Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Anything music related. Latest songs, good new bands, and blasts from the past.

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transformers2
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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by transformers2 »

Banks:
Every Swift record I'd heard prior to Folklore-which is everything she's put out since she dropped the country elements of her sound-that I'd heard was a hit-or-miss roller coaster. False God's smooth hook and intoxicating atmosphere put in the hit category-although there definitely at least a few tracks from Lover that I like considerably more than it.

As much as I like pop, R&B and hip hop, we're not really into the same stuff. Selena Gomez's Rare was a very bland record to me and I didn't share your enthusiasm over Mothica. Even some of the stuff from artists that I do like pop punk-era Machine Gun Kelly, Futre, Drake and Travis Scott are songs I'm not really a fan of. That being said, the introductions to those H.E.R., Childish Gambino, Christine and the Queens and DaBaby tracks were much appreciated, RTJ/Future Nostalgia were among my favorite records of the year as well and we did ultimately have 1.5 crossovers with In Your Eyes and Levitating.
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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by Shrykespeare »

Screen's List:

50. La Roux, 21st Century
49. Tinashe, Cash Race
48. Disclosure, Get Close
47. The Bonfyre, Automatic
46. Cannons, Fire For You
45. Taylor Swift, Lover
44. Lady Gaga, Alice
43. Meg Myers, Any Way You Wanna Love
42. Lady Gaga, Stupid Love
41. SHAED, No Other Way
40. Camp Cope, Done
39. Mrs. Piss, Knelt
38. Blood Orange, Time Will Tell
37. Tinashe feat. MAJK, Save Room For Us
36. Taylor Swift, Cardigan
35. Billie Eilish, everything I wanted
34. Meg Myers, Monster
33. Tove Lo feat. Jax Jones, Jacques
32. Meg Myers, Grizzly
31. Tove Lo, Passion and Pain Taste the Same When I’m Weak
30. Tove Lo, Mistaken
29. SHAED, Name On It
28. Meg Myers, Curbstomp
27. Tove Lo, Mateo
26. Billie Eilish, you should see me in a crown
25. Selena Gomez, Lose You to Love Me
24. Billie Eilish, bury a friend
23. M.I.A., Galang
22. Meg Myers, Sorry
21. Tove Lo, sadder badder cooler
20. Lana Del Rey, High By the Beach
19. Lady Gaga feat. Ariana Grande, Rain On Me
18. Alanis Morissette, Reasons I Drink
17. Katy Perry, Never Really Over
16. Dua Lipa, Don’t Start Now
15. Tinashe, Sunburn
14. Dua Lipa, Break My Heart
13. Tinashe, Lucid Dreaming
12. Meg Myers, Take Me to the Disco
11. M-22 feat. Medina, First Time
10. Meg Myers, I Really Want You to Hate Me
9. Garbage, Blackout
8. Maggie Rogers, Light On
7. Iceage, Catch It
6. Dua Lipa feat. DaBaby, Levitating
5. Chelsea Wolfe, Survive
4. Lewis Capaldi, Someone You Loved
3. Tiesto and Mabel, God Is a Dancer
2. Meg Myers, Adelaide



SCREEN’S #1 SONG:

Mrs. Piss, Nobody Wants to Party With Us

Happy 40th birthday Rami Malek! (5/12/21)

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by numbersix »

Banks, your songs were always the first I'd listen to so I'd come in optimistic at least. Your songs were always pretty commercial, just moving between pop, hip-hop, and r+b, none of which are worlds I feel comfortable in. A lot of it felt disposable to me.

That said, you had some good stuff there. RtJ is of course something we both love so good to see it there. And I do see the appeal of Da Lipa, or at least some of her songs. The Weeknd and Childish Gambino were both good. I've never quite taken to Taylor Swift and your #1 song was fine but not quite for me.


Screen, what an odd list. But you are an odd fellow :D. Lots of plastic pop in your list, some of which (Lady Gaga, Capaldi) I don't like at all. Even Tove Lo, who has some okay songs, didn't seem to have a good year last year. More Dua Lipa here, so wasn't too bad. Meg Myers too was listenable. But your list was also completely unpredictable. My eyebrow was raised Roger-Moore-style at the inclusion of some older songs that featured in my 100 of the Millennium, namely Iceage's Catch it and MIA's Galang. Can't complain, though, as they're great songs.

