood Orange – Best to You
ALBUM Freetown Sound
Had I discovered this song before December, it might be ranked much higher.
28) The xx – On Hold
ALBUM On Hold (single)
Usually I prefer the depressive and dark sounding xx songs but their latest, On Hold, became an infectious ear worm I couldn’t put down.
27) Walker Lukens – Lifted
ALBUM Never Understood
If there were a list for CJ’s “man crush of the year” Walker Lukens would be in the top spot. I was lucky enough to see his band a few times this year as well as hang with him at ACL Fest, and in the studio. Lifted is just the start for Lukens and I look forward to big things from the psychonaut rocker.
26) Empire of the Sun – Two Vines
ALBUM Two Vines
Two Vines marked a much anticipated return from electronic duo Empire of the Sun. The new album might not be as memorable as previous efforts but the tracks are fun nonetheless. Especially the title track and number 26 on this list!
25) Young Magic – Lucien
ALBUM Still Life
Young Magic travel the world and use samples from nature they’ve collected to make their music. The album Still Life embodies much of that sound as you might pick up in this darker tune.
24) Santigold – Banshee
ALBUM 99 Cents
In case you have not noticed, most of the new music I encountered this year live on later MixTape Playlists. Back in February though, the first real anthem to set the tone for my 2016 was Santigold’s single Banshee. It’s a super fun tune through and through and I hope you like it as well as I did!
23) Angel Olsen – Shut Up And Kiss Me
ALBUM My Woman
It’s wonderful to see this talented artist blow up in 2016! Angel Olsen’s vibe is (sorta) reminiscent of those mid 60’s country singers. Her lyrics and vocals also set her apart from other current Indie/singer song writer acts released this year. Shut Up And Kiss Me became my favorite track from My Woman after my woman played it for me (yes, I did shut up and kiss her).
22) Hippie Sabotage – Waiting
One of my most listened to artists of 2015 returned in 2016 with a new album. I heard Waiting while tripping and watching my ceiling melt. It’s some incredible gooey trip-hop from the Sacramento EDM duo!
21) Flume – Innocence (feat. AlunaGeorge)
Another big track from Flume! The first track from my big November MixTape also features some incredible vocals from AlunaGeorge.
True, I discovered a lot of new music in 2016. However, as with any year, a lot of my most played, favorite and top songs where not created in 2016 (thus I am not able to put them on my list).
If you are in the mood for discovery, here are a few of the songs I played the most (even more than the number one spot on this list!)
01) Black Atlass – Blossom
ALBUM Young Bloods
02) Caribou – Back Home
ALBUM Our Love
03) FKA twigs – In Time
04) Eskmo – Combustion
05) Gold & Youth – Time to Kill
ALBUM Beyond Wilderness