Singles File: Allison Stewart's Top Five Songs of the Week
A weekly playlist for the listener with a one-track mind.
Pearl Jam: "Santa Cruz"
Some of Pearl Jam's best, loosest songs have been the fan-club singles the band releases every Christmas, like "Last Kiss" (Xmas '98) and that Dead Boys cover they did that one time. This new, superbly mellow track, which suggests a post-Buffalo Springfield Neil Young, is their belated Christmas 2008 contribution.
Joell Ortiz: "Get Money"
Ortiz's seriously excellent new mix tape features 33 rapid-fire re-imaginings of classic hip-hop beats, including this reworking of the famed Junior M.A.F.I.A. track.
Esmée Denters featuring Justin Timberlake: "Casanova"
In what may be his least smolder-y performance ever, Timberlake plays Greek chorus-big brother to his Dutch pop protege Denters on this track from her upcoming debut.
Zee Avi: "Bitter Heart"
The Malaysian YouTube star (screen name: KokoKaina) makes like a cross between Jack Johnson and Colbie Caillat on this sprightly pop song from her self-titled debut, out today on Johnson's Brushfire Records.
The National and Bon Iver: "Vanderlylle Cry Baby" (live)
What happens when a laconic, occasionally dull blogosphere superstar act meets another laconic, occasionally dull blogosphere superstar act? Will the universe collapse and fold in on itself like a dying star? Click the link to find out!
-- Allison Stewart