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Music.Defined.’s Favorite Songs Of 2016


I didn’t get up to 100 songs this year. I tried and there just wasn’t enough material for 100 that I felt warranted listing. There’s a ton of stuff I haven’t heard, as there is every year, but these are the best of the music of which I had a chance to listen. 

The order isn’t that important, though I’m designating Childish Gambino’s “Redbone” and “Me And Your Mama” as numbers 1 and 1a, respectively. Other than that feel free to shuffle the Spotify playlist or mess around with the rankings on your own. I think there’s something here for pretty much everyone, including some great Chicago talent.

70. Sons Of An Illustrious Father-Post Future

69. Noname-Diddy Bop

68. Jenny Gillespie-Last Mystery Train

67. PJ Harvey-Ministry Of Defence

66. The Jayhawks-Pretty Roses In Your Hair

65. Kitten-Knife

64. Regina Spektor-Black And White

63. Cross Record-Something Unseen Touches A Flower To My Forehead

62. Summer Cannibals-Full Of It

61. Ravyn Lenae-Moon Shoes

60. Cousin Dud-Eloise’s Revenge

59. Maids-These Days

58. The Wind And The Wave-Skin And Bones

57. The Romantic Comedy-The Thirst

56. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds-Rings Of Saturn

55. Golden Bloom-Great Unknown

54. Kendrick Lamar-Untitled 08

53. Rihanna-Needed Me

52. Shakey Graves-Tomorrow

51. Run The Jewels-Legend Has It

50. Islands-Pumpkin

49. Donnie Biggins-When You Return

48. M.I.A.-Visa

47. J. Cole-Neighbors

46. Ezra Furman-The Refugee

45. Johnny Gallagher-Dangerous Strangers

44. AJJ-No More Shame, No More Fear, No More Dread

43. Nice As Fuck-Cookie Lips

42. St. Lenox-Thurgood Marshall

41. Twin Peaks-Holding Roses

40. Jarryd James-1000x

39. Warpaint-New Song

38. The All About-If This City

37. Angel Olsen-Heart Shaped Face

36. Justin Timberlake-Can’t Stop The Feeling

35. Schoolboy Q-THat Part

34. Night School-Teen Feelings

33. Solange-Mad

32. Nas-Wrote My Way Out

31. The Felice Brothers-Life In The Dark

30. Philip-Michael Scales-Stay

29. Lucinda Williams-Place In My Heart

28. ZAYN-BeFoUr

27. Tindersticks-Were We Once Lovers?

26. HÆLOS-Dust

25. Phantogram-You Don’t Get Me High Anymore

24. Wilco-Cry All Day

23. Glen Hansard-Way Back In The Way Back When

22. Arkells-Drake’s Dad 

21. Deap Vally-Smile More

20. Christopher The Conquered-I’m Giving Up On Rock & Roll

19. Shovels & Rope-Botched Execution

18. Frank Ocean-Self Control

17. Fort Frances-Take The Wheel

16. Hamilton Leithauser & Rostam-1000 Times

15. Bruno Mars-24K Magic

14. Hinds-Castigadas En El Granero

13. The Thermals-Thinking Of You

12. Jason Collett-Forever Young Is Getting Old

11. Brian Fallon-Smoke

10. Conor Oberst-A Little Uncanny

9. Slothrust-Like A Child Hiding Behind Your Tombstone

8. Beck-Wow

7. The Strumbellas-Young And Wild

6. Chance The Rapper-Summer Friends

5. Leonard Cohen-Treaty

4. Wet-I Don’t Wanna Be Your Girl

3. Chairlift-Polymorphing

1a. Childish Gambino-Me And Your Mama

1. Childish Gambino-Redbone

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