10 songs, 42 min, 11 min reading time.
This was tough. Not that happy with the list really, but that’s 2020 Jake talking. I think this is a good representation of what 2019 Jake loved across the year.
1) “Before I Move Off” – Mount Kimbie
For those that remember, I gushed over “Marilyn” by Mount Kimbie on my list last year. Again, I was late to this one only going back and listening to Mount Kimbie’s debut album at the beginning of 2019 when it was released in 2010… Have I also gone on about how I think that I lived opposite them at uni but only realised when I got into their music after uni… Anyway, I listened to it nonstop at the beginning of 2019 and it is a beautifully layered, delicate delight.
What I said in January 2019: “After researching Mount Kimbie for my recent Podcast, I came across a review that claimed their tracks pre-2013 were just background party vibes, if that reviewer was going to parties where stuff like this was playing in 2010 I want to know where they were hanging out. This is intricate, delicate and can be listened to over and over.”
Album: “Crooks & Lovers” (2010)
Label: Hotflush Recordings
2) “DAWAN” – Apparat
This is such an underrated, brilliant tune released in January 2019. It then appeared on Apparat’s “LP5” album released in March that was great and I’m not sure why it hasn’t been making people’s best albums of the year playlists.
What I said in February 2019: “Playing later in the year at Barbican, with KÁRYYN. Sounds like Thom Yorke / Radiohead vibes and when the singing kicks in it really ramps up. I think this atmospheric track in a big setting like the Barbican could be spine tingling.”
Album: “DAWAN” (2019)
Label: Sascha Ring
3) “Living In The Snow” – Mocky
Another track that I found way after it was released. I had it on repeat for much of the summer despite the juxtaposition of “snow” and summer, it just seemed to work.
What I said in July 2019: “Wow. I almost made my playlist this song but just 10 times over, a contender for my favourite track discovered this year despite the release being in 2015. Please give it 3 or 4 listens as it gets better and better on each turn. Mocky sounds like a very under-the-radar artist who is involved in a lot of interesting things and I will now be spending a few days going through his collection of work.”
Album: “Key Change” (2015)
Label: Heavy Sheet
4) “Memory Box” – Peter Cat Recording Co.
I didn’t go away and learn that much more about them, but this is still a great song. “Bismillah” was a solid album released in June if you want more.
What I said in August 2019: “Okay, so here it is. A contender for song discovery of the year for me. Peter Cat Recording Co are a bonkers band from New Delhi spanning lots of genres and I am now determined to learn more about them after this corker.”
Album: “Bismillah” (2019)
5) “To Say” – Jacques Greene
Not many more tunes that I was dancing round the room to this year. It’s monotonous in a brilliant way, just gets you grooving. Jacques Greene has featured on my playlists in a few forms either for his own work or remixes of others and there’s just something exciting about his work.
What I said in September 2019: “Credit to Contributor Alfie here: he shared the tune “Feel Infinite” with me, then I let the song carry onto the next in the album and found this gem.”
Album: “Feel Infinite” (2017)
Label: LuckyMe Records
6) “Cranes in the Sky” – Solange
Once again, late to the game. I am a bit of a nutter who lives in a bubble. How on earth I missed this beauty I have no idea, but thank you Mark Richardson for opening my ears to this masterpiece.
What I said in October 2019: “An absolute banger. The drums in the background, the beautiful singing, the orchestral violin feel, it all just works. Thanks to Mark Richardson for putting me onto it with his 50 best tracks of the 2010s and this was rightfully way up there near the top.”
Album: “A Seat at the Table” (2016)
Label: Columbia Records
7) “Wait a Minute!” – WILLOW
Natascha was not wrong. I have been screaming along to this in the car and bedroom. A triumph of a song. Watching others become more involved in RunPip has been great and discovering brilliant tracks through this is an added benefit.
What I said in November 2019: “Natascha’s brilliant Pride in Music playlist this month led me onto this. Having only known WILLOW previously for “Whip My Hair”, it was great to discover an absolute banger.”
Album: “ARDIPITHECUS” (2015)
Label: Roc Nation Records
8) “Radar Detector – Live at the BBC for Zane Lowe / 5th May, 2010” – Darwin Deez
The below still very much applies.
What I said in November 2019: “This has had me dancing round my room on a number of occasions this month. Also due to the fact on the Spotify app that you do not get to see the whole title if they are long, I went around coming up with conspiracy theories that Spotify had hijacked Apple Music live sessions which after finding out the date upon sharing the song and seeing the full title made me feel pretty silly.”
Single: “Radar Detector” (2019)
Label: Lucky Number Music
9) “sad day” – FKA twigs
MAGDALENE was excellent. This was a very tight call between this and “cellophane” another magnificent song. It’s everything about her, her ambience, stage presence, it all deserves the acclaim it is getting.
What I said in November 2019: “FKA twigs released her exceptional MAGDALENE album on November 8 and this is the highlight for me. Ending on “cellophane” which was discussed in Jake’s Monthly Discoveries 11 is heartbreaking, but “sad day” is an astonishing song.”
Single: “sad day” (2019)
Label: Young Turks Recordings
“It teases you and pulls you around just when you think you know what’s coming.” An exemplar remix. It sounds like it shouldn’t work and it just does. It’s a delight. I am glad another of his remixes way back from Jake’s Monthly Discoveries 1 has featured on a recent Apple advert.
What I said in December 2019: “I really enjoyed the original when it was released earlier in the year as explained in Jake’s Monthly Discoveries 11. However, Channel Tres has taken it to the next level and done something exceptional to it. One of my favourite songs of the year and an absolute triumph of a remix: clearly entwined to the original but also it’s own version in it’s own right. It teases you and pulls you around just when you think you know what’s coming. Channel Tres told NME in 2018: “I party hard, bro” and that he goes clubbing a lot for “research”. Regardless, he is very near the top of my list for who I want to see live next.”
Album: “Late Night Feelings (Channel Tres Remix)” (2019)
Label: Mark Ronson