Here are my favorite tracks from September 2019, the month in which the temps started dipping, it got easier to sleep at night, and it became socially acceptable to make chili again. I am going to make pounds of chili, and it will be just for my wife and me. STEP AWAY FROM THE LADLE. BAD!
1. Hannah Diamond & Danny L. Harle – “Part of Me”
A luminously sad banger from two of the PC Music collective’s fiercest talents. As Diamond sings about the imprints we make on one another, Harle’s dreamy xylophone leaves its own indelible mark.
2. slowthai (feat. Denzel Curry) – “Psycho”
This intense British emcee invites one of America’s finest to shred syllables over a diabolical, Bernard Hermann-sampling beat.
3. Sturgill Simpson – “Best Clockmaker On Mars”
Of all the compelling ways this country visionary has bucked the Nashville establishment over the years, this ZZ Top Eliminator cosplay is the most fun.
4. Begonia – “Fear”
Over a stripped, claps-and-bass groove, this Manitoba singer/songwriter laundry lists her fears. Taking musical risks is not one of them.
5. Danny Brown – “Dirty Laundry”
Danny Brown is one of the best rappers alive, and his new Q-Tip-produced LP is imminent. If it’s as loosely confident as this track, we might have to lose “one of.”
6. Van Morrison – “Dark Night of the Soul”
It’s extremely reassuring to learn that, at 74, Van still sounds like Van. Buoyant, just a little bit restless, and hopeful as the morning sky after a rainstorm.
7. Mariah Carey – “In the Mix”
On the theme song to the new Black-ish prequel, Mariah Carey also takes a look back – to that carefree, roller-blading-in-the-sunshine, “Fantasy”-era sound.
8. Red Death – “Face the Pain”
I’ve never met a chugging Motorhead riff I didn’t like.
9. Charli XCX – “White Mercedes”
Charli XCX’s brand of delirium-inducing club-pop often sounds best at full volume. On this majestic synthed-out ballad, the artist confesses why: “I hate the silence / That’s why the music’s always loud.”
10. Bull – “Love Goo”
Long live the Kinks.
11. Angel Olsen – “Lark”
Sometimes an artist releases a song so epic, so overwhelmingly emotional, so technically awe-inspiring, that it can’t go anywhere but at the end of a mix. Like “Lark,” which rises from folk murmurs to orchestral eruptions, like the ocean engulfing a volcano.