Abir’s Favs of 07

I’d have to say that this was a great year for music. I definitely didn’t think it was gonna be this way at the beginning of the year. I was hating my job, hating my life, and hating the whole music scene. It didn’t help that so many followups released early in the year disappointed me (I’m looking at you CYHSY and Bloc Party). So I kinda lost myself in pop for a little while (lots of Lily Allen, JT, and Nelly Furtado - [hey don’t judge man]). Then Of Montreal and Spoon (and a new job) shook me out of that funk. So that leads me to this list: 20 personal classics including 2 covers, 2 songs from unreleased demos, 1 remix, and of course, 1 Radiohead song.


LCD Soundsystem - All My Friends
This article kinda says it all:
“All My Friends” embodies this ethos flawlessly. While its galloping piano, aerobic bass line, and assembly-line percussion are mighty enough to traverse the farthest reaches of the stadium, the song’s anthemness obscures the fact that it is ultimately a lone man’s sigh.” How often do you hear the word sigh when describing a dance song?

Justice - D.A.N.C.E.
The dance hit of the year. As I watched Justice do their thing at the Mezzanine I realized why their songs are so great… it’s Michael Jackson Revisited.

M.I.A. - Paper Planes
One theme that I think that runs through my favorite songs this year (or any year) is contradiction. I love that kids are singing the thug chorus. Plus who rhymes gunshots with a cash register?

Black Kids - I’m Not Gonna Teach You
Pretty damn impressive for a bunch of kids (not all Black)from Florida. Black Kids seem destined to become the most overblogged act of ‘08 if they keep this up.


Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings - 100 Days
Amy Winewho?

The Pipettes - Tell Me What You Want
Ok, technically this song came out in 06 in the UK. It didn’t get released in the States until 07, and I didn’t really listen to it until this year. After seeing them at the Rickshaw stop I had “Tell Me What You Want” in my head for days.

Lily Allen Smile (Mark Ronson Revisit)
This is another of those UK exceptions. At the beginning of the year, I was pretty damn fed up with music and listened to Lily contantly. I think this remix makes the entire song new again. It has such a great breezy retor vibe.


Of Montreal - Heimdalsgate Like a Promethean Curse
Continuing the theme of contradictions, I love poppy songs about chemical dependency and mood swings! Plus how can you not love that song title? I wasn’t that big of an Of Montreal fan until this record came out. I found myself listening to this record on repeat for weeks. It was just so deliciously weird and surprisingly moving. Plus it has my favorite rambling 12 minute song of the year!

Vampire Weekend - Ladies of Cambridge
There’s a ton of great songs on their demo, but I picked this one because of the best track review of the year. Vampire Weekend presents the biggest conflict of the interest. It’s African tinged “Graceland” inspired rock performed by a bunch of white Columbia grads. The word “preppie rock” has been used to descirbe their stuff. *Shiver*. In the end though, they make really infectious pop songs that are super fun to listen to.

The National - Mistaken for Strangers
For being one of my favorite records of the year, I don’t have much to say about this song. National records just kinda put me in a trance, and affect me in different ways at different times. Sometimes I think, wow, the lyrics are great or I love this dudes vocals. Other times I fall for beauty of the backing music. Anyways, this is a great song off an amazing record. I love the line “You get mistaken for strangers by your own friends when you pass them at night under the silvery, silvery citibank lights”.

Jens Lekman - A Postcard To Nina
The lyrics are so clearly and wonderfully delivered I don’t even need to talk about what this song is about. It’s beautiful, inspiring, and hilarious.  While the story is great, I think my favorite part is the sentiment expressed in the few lines in the song… “Don’t let anyone stand in your way”.

Spoon You Got Yr. Cherry Bomb
I think GaX5 wins for most spins this year. It’s like dipping grilled cheese in tomato soup while wrapped up in a blanket. Sure there might be better more artful accomplished daring records this year but nothing was more comforting to me this year.

Beirut - Nantes
Seeing Beirut live was on of my concert highlights of the year so I felt I had to put a live version on mixtape. This comes straight from the collection of videos. Each video is performed live in one take and the results are incredible. I chose Nantes because the video follows Zach singing while walking down a flight of stairs. Every floor he gets accompanied by more musicians. By the time he reaches the bottom floor he has about 10 musicians playing with him. You can definitely hear the gradual build up in the song I put in. Check out video yourself. It must be seen!

St. Vincent - Now, Now
A Cute Girl Singing. Clever Lyrics. A Guitar Freakout Conclusion. “Now now” has pretty everything I could ask for a song. Plus how could not love an album title that’s an Arrested Development Reference.

Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Isis
YYY’s pack the most bang for the buck with their EP’s. This collection of mostly old songs reminded me how amazing they can be live. It’s nice to hear Karen scream on a record again.

Daniel Rossen (Grizzly Bear) - Too Little Too Late [Jo Jo Cover]
Ok, so Jojo is a 17 teen pop singer that’s the new Britney Spears or whatever (poor girl). The song is about all those jerky boys just it in for the chase and then want something more. Stupid boys. The lead singer did a cover this song as a gift to a friend. The result is an amazing reinterpretation that might be better than Ted Leo’s “Since U Been Gone/Maps” or Travis’s “Baby, One More Time”.
You must hear the original to appreciate this song.

Radiohead - All I Need
Another fuckin great year for the boys in Radiohead. I love how much more personal In Rainbows is compared to their other recent work. This record is much more about connection than alienation, and it has some of the most straightforward sentiment (”I don’t want to be your friend. I just want to be your lover”). “All I Need” is my favorite song off the new Radiohead record that I hadn’t heard before (although Recoker is closing in).

Arcade Fire - No Cars Go
I’m not sure this is the best song on Neon Bible. It’s pretty hard to choose a favorite. I picked this song because as good as it is on record it just explodes live. The last 2 minutes of this song was my most favorite concert moment of 2007. If close my eyes while I listen to this song I can the gang shouting their lungs out in unison.

The Go! Team - Patricia’s Moving Picture
The Go! Team is one of those bands that’s a “Break in case of an emergency” for me. Anytime I’m feeling blue, I can put on the Go! Team and it instantly change my mood. I think it’s impossible to listen to one of their songs without smiling. This song is a pretty low key affair from the new record that sounds it’s emanating from Sesame Street.


Scala & Kolacny Brothers - Heartbeats (Originally Performed By The Knife)
A beautiful choir version of “the single greatest song of this decade to date“.

B-sides (Songs that were on the mix at some point but I ended up removing)

Sappy songs
Band of Horses - No one’s ever gonna love you
Bright Eyes - Make a Plan To Love Me

Best Song That Came Out of Nowhere
Dustin Kensrue - I knew you before
The Missing Unofficial Intro that got cut at the last second
Patton Oswalt - Alternative Earth