I despise cultural snobbery in any form, but it seems particularly criminal in music. The counter-culture swing of hipster indie music against the commercial empire has always seemed ridiculous to me, given the monolithic record labels are all but disintegrating under the pressure of the internet all by themselves. It doesn't need any help from music listeners who celebrate the obscure as culturally superior. Music is the great equaliser. E veryone listens to it, and everyone has an opinion. All of this is by way of caveating the current tracks that are on repeat in my house, as I can't pretend to be fashionable. In fact, when it comes to music, I'm disastrously behind the wave, dangerously isolated and hopelessly nostalgic. But still, I reckon these are friggin' sweet tunes:
Lorde - Royals
The fact that she's so young and ridiculously talented is mildly annoying, but Royals is hopelessly addictive and a lyrical gem. It's one of 2013's most popular tracks for a reason. It'll also get into your head until the day you die.
The Samsung cinema ad with the children's choir adaptation is a brilliant arrangement too.
Elton John - Social Disease
Wait, Dave, isn't this a song from 1973?
Yes, yes it is.
Goodbye Yellow Brick Road is the type of album that I come back to every couple of years and discover new gems that were hidden to me on previous listens. Social Disease is hidden as the penultimate track on the huge double record. It adds to the album's huge diversity with a good foot-stompin', bass heavy, lyrically strong show-stopper.
When I jog to this, I like to imagine I'm on an episode of Soul Train. The fact the song makes me think of this despite the fact it's 2013, I'm white, and not a good dancer, is a testament to it's skills in reality transcendence.
Daft Punk - Get Lucky
Who would've thought a return to disco would be one of the biggest hits of 2013? And, of all bands, Daft Punk to be the group that led us there? It's almost certainly number one on Triple J Hottest 100 this year, and deservedly so. It's a simple, robust pop song.
It will also get into your head until you pass out.
John Mayer - Wildfire
John, what's happening with you buddy? It was only 12 months ago you released the Neil Young inspired Born and Raised and now you've released this interesting little off-shoot. I like the fact that Mr. Mayer could've easily grown into a rather sad pop star, but he's instead matured into an interesting artist that seems more interested in music exploration than populist accolades. He also seems to have grown out of his depressed STI days, which is quite frankly a relief.
The Last of Us
The music composition behind the video game is so unique and beautiful that the album's become a regular in my very small collection of music I listen to while writing. I love the fact that the developers chose classical guitar to accompany the zombie apocalypse. It manages to sound both barren and rich at the same time. Love it.