This past year may have come and gone like a whisper on the breeze, but good music stays with us perennially. As 2017 comes to a close and 2018 rolls round the corner, don't leave the entirety of the past behind – take some good music with you into the great (and hopefully, brilliant) unknown.
Follow our Singles of the Week here.
EJ Oakley, ‘It’s All Good’ by Superorganism
It’s two days to 2018. You’re tired and drained and the holidays aren’t quite nearly as long as you’d like them to be. The year hasn’t exactly been great – besides, of course, your own personal struggles, 2017 has been punctuated by violence, political strife, and injustice. But that’s not to say the future is bleak. The path ahead is long and arduous, but you’ll get through it, and no other song understands that better than Superorganism’s ‘It’s All Good’. “We know you feel the world’s too heavy,” seventeen-year-old frontwoman Orono sings softly, with just the right amount of world-weary millennial malaise in her voice. “But you can turn it all around if you want.” Straddling the fine line between sarcasm and gentle encouragement, ‘It’s All Good’ is both a biting critique of the relentless ‘up-and-at-’em’ mentality pushed on an increasingly strained populace, and a resigned acceptance of how sometimes, it’s perfectly fine to sleep in in the age of unrest. The frantic, almost artificial choruses of “it’s all good! It’s all good!” sonically framed against a chaotic mess of motivational tape audio snippets and Korean advertisements might as well be a generational mission statement. The world may be on fire, but we’ll somehow get by. It’s all good, indeed.
Brooklyn Jones, ‘Garage Palace’ by Gorillaz featuring Little Simz
This track was released very late in the year, but I would say it was undoubtedly one of my favourite singles of the year. While much like the Humanz album the single is not in traditional Gorillaz style, it is an excellent vehicle to showcase Little Simz and her up and coming career. This single has stronger influences of modern British hip-hop with a heavier bassline, departing from what a casual listener would expect from the alternative/indie/hip-hop outfit. Little Simz’ style is very much like Azalea Banks, but Simz surpasses her in lyricism and musical skill. This single is perfect for the gym, or a stressful day, or getting hyped to get shit done. Watching her perform it live with Gorillaz this year was one of my personal highlights, but it definitely retains its strength and general oomf in recording. It’s insanely catchy and will no doubt further launch Little Simz into the London and global spotlight.
Freddie Metherell, ‘Do It’ by Rae Morris
For countless bus journeys through fading, inky countryside landscapes I have been stuck in a cycle. Listen, then repeat. I’ve been glued to this song since its release in September. There have been more melodic tunes released this year, more stimulating lyrics written, but ‘Do It’ has the ability to enliven even my darkest of days. Taking a more electronic approach than on her debut album Unguarded, the song opens with a simplistic bass line and misty synth. There’s a relatability to the lyrics that draws you in, only to drift you away into a wistful nostalgia as ethereal keys patter in. This introduction is complemented by the sensationalisation of the everyday and the perception of longing builds an unbearable yearning, until an unburdening key change elevates the song into a euphoric chorus. Seamless layers are textured to form a cacophony of sound. A commotion of horns and an angelic hum are accessories to an ever-present beckoning call. ‘Do It’ offers the potential to escape the mundane by jumping, despite the risk. This is a message that I want to take with me through into 2018.
We’ll be back in the New Year, so check out our full 2017 Singles of the Week playlist here, and our previous Singles of the Week articles.
Image: Domino Records