Sorry about the wait, numbers one to twenty have been stewing all week. I’m sure there were ample lists on other blogs to satiate you list-craving folk in the meantime. Here are my top 20 seven inch singles of the year. If you missed numbers 21-40 you can catch up here.
1. The World – Managerial Material (Upset the Rhythm)
This was the debut from this Oakland, California band that was formed from members of Pang and Andy Human. Sounding like some long lost post punk band that was left off of one of those Akron/Cleveland Soul Jazz comps from a few years ago, the four songs on this single were lightening hot. You can skank, slam, shimmy or just plain old freak out to this.
2. CC Dust – Shinkansen No. 1 (Night School)
CC Dust is the side project of Mary Jane Dunphe from Olympia punk band Vexx. Here, she takes a slightly goth sounding approach to DIY synth and hits pay dirt on both sides.
3. Hate Week – Nights By the Lake (WIAIWYA)
A couple former Faintest Ideas guys form a new hyper jangle band and take my world by storm. Part Wedding Present and part Smiths and informed by innate Swedish pop sensibilities, this single has no weak parts.
4. Dos Santos Anti-Beat Orquesta – ¡Cafeteando! (Electric cowbell)
Chicago anti-beatniks take the blueprint of weird latin funk originated by Esquivel and bring it into the present adding some dub and lo-fi elements. Couldn’t get enough of this single and had to reach for my Esquivel records.
5. Uranium Club – Who Made The Man? (Static Shock)
Minneapolis punks who’s snotty attitude is akin to the Replacements while their off kilter take on punk reminds me of the Minutemen, but that doesn’t even come close to describing how great this record is.
6. Soft Candy – Bizarre Luv Pyramids (Hozac)
Soft Candy are from Chicago, but their hazy psychedelia sounds like it came from the L.A. Paisley Underground.
7. Cut Worms – Don’t Wanna Say Good-Bye (Randy)
Too few bands these days sound like the Everly Brothers or Buddy Holly. Probably because kids want to hear the soothing sounds of autotuned pop. I’ll take this classic old-timey sounding pop any day.
8. Chupa Cabra – My Girl (Too Pure)
I love records from bands that sound unhinged. Chupa Cabra sound like they’re going to explode on this single.
9. Mercury Girls – Ariana (Slumberland)
Ariana is wonderfully stylized, lush pop with lots of guitars and soaring vocals to give it some teeth.
10. Honey Radar – Ignore the Bells (Chunklet)
As evidenced from their LP also from this year, Philadelphia’s Honey Radar seem to have piles of these killer lo-fi jams. A huge hit in my alternate universe.
11. Peaness – I’m Not Your Problem (Kingfisher Bluez)
This UK trio delivers a sprightly and cheerful brand of indiepop that is now at a premium with the demise of Allo Darlin’.
12. Primetime – Going Places (La Vida es in Mus)
Primetime take their time as single number two from the band comes two years after their debut. They again deliver top shelf, cocky Wire influenced punk rock.
13. Seafang – Motorcycle Song (Elephant Stone)
This single is an undeniable combination of the Bangles, Shop Assistants and Primitives. Pop that goes straight to the pleasure center of the brain.
14. Vital Idles – My Sentiments (Not Unloved)
Glasgow’s Vital Idles give us a hot and cool side on their debut single. My Sentiments rollicks like the Fall while In the Garden soothes the burns inflicted from the A-side.
15. The Beginner’s Mynd – Singing Man (Hidden Volume)
DC psych rockers continue to mine gold to seemingly little recognition. Similar in style to Young Sinclairs, this record will have you seeing many colours.
16. Lake Ruth – The Inconsolable Jean-Claude (The Great Pop Supplement)
Pulsing with baroque-kraut vibes, The Inconsolable Jean-Claude sounds is a rich combination of Left Banke meets Stereolab that makes its mark.
17. Boys Forever – Poisonous (Fooone)
Another Veronica Falls spin-off band, Boys Forever is lead drummer Patrick Doyle (he was also in Sexy Kids and the Royal We). Poisonous has a familiar indie pop Veronica Falls sound that is super immediate and sticks to your insides. Extra points for the b-side which is a cover of Kirsty MacColl’s They Don’t Know.
18. The Shifters – Creggan Shops (It Takes Two)
Creggan Shops was on the Shifters debut cassette from last year, but the astute folks at It Takes Two recognized its Fall-like genius and saw fit to release it as a 7-inch single.
19. Dreamin’ Wild – Doncaster Shadow (Moontown)
Best mellow single of the year, Melbourne’s Dreamin’ Wild deliver a cocktail jazzy ditty that is part Harry Nilsson and part Clientele. Lovely!
20. Sloucher – Certainty (Turntable Kitchen)
Seattle’s Sloucher cooked up a great single which is taken from their debut LP that also came out this year. Very Elliot Smith like, or maybe Heatmiser, anyway you get the picture.