It Might Get Loud: A Year in Pop

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I know it looks like a lunatic/pa-cool motherfucker made this list but really, these are the songs that I loved listening to the entire year. Spotify tells me though that my most played song is Ariana Grande’s ‘One Last Time’, which doesn’t qualify for this list because it only includes officially released songs (if it were it would have been #2 in the list). So instead, since I had an EDM phase sometime in the middle of the year, I chose the Zedd-produced ‘Break Free’.
I don’t know if ‘Fireproof’ actually counts but it was released as a ‘teaser’ of sorts for One Direction’s Four, which is actually one of my favorite albums of 2014. I like how it’s a step into a grungier route (which is apt considering they look like druggies now, except for Zayn who is ***flawless with that long hair he’s sporting as of this writing). ‘Stockholm Syndrome’ and ‘Fool’s Gold’ —cuts from Four (Album of the Year!) that properly reflect One Direction’s new, uh, direction—are also two of my most listened songs this year but they weren’t also released as official singles. ‘Stockholm Syndrome’ would have been #3 in my list. ‘Kilometro’ was a no brainer for my favorite song of the year.
Thyro and Yumi (who also wrote ‘Ikot-ikot’) are fast growing as writers who shape the new era of Pinoy pop (see also, ‘No Erase’, my fondness for James Reid aside, was catchy as hell). It’s a song blazing with the fiery ache of desire, almost verging on desperation but the way it puts its madness into words (Maging ang laot/Walang takot/Na tatawirin, etc.) reaches a momentum so deliciously sweet and infectious, you could sense that Sarah is inviting you surrender and throw yourself over the abyss as well.
A few notes:
1. It’s only been a week since I started listening to St. Vincent (here’s the part where I’m trying to sound cool) and my favorite song of hers is ‘Digital Witness’.
2. I was torn between Taylor Swift’s two singles this year. Initially, I wasn’t into ‘Shake It Off’, both the song and the video (“What a waste of your talent, Mark Romanek” *shakes fist in the air*) but I warmed up to it, especially with its horn section.
‘Blank Space’ won me over because Swift willfully plays with her depiction as a madwoman who eats boyfriends for breakfast.
3. Alt J wins best use of ‘eenie meenie miney moe’ in a song.
4. I liked ‘Kakaibabe”s hook but it wasn’t enough to pull me into its hype, unfortunately. ‘Dyosa’ on the other hand is utter ridiculousness (‘Anong mase-say?/Havey na havey/Di na ‘ko waley/ Hindi’ na ‘ko chaka-face’) but it’s the kind of earworm that I’ll gladly sing for days on end.
5. Lykke Li also had two excellent singles released this year: the one mentioned below and ‘Love Me Like I’m Not Made of Stone’.
Anyway, here are my favorite songs of 2014:
  1. Kilometro – Sarah Geronimo
  2. Say You Love Me – Jessie Ware
  3. Two Weeks – FKA Twigs
  4. Dyosa – Yumi Lacsamana
  5. No Erase – James Reid & Nadine Lustre
  6. Sana – Lee Grane
  7. Left Hand Free – Alt J
  8. Blank Space – Taylor Swift
  9. No Rest for the Wicked – Lykke Li
  10. You Know It’s You – Slow Hello
  11. Break Free – Ariana Grande
  12. Fireproof – One Direction
  13. Girls Chase Boys – Ingrid Michaelson
  14. Queen – Perfume Genius
  15. Somebody to You – The Vamps ft. Demi Lovato