i don’t have the heart to match the one pricked in your finger: last year’s festive fifty, 2014;

And so to a rough estimation of my favourite songs of 2014, slightly complicated by the bug that hit my iTunes earlier this year and messed up all of my play counts (seriously, if you think I managed to listen to the same James Vincent McMorrow track 169 times without putting my fist through the windae you’re massively mistaken). The rules are that there are no rules, other than a limit of one song per artist that applies to even Taylor Swift. Even in the age of “grat tracks” and shuffle I retain my fondness for the album as an art form, as you will see at whatever point I put my list of those together.

I WANT TO KNOW YOUR FAVOURITE SONG OF THE YEAR. Yes, just one. Let me know what I’m missing. Edit: If I get enough of these, I’ll include a “readers’ picks” special mix with the rest of them at the end of the month. Because I am a lunatic.

(PS The Hurray for the Riff Raff and St Vincent videos embedded below are new in the past couple of days.)

Against Me!, “FUCKMYLIFE666”
Alex Dezen, “Death Metal and Disco”
Angel Olsen, “Unfucktheworld”
Ben Howard, “The End of the Affair”
Bruce Springsteen, “The Wall”
Dave Hughes & the Renegade Folk Punk Band, “Doctors and Dates”
Drive-By Truckers: “Grand Canyon”
Dum Dum Girls, “Rimbaud Eyes”
EMA, “Neuromancer”
Eliza Shaddad, “Alright Again”

Ex Hex: “How You Got That Girl”
Fear of Men, “Luna”
Gossling, “I Was Young”
The Hold Steady, “Spinners”
Honeyblood, “Killer Bangs”
Howling Bells, “Slowburn”
Hurray for the Riff Raff, “The Body Electric”
Jason Isbell & Amanda Shires, “Born in the USA”
Jenny Lewis, “Head Underwater”

Joan As Police Woman, “Shame”
Jonnie Common, “Crumbs”
Kevin Drew, “My God”
King Creosote, “Leaf Piece”
Lydia Loveless, “Chris Issak”
Matthew Ryan, “An Anthem for the Broken”
The Menzingers, “I Don’t Wanna Be An Asshole Anymore”
Meursault, “A Kind of Cure” (Organ Grinder’s Monkey version)
The New Pornographers: “Dancehall Domine”
Nicole Atkins, “Girl You Look Amazing”

Old ’97s, “Nashville”
Rachael Dadd, “Strike Our Scythes”
Randolph’s Leap: “I Can’t Dance to This Music Anymore”
Ryan Adams, “My Wrecking Ball”
Samantha Crain: “Churchill”
The Second Hand Marching Band, “Bypass”
Sharon Van Etten, “Afraid of Nothing”
She Keeps Bees, “Is What It Is”
Skinny Dipper, “Hospital Bed”
Sky Ferreira, “I Blame Myself”

Speedy Ortiz, “Everything’s Bigger”
Stanley Odd, “Pastime”
St. Vincent, “Birth in Reverse”
Sun Kil Moon, “Jim Wise”
Taylor Swift, “Blank Space”
Tegan & Sara, “Don’t Find Another Love”
Tuff Love, “Penguin”
Virgin of the Birds, “From Peking”
Warpaint: “Love Is To Die”
Withered Hand, “Between True Love and Ruin”



  1. December 18, 2014 / 11:21 am

    My favorite song this year, Nicole Atkins – Who Killed the Moonlight.

  2. Kate
    December 18, 2014 / 11:32 am

    My favourite song of the year has to be by Owen Pallett. I really should have chosen ‘I Am Not Afraid’ to match your choice of Sharon Van Etten’s ‘Afraid of Nothing’, but instead I’m going to go for ‘In Conflict,’ which just burrows into your head and refuses to leave, and it reminds me of going to see him play the Queen Elizabeth Hall recently and walking down the Southbank, overwhelmed by all the bright lights and dark shining river and Christmas opulence, and all the venues and things to do in that area, it made everybody look beautiful. And he sang this particular song in a voice that seemed much stronger and tougher than before, not solo, but with a drummer, bassist and whole chamber ensemble, for God’s sake. And the refrain “there is nothing to lose, there is nothing to lose, there is nothing to lose” took hold, it’s open to interpretation but to me, it means courage, and I sang it under my breath as I half-ran to the tube station on the way home, in the dark.

    Good video, too… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hoDlU9A6y50

  3. December 18, 2014 / 9:21 pm

    One track? Tricky. First thing that comes to mind, that’s not already in your list, is Next of Kin by Alvvays. So, yeah, I guess I’ll plump for that

  4. Abigail
    December 19, 2014 / 3:05 pm

    Is Interpol’s “The Rage Back Home” too obvious? or TV On The Radio’s “Happy Idiot”?