2014 (and late 2013) has been the best, most ridiculous year of my life. Between traveling the world, building new friendships, and starting a career, it’s hard to complain about anything. That being said, it’s been a weird year in which I am getting up to go again right when I start to settle in. I haven’t been in one place for more than a couple months, and the only real constant has been music. My taste and preference has expanded pretty significantly based on location, people, and mood over the past year – I’m happy to share my top 5 tracks of 2014 with you!
- Dwntwn – ‘Til Tomorrow’
LA based four-piece Dwntwn broke onto the scene in early 2014 with their eponymous EP and smashing single, ‘Til Tomorrow.’ Jamie Leffler and Robert Cepeda sing back and forth to each other, discussing how they’re going to move forward and let the past be the past. This song carried me through a stressful round of finals, graduation, straight into a summer of adventure and self-discovery.
- Heartsrevolution – ‘Kiss’
I covered this band back when The Music Brewery started as my very first post, but will be highlighting a different song this time around. ‘Kiss’ is a song about getting back on track with that significant other…or facing reality and ending something that’s been dead for a while. This was my early morning wake-me-up over the summer, taking the train from Sinchon station to Seoul National University. Check it!
- Porter Robinson – ‘Sad Machine’
‘Sad Machine’ is the Japanese anime-influenced mega-hit of Porter Robinson, from his latest album, Worlds. This track perfectly displays the shift Porter has taken with his latest work, and attempts to make a point to the EDM community – I’d say it achieves its purpose – that it’s not all about heavy beats and predictable bass-drops. Worlds is the passion project of a kid that grew up with Toonami and Miyazaki, and it’s absolutely beautiful. ‘Sad Machine’ is exactly what the title suggests…a sad machine that wakes up from a long hibernation and is all alone. The machine itself sounds like BMO from Adventure Time – tragically cute. This was my roaming-through-the-crowded-HK-markets song.
- Phantogram – ‘Fall In Love’ & ‘Bill Murray’
I couldn’t choose just one song from Phantogram’s latest work, Voices. ‘Fall In Love’ is a much heavier, classic Phantogram song, while ‘Bill Murray’ – an homage to the coolest human ever and his amazing performance in Sofia Coppola’s Lost in Translation – slows it down. They’re both masterpieces from one of the hottest up-and-coming indie groups. When you collaborate with Outkast’s Big Boi, you know you’ve made it (or you’re at least well on the way). These are my rage song and study song respectively.
- Tahiti 80 – ‘Crush!’
One of my favorite bands from the past month and a half, Tahiti 80 absolutely crushes it with their hit ‘Crush!’ I’ve covered their recent album, Ballroom, in a past review, and still can’t stop talking about them. ‘Crush!’ is a very interesting indie foot-tapper. It’s Phoenix meets The Beach Boys. This is my airplane-is-about-to-land song.
I hope you enjoy my top five-ish songs of 2014 as much as I do! Onward to 2015!