1. The Magnetic Fields – Strange Powers
The Magnetic Fields are impossible to hate on. While most people go for 69 Love Songs, I’m a bigger fan of Holiday. Stephen Merritt’s signature sarcasm is a little toned down—possibly even bordering on sincerity?—and each song is a brilliant little pop gem. What a weird and wonderful love song this is.
Our hair in the air, our lips blue from cotton candy
When we kiss it feels like a flying saucer landing
And I can’t sleep, cause you got strange powers
You’re in my dreams, strange powers
Makes me feel young again. Younger, anyway.
2. Def Leppard – Animal
I really thought I hated Def Leppard. I was like, if I walk into one more fucking karaoke bar and hear “Pour Some Sugar On Me,” I’m going to throw my drink on the sound system and hopefully electrocute myself and whoever chose it. Well, like most of the opinions I formed when I was 15, I was wrong. If you want to listen to the ultimate bombastic 80s rock ballad, this is the song for you. It is the absolute perfect niche-filler for a lovelorn, Aquanetted, tank-topped hero.
3. Twin Sister – Kimmi in a Rice Field
Twin Shadow, Cocteau Twins, Twin Tigers, Ying Yang Twins—can one have too many twins? I was late to this ethereal groove, which happens to have an equally mystical video. Disco for ghosts.
4. Earth – The Driver
An Earth track that is more sexy than stoner (although still plenty puff-friendly). They should really make a super-dark interpretation of The Hobbit (alternatively, The Never-Ending Story) and let this album be the soundtrack.
5. U2 – Numb
In a car full of alleged U2-haters the other day and this song came on the radio. We were all like, oh yeah! This song! This song is sickkk! And then I Shazam’ed it and it was U2 and everyone looked so ashamed of themselves. Guys, it’s okay to hate Bono but also believe that not all U2 songs are pieces of garbage. Also, if it helps, The Edge is actually the one doing vocals on this track—as well as participating in a Marina Abramovic-like performance in its video.