And then amongst all the pop and dance you had Mrs Piss, Chelsea Wolfe's surprise release from last year. It's a really good album, maybe featuring some of her best material in a few years. And Nobody Wants was excellent. So whatever drugs you're on, keep taking them.

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by Shrykespeare »

I’ve known most of you guys for well over a decade. I consider all of you to be close friends despite the fact that it’s unlikely we’ll ever meet in the flesh. There’s no doubt that, by now, we all share a bond that goes well beyond our loves of music, movies, and pop culture in general.

It’s somewhat sad – and a byproduct of our technologically-dependent culture – that I have never had many “in-person” friends. Yes, there are a handful of guys that I see on occasion, but for the most part, most of my closest buds are online. The primary reason that I love doing these countdowns is that, for a short time, we can all reconvene with a singular purpose – to share our opinions, shoot the shit, verbally bash each other’s tastes with a Nerf sledgehammer, and be the community that we were for years when box office prognostication was a way of life for us. 😊

What I’m about to share with you, most of you already know. I’m telling you again because I may be including things that you don’t know. This, in my heart of hearts, is what friends DO.

First, the basics. I’m 51 years old, married without children, and live in Phoenix, Arizona. I have seven published novels and am currently trying to find an agent for my paranormal series (for which I have already completed two books and am currently penning Book Three). I am the child of Ivy League-educated parents who did very well for themselves, made smart financial choices, and provided a loving home for me to grow up in. For this reason, I have never, and will likely never, know what it feels like to be hungry, destitute, or homeless. For this I am exceedingly grateful.

I am an extremely empathic person. As you can imagine, 2020 was a tremendously difficult year for me, for all the reasons you can guess, as well as a few you might not. I lost my dad in October 2019 after a three-year battle with dementia. I have cancer in multiple places in my body, and while it’s under control for the most part, the constant checkups, scans, and infusions really take it out of me. And then came the pandemic.

(If you abhor political talk, you may want to skip the next paragraph.)

In a time when we needed great leadership, we had the exact opposite. Add to that all the social unrest, the inequities, the injustices, really hit me where I live. I spent many, many hours glued to the news (a masochistic venture, I know), hoping and praying that good would prevail and we might be given a chance to climb out of this hole. By the skin of our teeth, it happened. The light at the end of the pandemic tunnel is within sight.

Safely ensconced within the walls of my home – where I have spent roughly 23 hours a day for the past year, venturing out only to do errands and get drive-thru – I spent most of my leisure time (and some of my work time) listening to music. After our “Best of the Millennium” countdown last year, I was determined to not fall behind ever again. I listened to hundreds of songs, dozens of albums, and discovered (or rediscovered) many artists and bands that I might not have under different circumstances. Bands like The Birthday Massacre, Cannons, and many others that featured heavily on my list, are what got me through the year.


Which brings me, finally, to my #1 song.

#1. Chaz Cardigan, Not OK!

Many people had a “quarantine anthem” during their various lockdowns/periods of self- or government-imposed isolation, and this was mine. Had COVID not changed our world as profoundly as it did, I may not have given this song the love it deserves. The first time I heard it, I enjoyed its catchy rhythms and, to a lesser extent, it’s lyrics. It was only after multiple listenings that I really began to bond with the song, in such a way that I felt like it was written just for me.

Some days, man, I got it all together
Most days though, I’m just tryin’ to get better
Everybody’s got that something we can’t fix with love or money
Even when it pulls me under, get so high that it just seems funny


When I got into analyzing the lyrics, those lines really stood out to me. It’s such a profound truth that I want to turn it into a bumper sticker. And then there are the closing lines that put this song over the top for me, cementing at as my favorite song of the year:

How many times can I fake it before it breaks me?
I’m not OK
Everyone feels like they’re crazy, why can’t I say it?
I’m not OK


If 2020 taught me anything, it’s who my real friends are, and I include every single one of you weirdos in that number. 😉 For decades, I hid a shit-ton of inner pain caused by many years of childhood bullying. I expelled most of my demons by becoming an author. But there’s always a sliver that I will never be rid of. A piece of me that says I simply “less than” everyone else. That I’m not worthy of all I’ve been given, not entitled to have what millions of others don’t.

