It’s the end of the year and the Finest Kiss top 40 seven inch singles count down is back bigger better than ever in spite of there being fewer and fewer of these records getting released. Admittedly, it’s a dying genre, especially when you often have streamed a single 10-20 times and killed it by the time if finally arrives in the post. Nobody likes to wait these days, so without further ado, here is the first part, numbers 21-40.
21. Close Lobsters – Under London Skies (Shelflife)
Scotland’s OG jangle popsters are still at it. This is their second single since reforming and they haven’t lost a step. This high quality justifies an LP.
22. The Jeanies – Amilee (Hozac)
Take a trip back to the 70’s when the hair was frizzy and wild and power pop was on the airwaves.
23. Stephen’s Shore – Ocean Blue (Cloudberry)
Swedish pop makes a come back with this Mary Onettes inspired beauty.
24. Perapertú – Palmas bajas (Discos Walden)
This bouncy single answers the question, what if Orange Juice were Spanish?
25. Patience – The Church (Night School)
It appears that Veronica Falls are no more, but I cannot be to downtrodden since we get this first single from Roxanne Clifford’s new synth based project.
26. Couteau Latex – Hostile Environment (Goner)
Seth Sutton still has his Useless Eaters, but takes a step into minimalist synthetics with Lise Sutter.
27. My Favorite – Christine Zero (Death Party)
My Favorite write a beautiful tribute to Prefab Sprout. So good, I think Paddy McAloon was in the studio when they recorded this.
28. Jessica & the Fletchers – Marble Fountain (Market Square)
Noisy, blissed out songs in the vein of the Shop Assistants and Strawberry Switchblade.
29. Heavy Times – Dancer (Randy)
Chicago’s Heavy Times add some synth to their guitar attack and sound just as menacingly great.
30. Oslo House – Plateau (Trendy Feelings)
I loved that Omi Paloni record from a few years ago. Singer Philip Serfaty is now in Oslo House which is more subdued, but no less vibrant.
31. Posse – Perfect H (Wharf Cat)
Seattle’s Posse kept a fairly low profile this year, this being their lone release. They continue their Galaxy 500 influenced vibe here and it’s more than good enough to keep me anxiously awaiting what is next for them.
32. The World – Loser (Play Pinball)
Hot stuff from this bay area band that sounds a little ska, a little post-punk and a whole lotta goodness. This record probably would have charted higher if it wasn’t a flexi.
33. Exploded View – No More Parties In the Attic (Sacred Bones)
Formerly a solo act, Anika has a full time band now. Not sounding very different from her solo LP, this single pins the cold and disaffected meter in the red to sound even bleaker. Perfect for these times.
34. Spinning Coin – Albany (Domino)
Spinning Coin have a little bit of everything. A ramshackle feel akin to their countrymen the Pastels, a bit of the Tyde’s chilled out version of felt and some big old power chords recalling Slade. A lot to like here.
35. The Sha La Das – Those Years Are Over (Daptone)
The falsetto and backing vocals on this single will remind you of the Beach Boys. When someone tells you they don’t make them like they used to, hand them a copy of this beauty.
36. Tangible Excitement! – Muddled Whine (Emotional Response)
Undeniable sunny sided indie pop courtesy of Stewart Anderson, Scott Stevens, and Mark Monnone who collectively have more years of experience in the genre than just about anyone.
37. Patience – The Pressure (Night School)
Single number two from former Veronica Falls front woman Roxanne Clifford. Depeche Mode would be proud.
38. UV-TV / Shark Toys – Only When It Matters (Emotional Response)
As a rule I generally despise split singles, but Florida’s UV-TV are so good they have me making an exception this year. Killer Shop Assistants style of buzzing pop!
39. Romantic States – Take My Hand and Run (Nebraskan Coast)
Slightly grungy guitars juxtapose with Jim Triplett’s sensitive vocals to make a sprightly single from this Baltimore band that kind of reminds me of the Sprites.
40. Catholic Action – Rita Orca (Luv Luv Luv)
Crunchy second single from these Glaswegians is 100% fun. Their combination of Art Brut and Ash is one that could go wrong, but hasn’t yet.