Here’s a list of my top songs for this year, in an order that might be surprisingly mixable. These are not necessarily from 2020; I just happened to have heard them in the last twelve months.
Horses, by Tomo Nakayama on Music from Touchy Feely August, by Taylor Swift on Folklore Conversations in the Dark, by John Legend on Bigger Love Husavik, by My Marianne feat. Will Ferrell on Eurovision Song Contest Now I’m in It, by Haim on Women in Music Pt. III That Feeling, by Young London on Laggies I Hate Everybody, by Halsey on Manic Scared To Live (SNL Live), by The Weeknd on After Hours (Deluxe) This Is Everything, by Grouplove on Healer Delete Forever, by Grimes on Miss Anthropocene
Playing Dead, by Breathe Owl Breathe on Your Sister’s Sister This Summer, by Loren Allred on This Summer Bad Decisions, by The Strokes on The New Abnormal Inner Child, by BTS on Map of the Soul: 7 Retrospect, by Vistas on Everything Changes in the End Nothing at All, by Perfume Genius on Set My Heart on Fire Immediately Death Stranding, by Chvrches on Death Stranding Empress, by Snow Patrol on Wildness Spring, by Angel Olsen on All Mirrors
We lost an excellent filmmaker this year, Lynn Shelton. Three of the songs featured on this list are from her movies — Touchy Feely (Horses), Laggies (That Feeling), and Your Sister’s Sister (Playing Dead). Touchy Feely is my favorite film of hers, but really, they’re all excellent.
Here’s a list of my top songs for this year, in an order that might be surprisingly mixable. These are not necessarily from 2019; I just happened to have heard them in the last twelve months.
Love Song, by Lana Del Rey on Norman Fucking Rockwell! Married in a Gold Rush, by Vampire Weekend feat. Danielle Haim on Father of the Bride Cracking Codes, by Andrew Bird on My Finest Work Yet Gloria, by The Lumineers on III Hustle, by P!nk on Hurts 2B Human Paper Rings, by Taylor Swift on Lover Bad Guy, by Billie Eilish on When We Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? Make It Right, by BTS on Map of the Soul: Persona Some Kind of Love, by Dido on Still on My Mind Orpheus, by Sara Bareilles on Amidst the Chaos Falling for Boys, by Julia Michaels on Inner Monologue Part 2
Digital Boy, by Serena Jade (Live from the Rockwood Music Hall, NYC, 8-3-2019) Stupid Things, by Keane on Cause and Effect Allergic, by Post Malone on Hollywood’s Bleeding I Was Terrible, by How to Dress Well on Care Young Enough, by Charly Bliss on Young Enough Billie Jean, by Weezer on Weezer (Teal Album) Real Love, by Carly Rae Jepsen on Dedicated Feels Good, by Lissie on Castles Light on, by Maggie Rogers on Heard It in a Past Life
Many good tunes here, but I really dug the Charly Bliss song. Hugely anthemic, Young Enough just soars and soars.
Here’s a list of my top songs for this year, in an order that might be surprisingly mixable. These are not necessarily from 2018; I just happened to have heard them in the last twelve months.
Never Enough, by Loren Allred on The Greatest Showman (Soundtrack) Sorry, by Halsey on Hopeless Fountain Kingdom Feel Alive, by Katie Herzig on Moment of Bliss No Roots, by Alice Merton on No Roots EP It’s Not Just Me, by Let’s Eat Grandma on I’m All Ears Babies, by Tracey Thorn on Record Cycles, by Tove Lo on Blue Lips Delicate, by Taylor Swift on Reputation Woodland, by The Paper Kites on Woodland & Young North EP I Get Overwhelmed, by Dark Rooms on A Ghost Story (Soundtrack) 28, by Lorene Scafaria on Garden Party EP Somebody New, by The Struts on Young & Dangerous The River, by KT Tunstall on Wax Hold Out Your Hand, by Brandi Carlile on By the Way, I Forgive You The Winner Takes It All, by Cher on Dancing Queen Capital Letters, by Hailee Steinfeld X Bloodpop on Fifty Shades Freed (Soundtrack) Brave, by Sara Bareilles on The Blessed Unrest Trade Hearts (feat. Julia Michaels), by Jason Derulo on Everything Is 4 Need You Now, by Lady Antebellum on Need You Now Most of All, by Steve Perry on Traces At This Moment, by Billy Vera and the Beaters on Billy and the Beaters
Which one was the best? I think it’s too close a call between Loren Allred’s soaring Never Enough and the always-melancholy Tove Lo’s Cycles. Both are delightfully painful tunes.