Mental Jukebox: Best of 2015 Countdown (#20-16)

Monday (#20):   Chris Cornell “Nearly Forgot My Broken Heart”

Soundgarden’s Chris Cornell released his fourth solo album “Higher Truth” in September 2015, and the first single from the album “Nearly Forgot My Broken Heart,” quickly claimed a spot on my favorites list. The song shows off Cornell’s folk influences, making it a perfect kick off for his solo acoustic tour. From the harmonica and mandolin-laden intro, the tune is a sonic delight and “crams many disparate sounds into four minutes – from strings to a psychedelic guitar solo to chiming mandolins nodding to Led Zeppelin’s “The Battle of Evermore.” (Rolling Stone) Side note: So just how many music videos has Eric Roberts been in to date? Fifty?

 

Tuesday (#19): Modest Mouse “The Ground Walks With Time In a Box”

“Strangers To Ourselves” was released in March 2015, the first new album from Modest Mouse in eight years, and their sixth overall. Modest Mouse is a band that I generally appreciate intellectually more than aurally. But this tune got me hooked. It’s hard to say just what it is that I find so compelling about this particular song [outside of the admittedly awesome title and fantastically bizarre ‘Game of Thrones’ inspired video] but it had me hypnotized for a good many weeks.

 

Wednesday (#18): Melanie Martinez “Soap”/”Dollhouse”

No, I don’t watch The Voice, I actually discovered Melanie Martinez via a small article in Rolling Stone that described her as an “artist you need to know.” After watching her video for the single “Soap” – in which I would have sworn she looked about 12 years old [she’s 20],– I was fascinated into watching every video of hers I could find on You Tube. Her semi-autobiographical /character concept album Cry Baby (watch the videos in order to see the full story) debuted at #6 on the Billboard charts with no airplay. This visually creative and lyrically provocative singer/songwriter from New York is truly unforgettable. Bonus video: my personal favorite, “Dollhouse”. But you should also check out “Pity Party”, which samples Lesley Gore, and…oh heck, just watch them all!

 

Thursday (#17): Declan McKenna “Brazil”

As I said back in September:   I am so intrigued by this song “Brazil”…and by the fact that it’s written and performed by a 16-year old UK-based singer-songwriter who is so obviously *not* your average teenage musician. Is it the lyrics? (Which just happen to be about the FIFA scandal/corruption if you’re unlearned in the area of sports news, like me). The distinctive vocal delivery? The catchy riff? Whatever it is has me constantly pushing the replay button on this one. Small wonder Declan McKenna was the winner of Glastonbury Festival’s 2015 Emerging Talent Competition. Eager to see how this young man’s career unfolds.

 

Friday (#16): The 1975 “Love Me”

If MTV was still a thing, this song and video from British indie pop band The 1975 would no doubt be in ultra-heavy rotation.   This funky pop song grabs your ear from its opening notes with its homage to Bowie’s 1975 hit “Fame”, and the video is just pure fun. The 1975’s self-titled first album in 2013 debuted at #1 in the UK . “Love Me” is the first single from their second album “I Like it When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It” (sounds like a Fall Out Boy song title!) coming in February of 2016. It’s on my shopping list!

 

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