Hey folks, it's that time again...my Top 20 tracks of 2017. Counting down from 20...
First up is #20 and Westlake Village, California's own Foxygen with "Follow the Leader," a stellar track that sends me right back to my days of listening to WLS on this really crappy AM radio I had. It sounds like it came out in 1979!
#19 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017...Philly's own Strand of Oaks with fab track, "Radio Kids." There's an urgent story in this track that really hit me.
#18 on my Top 20 tracks of 2017...New Zealand's Fazerdaze with "Jennifer." A summery wisp of a track, this one was played quite a bit during tennis coaching and moonlit walks in July and August.
#17 of my Top 20 tracks of 2017...Freemantle, Australia’s own San Cisco. This is from their 3rd LP, The Water. I really wish they would catch on here in the States more...
#16 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017...super group BNQT with their 70s dripped track, "Unlikely Force." This could have easily been a soft rock hit in 1978. Band of Horses frontman Ben Bridwell handles the vocals and songwriting duties on this track.
#15 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017...Portland's own Chromatics with "Shadow." There was no way I could make a Top 20 list without featuring a song from the Best TV show of 2017, Twin Peaks: The Return. Even though this track first came out in 2015, it set a certain tone for this year with the series revival and beyond.
#14 of my Top 20 tracks of 2017..."Wall of Glass" by Manchester's own Liam Gallagher. Obviously, I'm going to like anything the Gallagher bros do and it's pretty boss that we now basically get two Oasis albums every other year.
But Liam did a great job with this track and the whole LP. Much better than Beady Eye. And it was great seeing him in the Main Room just a few weeks back!
#13 of my Top 20 tracks of 2017...Honolulu's Bruno Mars with "24K Magic." What a fun track!! It came out at the very end of 2016 so it doesn't really count for that year. I played it (and the whole record) constantly this year as it reminded me a great deal of The Time and Prince.
#12 of Top 20 tracks of 2017...Todd Rundgren and Donald Fagan with "Tin Foil Hat." In the first year of the Trump presidency, there is really no better track. This marks the first collaboration between two of my big music heroes. Perhaps Todd should fill in occasionally for the recently passed Walter Becker.
#11 of Top 20 tracks of 2017..."Tokyo" by LA's own Thundercat taken from his magnificent LP, Drunk. This song (and indeed the entire record) reminds me a great deal of the previous entry on my list, Todd Rundgren. This song makes me want to go to Tokyo!
#10 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017..."Wow" by Beck. Every album Beck makes is wonderful. Most of this record sounds like the 3rd Friendly Fires album that has yet to materialize. But this track is vintage Beck. So glad I finally got to see him this year!
#9 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017...."The Man" by The Killers. Brandon Flowers and Co. are back with this (ahem) killer track. I want to sing this song to every woman I have ever known!
#8 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017...Hampshire's own Blaenavon with "Let's Pray." Most reminiscent of the Smiths, this track off of their debut LP (That's Your Lot) was in heavy rotation with me this year. No doubt, one of the most exciting new UK bands....
#7 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017...West Midlanders The Charlatans with corker of a cut, "Hey Sunrise." I've been a fan of this band for over 25 years. They were a precursor to the '90s Brit Pop era and they've stayed strong for this entire time.
#6 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017...Toronto's own Alvvays with "Dreams Tonight." Hands down, the most beautiful track of the year. I'm always a sucker for romantic tales...
#5 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017...another entry from the supergroup, BNQT. "Hey Banana" is a slinky, Jim Morrison-esque number sung by Alex Kapranos (Franz Ferdinand). I really love this song...
#4 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017..."It's A Beautiful World" by Noel Gallagher. Noel has outdone himself with his latest LP, "Who Built the Moon?" This is my favorite track.
#3 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017..."California Light" by Nottingham's own Childhood. This band should run a clinic on how to remake yourself. Their first album was shoe gaze Brit pop. This track, from their 2nd LP, Universal High, is straight up soul and sounds bloody magnificent. Nearly the track of the year if it weren't for the top 2.
#2 of my Top 20 Tracks of 2017...Cwamaman, Wales' own Stereophonics with "What's All The Fuss About?" A most cinematic track from Kelly and the lads this time around. I like how the song just goes and goes until it doesn't.
And the #1 track of 2017...drum roll, please...."Hey Kids" by Run the Jewels. This track helped me a great deal throughout 2017 get through Donald Trump's first year in office. It's angry, irreverent, loud, obnoxious and wonderful. Killer Mike is a beast.