|Various artists, "America, Fuck Yeah"|
Launching an off-key screaming eagle assault, "America, Fuck Yeah" demands terrorists suck on our balls while givin' the jingoistic "fuck yeah" to Wal-Mart, slavery and books. Trey Parker's red-, white-, and testosterone-spewing opus to the current state of affairs and irony outguns Lee Greenwood's "Proud to Be an American," emerging as the most crotch-grabbingly awesome anthem for the new USA!
Find it on the Team America: World Police soundtrack.
2. Gold Chains & Sue Cie, "The Heater"
Paired with electronic artist Sue Cie, Gold Chains plays the well-mannered rapper on this track while a minimal synth groove writhes beneath. Seriously serious and sexy, this song is no joke. After a moment of seduction, the Bay Area artist reveals his plan: "Lights on/ Yeah, I am the heater/ You be the follower/ let's kill the leader."
Find it on Gold Chains & Sue Cie's When the World Was Our Friend.
3. The Good Life, "Album of the Year (April)"
Screw Conor Oberst. Tim Kasher is the best indie-rock turd to fall out of the ass that is Omaha yet. A true songwriter who believes in story, Kasher has written an echo-filled update of "Rocky Raccoon" here, his main character mired in desperation and longing, and faced with a serious problem accepting reality.
Find it on the Good Life's Album of the Year.
4. Bright Eyes, "Lua"
Billboard's Top 100 Singles chart has undergone an indie-rock takeover. "Lua," Conor Oberst's diary of experiences as a recent NYC transplant--parties at actors' lofts, nights of endless drug use, trying not to pass out on public transportation--has been kicking asses and taking names, specifically that of Usher and Alicia Keyes. The masses love it, and this time, so do we. Dammit.
Find it on Bright Eyes' single "Lua."
5. Low, "When I Go Deaf"
The remarkable thing about Low's upcoming Sub Pop release, The Great Destroyer, is that it rocks. And when Low rocks out, it sounds an awful lot like Yo La Tengo--certainly not a bad thing. This track shows the band's muscle, creating perfect transitions from beautifully harmonized guy-girl vocals to explosive electric guitar.
Find it on Low's The Great Destroyer, due out Jan. 25, 2005.
6. Pinback, "3XO"
Although Summer in Abaddon as a whole doesn't satisfy like Pinback's earlier work, tracks like "3XO" present themselves like hidden gems, proving this duo's still got it. A dramatic piano builds up as Rob Crow and ABS4 sing random sounds and repeat verses over one another. Beauty.
Find it on Pinback's Summer in Abaddon.
7. Hayden, "Robbed Blind"
Sometimes Hayden's crooning is so sappy he sounds drunk. But its pained sincerity--much like J. Mascis' nails-on-a-chalkboard falsetto--sucks you in as much as it ruffles your feathers. "Robbed Blind" showcases Hayden's songwriting talents with great matter-of-fact lyrics, folky guitar, harmonica and that ever-popular hand-clap.
Find it on Hayden's Elk-Lake Serenade.