Empathy sucks sometimes. But if 2020, and this song in particular, taught me a second thing, it’s that it’s okay to not be okay. As long as you’re a good person and continually strive to be better, that’s all that matters.

Okay, no more blathering. Let’s end this thing.

This is the second video made for the song, which I absolutely adore. There is literally nothing about it that I don’t love (especially the perfectly-placed guitar strum at the 2:38 mark).




Here is the original video:





Thanks again to all of you for participating. Let’s hope that in nine months, when I start bugging you all interminably about preparing your 2021 list, many of our lives have returned to some semblance of normal. I appreciate, respect, and heart every one of you.
Happy 40th birthday Rami Malek! (5/12/21)

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by Shrykespeare »

My entire list.

100. Green Day, Oh Yeah!
99. Starset, Trials
98. Alanis Morissette, Ablaze
97. Black Pumas, FIre
96. Foo Fighters, Shame Shame
95. Teenage Wrist, Earth is a Black Hole
94. The Rolling Stones, Living in a Ghost Town
93. Joywave, Half Your Age
92. lovelytheband, loneliness for love
91. Volturian, The Killing Joke

90. AC/DC, Demon Fire
89. Wallows, OK
88. Dawes, Who Do You Think You're Talking To?
87. Black Veil Brides, Sweet Blasphemy
86. Cheat Codes feat. Mark Bassy, Do It All OVer
85. PVRIS, Dead Weight
84. Cannons, Shadows
83. I Don't Know How But They Found Me, Leave Me Alone
82. PVRIS feat. 070 Shake, Use Me
81. FINNEAS, Can't Wait to Be Deada

80. Tame Impala, Why Won't They Talk To Me?
79. The Knocks feat. Foster the People, All About You
78. Best Coast, Everything Has Changed
77. Wig Wam, Never Say Die
76. Illiterate Light, Sometimes Love Takes So Long
75. Motionless in White, Another Life
74. Glass Animals, Your Love (Deja Vu)
73. UPSAHL, Smile For the Camera
72. Ocean Grove, DREAM
71. Ritt Momney, Put Your Records On

70. Lazsewo, Us In Motion
69. Architects, Animals
68. Yoe Mase, You Don't Know Who You Are...
67. Seether, Wasteland
66. Pet Shop Boys, Only the Dark
65. Black Pumas, I'm Ready
64. Future Islands, Born in a War
63. Of Monsters and Men, Visitor
62. Kasbo feat. Frida Sundemo, Shut the World Out
61. Wig Wam, Kilimanjaro

60. Purity Ring, silkspun
59. Night Traveler, Put Your Money on Me
58. Pete Yorn, I Wanna Be the One
57. Saint Asonia, Blind
56. The Academic, Acting My Age
55. Clairo, Sofia
54. Royal Blood, Trouble's Coming
53. Grouplove, Inside Out
52. James Bay, Chew On My Heart
51. Citizen Soldier, Mess of Me

50. The Killers, My Own Soul's Warning
49. nothing, nowhere feat. Kenny Hoopla & Judge, Blood
48. Nothing But Thieves, Is Everybody Going Crazy?
47. Far Out feat. Ally Thorn, Adventure
46. almost monday, Broken People
45. Joji, 777
44. ONR feat. Sara Barthel, Must Stop
43. The Strokes, The Adults are Talking
42. Neon Trees, New Best Friend
41. AWOLNATION feat. Grouplove, Radical

40. Tame Impala, Is It True
39. In Flames, Stay With Me
38. Ten Second Songs, Blinding Lights (in the style of Depeche Mode)
37. Coheed & Cambria feat. Rick Springfield, Jessie's Girl 2
36. The Shins, The Great Divide
35. Chaz Cardigan, Tightrope
34. Semisonic, You're Not Alone
33. Dayglow, Can I Call You Tonight?
32. The Birthday Massacre, Run
31. Cannons, Love on the Ground

