The top mp3s have gone through many incarnations since the beginning of Consequence of Sound in 2007. What used to be an exhaustive roundup of all the singles, remixes, covers, and undiscovered gems emailed to us any given week evolved into a compilation whittled down to our 10 favorite new songs. For 2013, were again changing up the format with the hope of giving our selections some added weight. Were still posting about our 10 favorite songs, but theyll be ordered in quality from 10-1. Who takes home #1 this week? Youll have to click Next to find out.
10. Hey Marseilles Bright Stars Burning
Hey Marseilles hail from Seattle, and just like their Washington brethren Death Cab for Cutie, they write gentle indie pop that aims straight for the heart. “After all these years, you are leaving here despite what should be otherwise,” frontman Matt Bishop calls. His voice is strong and controlled, set amidst a smattering of low-key instrumentation. He’s brokenhearted, yearning to know why the relationship had to end. Nick Ward’s guitar peeks out as the notes grow louder and the chords hit harder. By the end of the track, Bishop is still unfulfilled, though he’s beginning to understand why his lover left him. “Bright Stars Burning” is the lead single from Hey Marseilles’ forthcoming LP, Lines We Trace (out March 5th). -Jon Hadusek
9. Elephant – “Skyscraper”
London duo Elephant fall into the “dream pop” umbrella quite easily, especially if you’re dreaming that the girl groups of the ’60s could hook up with vintage orchestral backing and modern reverb tech. On new single “Skyscraper”, the idealized past sweetness recalls Angelo Badalamenti’s Twin Peaks pop songs as much as it does Beach House, Amelia Rivers’ rich, spectral delivery draping over the waltzing mass. Though often obscured by the icy beauty of the music (not to mention overshadowed by her haunting presence), the simple, mournful edge to lyrics like “skyscrapers/ scrape the skies/ only to fall down” reveal the dark core underneath all of the rime. -Adam Kivel
8. araabMUZIK The Prince is Coming
Paced by pattering bongos and a boom-bap beat, araabMUZIKs The Prince is Coming is the ominous opening track off of the uber-producers new mixtape, For Professional Use Only (available for download February 15th). Menacing sirens penetrate the rhythms, and swaths of dark ambience create an overcast backdrop. It sounds like a warning. Whoever this prince is, hes certainly not a pleasant figure. -Jon Hadusek