21 May 2019

Summer Jam 2019 Week 2! Where You Take Your Horse?!

We're a day behind, but still on track! Maybe. Summer Jam is of course still a thing and here we are counting down the hottest, most intriguing tracks of the second or third week of May 2019! Let's dive into this mess:

Hot Jam of the Week: "Earfquake" by Tyler the Creator

T the C just dropped IGOR which is solidly trending right now and could have a nice summer. I post a lot of Tyler the Creator songs on here because they tend to tickle my fancy, but he seems to avoid mainstream buzz, perhaps because he's totally bonkers. Still, he remains popular amongst the youth in this splintered media landscape. There's good vibes right now and "Earfquake" is kind of a whack, very un-"Yonkers" kind of track, but that might be a good thing.

"I Don't Care" by Bieber & Sheeran

These two putzes teamed up to make an attempt at a meme video, and it's largely successful. There's enough goodwill between these two crooners that this could surge this summer, although this is also totally exactly like every Sheeran song ever. Bieber has lent his voice more to EDM and DJ Khalid tracks lately, so this sort of stands out for him. This point is, if this track takes off I'm going to have to look up the title each and every week because I will absolutely not remember.

"Middle Child" by J. Cole

J. Cole is back again with one of the greatest songs of the moment and of his career. J. Cole was such a joke so recently, now he's laying down tight rhymes over sick beats. This really isn't that hot on the Hip-Hop scene, but still one of my favorites right now.

"ME!" by Tay Sway and the Lead Singer of Panic! At the Disco

This is starting to feel like a track that might be around for a while but never overpowering. It also feels very much in the model of five to ten years ago - a pleasing pop track designed by studios for a happy traditional release. As we move forward this suddenly feels so antiquated. It's enjoyable, though, and already has enough traction to move forward, but probably not on top.

"Bad Guy" by Billie Ellish

This is a really new artist who has dropped a bunch of intriguing tracks, and there's a combination of irreverence and intensity here that's most intriguing of all. The beat is sultry and engaging, with a raspy fray voice that filters over its most boppy moments. It's more original than most pop stuff out there and could remain for a while on these hot summer nights. I get the feeling that Billie Ellish is a new Kat Dahlia or Skylar Grey or something, though. In the moment, not to rise beyond her year.

"Don't Call Me Up" by Mabel

This week turned out pretty pop-centered. Back in the day this was all Katy / GaGa / Ke$ha wars. Oh how we've changed. I really enjoy how this song drops its beat, but it's also one whose title I totally had to look up. Mabel, Billie, all these artists are pretty good but I don't know if they have staying power in this new landscape. That also goes for

"Old Town Road" by Lil Nas X ft. Billy Ray Cyrus

First of all, check out this little history of this song, which is mind-blowing. Somehow it's totally possible to just make a song and self-promote it up to the #1 spot in the country. Of course, that's all the more to do with how much this song nails its hip-hop / country appeal, which is perfect. It really hits a sweet spot between earnestness and parody that fits 2019 so well. This is #2 this week because #1 was just in my head more, but I think this is just beginning its mainstream run.

"Sweet but Psycho" by Ava Max

Yeah, I don't know, but this totally earwormed me this week. I kept thinking she mentioned "George Micho" or something but I guess not. This dug into my soul and stayed there all week. This is more than this track deserves because it's totally not a #1 Summer Jam, but definitely this week - and that's why we have 17 of these! Stay tuned all summer!

Next week...

I really enjoyed Lizzo's "Truth Hurts" but it's been out for a year? If that track continues to surge I may not be able to ignore it. I'm also eyeing just about all of IGOR because with a Spotify-fueled world singles just don't matter any more. Logic and Eminem teamed up for a great all-white rapper track and the Jonas Bros are still hanging around. There's a lot of directions this Summer may be pulled!

13 May 2019

Summer Jam 2019! Week 1! Let IT BEGIN!!

Welcome to the 10th Incarnation of Norwegian Morning Wood's Summer Jam Countdown!

Posts here have been so spotty lately. The Summer Jam will fix all of that! Probably. Each and every week until Labour Day we'll list off the Top Eight HOTTEST Jams in the Good Ol' Us of America and then tally up WHICH track is the final, ultimate Soundtrack to Summer 2019. It's going to be a good one. I can feel it. The media landscape isn't fractured!

Hot Jam of the Week: "Picasso" by Hopsin

I just searched for New Music, this jam popped up and I dug it. Is Hopsin a new hot artist on the Hip-Hop scene? The Travis Scott of 2019? Time will tell, but this is actually a bumpin jam, pretty brutal, clever, and a sick cutting beat. It's good enough to be the HOT ONE this week!

"Please Me" by Bruno Mars ft. Cardi B

An ancient song, but still hanging around this week - the second, much worse collabo between Bruni and Cardo does its job and is an earworm enough to be enjoyable. I naturally subconsciously searched for "Please Please Me" because of Johno and Pauli.

"Break Up with your Girlfriend, I'm Bored" by Ariana Grande

Ariana continues to dominate 2019 with every single thing she does, although this is a little bit of a lesser work compared to "Thank U, Next" and "7 Rings." It's the kind of bold, aggressive song that takes on a weird connotation after her series of high-profile relationships (chronicled with a little more tact in "Thank U, Next"). It's still a catchy jam, but it's pathway to the Top is probably over.

"Middle Child" by J. Cole

Did anyone else pick up on the moment when J. Cole became one of our best current rappers? He has a slew of hits, or at least songs lately, but this is chief among them. It's incredibly listenable in the background but also has significant lyrical weight when you sit down and contemplate it. Basically, a perfect rap song. I'll take it. A little old by Summer Jam standards, but it'll do.

"Old Town Road" by Lil Nas X ft. Billy Ray Cyrus

How did Billy Ray Cyrus earn a #1 Billboard Single and it not be the year 1990? This is a solid jam that has set the streaming world on fire. Since I am old man in my 10th iteration of this insane list, I haven't gotten up on streaming yet. Still, I'll acknowledge this because it doesn't matter what old men say - just what Old Town Roads say. And they say...hotness. Also this video is tight.

"Sucker" by Jonas Bros

I didn't know that the Jonas Bros were still a thing nor that this track was a Jonas Bros track but I actually dig it. My pop knowledge is insane that it actually reminds me quite a bit of Fifth Harmony's "I'm in Love with a Monster" from a few years back. That's really a guilty pleasure song.

"WOW" by Post Malone

This is somehow one of P.M.'s best tracks. His flow is stellar as always, but it's the throbbing beat and weird dancing beard man that push it over the edge. It's such a devil may care video that fits pretty well with the post-modern musical landscape. The post-malone musical landscape, if you will.

"ME!" by Taylor Swift ft. Brendan Urie

Tay Tay deserves more credit for slight reinventions of herself as the years go on. She seems less about petty weird jealousy and fake feuds with Katy Perry than actually making some mature music these days. This track was everywhere this week and I think could last a bit. It's far too early to proclaim a Summer Jam Winner. Yes, it is. But on May 13, 2019 this is what we got. That's actually the point of this countdown, Robert.

Next week...

Oh, we'll have more. This is a solid list for right now but the ebbs and flows of our fickle musical landscape will morph and change until our destinies are fulfilled! To September!!
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