30. The Airborne Toxic Event, Come On Out
29. 10 Years, The Shift
28. Sylvan Esso, Ferris Wheel
27. The Smashing Pumpkins, Cyr
26. Incubus, Our Love
25. Bea Miller, forever is a lie
24. The 1975, If You're Too Shy (Let Me Know)
23. Erasure, Careful What I Try To Do
22. Joji x Diplo, Daylight
21. The Birthday Massacre, Flashback

20. Dominic Fike, Vampire
19. Live Lounge Allstars, Times Like These
18. Grouplove, Deleter
17. Balthazar, Losers
16. PVRIS feat. Raye, Thank You
15. Nation of Language, Rush & Fever
14. Within Temptation, The Purge
13. Gorillaz feat. Peter Hook & Georgia, Aries
12. New Order, Be a Rebel
11. Purity Ring, Stardew

10. Cannons, Golden
9. The Birthday Massacre, Crush
8. The Violent, Fly on the Wall
7. Erasure, Nerves of Steel
6. Coldplay, Champion of the World
5. Night Traveler, Carolina
4. Cannons, Fire For You
3. Volbeat, Leviathan
2. The Birthday Massacre, The Sky Will Turn
1. Chaz Cardigan, Not OK!
Happy 40th birthday Rami Malek! (5/12/21)

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by numbersix »

Shryke, our man with the plan. None of this would have happened without your tenacity and determination.

And thanks for opening up to us. I can't speak for the others, but I certainly consider you to be a friend, and appreciate you talking about how tough it's been this last year. And that you found something good out of it as you discovered so much new music. I hope you know that very, very few people at your age (or mine) are as open to new music as you are, so you may be down but you're definitely not out.

All this almost makes up for how awful your #1 is.

Okay, I kid. While it's not my kinda thing I totally get the appeal of its huge, sweeping, epic feel which works nicely with the more intimate lyrics.

And it definitely fits in with the rest of your list. Most of it was fine. It didn't bother me nor did it interest me. It was good to hear some Purity Ring, The 1975, Tame Impala, and even New Order whose last few albums I haven't heard at all.

Thanks so much, once again, for delivering, and uniting this oddball group of movie and music dorks!

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by transformers2 »

Screen:
I remember the Mrs. Piss record dropping right around the start of lockdown, but I never got around to checking it out. Based on the 2 tracks you featured here, that was an oversight on my part. It's rawer and nosier than Wolfe's solo material while still maintaining her signature doomy atmospherics. Will definitely be giving the full record a spin soon.

As for your overall list, I have to echo six's sentiment about you have an unusual and intriguing list. There's not too many people that can count scuzzy Swedish synthpop (Tove Lo), vintage grunge acts (Garbage) and indie icons (Alanis Morrisette) among their favorites, and that layer of unpredictability made the reveal of your pick each day particularly exciting. Not everything worked for me (most notably the Lewis Capaldi and new Gaga tracks), but there was a lot of great stuff in there from the likes of Dua Lipa, Billie Eilish, Taylor Swift and the aforementioned Tove Lo. It was also cool to see that you stumbled on some great older songs from Wolfe, M.I.A. and Lana Del Rey during 2020 as well. Looking forward to seeing what you end up discovering over the course of this year.
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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by transformers2 »

Shryke:
Thank you for having the courage to open up to us and it's great to hear that music helped you get through such a difficult time in both the world and your personal life. You're the heart and soul of this weird little community and I absolutely consider you a friend. Out of respect, I'm going to refrain from commenting on your top song because I'm not comfortable criticizing something that meant so much to you personally.

Unsurprisingly, the mixed feelings I had about your Top 100 Songs carried over to this countdown. While we share enough overlapping areas of interest for me to usually find your picks to be agreeable at worst, we're also divergent enough for me to rarely come away very impressed either. Top highlights for me were Is It True, Jessie's Girl 2, Vampire and the Joji tracks (Nectar is a very solid album) and on the downside you most notably provided me with a very depressing reminder about the current state of In Flames.
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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by Leestu »

Catching up.

UDM - While there wasn't much from your list I really liked, there wasn't much from your list I really disliked either. It was mostly light, positive, easy listening songs to finish each days listening. Your number one song fits into this category as well. I quite enjoy watching live performances and I imagine I would therefore probably like this more than hearing it in it's original form. I liked the byplay between her and the violinist.

