WMUC’s OH NO! (One Hundred-and-fifty, New & Original)

By WMUC DJs and Staff

In a year characterized by continuous demise, at least we can say the music was good. Here’s a non-definitive, un-ranked list of our top songs. We weren’t sure if some of these would make it onto other lists—so we took the liberty of making one ourselves! From our Spotify accounts to yours, read on for one-hundred-and-fifty of our favorites.

“Eso Que Tu Haces” by Lido Pimienta
The world needed a banger, or several, to get us through this massive dumpster fire of a year. Canada got its cumbia song of the summer through Polaris Prize winner Lido Pimienta, whose album Miss Colombia reflects a triumphant celebration of her Afro-Colombian, Wayuu, and LGBT+ roots. Pimienta’s pride in her heritage shines through here, hard. You know when people say, off-hand, things like "this song cured my depression"? Well, this song literally did. Miss Colombia teaches you to love the things you've fought for in your life, and lovingly relinquish the things that have to pass out of it.
-Brennan Winer, Moose Factory

“Lick in Heaven” by Jessy Lanza
A standout from Lanza's new record. She also gave the single best quarantine performance, and perhaps one of the best Boiler Room sets of all time this year.
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“Ibitbt” by 3l3d3p
Rave music for the mosh pit in your room... with your cat? Also need a good LED strobe light going.
-Marlia Nash, Communications Team

“Vacation Bible” by Ayesha Erotica
After managing to go viral even after retiring from music, pulling her songs from all streaming platforms, AND going private on Instagram, Ayesha Erotica has finally succumbed to the public's demands and formally released her most-requested. Ayesha Erotica sounds like what Regina George wants to look like.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“J'aurai les cheveux longs” by Klô Pelgag
Snowflakes flurry in on a cold breeze from an open window on a lonely winter’s eve lit by candlelight on the fourth track of francophone Canadian singer Klô Pelgag’s 2020 album, Notre-Dame-des-Sept-Douleurs.

With a longing piano ballad backed by somber orchestral swells, Pelgag’s sincere voice pierces through the layers of snow, ice, and frost to deliver an emotional jab right in the center of your chest, stopping you in your tracks and leaving you spellbound.
-Eric Harkleroad, Rainbow Quest

“Hearts Collide Way 2 Fast” by Jasper Lotti
Please stream Jasper Lotti, I am begging. Ethereal haunting pop of 2081.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Happiness” by Katie Dey
About wanting love to escape loneliness. The production expresses the sadness in that intention.
-Caleb Yoshida, scum

“In the Way” by jonatan leandoer96
Yung Lean dropped his fourth project, Blodhundar & Lullabies, under his ‘jonatan leandoer96’ moniker in late December, and it is his most developed and interesting work under this name yet. "In the Way," the first track on the record, is filled with quick, memorable, and haunting lines from the rapper-turned-singer-songwriter.
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“Nothing Else I Could Do” by Ella Jane
I found Ella Jane while scrolling through TikTok. It was one of the many “I’m a small artist ! make my song go viral” videos but this one caught my attention. I listened to the whole thing and fell in love with it. It’s a great sad song that has a fun beat, in case you’re like me and just want to dance around when you’re sad. I think it’s a song that has really spoken to me in times where I've been down, and I think it's very relevant to a feeling we all experience.
-Evan Hecht, The Timewarp

“Gospel for a New Century” by Yves Tumor
If you turn off all the lights and say gospelforanewcentury three times in the mirror, a horned Yves Tumor will appear and fly you to the transcendent plane between purgatory and the last standing spot in a metro car. Tumor sonically controls chaos with a severity that reads equally unforgiving as it is abstract.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Slayin'” by Bootychaaain
An adorable song on a darling album from the pretty princess of Goth Money Records.
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“A Big Day For Grimley” by AJJ
Prophetic AJJ takes us back to the desert and cheerfully warns of a bull**** year “out in sweet 2020”. The peaceful bleakness continues before a sudden burst of optimism and a message of goodwill hangs in the air. Like a guy with a guitar leading a pub song out of Mad Max, what better way to celebrate collective doom than by whistling along and riding off into the sunset on your post-apocalyptic-future-past motorcycle until your voice shrieks to nothing but static. Even at its darkest, you can't help but be hopeful and sing along: “good luck everybody”.
-Blake Bissen, Emotional Waves

