411 Music Ten Deep 7.03.14: The Top 10 Songs of 2014 (So Far)
Posted by Sean Walker on 07.03.2014
From Jack White's "Lazaretto" and Linkin Park's "Guilty All the Same" to Michael Jackson's "Do You Know Where Your Children Are," "Magic" by Coldplay and more, 411's Sean Walker counts down the top 10 songs of 2014 so far!
Hello everyone, and welcome to another edition of Ten Deep. I'm Sean Walker, and I'm back after a hard drive failure, 1 TB worth of loss shit, and the birth of four gorgeous kittens. It's clear that I have no life whatsoever.
2014 is halfway over with, and there have been some quality songs that have been released. Every genre has had a strong showcasing so far, and picking fifteen was not an easy task. Please remember that this is an opinion column, and music is subjective, so your taste may be different than mine. Let's get started!
Just Missing the 10:
15. Iggy Azalea – "Don't Need Y'all"
14. Lana Del Rey – "Shades of Cool"
13. Ariana Grande- "Problem"
12. Sam Smith – "Stay With Me"
11. Erik Hassle - "Talk About It"
The Top Ten Songs of 2014 (So Far)
10. Mariah Carey – "Thirsty"
Mariah Carey in 2014 has been a bit of a mystery. Her new album and singles have all underperformed for someone of her status. She's been promoting the album in the weirdest ways, like riding a subway in a very expensive dress, and playing in the park with the other commoners. Despite all of the recent cookyness, she has indeed released arguably her most cohesive and interesting album ever. Take "Thirsty" for example. Mariah decided to experiment with trap, and it sounds fantastic. The lyrics are about her lover's never ending "thirst" for fame, which causes him to be in misery. If Mariah wants to once again deliver strong sales, she needs to make songs like this.
9. Betty Who - "Alone Again"
I almost guarantee that Betty Who will be a superstar in the future. At 22, she already has the ability to create a great pop song. She definitely reminds me of a younger Robyn or Kylie Minogue. "Alone Again" is a quality pop gem that has the potential to murder the radio waves if given the chance. You'll get a whiff of 80s/90s nostalgia from listening to it. It's bubblegum without ever getting too sweet or stale over multiple listens.
8. Jack White – "Lazaretto"
Jack White makes the strongest case for why rap-rock should be more prevalent in this generation. Someone made an excellent observation stating that rappers are the new rock stars. Rock artists have just become so faceless and generic that none of them stand out anymore. Cue Jack White, who instantly becomes the face of modern rock by bringing back the brashness and aggressiveness that is sorely missing in the mainstream. "Lazaretto" gives me chills every time I listen to it because of how different it sounds from all of his peers.
7. Lily Allen - "URL Badman"
Lily Allen has never really had a close relationship with internet users. She's constantly bashed for some reason, whether it's her rich background, or some issue she had with piracy, she was never really an internet favorite. On "URL Badman" she fights back with some of the most clearly targeted, unambiguous lyrics I've heard since the PC movement started. She pulls no punches as she destroys "internet geeks" with some pretty accurate statements. It's biting, vicious stuff that's fun and funny at the same time.
6. Beyoncé – "Yoncé/Partition"
Yoncé is a cocky masterpiece that proves that proves that Beyoncé may really be queen. She half raps, half sings over a sick beat that few pop singers just can't pull off. The second part of the song, "Partition" is a nasty, messy, filthy song that leaves you wanting to clean out your ears after one listen to its lyrics. Yet it's her brutal honesty and the trap production that makes you want to continue listening. I've never really heard Beyoncé be this explicit about sex, yet I've also never heard her be this open about her personal life. It's a club banger that's for sure, and you just want to dance to her singing about Jay Z ejaculating all over her.
5. Coldplay – "Magic"
I'd never thought I see the day where I would call Coldplay an underrated group. For some reason, their fanfare has started to turn to hate over the past couple of years. They've evolved their sound enough each album to where they still sound fresh despite being six albums in. "Magic" sounds like every other song Coldplay has put out, but with a bit of a twist to still make it interesting. There's the little things like Chris Martin's falsetto, or the soulful vibe that the song gives off that makes it a hit.
4. Linkin Park feat. Rakim – "Guilty All the Same"
I'm of the minority, but I loved A Thousand Suns, so I wouldn't really say that they've fallen off in terms of quality. I think that Linkin Park has matured from the angst-ridden teenager phase of Hybrid Theory and Meteora and turned into a fantastic rock band. The Hunting Party really proved that Linkin Park can do hard rock as much as they can do electronic rock. The first single, "Guilty All the Same" reminded me so much of Metallica in the 90s with the awesome raw guitar solos, and roaring lyrics. The legendary Rakim rapping is just icing on the cake.
3. Michael Jackson – "Do You Know Where Your Children Are"
I was just as cynical as the rest of y'all when I read that there would be a new Michael Jackson album, fiv years after his untimely death. Sony and the Jackson family are literally beating the dead horse until it's bone dry. As much as I dislike the fact that they made this album, I can't help the fact that it is really good. I guess this makes me part of the problem. "DYKWYCA" sounds like it would fit right in the Bad/Dangerous era of Michael, where it wasn't as risqué for him to sing about helping children. Besides the cringey title, this song reminded me why I am a fan of Michael in the first place. The social commentary is brilliant (albeit a bit outdated) and it isn't overproduced, which is a plus.
2. Robyn & Röyksopp – "Do It Again"
Robyn takes forever to release new product out into the world. On average, a new album comes every four or so years, so you without a doubt have no choice but to play the waiting game when something new comes out. This time, she teamed up with longtime collaborator Röyksopp to make a mini album that only teases her fans at the potential they have of making a full album together. "Do It Again" is a fun throwaway dance song that is almost a blueprint of what an EDM song should be in 2014. It has a great production that doesn't drown out the singer or void any emotion that should be there. A recommended listen for the EDM fans.
1. Sia – "Chandelier"
Earlier this year I was excited for when Sia announced that she was releasing a new album. 2010's We Are Born was a strong pop album, and she had been writing for many superstars like Rihanna and Christina Aguilera in the meantime. I was anticipating the day she would drop her first single in four years, and what sound it would carry with. Boy did she not let me down. Sia Furler definitely delivered in a big way. From the slurry auto tune, to the awesome chorus that yells from the top of her lungs, you truly feel as if you're swinging from a chandelier.
Are there any songs that I missed? Comment below and point out songs you feel that were great. Until then, see you next time!