1. Miguel: “waves (Tame Impala Remix)”
I don’t get outright obsessed with songs very often. That may seem hard to believe, but it’s true. Even when I truly love a song to my core, it’s rare that I feel the need to endlessly play it on repeat. This Tame Impala remix of Miguel’s “waves” is a glowing exception. Miguel and Tame Impala are not only two of my favorite current artists, but they both had big breakout years in 2015. They both pushed toward each other’s worlds with their latest albums, past the boundaries of their respective “genres.” Miguel is known as an R&B/pop singer but I wouldn’t argue if you called last year’s Wildheart a rock album, while Tame Impala, the “rock band,” experimented with pop and funk on Currents. We can see evidence of this convergence between Tame Impala’s sound and the current pop landscape in Rihanna’s latest album ANTI. She straight-up took the production of Tame Impala’s “New Person, Same Old Mistakes” note-for-note and sang over it herself to create “Same Ol’ Mistakes”, and somehow it sounds completely at home! No one would have thought that was possible five years ago. The pop star behind “Don’t Stop the Music” sang over a track from the guys who made “Lucidity”? I don’t know man, but it works.
So, it turns out Tame Impala is actually a natural fit for a Miguel remix. The original version of “waves” is amazing in and of itself, easily one of my 5 favorite Miguel tracks. Kevin Parker, the wizard behind Tame Impala, punches it up a notch with a little more “oomph.” The opening harmonies, which sound like they were ripped from a sun-soaked Beach Boys cut, give way to classic Tame Impala woozy, gauzy psych rock. This seamless Miguel-Tame Impala combination hits my sweet spot dead on. I have a feeling this is going to be a constant presence in 2016 summer playlists.