“Taco Bell” by That Kid
Makes me wanna get eliminated from season 4 of America’s Next Top Model but in a good way. If I am on aux, then so is this song.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Faith” by LUCKI
"Live life syrup." LUCKI is in peak form on Faith, released as a single for his Almost There LP.
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

"Khala My Friend" by Amanaz
Amanaz was one of the few bands that was able to breakout within the brief psych rock explosion that took place within Zambia during the early 70's. The track evokes a feeling of nostalgia and yearning for a friend that has taken the wrong path in life. A beautiful bass line and occasional sharp guitar solos very reminiscent of the late Jimi Hendrix makes this a hidden gem from the Zamrock era that is often forgotten from music history.
-Aidan Appelson, CHOPS!

“KLK” by Arca ft. ROSALÍA
Subversion of genre at it’s finest. The whole KiCk i album?? Quarantine essentials.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Monster” by King Princess (cover from Adventure Time- Obsidian soundtrack)
If you grew up watching Adventure Time and haven’t already watched the Distant Lands miniseries, put that on your to-do list immediately. “Obsidian'' is the second episode and one of the first cartoons to show any kind of LGBTQ+ representation on public TV.

Monster is about Marceline accepting her past and how that’s led to personal growth. For a show that’s targeted at kids, the songs are genuinely tunes I would put on my everyday playlist. King Princess’ cover of Monster is definitely worth a listen, or you can do yourself a favor and just put it on repeat.
-Delaney Accomando, Local Girls Ruin Everything

“End of Guerilla” by Nazar
In his own words, Nazar "weaponizes" kuduro, the national music style of Angola, to digitalize the sounds of the civil war that displaced his parents across two continents. This powerful song brims with gritty conviction for a better future among the Angolan diaspora in Europe, for the families of refugees more broadly, and for an Angola emerging from war: united, prosperous, but still conscious of the looming spectre of violence that hangs over the country.
-Brennan Winer, Moose Factory

“ringtone (Remix)” by 100 gecs ft. Charli XCX, Rico Nasty, Kero Kero Bonito
Actually song of the century.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Sunglasses at Night” by BNFRND
BFRND graced the Balenciaga summer '21 pre-collection show, a video montage of moody models stomping the streets of Paris, with this eight minute cover of Corey Hart's classic song about dark tinted eyewear.
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“Lucky Sue” by Men I Trust
A song for a late night drive to nowhere.
-Marlia Nash, Communications Team

“I Know the End” by Phoebe Bridgers
Punisher’s closer track, “I Know the End,” ends the album on a triumphantly grim moment. Bridgers’ whisper of a voice starts the track with a soft synth backdrop. A lonely violin bridge closes out the somber first half of the song. A steady drumbeat kicks in.

“Yeah, I guess the end is here,” announces Bridgers as electric guitars begin to wail and her friends and collaborators Lucy Dacus, Julien Baker, Tomberlin and Conor Oberst join in to cry out “The end is here!”

A cathartic scream of terror closes out the track, effectively summing up the year in audio form.
-Eric Harkleroad, Rainbow Quest

“A Comma” by serpentwithfeet
serpentwithfeet’s three-song EP released earlier this year seeps into the edges of your daydreams like none other. “A Comma” displays a masterful incorporation of lilting classical notes into a modern work as efferescently aimless as the year that brought about it.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Dionne” by The Japanese House
This is shimmering, dreamy, and emotional pop of the future that captures the spirit of today with big dreams fueled by bigger despair and loneliness. ‘Dionne’ makes love into something that feels at once beautiful and devastating. Buried deep in memories, ‘Dionne’ tells of struggling to make it to today, much less contemplate a future. The chorus’ call to action is as catchy and inspiring as it is jarring and heartbreaking. In a year of so much loss and isolation, how admirable and difficult a dream it is, that you might “together with your problems, live alone willingly”.
-Blake Bissen, Emotional Waves

