50 Best Songs of 2009

It’s time to commence the end-of-year list-making here on The Search… and we’ll start with my picks for the best songs of the year. I’ve opted not to put them in any sort of order (except alphabetical), because it takes too much time to arbitrarily decide whether Neko Case (pictured above) should be #11 or #18. So here they are… 50 songs that you should definitely think about downloading!

Andrew Bird, “Tenuousness”
Animal Collective, “Brothersport”
Animal Collective, “Graze”
Animal Collective, “My Girls”
Atlas Sound & Panda Bear, “Walkabout”
Bat For Lashes, “Daniel”
Beyonce, “Sweet Dreams”
Bibio, “Ambivalence Avenue”
Bon Iver, “Brackett, WI”
Camera Obscura, “The Sweetest Thing”
Clipse and Kanye West, “Kinda Like a Big Deal”
David Bazan, “Curse Your Branches”
Dirty Projectors, “Stillness is the Move”
Fleet Foxes, “False Night on the Road”
Future of Forestry, “Slow Your Breath Down”
Grizzly Bear, “While You Wait for the Others”
Jay-Z and Alicia Keyes, “Empire State of Mind”
Jay-Z, “Young Forever”
Julian Plenti, “Only If You Run”
Karen O and the Kids, “Worried Shoes”
Kelly Clarkson, “I Do Not Hook Up”
Kid Cudi, MGMT, Ratatat, “Pursuit of Happiness”
Lady Gaga, “Bad Romance”
M.Ward, “For Beginners”
Memory Tapes, “Bicycle”
Monsters of Folk, “Dear God”
Mos Def, “Quiet Dog”
N.A.S.A. (ft. Kanye West, Santigold, Lykke Li), “Gifted”
Neko Case, “Middle Cyclone”
Neon Indian, “Deadbeat Summer”
Peter, Bjorn & John feat. Wale, “Nothing to Worry About”
Phoenix, “Lisztomania”
Phoenix, “1901”
Raekwon, “House of Flying Daggers”
Real Estate, “Snow Days”
St. Vincent, “Marrow”
Sufjan Stevens, “You Are the Blood”
Sunset Rubdown, “You Go On Ahead (Trumpet Trumpet II)”
Susan Enan, “Monoplain”
The Antlers, “Two”
The Books and Jose Gonzalez, “Cello Song”
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, “A Teenager in Love”
The Very Best, “The Warm Heart of Africa”
Thom Yorke, “All For the Best”
U2, “Magnificent”
Vampire Weekend, “Horchata”
Washed Out, “Feel it All Around.”
Wilco, “Solitaire”
Yacht Club, “Psychic City”
Yeasayer, “Tightrope”

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7 responses to “50 Best Songs of 2009

  1. Hey Brett,

    Long-time follower, first time caller.

    Excellent list, though completely expected from a Christian hipster. ;)

    I just picked up St. Vincent’s album, actor, too. It’s quite thrilling.

    Have you noticed the obvious similarities between the lyrical structures of Karen O and the kids’ Capcize and St. Vincent’s Marrow? Just curious.

    Regardless of all of that, what do you think about the influence of this excessively odd and lovely music as much as it’s juxtoposed against the incessant spiritual need to celebrate our Daddy?

    How much of a push is there or should there be for transparently drawing us into God’s presence?

    If I were to make this list, I’d probably include a couple songs from Aaron Strumpel’s Elephant and replace those Jay Z tracks.

    Seriously, what is the appeal to him for so many of us who are(n’t) christian hipsters?

  2. FYI, that Karen O song on your list, “Worried Shoes”, is a Daniel Johnston cover. Not sure if you were limiting this to original songs, but just thought I’d mention it in case you weren’t aware.

  3. Yeah I knew it was a cover- there are other covers on this list too (“You Are the Blood,” “Cello Song,” etc).

  4. M.joshua-
    I loved Aaron Strumpel’s Elephants but more as an album than individual songs. As for Jay-Z, I just really liked those songs.
    As for the Karen O / St. Vincent question- No I hadn’t noticed the similarities, but it’s an interesting thought.
    Thanks for the comment and questions!

  5. I agree that Jay-Z and Alicia Keys’ song is catchy, but it also includes the lyric “Jesus can’t save you.”

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