Musicandotherthingz Best Single of 2016

There’s been a almost too many rhythmic and hook-laden tracks in 2016 and they cover quite a wide range of genres from the Joyous Electro-Pop of Röyksopp to the reinvigorated, late era Punk Rockers Green Day. The classsic Eighties Pop thrills and undeniably infectious vocals from Tegan and Sara were a popular choice amongst voters as was dark Pop of The Weeknd with Daft Punk. They just missed out on getting into our top three however, which features very familiar and new acts below. 

3. Chance The Rapper – Angels (11.63% of the vote)

This year has been a strong year for Rap and Hip Hop music and nowhere is this more evident than with the success of Chance The Rapper. ‘Angels’ is a song bursting with joy and optimism about his home of Chicago. It is full of soaring brass, steady beats and enthused lyrics with a cool and easy contribution from Saba. 

2. Kanye West feat. Kendrick Lamar – No More Parties in L.A (21.00%) 

What made this single so popular was hearing someone as egocentric as Kanye getting fed up of the general excess of the party scene around him in Los Angeles which is mighty refreshing, but also a little comedic when his own personal excess is never far from mention. Kendrick Lamar adds context to Kanye’s message as he raps about the culture shock of coming from nothing and being thrusted into a distant and excessive high class society. There is slick use of sampling throughout and this ties the heavy verses together seamlessly.

1. Christine and the Queens – Tilted (30.23%)

‘Tilted’ is about not finding balance in your life, feeling out of place or feeling uneasy with yourself, even dealing with depression. It hardly seems like the appropriate lyrics for a Pop song, but sits this uncomfortable subject matter comfortably into this stylish and refined Pop song. As you’ll find with Christine, she can make so much from so little and she does that again here, with only nudging synths and gentle beats. Not only did she make a great Pop song with these lyrics and small amounts of music, but she made an oddly rhythmic song that has become of one the most popular dance tracks of the year and undoubtedly the most unique. 

Owen Riddle

This Weeks Music Video with Nick Cave, Metallica, Tegan and Sara, Kings of Leon, New Order and Dirty Projectors

This Weeks Music Video with Metronomy, Tegan and Sara, Angel Olsen, Avalanches & Chromatics

This Weeks Music Video with Tegan and Sara, Massive Attack, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, The Raveonettes and Belle & Sebastian 

This Weeks Music Video with Kanye West, Tegan and Sara, Massive Attack feat. Ghostpoet, Gregory Porter, NAO and Broods


This Weeks Music Video with The Strokes, Tegan and Sara, Beach House, AlunaGeorge, How To Dress Well and Daisy Victoria


Tegan and Sara – Love You To Death Review

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They may be known as the most recognisable identical twins in music or even for their great work with LGBT activism, but despite this, Tegan and Sara have always let the music do their talking. With their eight studio album Love You To Death, they look to do the same. They’re quite simply massive in their hometown of Calgary and across Canada, the US and Australia. This success hasn’t been as easy to come by in the UK and the rest of Europe, but with a reinforced Pop direction, they’ll be looking to replicate their success across the oceans.

The lead single from the album is ‘Boyfriend’ and it is one giant Pop punch in the face to give you a visual aid. With anyone else this would sound hopeless and random, but they draw out and tease the song along in places in order to maximise the popping rhythms and melodies. From these bolstered hooks come their highly infectious harmonies which function in perfect unity with  the instrumentation around them. It is without doubt one with the best Pop songs of the year and with it comes emotional lyrical content. ‘U-Turn’ features buoyant synths and skipping riffs that are underpinned by a steady dropping beat. Again their unified vocals are perfectly matched for the sounds around them and again they refine these sounds in parts in order to draw out a stronger chorus. This leaves a outrageously catchy track for everyone to sing along to.

With ‘100x’ they look to embrace the Pop-tinged swooning ballad and spacious piano chords are certainly the order of the day here. The power vocals are the only thing tinged with a hint of production influence with a slight skip and whilst nothing spectacular, it demonstrates their vocal skill and is a sign of their own versatility. ‘Stop Desire’ is filled with rumbling bass lines and spacious elecronica with close vocals. ‘That Girl’ is a typical piano-Pop track in the verses, but with a chorus that flourishes into light and power. ‘Faint of Heart’ is a cheesy ballad with their vocal rounds working brilliantly to hammer home the infectious nature of the track. The album falls down on a few tracks due to more simple lyrics and stale sounds such as the the final track on the album. These things prevent it being a perfect Pop album. It full of energy and is cleverly manipulated and moulded to accentuate every layer of the songs. For the most part, the lyrics offer up a striking vulnerability that add yet another dimension to their pepped up Pop. Beyond that it is just a fun album and won’t get old quickly.

Tegan and Sara – Love You To Death = 8/10

 

Owen Riddle

Single Review – Tegan and Sara – 100x

Perhaps the most prolific identical twins in music have been quite busy of late, churning out three singles and videos in a relatively short space of time. These singles are from their impending eighth studio album Love You To Death (Out June 3rd). With it, they look to push their current Pop influences even further and ‘Boyfriend’ and ‘U-Turn’ have been wonderfully open and indulgent pieces of Pop. With ‘100x’ they look to embrace the Pop-tinged swooning ballad and spacious piano chords are certainly the order of the day here. The power vocals are the only thing tinged with a hint of electronica and whilst nothing spectacular, it demonstrates their vocal skill and is a sign of their own versatility.

Owen Riddle

This Weeks Music Video with Radiohead, Grimes, Tegan and Sara, Beth Orton and Ought

This Weeks Music Video with Florence + The Machine, Tegan and Sara, Azealia Banks, Braids and Islands