10. Town of Saints - Short Circuit Breakdown
We kick off the top 10 with Dutch/Finnish indie-folk band Town Of Saints. "Short Circuit Breakdown" is a song that combines boogie-woogie rock with stadium-sized choruses and soaring strings to create a rock-hopping masterpiece.
9. Anteros - Breakfast
We loved "Breakfast" when we first heard it back in April, and loved it even more when we saw Anteros open their set with it at The Great Escape. A delicious indie-pop tune about being kept up late at night by a partner for all the wrong reasons.
8. INHEAVEN - Baby's Alright
On "Baby's Alright", post-punk band INHEAVEN pull off that great musical trick of hiding rage-filled, angry, vitriolic lyrical verses around a rousing sing-along chorus that doesn't seem to have anything to do with the song in question. Favourite moment in the song is the 2nd chorus, when the guitars double up and the song soars into the stratosphere.
7. Turin Brakes - Keep Me Around
Turin Brakes are one of those bands that have for years been in my category of acts that we feel we would absolutely love if we made an effort to explore their music further, but haven't yet set aside the time to do so (see also: Cold War Kids). Well, in 2016 we made the first tentative steps towards that after falling for love with "Keep Me Around". There's something about that acoustic guitar hook and soaring strings that keeps me listening to the song time and time again. Who knows? This might be the start of a beautiful friendship.
6. Ciaran Lavery - Return to Form
It almost feels like an artist is tempting fate when he names his comeback single "Return To Form", especially when it comes off the back of a highly streamed, successful debut, although Northern Ireland Music Prize winner Ciaran Lavery need not have fretted, as the song marked a new high watermark for him. It's certainly the most radio-friendly song that Ciaran has released to date ( if you exclude the polite f-bombs on the album version), and calls to mind "I'm Not The Only One" by Sam Smith, although with the choirboy swooning replaced with Lavery's trademark world-weary ragged vocals. Definitely not a return to form, but a strengthening of it.
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