Six - It was no surprise to me that I enjoyed your list a lot, with two crossover songs (plus your number one was in my facebook 100), three crossover artists with different songs, and one artist, HEALTH with a different song in my top 100. We often differ on which song we like most but that's often a testament to how good the album itself is (IDLES, RTJ), as well as the power of music to appeal differently to each person. I found a couple of artists to explore further, Yard Act, Working Mens Club etc. As to your number one I was pretty confident this song would be your number one, especially the further the countdown went on and it still hadn't appeared. Obviously I love the song (and album) too. Great top 10 albums with 4 of them also in my top 10, 3 in my top 100, 2 I haven't heard yet (although from Surfers and your Crack Cloud selections I expect that album will also make my 100 when I listen to it), and only 1 album, Sufjan Stevens, that I didn't get into.

Banks - your list started off so great with Childish Gambino that I was looking forward to more. Unfortunately after that there was not a lot I liked. Overall just a little too poppy for my tastes. However there was still some sweet stuff. The same two RTJ songs as me, Travis Scott was in my facebook 100 with Franchise, and Jack Harlow and MGK were pleasant surprises to see appear. As to your number one song it is actually pretty decent for a Taylor Swift song, and one of the better songs from her Lover album.

Screen - honestly I must admit there were a lot of songs I struggled to enjoy from your list, but every now and then you added some spice with some awesome songs, and most importantly I found out about the Mrs. Piss project which alone makes you joining in and participating totally worthwhile. Thanks for that. And having a Mrs. Piss song at number one, (great song by the way) and others like Iceage, MIA, Camp Cope, Bille Eilish, Maggie Rogers, and Lana Del Ray makes me look forward to seeing what you discover in 2021 when we do this again next year.

Shryke - I am honoured to be counted as one of your friends, and it should go without saying that I too think of you as a mate. I have loved our chats about music and other things (but mainly music) throughout the year. It's sad to hear about your recent struggles, and I truly hope everything improves and gets better from here. I have loved seeing your choices each day, even if it was rare for me to love your choices each day. Mostly they are enjoyable songs that just don't have that edge that I like to make them appeal to me as a favourite that I want to hear a lot....and a little too much synth pop for my taste. Your number one however is a song I truly enjoy. Just enough honesty and quirkiness for me to enjoy, plus I hear some similar traits to bands like Grouplove and fun. that I really like. Again, thanks so much for organising this, and keep listening to new music. There is so much magic out there and the more we listen to the more we will find.

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by JohnErle »

Banks/Screen

You both posted lots of pop divas that don't interest me, and rarely commented on other people's choices, so my summary pretty much applies to both of you. I did like Christine & The Queens, and some Chelsea Wolfe, but apart from that most of your picks didn't do anything for me.

The sax in False God was the most enjoyment I've ever gotten from Swifty, but Mrs. Piss was surprisingly decent in a Chelsea Wolfe kind of way, and after Googling them I realized she was in the band! I liked the very Blade Runner synths, and the sudden change in tone, but I kinda doubt it'll stick with me, partly because they have the worst band name ever, and also because I'm ever so slightly older than you and so I feel like I've heard all of this before.

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by JohnErle »

Shryke,

Throughout your list it did seem like your musical horizons had broadened since we first started doing these countdowns, and reading the intro to your #1 definitely confirmed why. Unfortunately, from my perspective, your fondness for songs with a glossy, pop sheen and a simple, radio-friendly hook is still there, and that still keeps me at a distance from many of your picks.

Your #1 reminded me very much of Third Eye Blind, a band I'm pretty sure I've referenced many times when reviewing your musical picks. I can enjoy this sort of thing in small doses, but ultimately it's a bit too commercial for me, though I enjoyed it more than many of your other choices.

I did like Semisonic, Love On The Ground, Sylvan Esso, and The Airborne Toxic Event, plus your extended list had some solid geezer rock from AC/DC, so some of your picks did tickle my hard-to-tickle fancy.

