It’s the most wonderful time of the year — the time for best-of lists! Just like last year, my lists are open to any song/movie/book that I encountered for the first time in 2012. Let’s kick it off with my favorite songs of the year. Here are numbers 10 through 6.
10. Fiona Apple, “Get Him Back”
I realize that I’m one album behind in the Fiona Apple catalog, but I recently stumbled upon a used copy of Extraordinary Machine at Cheapo. I was familiar with some of the songs from sharing music with college friends. Among the unfamiliar offerings, this funky tune quickly became a favorite. I love the gleefully sinister tone when she sings, “Wait till I get him back.” Is she going to get him back or get back at him?
9. Ingrid Michaelson, “Ribbons”
This year Ingrid Michaelson released Human Again, which features some top-notch breakup songs. As I mentioned in my album review, I like to think of “Ribbons” as a continuation of “Parachute,” which appeared on last year’s best-of list! Maybe I’m just a sucker for flying metaphors.
8. Fleet Foxes, “Montezuma”
“Montezuma” could be the most beautiful song of the year. I heard it quite frequently on The Current and eventually added it to my own music collection. The harmonies are what initially grabbed my attention, but the lyrics make it more than just a pretty song. “Oh how could I dream of such a selfless and true love? / Could I wash my hands of just looking out for me?”
7. Tegan and Sara, “Closer”
Tegan and Sara want to make us dance, and I’m more than willing to let them. “Closer” is a genuinely sweet song about the anticipation of new love. If you aren’t singing along by the end, well, you definitely aren’t me. I can’t wait for their new album in January! (More thoughts on “Closer” and the upcoming album can be found here.)
6. Taylor Swift, “State Of Grace”
Taylor Swift is my not-so-guilty guilty pleasure. I must admit, it was hard to pick a favorite song off her new album Red. So many of them make for great singalongs in the car, including the classic Swift ballad “Begin Again.” In the end I had to pick a triumphant love song because I love a triumphant Taylor. I’ve heard the sound of “State Of Grace” compared to U2, and I think it’s an apt comparison. The dramatic flair suits Taylor nicely.
Come back tomorrow for the top 5!