Top 50 Tracks of 2015 (10-01)

10. Soko ft. Ariel Pink “Lovetrap”

You’d be hard-pressed to find a better female/male indie pop duet in 2015 than French chanteuse Soko’s “Lovetrap”. With lyrics detailing the lustful longings of a merman begging a mermaid to, “be my girlfriend, be my best friend, be my one-night fling”, Ariel Pink pleads with Soko to give him one more chance for love. Once the two merpeople jump into the irresistibly danceable chorus, it’s impossible not to get swept away in their watery romance. – Andy Mascola

09. The Districts “Young Blood”

The Districts‘ lead singer Rob Grote has a voice that’s absolutely heartbreaking, and it makes “Young Blood” one of the most powerful songs of 2015. We start out easy enough with slow, steady drumming, and as soon as Grote leans into the microphone, it’s obvious that the lyrics are beautifully written. Lines such as “Love is patient and wise, but it’s not always kind when you learn how it leaves / So nimble and lithe, like fingers through sand / It never lingers and I’m grating my hands” are poignant, but most importantly, they’re convincing. The Districts are a band that could easily move you to tears. The song finishes on a high, with Grote growling the words, “It’s a long way down from the top to the bottom / It’s a long way back to a high from where I am” backed by an explosive rhythm section. Stretching for nearly nine minutes, this song is the perfect catharsis. – Shannon Athena

08. Panda Bear “Boys Latin”

Panda Bear’s keeping it weird and “Boys Latin” is his latest goofy, strange masterpiece. “Boys Latin” features synthy tones cut with a simple percussion paired with some ethereal, floaty, disguised vocals. “Boys Latin” feels like more than an experience than a song at some points. It’s like peering into another universe; and this is exactly why it’s one of the best songs of 2015. Panda Bear transports you to another world altogether. Listening to “Boys Latin” is like going on some sort of Alice In Wonderland adventure. It’s a bit absurd, a bid trippy, but fascinating and wondrous. – John Naessig

07. Jamie xx feat. Young Thug & Popcaan “I Know There’s Gonna Be (Good Times)”

“I Know There’s Gonna Be (Good Times)” is a total outlier on Jamie XX’s In Colour album. The track is the only song on In Colour that includes rapping which comes in form of both Atlanta rapper Young Thug and Jamaican dancehall artist Popcaan. But the real star of the show are the samples of The Persuasions’ 1972 track “Good Times” which Jamie XX expertly picks out the most soulful moments of to create the catchy chorus and monster beat. – Adam Tercyak-Morgan

06. Speedy Ortiz “Raising the Skate”

While 2015 was another strong year for feminism in music, much of the year’s plaudits went to Courtney Barnett. Sadie Dupuis of Speedy Ortiz surely deserved a fair amount of praise as well. “Raising the Skate” could be used as an anthem against sexism. Defiantly singing “I’m not bossy, I’m the boss,” Dupuis channels her inner Beyonce over the band’s signature off-kilter, snaky guitar lines. – Adam Tercyak-Morgan

05. Hot Chip “Huarache Lights”

In the indie rock circuit, Hot Chip is a household name. They’ve been around for fifteen years and have headlined nearly every major music festival you can think of, plus they have the added bonus of sharing a band member with the legendary LCD Soundsystem. This has consistently led to amazing things in the past, and 2015 is no different – “Huarache Lights” off their latest album Why Make Sense? is pure electronic bliss. The computerized chanting of “Replace us with the things that do the job better” is infectious, and the tempo switches only make the song seem even more club-ready. Hot Chip is far past the stage of having to prove themselves, but just in case they did, “Huarache Lights” would certainly do the trick. – Shannon Athena

04. Kendrick Lamar “King Kunta”

There is nary a list of songs of 2015 out there that does not include Kendrick Lamar’s “King Kunta” and for good reason. While most write ups are about Lamar’s lyricism–which is admittedly supreme–the instrumental gets overlooked as a major part of the “King Kunta”‘s success. Produced by Sounwave and Terrace Martin, the track goes through a catharsis from just funky drums to the addition of light guitars, horns, synths until the track fills out to a lush, handclapping jam. – Adam Tercyak-Morgan

03. Courtney Barnett “Pedestrian at Best”

We have all dated someone who thought they were undeserving of the affection they were receiving. Courtney Barnett feels that way to the point where she takes to song to iterate it. She hurls insults at herself saying “I’m homely” and “put me on a pedestal and I’ll only disappoint you,” all with a frenetic manic energy. – Adam Tercyak-Morgan

02. Florence + The Machine “What Kind of Man”

The lead single from Florence + The Machine‘s third album, How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful, “What Kind of Man” is an odd song. Begin with angelic synths and manipulated vocals that have almost a demonic quality to them, the song really picks up with two guitar hits that sound straight out of INXS‘ “Need You Tonight”, tambourine, and almost tribal backing vocals. As horns get added to the mix, Florence sounds as fiery as ever asking “what kind of man loves like this?” Its strong brilliant pop from an artist who is quickly become one of the great voices of this generation. – Adam Tercyak-Morgan

01. Tame Impala “Let It Happen”
I’m fairly convinced that Tame Impala‘s “Let It Happen” is magic. It’s been nine months and this song still feels new. Its many twists and turns are still exciting and heart-stopping. It’s an artist at the peak of his powers. While a lot (probably too much) has been written about Kevin Parker this year—much of it positive, some of it negative—leave this song alone. Let’s not overthink. Let’s let it wash all over us. It’s pretty much perfect, so let’s just let this song happen. – Mark Steinbach