Friday, December 30, 2011

Favorite Songs of 2011 - Songs 1-10

And now the Top Ten. Happy New Year all!

1. Calamity Song by The Decemberists.

"Had a dream.
You and me and the war of the end-times.
And I believe; California succumbed to the fault line.
We heaved relief.
As scores of innocents died."

The second "new" song that I heard in 2011 (the second track on "The King is Dead") and still my favorite 11 1/2 months later. Only Colin Meloy (okay, and maybe Michael Stipe and Florence Welch) could write such a bouncy, upbeat song about the apocalypse.

2. Bushwick Blues by The Delta Spirit.

"So maybe I'm the fool
for feeling used.
Well, the way we kissed that night -
I thought you knew.
Because my love is strong.
And my heart is weak.
After all."

 Thanks to my brother Jeff for turning me on to them. I'm sorry I missed them at Mountain Stage last year.

3. Yer Spring by Hey Rosetta!

"Oh man I hate this part -
When the car sails off the bridge.
Am I the knuckles white inside?
Am I the water rushing in?"

 Probably my favorite lines from any song all year long.

4. Barton Hollow by The Civil Wars.

"Ain't going back to Barton Hollow;
Devil gonna follow me 'ere I go.
Won't do me no good washing in the river;
Can't no preacher man save my . . . soul."

The video HAD to be black and white, didn't it? I love the way the singers' voices blend.

5. We Will All be Changed by Seryn. 

"We can write with ink and pen,
But we will sow with seeds instead.
Starting with words we've said.
We will all be changed."

I think I first saw mention of this song this summer on someone's "Best Songs of 2011 So Far" list.

6. Smart by Girl in a Coma.

"Hold your head up though you're shaking.
I've never felt a rush like this; not quite like this.
You were never one to fake it.
I've never felt a lust like this; not quite like this."

Just love the vocals on this song.

7. 100 Other Lovers by Devotchka.

"I know it's coming;
I can feel it in my bones.
This is information you already know.
Even if it's only temporarily;
Give the illusion tonight you belong to me."

I saw them at Bonnaroo too, and while they were great, they, somewhat disappointingly, didn't play this song.

8. Under Cover of Darkness by The Strokes.

"Get dressed, jump out of bed and do it best.
Are you OK?
I’ve been out around this town
And everybody’s been singing the same song, ten years."

I wanna be Julian Casablancas when I grow up.

9. Too Dramatic by Ra Ra Riot.

"Don't listen when you're weary.
Oh, but I wanna talk about it.

You and me weren't made for that, I'm sure."

Love the strings; not crazy about the video.

10. Down in the Valley by The Head and the Heart.

"Call it one drink too many; call it pride of a man.
But it don't make no difference if you sit or you stand.
'Cause they both end in trouble and start with a grin.
Yeah they both end in trouble and start with a grin."

The only group with more than one song in the Top Thirty other than The Decemberists, The Head and the Heart is a must-see in concert if you get the chance. Even if it's under a tent in 95 degree heat in the middle of a dusty field in Tennessee.

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