December 31, 19

McM Volume | Best of 2019

Billie Eilish - Bad Guy | For me, Eilish was by far and away the biggest breakout star of 2019. Along with her producer/brother Finneas O'Connell, they wrote an amazingly catchy, yet edgy dance track that you can't help but bob your head to.

Diplo (feat. Niska) - Boom Bye Bye | I was introduced to French Hip-Hop in college, and since then I have never been surprised to hear a French MC crush a beat. French MCs always have supremely cool flow, as is the case with Niska. Pair him with Hip-Hop aficionado Diplo, and well...you get a masterpiece.

Two Door Cinema Club - Talk | The first time I heard Two Door Cinema club was at Bonnaroo in 2012. It was one of those great unexpected festival sets, and it stuck with me. They have since fallen off my radar, but released Talk this year. This track reminds me what drew me to them in the first place. Pure pop.

White Reaper - Ring | By far the most anticipated album of 2019 for me, White Reaper's You Deserve Love is packed with good tracks. It was actually hard to pick one for this list, but the energy of Ring at their show was on another level. If you haven't seen White Reaper live (or haven't heard of them at all), you're missing out.

The Black Keys - Eagle Birds | The Black Keys have never been one of my favorite bands, but on every album they release, there are always a number of flat out fantastic tracks. Eagle Birds is one of these tracks, and is just oozing with the things that have made The Black Keys so successful...swagger and sick guitar licks.

Opeth - Heart in Hand | Prog Metal legends Opeth have evolved significantly over the years, but one thing that has never changed is solid songwriting from Mikael Åkerfeldt. 2019's In Cauda Venenum is a beautiful album that moves and plays like an opera, with killer guitar riffs...exactly what has come to be expected of the band.

Dream Theater - Fall into the Light | I have a love/hate relationship with Dream Theater. Sometimes their music misses the mark for me, but one things is for sure...they are an EXCELLENT band and world class musicians. I've also been more partial to them even since Mike Mangini joined the band. Fall into the Light is one of those tracks that reminds me that these dudes are BEASTS.

Thoughtcrimes - Artificer | When The Dillinger Escape Plan broke up, I tried to follow each member to see what they would do next. Drummer Billy Rymer's new band Thoughtcrimes is by far the most interesting. Artificer is chalk full of energy, and comes as close as possible to filling the DEP sized hole in my heart.

High On Fire - Into the Crypts of Rays | Sometime after Lemmy died, Matt Pike of High On Fire decided to pick up the torch. He almost BECAME Lemmy to a certain extent, and almost every track that he has written since has been absolute fire. Into the Crypts of Rays is another one fo those tracks. Hope you enjoy your face melting off.

Dog Blood - Break Law | Skrillex + Boys Noize = Dog Blood. I hate to overshadow Boys Noize, but Skrillex (whether you like it or not) has changed the music landscape significantly over his career. This track has classic Skrillex vocal sample editing, and his signature HUGE synth sounds makes this track an instant classic. From a sound design perspective, there wasn't a better track that was released this year.

Monstergetdown - Light It Up | This guy always flies right under the radar on Deadmau5's mau5trap label, but Monstergetdown can produce some really smooth techno tracks, with seriously groovy bass lines. Light It Up is definitely one of those tracks, and deserves a spot on this list.

Matt Lange (feat. Deniz Reno) - Space Between | Matt Lange is one of the more talented songwriters in the electronic music world. A graduate of Berklee College of Music, his eclectic catalog is truly genreless. When he puts on his deep house/techno shoes he's unbeatable. Add a wonderful vocal from Deniz Reno, and you've got a winner.

Rodriguez Jr. - Amargosa | One of my current favorite electronic dance artists, Rodriguez Jr. can almost do no wrong. Amargosa is brimming with what makes him a master. His grasp of melody, mixed with his use of his vintage synth packed studio produces solid tracks time after time.

Jeremy Olander - Brando | Olander (considered by some to be the heir apparent to legendary Swedish DJ Eric Prydz) has crafted a brand of progressive house all his own. His minimalistic approach to his productions creates such a smooth sound that you can listen to his tracks in any situation. Brando can bring a dance floor to life, or provide the soundtrack to a late night wind-down all the same.

Ben Böhmer - Fliederregen | Ben Böhmer has been cranking out the hits over the past few years. He recently released his debut full length album (which is not surprisingly full of great music), but with so many good tracks to choose from 2019, I had to go with one that has been on heavy rotation all year.

Kaskade - 2nd Street | Kaskade's Redux series pays tribute to the Chicago house scene that he grew up in. His third installment (Redux EP 003) contains 2nd Street, and is exactly that. A true homage to classic 90s house music, but with Kaskade's signature smooth sounds littered all over.

Late Night Alumni - Same Eyes | Becky Jean Williams has the PERFECT house music voice, although ironically buried and used more of an instrument on Same Eyes. That in itself proves how talented the Late Night Alumni roster is. Every piece of this track shines.

Bon Iver - Hey, Ma | No one should ever be surprised when one of Justin Vernon's tracks makes it to any kind of "Best of" list. He is a beautiful songwriter, as proven once again in Hey, Ma.

Billie Eilish - When The Party’s Over | I know...Billie Eilish is already on this list, but COME ON. Her debut album When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? is so good, I couldn't pick just one track. When The Party's Over is a hauntingly beautiful vocal by Eilish, with not much else behind it. Impressive.