- 18 Dec 19
The Hot Press team has compiled a list of our best tracks of the year. Each day we're revealing ten more tunes, all in the lead-up to our absolute favourite song of 2019.
30. Tyler, The Creator - ‘EARFQUAKE’ (Columbia)
Starting off with a piano-accompanied intro, 'EARFQUAKE' quickly turns into an otherworldly, distorted and genre-bending track. The constant switch between piano accompaniment and hiphop beats perfectly highlight the guilt-driven and apologetic lyrics. It's a fun track that shows Tyler, The Creator's ability to fuse multiple styles of music into one catchy hit song.
29. The Murder Capital - ‘Green & Blue’ (Human Season Records)
A moving stand-out on The Murder Capital’s acclaimed debut When I Have Fears, 'Green & Blue' continues the album's journey through the tortured stages of grief. The compellingly raw track conjures images of a funeral: “With their wings flung the choir sung their final song today/ As the doors appear to clear the space in which she lay.”
28. Saint Sister - ‘Is It Too Early (Kilmainham)' (Self Released)
Following hot on the heels of their critically-acclaimed debut, Shape of Silence, Saint Sister’s ‘Is It Too Early (Kilmainham)’ is an ode to home – revelling in a textured, electro-folk sound, with lyrics that hark for the comfort of a specific time and place.
27. Inhaler - ‘My Honest Face’ (Inhaler Records)
Emerging Dublin synth rockers, Inhaler, put forward a promising banger with 'My Honest Face'. A driving bass line, some head-banging drums, and top it all off with Eli Hewson's stuttering in the bridge, and you have an utterly unique track. You can practically hear the lads ringing this song out through stadiums across the globe.
26. Gavin James - ‘Faces’ (Good Soldier)
Honey vocals, relatable lyrics, and an irrepressible melody? Sounds like the recipe for yet another brilliant track from Gavin James. That's exactly what he delivers with 'Faces', which recounts heartache and loss in three minutes of beauty.
25. Foals - ‘Exits’ (Warner Records)
'Exits' immediately draws you in and demands your attention as soon as those contorted piano chords start. The funky drum beat that follows carries you through the rest of this groovy-as-fuck track. While it constantly switches form throughout its packed 6 minutes, 'Exits' stays catchy from start to finish.
24. Beyoncé ft. Blue Ivy, Saint Jhn, and WizKid - ‘Brown Skin Girl’ (Parkwood Entertainment/Columbia)
Nobody's surprised that Beyoncé is the coolest mum in the world, but this anthem to women of colour is next-level empowerment. Beyoncé declares mantras of beauty and self acceptance and the song finally closes with her own daughter, Blue Ivy, repeating it back to her, "Brown skin girl/ Your skin just like pearls/ The best thing in the world/ I never trade you for anybody else, singin'."
23. Julia Jacklin - ‘Body’ (Transgressive)
At what point does a relationship turn toxic? On ‘Body’ Julia Jacklin puts to song vivid memories of feeling betrayed and powerless. She scrapes the recesses of her mind for moments most others would prefer to repress- but that’s what makes the song such a soul-crushing listen.
22. Pillow Queens - ‘HowDoILook’ (ANY OTHER CITY RECORDS)
Ireland's premier queer girls' rock band has released a number of bangers this year, but none of them resonate quite like the guitar-heavy 'HowDoILook'. Addressing self-confidence and body image, the track is a vulnerable yet confident foray for Pillow Queens.
21. Picture This - ‘One Night’ (Republic Records)
'One Night' is a stirring acoustic guitar-led ballad that epitomises the sound of Picture This. With haunting lyrics and driving instrumentals, the track is an unmissable work of art from Ireland's own.
You can read the complete list of Hot Press' Top Tracks of 2019 in one brilliant sweep in the Hot Press Annual – in which we distill the highlights and low-points of the year, across 132 vital, beautifully designed pages. Starring heroes of the year Fontaines D.C. on the front we cover Music, Culture, Sport, Film, Politics, the Environment and much, much more. Buy this superb publication direct from Hot Press here.