Noisey UK's Best Tracks of the Year (So Far)
A buttload of new music is released everyday and, between having a social life, devouring everything on Netflix, flicking through Instagram, buying and cooking food, getting drunk, going on Tinder dates, fucking, sleeping and actually, y'know, holding down a job, it can be hard to keep up.
Luckily our job is music. We listen to so many sounds that we barely talk in real life - we're too busy listening to music in our headphones that, despite sitting within an arms reach of everyone we work with, we converse on iChat. If we take our headphones off - we're greeted by the office stereo. Our YouTube account is full of music favourites. We spend our weekend at festivals. We're full to the brim with so much music that when we take a dump a little medley often comes out.
This means you can trust us when we say that 2014 has already been a great year for music. With that in mind - get your favourites, repost and Soundcloud like buttons ready. This is Noisey UK's best video of the year, best tracks of the year, and all the other shit that is worth listening to.
The Best Video of The Year (So Far)
Serious Thugs call their music post-ringtone. We call their video the best colour co-ordination we've seen this side of Dipset.
THE TOP 5
5: GET HOT - "PARTY"
You're at a party. Do you see that guy across the room? The one having so much fun that he doesn't care he's spilled half a drink down his shirt, is drenched in sweat, chewing his gums off, and about to formula-one his beer across the room into five different conversations with a massive grin etched into his face? This is Get Hot's "Party" in visual form.
4: Ariana Grande - "Problem" (Feat Iggy Azalea)
There is something about Ariana's vocal style that's been missing from pop for a long time. All these pop house vocalists (Jess Glynne) and soulful crybabies (Sam Smith) are fine - but all they can do is faux emoting. Ariana has that fizz of excitement that you hear in Bowie or Britney. Her vocals are like tangfastics, Haribo dreams that are only cut asunder by Iggy's Atlanta verbal pre-nup: safeguarding Ariana for when her sugar-rush dream boy turns out to be a cunt who doesn't give head and never takes out the bins.
3: Caribou - "Can't Do Without You"
The only problem with this track is that, even after releasing an extended mix, it still isn't long enough. IT NEEDS TO LAST FOREVER.
2 - Ratking - "So Sick Stories" (Feat King Krule)
Ratking and King Krule stitch together the streets they inhabit. Krule evokes the sound of snaking around the city on an Overground basilisk, winding in and out of darkness, carrying a sodden roll-up and some Oxfam shop vinyl, Ratking drinking cold 40s and getting adequately blunted at Queens squat parties. Both artists paint the sort of visual image that wouldn't be found on a postcard - and both live in cities suffocated in concrete but breathing culture. It made perfect sense for them to jump on a track together and this is one of the best things they've ever done.
1: Skepta - "That's Not Me" (Feat JME)
Poor Meridian Dan. Skulking around in the back of Skepta videos for the best part of a decade, waiting for his moment in the spotlight. Finally, this year, his moment came - everyone basically stopped taking bets on German Whip being the crossover grime hit of the year. We should have known that Skepta would never have that - in the throwaway opening bars of That's Not Me ("one-line flows, yeah I've got some of those") he neatly outpaces the best punchlines on German Whip. "That's Not Me" is grime at it's best: unexpected, darkly funny, ripe for endless adaptation and, most importantly, fucking great when being hollered by a bunch of gassed guys at a grime rave (as long as said rave hasn't been shut down by police).
EVERYTHING ELSE THAT IS WORTH LISTENING TO
Nao Vs A.K Paul - "So Good"
This was the first time Jai Paul's brother - and long time collaborator - stepped out from behind his siblings shadow. Guesting with East London singer Nao, they've nailed the track title on this one because "So Good" is So Good.
Princess Nokia - "Dragons"
Forget about Kim and Kanye, Jay and Beyonce, or Future and Ciara: Wavy Spice and Ratking's Wiki are the best power-couple in hip-hop right now. We wanted to pick their track "Puerto Rican Judo" but it's not on YouTube or Soundcloud. Instead here's a track from Wavey Spice's spellinbinding Princess Nokia mixtape.