“Until We Fold into Eachother Again” by 500
An incredible trance track that for some reason covers Mike Posner...
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“Believe” by Cher
This didn’t come out in 2020 but here is my formal strongly-worded request that it be added to the Spotify hyperpop playlist, effective immediately.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Where we Wanna be” by Daði Freyr
Daði Freyr was Iceland’s contestant for Eurovision 2020. I found him after his Eurovision song, “Think About Things,” went viral on Twitter in early 2020. I honestly thought any lockdown-related song was in poor taste and tacky, and couldn’t be done well no matter how hard an artist tried, but I felt like his take on making a song about lockdown felt encouraging and not tacky like expected.
-Evan Hecht, The Timewarp

“Lucy Liu” by Charli XCX
Yes, 2020 was a good year for unreleased Charli, too.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Iris” by Phoebe Bridgers & Maggie Rogers
Indie sad girls Phoebe Bridgers and Maggie Rogers breathed new life into the 90s alt-rock ballad with their cover.

Bridgers promised over social media that she would release the cover on the condition that presidential candidate Joe Biden won in November. The American people voted, and Bridgers delivered.

As a duo, Bridgers and Rogers’ hushed, waifish vocals and gentle guitar plucking stand in for John Rzeznik’s raspy delivery and humming electric bass, turning a cheesy, grungy soundtrack-filler into something much more beautiful and earnest.
-Eric Harkleroad, Rainbow Quest

“Where's My Juul??” by Full Tac ft. Lil Mariko
Constriction yields exaggeration. In a year where most could do little other than play pretend, returning elements of screamo wove themselves into contemporary music. The same angst that once drove hordes of teens to over-line their eyes and dress in all-black now drives Lil Mariko to escape into a satirical persona and blood-curdling-ly demand, “where’s my juul??!?!!!?!?!!!?”
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“I Realized Quickly What's Goin' on (Robo S. Thompson)” by Balam Acab
Balam Acab has been quietly releasing extraordinary experimental remixes of his favorite rap songs over the past couple years, and this interpretation of Lil Wayne's "A Milli" (and a host of other samples) is no exception. Wet, dreamy, and dope.
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“APESHIT” by Bree Runway
If you think you’re not that bxtch, all it takes is one listen for you to realize that u R !!! Bree Runway delivers an absolutely electric track that’ll pump enough adrenaline coursing through your veins to get yourself what you deserve.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“If Not Rising” by R.Kitt
R.Kitt's Orainn label is enlisting Irish talent that can collide the country's present and past through electronic music in ways we haven't seen before. His first two contributions to the label totally eschew obvious potential influences from Celtic folk music in favor of medieval sources from Ireland's Insular Period. This song seethes with anticipation for a new era of the country’s history, where it must forge its own identity in relation to the British Isles and the European Union in the wake of Brexit.
-Brennan Winer, Moose Factory

“I Feel Alive” by TOPS
A song for the summer you missed; sun kisses and intimate dates with the grass.
-Marlia Nash, Communications Team

“Golosa” by Isabella Lovestory
Golosa army-Isabella Lovestory is THE pop act to watch in 2021.
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“bad idea” by p4rker (prod. blackwinterwells)
With hyperpop’s explosive popularity this year, it’d be egregious to not include a p4rker song here. “bad idea” speaks directly to a demographic with too much time and too little they’d care to do with it. Ringing in at only a minute and nine seconds long, p4rker and blackwinterwells pack in enough adolescent (p4rker is only a sophomore in high school this year) alienation to last far beyond graduation.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Mariana Trenchrock” by bar italia
A standout track from the debut project of the new group on Dean Blunt's worldmusic label.
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“Stormz” by Ephraim Bugumba
If you’ve ever thought to yourself, “Gee, I wish I could feel like the protagonist of a coming-of-age movie at the part where all my friends have dropped me because my ego got too big which led to me ignoring/betraying/hurting them and now I’m reflecting in my bedroom with only dim mood lighting and probably also crying,” then this is the song for YOU. “Stormz”, as well as Bugumba’s other song, “Class Clown,” has the groove to hold its own in an upbeat playlist, but is mellow enough to help you wind down or let out some feelings.
-Vicky Dubin, harry styles’ chiropractor