Unlike many of you, these countdowns are one of the few times during the year that I make an effort to listen to new bands as opposed to waiting for artists I already know and love to release something new. I spent 10 years listening to everything I could get my hands on when I was running Dynamic Range Radio, and even then I was very picky, but now I rarely venture out of my comfort zones, so maybe I overdosed on new music back then and needed to quit cold turkey, but these countdowns give me a good excuse to try new things for a change. Even when I know 90% of the picks won't do much for me, it's the community here that makes it worthwhile. I couldn't give a fuck what some critic, influencer, or algorithm wants me to listen to, but if you guys like something enough to post it here, I'll at least give it a chance.

So thanks, Fearless Leader, for herding all the cats again this year, and I look forward to next years' batch of pop divas, screamin' demons, and soon-to-be-formed indie bands who are still just a twinkle in Surfer's eye.

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by Chienfantome »

Missing most of this countdown those last few weeks was kind of unnerving, and I'm trying to catch up bit by bit.
Although I won't be able to comment most of it, I have to comment about your commitment Shryke, and your words while announcing your #1.
Even though I wasn't an active part of this, thanks a lot for being the driving force you are. You're a great friend, and I'll only give up on the idea of meeting you in the flesh when I'm six feet under. Meeting Ron, Surfer, Shaan, and yeah, even Six ( ;) ) for real were always blasts, so I do hope I'll meet more of you guys.

And I will not miss the next countdown, whatever it is.

I figure I could at least share with you a couple of songs I loved in 2020. I didn't participate in the first place because I only had enough songs to make a Top 10 probably, and 7 of them would have been Benjamin Biolay songs, and I guess you guys heard enough of him when we did the Best of 2000's countdown ;)

But I'll give you 3 of my very favourite songs of 2020. One from Biolay, obviously, because he is my very favourite singer/writer/composer today, and this one is a sweet breeze that sounds like a melancholic summer. One from Matt Berninger, I know Leestu already listed one of his, here' another one. And one from a French artist I discovered last year, Ben Mazué, a song that starts almost spoken, like slam, and suddenly explodes powerfully when the chorus arrives.

Here they are :

Benjamin Biolay, "Interlagos (Saudade)"


Matt Berninger, "One more second"


Ben Mazué, "Je marche"
Fluctuat nec mergitur

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by numbersix »

Can I make a suggestion or two for next year?

Totally up for the Best of 2021, but I think the Top 50 is way too big, and we all had way too much repetition (me included) in our lists. Plus, finishing in March feels too late when we're all probably listening to new music.

So I suggest a stripped-down countdown. Top 15, maybe 20, starting in early Jan and finishing by the end of the month. More distilled and easier to manage. And less songs not from that year :D

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by Shrykespeare »

numbersix wrote:
March 26th, 2021, 1:12 pm
Can I make a suggestion or two for next year?

Totally up for the Best of 2021, but I think the Top 50 is way too big, and we all had way too much repetition (me included) in our lists. Plus, finishing in March feels too late when we're all probably listening to new music.

So I suggest a stripped-down countdown. Top 15, maybe 20, starting in early Jan and finishing by the end of the month. More distilled and easier to manage. And less songs not from that year :D
Hrm. I'll think about it. I'm already considering putting Surfer's Bdrmm song on my list for 2021...
Happy 40th birthday Rami Malek! (5/12/21)

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Re: Top 50 of 2020 - The #1's

Post by transformers2 »

I don't believe reducing the countdown from 50 to 20 would solve the repetition "problem". If we had only done a top 20 this year for example, the diversity present in my list would've shrunk pretty considerably (my top 20 songs were from 13 artists, the prior 20 songs were from 19). The odds of someone's favorites-particularly the real hardcore nerds among us who rip through a ton of albums in a given year-being from the same small group of artists are very high, regardless of if we do 15, 20, 30, 40 or 50.

I also have no problem maintaining the same start time as this year and don't feel that listening to each day's picks inhabited my ability to check out new records (although to be fair, 2021 has been a very slow start for the artists/genres I'm interested in and there were several days during this countdown where I was already very familiar with multiple picks). That being said, I'm not going to make much of a stink regardless of how we decide to do it next year, just felt compelled to throw my 2 cents in on the matter.
BRING BRENDAN FRASER BACK TO THE BIG SCREEN DAMN IT
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