Hey – I know I said albums were next, but I’m still only 63% the albums of 2011 list that I made (it’s 1.4 days long), and that includes listening to LMFAO (yeah I have the album, what) at 9:30 on a Friday when I’m in my pajamas. I’m working on it.
In the meantime, I’ve been told that no one likes albums anyway, and I should just do songs. So, Songs of 2011! I only include here songs that aren’t on albums that are going to be on the albums list (at least, the expected albums list). Which means James Blake and “Take Care” and other stuf aren’t on here, even though I’m super fond of those songs. They’ll be next!
Favorite fantastic songs of 2011 with no video/videos I don’t care about:
Charlie XCX, “Stay Away”
Hot damn, do I love this song. I was gonna say its a perfect like, getting ready for a party song, but also a perfect after you come home song and ALSO a perfect sitting on the couch writing a blog post song (yep, just tested it), because this song is great.
Kelly Rowland ft. Lil Wayne, “Motivation”
The Pitchforkiest Top 40 song of the year, all minimalist beat and bloops and dark rolling vocals. This song is also, literally, sex, and I listen to it all the time.
In English or in Spanish, I have no idea what this song means. But I love the bouncing, almost ska-y horns and the trilling-rrrrabiosa and the funny downbeat “sexy” vocal and, honestly, even Pitbull’s, uh, seduction raps. In other news, Shakira stripper pole.
Beyonce, “Schoolin’ Life”
Ok duh, “Countdown” was the best Beyonce song of the year. But this thing is so loud and punchy (it’s basically Beyonce’s version of “Yamaha.”) This is for them twentysomethings.
Lady Gaga, “Scheisse”
I relistened to this album as part of that big 2011 albums list, and you know, it’s a lot better than I remembered! It’s still not great or anything, but it’s pretty solid. I think Gaga’s stuff (especially lately) is just so plastic that you can use it up pretty quickly, and then it just becomes irritating. The point is, this song has not gotten used up, at all. Her voice on “I wish I could be strong without someBODY there” is so fantastic.
Selena Gomez, “Bang Bang Bang”
Obviously, this year I was all about bouncy electronic bloops and the usual sort of purr-sexy-what are you doing vocals, all in the service of letting us know how great Justin Bieber is in bed.
Calvin Harris ft. Kelis, “Bounce”
I’m actually pretty fond of this video, but the point is what a perfect party song this is – why haven’t we had a video game-bleep-sound song called “Bounce” yet? Also Kelis, nice to see you again. Hands to the sky and throw your hands back.
Lana Del Ray, “Video Games”
Speaking of video games…You know, I heard this song on someone’s list and I hadn’t connected it to that Lana Del Ray, and I just remember waking up with “I hear you like the bad girls honey, is that true?” in my head and thinking it was so gorgeous. And then I realized it was her and I spent awhile poking around the Internet to figure out what the “controversy” was, and then I just felt sort of awful. I still think this song is really great, but I think we don’t need any more Lana Del Ray.
Favorite songs of the year where the song is pretty good but the video is fantastic:
Tyler, the Creator, “Yonkers”
I never got around to forming opinions about Odd Future/OGWhatever, but this is the perfect combination of song, video, look, artist, even the name of the song. “Yonkers” – the place? The concept? I’m a fucking paradox, no I’m not. (No, he’s not).
Kreayshawn, “Gucci Gucci”
That hook is super catchy, and I just love this whole video of them all just hangin’ out, yknow, in Oakland, with her huge bow and that like, nose chain? I followed Kreayshawn on Twitter for awhile, I was so charmed
LMFAO, “Sexy and I Know It”
Ok full disclosure, I wasn’t going to put this on the list and then I realized there were only two songs in this category so I added it, because this video is a blast, and I still love LMFAO. I have sort of a personal feeling about them, having been a fan since “I’m in Miami Bitch”. What I’m saying is I was into LMFAO when they were indie.
Songs that are fantastic already but the video just raises it that much more; thus, these are the best:
Zoo Kid/King Krule(?), “Out Getting Ribs”
I found this on the Pitchfork song list and was just sort of struck. Where did this even come from? That voice and this kid, just standing there. It’s like it’s coming straight at you out of the innards of the Internet itself. I can’t stop looking.
Karen O, Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, “Immigrant Song”
Technically not a video, but would this song matter without “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo?” It’s still my favorite part of a movie I liked an awful lot. They picked a good one – the lyrics match up with the story (sort of), and Karen O is perfect to sound unhinged and deranged and straight up powerful. Plus most LedZep songs could stand to be condensed (just like “Girl with a Dragon Tattoo” itself).
Yuck, “Get Away”
The best 90’s song to have come out this year, by some 20-something dudes from England. Sometimes revivals are even better than the original – all the best parts, none of the boring Sebadoh songs. This goes here because the video is such a perfect 90’s moment itself, too.
Nicki Minaj, “Super Bass”
Pretty obviously the song of the year. I mean, 217 million people watched this video. Nothing can compete with that for sheer ubiquity and also awesome-songness, unless it’s…
Adele, “Rolling in the Deep”
216.8 million. It’s hard to hear now, but this song still hits it out of the park.
Azaelia Banks, “212”
Possibly my favorite song of the year. Is there anything she can’t do – rapping, singing, choruses, funny dancing, looking hella spunky in her crazy pigtails? This is the video where I wish they would stop doing closeups on her great lips so I could watch her dance and stand around with an attitude more.