Tracking 2012's Best Songs #9

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Tracking

This week on Tracking––a weekly series in which we discuss our favorite songs of the year (you can check out the official list as the year progresses)––you can listen to additions from Chromatics, Santigold, Jack White and Joyce. (Click on the arrows to navigate through the songs.)


Chromatics - "Lady" (1of4)
The third single off of Chromatics stellar album, Kill For Love, “Lady” is an icy yet infectious jam that is best played late at night while driving through sinister, rain-soaked streets. The 2-drop song structure is a classic house template and it works well in this case, as each shift in the track brings a new, pitch-perfect addition to the arrangement. The opening synths are sparse but they are quickly joined by a sturdy bass line and Ruth Radelet's dreamlike vocals. This is all a build up to the addictive drop, which delivers all of the spaced-out grooviness that the intro portended. “Lady” may not be as immediately gripping as the eponymous “Kill for Love” but it creeps up behind you and quickly becomes the kind of song you can't help but play just once more. –– Drew Malmuth

CHROMATICS KILL FOR LOVE

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This week on Tracking––a weekly series in which we discuss our favorite songs of the year (you can check out the official list as the year progresses)––you can listen to additions from Chromatics, Santigold, Jack White and Joyce. (Click on the arrows to navigate through the songs.)

Santigold - "The Keepers" (2of4)
While not quite as fierce as “Disparate Youth”, “The Keepers” is still steeped in Santigold's passion. From the outset, driving rhythms and unbridled energy form the backdrop for the most politically charged track off of her noteworthy new album Master of My Make-Believe. She sings “we are the keepers/ while we sleep in America our house is burning down”. It feels like a call to action. Or at least it is a song meant to point out that if something is wrong with our country, or ourselves, we are the only ones that can do anything about it. It's easy to ignore that message––– as the slick production, soaring melodies and uber catchy chorus are decidedly more upbeat things to pay attention to –– but it makes the song all the more interesting to take it as a whole, the way Santi intended it. –– Drew Malmuth

SANTIGOLD

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This week on Tracking––a weekly series in which we discuss our favorite songs of the year (you can check out the official list as the year progresses)––you can listen to additions from Chromatics, Santigold, Jack White and Joyce. (Click on the arrows to navigate through the songs.)

Jack White - "Hypocritical Kiss" (3of4)
Off of Jack White's solo debut Blunderbuss, a work that's welcomingly more honest and stripped-down than his other projects, "Hypocritical Kiss" showcases some beautifully sparkling piano riffs that complement White's signature rough poetry. The best part is the instrumental bridge that spotlights a powerful piano jam against a straight beat. Clocking in at just under three minutes, it's still amazing how White can take something seemingly simple and make it sound like a feel-good, classically-aged rock cut. –– Denise Lu

JACK WHITE BLUNDERBUSS

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This week on Tracking––a weekly series in which we discuss our favorite songs of the year (you can check out the official list as the year progresses)––you can listen to additions from Chromatics, Santigold, Jack White and Joyce. (Click on the arrows to navigate through the songs.)

Joyce - "Keep The Lights On" (4of4)
Joyce isn’t named Joyce, she’s a south Londoner named Katherine Fussey, but her music is the kind whose chilly, shimmering disco power seems to mandate a dramatic pseudonym. “Keep the Lights On,” the driving, ‘80s-inspired jam-of-all-jams that’s getting her noticed, is one of our favorite pop tracks of the year because it’s so now because it’s so then – close your eyes and imagine the foggy-lensed video starring Fussey in neon aerobics wear and massive hair dancing beneath a glittering disco ball, then open them again, listen closely to those processed vocal loops, and remember it’s 2012. Not everyone can remember their roots and stay this current, but Joyce can. –– Genevieve Oliver

Joyce

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