You know the recession is on when your favorite song of 2009 is Animal Collective’s “My Girls” — a track that uses kaleidoscopic electro-psychedelia to sing the praises of financial stability. Clearly, for better or for worse, Pitchfork’s best songs of the year say something about its (young, educated, cosmopolitan, indie-leaning) audience’s preoccupations. With that in mind, we’ve examined their top 10 tracks of 2010 and attempted to tease out what they say about us.
10. Janelle Monáe feat. Big Boi — “Tightrope”
We are longing for a sci-fi future. The music we love and the heroes we choose are informed by the classics but represent a brand-new fusion that isn’t merely rock or R&B or hip-hop but a whole greater than the sum of its parts. Monáe is a true diva, but she’s also no Beyoncé — she’s a star we barely have the vocabulary to describe because we just haven’t seen anyone quite like her before. This is a very good omen.