Yung Lean - "Yoshi City"
Noisey hosted Yung Lean's first ever US show a few weeks ago and Drew Millard, over at our office in Brooklyn, wrote that "[Yung Lean has] gone from internet rap curio to something of an interstellar rap warrior, wearing sadness as if it were a cape of truth and justice". We'll be putting on his third ever UK show next month (we already hosted his first two earlier this year, keep up) and "Yoshi City" is his best video yet. Why? Because he raps in a cave and ghostrides a smart car with suicide doors.
Mr Vegas - "Squat"
Dance moves in bashment tunes have been getting too easy: step to the left, get low, twerk. Easy. Easy. Easy. Mr Vegas gives your hamstrings a workout on a track ready for carnival, but more importantly, your local Legs, Bums and Tums class.
Cam'Ron - "Humphrey" (Feat A-Trak)
"Humphrey" was the first in a line of great new Cam'ron songs created with Fools Gold boss A-Trak. This might actually be the best track Cam'ron's done since Come Home With Me.
Jessie Ware - "Tough Love"
A picture of Jessie Ware holding a baby alligator exists and it is perhaps the best reptilian related pop music thing we've ever seen. Jessie's not bad at this singing lark either. "Tough Love" is one of the best low-key pop tracks put out this year: perfect for when you're stalking your ex on Instagram, accidently like one of their photos, and then get really sad because they don't respond to your incessant messages anymore.
TALA - "On My Own In Hua Hin"
In the space of a year TĀLĀ has gone from a support vocalist for T. Williams to releasing her own shimmering pop singles that've been devoured by everyone with a Soundcloud account. "On My Own In Hua Hin" kicks off with an iPhone sample of a local band at a friend’s wedding in Thailand and by the end has morphed into a melting pot of loneliness, love, and a want to actually get out and see the world through your eyes instead of a computer screen.
Tink - "Don't Tell Nobody" (Feat Jeremih)
Real Lies - "North Circular"
You can say what you want about "Highway 61", "Hit The Road Jack", and that song on the Wizard of Oz - but "North Circular" is the best song ever made about a stretch of tarmac.
Vic Mensa - "Down On My Luck"
Vic Mena's first slice of new material seemed flung far from the orange soda and blunt taste of his debut Innanetape and more directed toward the club. But that's OK - "Down On My Luck" is about three times as good as any of the club-ready pop bangers currently rotating on your favourite radio station.
JUCE - "Call You Out"
We fell in love with JUCE as soon as we watched this video and forced them to let us put it on our YouTube.
Tinchy Styder - "ESG"
A killer return for Tinchy and the best song written about East London since "LDN is a Victim".
100s - "Ten Freaky Hoes"
We covered the whole 100s mixtape as The Best Thing We Heard This Week back in March and, four months later, it's one of the best things we've heard this year. "Ten Freaky Hoes" is one of the best tracks: sounding like a bubble bath filled with purple coloured Patrón.
Moody Good - "Grumbles n Sparkles" (Feat Rejjie Snow and Joshua Idehen)
We’ve loved Irish MC Rejie Snow since day but he might have found his calling on this horrorcore track from Chicago’s Moody Good. Best lyrics: "Snatching up the duffel bag, mephedrone, drug pushing, slags worth a dime bag, and fuck 'em for the cash”. Charming.
Sleaford Mods - "Tied Up In Nottz"
"Tied up in Nottz, Nottz with a Z, you cunt!"
Toddla T x Jammer x Danny Weed - "I Don't Wanna Hear That"
Poor Meridian Dan take two. This track takes second place in the grime resurgence.
The Majority of Things by PC Music
When we first covered PC Music they were just something we found on the internet that we really liked. But they're blown-up since then: recieving plaudits from The Fader and Pigeons and Planes - which described them as "The Future of Pop". If you still haven't heard them then this mix by label boss A.G Cook on Rinse FM is probably the best place to start.