Adventures In 2010: Top 30 Songs [#30-21]

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

You know you wanna take a peek...

30. Clockwork - Toni Braxton 
How stupid. How stupid someone must feel to not include this sultry stunner on the original pressing of Ms. Braxton's "comeback" album, Pulse. If you were lucky to get the first leaked version of Pulse, you were able to hear how things could have gone, and they would've gone this sexy way. The clopping percussion beat grinds away and it's really the sexiest thing Braxton has done since "You're Making Me So High". It's truly the Toni Braxton sound everyone was jonesing for on Pulse, but sadly, didn't get to hear due to its omission.

29. Solider Of Love - Sade
If you want to get technical, this was released back in the wee closing days of 2009, but the song just marched right on into the turn of the century giving high hopes for what was to come. Awaking out of a 10+ year musical slumber, Sade really came back with a bang on this one. It's urgent, has a great arrangement, and Ms. Adu never sounded so defeated and gritty in one song. While the song has sort of lost it's gleam throughout the months due to overplay, and the accompanying album really was just like beautiful plastic fruit, this song is one of Sade's best and breathes new life into the band. 

28. Sunshine - Faith Evans
Something About Faith, wasn't really something to talk about, but one of the saviors of the album was this bouncy House number. Why Faith didn't go in this direction for the full album is one of life's little mysteries as it bubbles in and along vibrantly. The song is just enough to give you the slight impression that Faith is still in tune to her 90's hey-day. 

27. Nothing But Love - Izzi Dunn
There were a number of songs I adored on Izzi Dunn's sophomore album Cries & Smiles, which in turn makes it difficult for me to choose what was my favorite moment. I settled on "Nothing But Love" because it pushes all the right buttons for me. It's a wonderfully arranged recall to yesteryear soul, that Alice Russell or Adriana Evans would have been tempted to try on. Still, Izzi really puts on a show when she kicks her vocals into high-drive and makes this recording really sublime.

26. Somebody To Love Me - Mark Ronson & The Business Intl ft. Boy George and Andrew Wyatt
Ooh, this was an unexpected thrill. I've never been much of a Mark Ronson fan, but I have to give him major Browine points for bringing Boy George out of wherever he was at and reminding people why he's one of the most underrated voices that we've had in the last 30 years. It's got nothing on the Culture Club catalog, but it's still a funky yet quiet foot stomper that catches you if you've been sleeping.

25. Song For The Baby - Kelis
Interesting conversations are aroused when Fleshtone, Kelis' chameleon turn, is mentioned. Either you hated it or you loved it. All I have to say is that Kelis' can't do "Trick Me" over and over, and I'm glad she didn't on this release. While everyone pretty much favors "Brave", the interruptions of ear splitting synths sort of kill it for me...and you know how much I like synths. While I liked "4th of July" and "Acapella", "Song For The Baby" is the shining moment as it closes out the album. It gets on the good 90's dancefloor foot and the addition of some brassy synths makes it a funkier affair. As it is an ode to Kelis' own bundle of joy, it plays like the "Isn't She Lovely" of the 21st Century and that's fine with me.

24. 10 Seconds - Jazmine Sullivan
A song where Jazmine sounds more Mary J. Blige than Mary herself now. Okay. I'm sorry for the cheap comparison, but she is giving me Blige vibes so hard on this that it's not even funny. Not that it's bad or unoriginal, it's actually great because we need someone who can really expel those angst riddled tunes of soul grandeur and give a hell of a vocal performance in the process. Jazmine seems to be one of few who can do that right now, which is why I'm on the sidelines rooting her on. Tart, accusatory, and demanding, how a real soul throwdown should sound.

23. Wait A Minute (For Your Love) - JoJo
JoJo always manages to surprise me with something she does. She's come a long way since "Leave (Get Out" and other playground dear diary scribbles, but this year she gave an inkling that she can really give her peers like Jazmine Sullivan and Melanie Fiona a run for their money...that's if she plays her cards right. Plays her cards she does with "Wait A Minute" which is another release from the leaky Internet faucets that has no designated home. It's a stunning song that has JoJo feeling her way through throwback soul with a live band, and it's appeal is that you want more long after the piano and horns dissipate. While she (sadly) didn't recreate this sound on her mixtape Can't Take That Away from this year, there is still tons of promise of what JoJo can achieve in 2011.

22. Night Air - Jamie Woon 
This song is a vortex. You literally get sucked into this song when you first hear it, which is why it's so fantastic. At first listen it sounds like some kooky New Age experiment. Then it goes into a Michael Jackson groove and then I'm hearing bubbles of New Order peeking through. It's just insane, but a good insane. Like a broken record I will continually say that Jamie Woon is one to watch come next year and if he continues to have originality oozing out of each scale like on this track, he's already best friends with me.

21. Shadow - Yahzarah
How stunning is this? As a head turning achievement as The Ballad of Purple St. James is, this was the moment that really gives you the inkling that Yahzarah is in it to win. She is just perfect vocally on this song. No over exercising her instrument or trying to push something out that isn't there, the approach to this piano driven Jazz segment is what is to mainly marvel about it. Personally, this was the best song next to "Come Back As A Flower" and "Why Don'tcha Call Me No More". While most favor "Starship", it was too much of a wannabe Prince moment for me, this song is original in it's form. She just tenderly kicks it off and then just continues to flourish as the song progresses. Beauty, people.

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