“i was all over her” by salvia palth
TikTok bxtches + niche depressed teens in 2016, rise up. 2020 saw the repackaging of palth’s best-known work to another generation of kids who don’t quite know what’s best for them yet.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Barcelona” by The Big Moon
For picnic dates with sun and cool summer breezes.
-Marlia Nash, Communications Team

“Angele (Demo)” by PJ Harvey
PJ Harvey blessed quarantine by releasing the demos from both To Bring You My Love and Dry, as well as Angelene, from her 1998 album Is This Desire?
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“胶囊” by Jasmine Sokko
Masked pop icon Jasmine Sokko is Singapore's most recognizable music export. Her groundbreaking Mandarin-language album MADE IN FUTURE smashes through the Anglophone confines of Singapore's music industry, pushes the lyrical boundaries of Mandopop (like a Gen Z Jolin Tsai), and reflects the city-state's growing influence as a new financial and cultural capital for East and Southeast Asia. Holding out hope for a similarly futuristic Malay or Tamil album to come out of Singapore. ​
-Brennan Winer, Moose Factory

“Flowers To My Demon” by NNAMDÏ
Uhmm m mmm.. . ... math rock meets escape room meets fourth wave emo meets the coolest genre bender in the game rn??!?!?!! This album opener stuns with NNAMDÏ’s technical proficiency and echoing production.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“U + Me” by Coco & Clair Clair
CC&C's interpolation of Britney Spears' "Everytime" is enchanting
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“Jealous” by Eyedress
Originally released in 2019, “Jealous” didn’t blow up until this past year (yes, it was because of TikTok). The rise of ‘alt’ culture correlated with a broader inclination to identify with outsiders and as Eyedress’ monotone vocals directly oppose his own energetic backing instrumental, it’s not hard to see why so many gravitated towards this track. For when no one understands and no one can know how to, queue up this song and “just leave me alone.”
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Spotlight” by Jessie Ware
Giving Dua Lipa, Kylie Minogue and Róisín Murphy a run for their money, U.K. pop songstress Jessie Ware delivers a breathtaking, sensual dance track that actually does disco and 80s synthpop justice. The rich, grooving bassline and Ware’s ethereal vocals are guaranteed to leave your jaw on the floor and your ears entranced on first listen.
-Eric Harkleroad, Rainbow Quest

“Hold On” by Little Dragon
A little R&B music to dance to in your room with your mirror as the audience.
-Marlia Nash, Communications Team

“umbrellar” by Dua Saleh
Make room, Ms. Lipa, there's a new Dua in town! Saleh’s controlled frustration bleeds into thudding drums, evoking a melancholic soundscape emblematic of the four walls we’ve too-often found ourselves prisoner to.
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

“Covid 19 Based Freestyle” by Lil B
"If you worried about stuff that's going on right now, just keep positive. Keep your mind up; keep your head up... You know we got this and I believe in you, I believe in you. it's ya boy Lil B based freestyle."
-Mickal Adler, Deep fake diamonds

“Bleu Ciel” by Moussa and Nice
Whether it was intended to be or not, this song is perfectly anthemic for all of the couples forced into long-distance relationships by the COVID-19 pandemic. Nice's fragile, dreamy vocals are delivered with the detached jadedness of someone who is singing from personal experience, and Moussa (as with his entire discography) produces and raps exactly on the mark for the latest trends in French music. This just *feels* like it was made to be in a movie about France in 2020.
-Brennan Winer, Moose Factory

“I Existed” by Ky Vöss
This past year’s shift from in-person to remote operations inevitably propelled a reinvention in perception. When we can’t see anyone, who are we but the pixels on our screens? Elevated emphasis on digital interaction restructures what it means to be and to be perceived. “I Existed” acts as a perfect summation of these sentiments as Vöss confides in the listener, “Can you keep a secret/I wish I existed.”
-Sabrina Li, hyphen

Listen to all these tracks and 99 more in this playlist! See you in 2021!