The big-wigs here at GIGsoup are pretty democratic. When we bounced around ideas for working out Track of the Year, we always said that they should be selected by the writers themselves, as they’re the ones who make the site what it is. The list below are the top 18 songs picked by the writers, their order isn’t arbitrary, but painstakingly voted for everyone here at Team GIGsoup.
18. Loyle Carner – ‘Tierney Terrace’
Growing up in London as Grime was slowly seeping into society has really shaped Carner’s lyrical outlook, but musically he’s more old school. It’s this mixing of styles that really puts him in his own league. On latest single ‘Ain’t Nothing Changed’, Carner re-imagines the blueprint that De La Soul and Gangstarr laid down; jazz and soul samples over tight crisp beats, while he talks about his life.
17. Girl Band – ‘Pears for Lunch’
Guitars that sound like ambulance sirens, gnawing away at your brain and more than one reference to Sudocrem, nonchalance hasn’t sounded this disturbing in a long while. Dara Kiely’s knife edge vocals never disappoint with their nervous tension. It’s been an exciting start for Ireland’s new darlings of not giving a shit.
16. The Garden – ‘HaHa’
These levels of infection make Ebola look like a case of the sniffles. It basically sounds like nothing else, while at the same time, sounding like everything you’ve ever heard before. The opening track sounds like the Ratpack classic ‘Searchin’ For My Rizla’, then a filthy bassline kicks in and ‘HaHa’ goes from rave to punk in five seconds. The rest of ‘HaHa’ is filled with The Garden’s trade mark surreal lyrics, incendiary composition and effervescence that has made them a favourite for anyone who’s heard them.
15. Audio Push – ‘Mary Jane’
‘Mary Jane’ has that classic California hip-hop vibe to it; its smooth, sexy and marvellously produced. Audio Push’s rapping is on point as always, and the beat will carry you straight back into mid nineties LA. It’s a love song, and smoking song all rolled into one (no pun intended). What could be better?
14. Chris Stapleton – ‘Traveller’
Beard of a hobo and voice of an angel, Traveller is a soaring anthem for the modern wanderer. It has a nonchalant charm that flows from Stapleton’s husky voice and while musically the song keeps things simple, it certainly packs an emotional punch.
13. Parkway Drive – ‘Vice Grip’
‘Vice Grip’ takes Parkway Drive in a new direction, as it is one of their most mainstream songs to date. Released in early June, Vice Grip’s energetic guitar melodies make it the perfect summer track for any metalhead.
12. Brandon Flowers – ‘Lonely Town’
By digging deep into his A-Z encyclopedia of pop-knowledge, he’s manages to create a song that tips its hat to the past, but may also end up as one of the finest pop moments of 2015.
11. Floating Points – ‘Silhouettes’
‘Silhouettes’ is a three-part progressive electronica piece that clocks in at almost 11-minutes. Carried by jazzy percussion and driving bass, this sublimely produced track takes you on a journey featuring beautifully arranged selections of keys, sweeping strings and vocal harmonies with the “bliss point” coming just after the 4-minute mark.
10. Bring Me the Horizon – ‘Follow You’
Signalling a ground-breaking departure from their heavier roots, the ballad-esque ‘Follow You’ highlights them as one of the year’s most exciting and dynamic bands. Championing an abundance of catchy hooks and dazzling electronic orchestration.
9. Blur – ‘Ong Ong’
Amidst the dreariness of ‘The Magic Whip’ – ‘Ong Ong’ offers a brief light towards the end of the tunnel. Shrugging aside the melancholy, Blur frontman Damon Albarn sings “I wanna be with you” over one repeated, simple chord progression, producing Blur’s famed chirpy characteristics that live in harmony with rubbishy modern life.
8. David Bowie – ‘Blackstar’
Released November 20th, ‘Blackstar’ by David Bowie offers us a peak into the window of 2016. An impressive ten-minute long journey through the weird and wonderful, this expansive experimental track provides a teaser for the similarly-titled upcoming album.
7. The Maccabees – ‘Spit it Out’
This is a dynamic rock song complete with driving guitar and rich harmonies, that shows how much The Maccabees’ sound has developed over the last few years. It comes from a powerful album filled with feelings of long winters and desperation, which takes listeners on an entirely memorable emotional journey.
6. Kurt Vile – ‘Pretty Pimpin’
Pretty Pimpin’ is one of Kurt Vile’s most charismatic songs yet: an instant earworm. It has a stoner melancholy to it with Kurt musing on losing himself in a daydream, but snaps back with the cool quip ‘But he was sporting all my clothes; I gotta say pretty pimpin’.
5. The Libertines – ‘Gunga Din’
Passing through depression, personal penchants, mental scars and that famous brotherly bond, it is enough to secure the ‘Albion Ship’ back on track; albeit being a little disappointing at times, but would it be The Libertines if otherwise?
4. Justin Bieber – ‘Sorry’
Is it too late now to say sorry? Even if it is, we won’t. Justin Bieber went from being the boy who cried wolf to the man of the hour, in the space of a month. You can dance to it, sing to it, cry to it, kiss to it, do anything to it. Sorry may not be the norm here at GIGsoup, but by god is it a good song.
3. Mark Ronson – ‘Upton Funk’
This collaboration between Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars might not be the most life-affirming or poignant song of 2015 but it’s mix of soul and funk makes it a vibrant and uplifting tune which is guaranteed to make even the most miserable of folk that bit more cheerful.
2. Kendrick Lamar – ‘Alright’
‘Alright’ is one of those career and genre-defining singles that come around once a decade. As a societal narrative, it brings exposure to issues that are so often ignored and seldom tackled.
1.Foals – What Went Down
Foals have blasted back onto the scene earlier this year with their heaviest song to date. Frontman Yannis Philappakis’ vocals have never sounded so ferocious, hollering over fuzzy guitar riffs and a pulsating drumbeat. The track becomes almost feral as it builds up to a massive crescendo, exploding with intensity before a dramatic, abrupt finale. It’s a song that highlights Foals’ sound progression more than any other.