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THE SINGLES FILE

Nelly Furtado reinvented herself in 2006; Jose Gonzalez, below right, plucked on
Nelly Furtado reinvented herself in 2006; Jose Gonzalez, below right, plucked on "Heartbeats"; Justin Timberlake broke new barriers; and Cassie delivered the goods for "Me & U." (By Mark Mainz -- Getty Images For Aol Music)

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Over the course of 25 years and 20-odd albums, Sonic Youth have probably written a gazillion enchanting guitar riffs. This song makes it a gazillion and one.

13. The Pack: "Vans"

These teen rappers have penned the coolest paean to footwear since Run DMC's "My Adidas."

14. Prince: "Black Sweat"

Just when we thought the little guy went soft, his royal purpleness unleashes a panting funk cut from darkest corners of his dirty mind.

15. Robin Thicke featuring Pharrell: "I Wanna Love U Girl"

If Paris Hilton gets to release a tolerably dopey pop song, it's only fair that the son of sitcom dad Alan Thicke gets to release a truly excellent one.

16. Scritti Politti: "The Boom Boom Bap"

Don't call it a comeback -- Green Gartside has been here for decades. The Scritti Politti crooner's recent pledge of allegiance to hip-hop is a dreamy, drippy delight.

17. Ricardo Villalobos: "Fizheuer Zieheuer"

Apparently the whole "German engineering" thing applies to techno music too. Villalobos's exquisitely nuanced drumscape shows exactly why this Berliner is the finest in his field.

18. T.I.: "What You Know"


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