The 20 Best Songs We Heard in June
"Big Blue Hole," David Olney
Photo by Gregg Roth/davidolney.com David Olney
"Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, all them saints are dead and gone / Amy Winehouse and Curt Cobain, they ain't comin' back here again." David Olney is like the black sheep rounder uncle the family wanted you to stay away from. A former running bud of Townes van Zandt, Olney plays and sings like he'll cut you if you don't get it.
His new album, When the Deal Goes Down, has more edge than a straight razor and cuts just as deep. If you're into music for good news, fairy tales, cotton candy or dance beats, move on. Your life is in danger here. WILLIAM MICHAEL SMITH
"Doses and Mimosas," Cherub
"Doses and Mimosas" will do it for you, regardless of what you're getting into for the night. Your quintessential "getting ready" anthem, you can be primping for a gallery exclusive, putting on the bling for a club night out, or putting out your homemade amuse bouche platters for a dinner party: it does not matter. This is a party anthem, sans the onoxious nature of LMFAO. Put it on. Love it. SELENA DIERINGER
"Dream Shook," Roosh Williams
While half of Houston seemed to be cozying up to Gregg Popovich's nuts in the wake of another stomach-turning Spurs title, Roosh Williams' "Dream Shook" suddenly appeared on your favorite social-media outlets like a breath of fresh, Nigerian air.
The dope young MC has already long since proven himself among the city's best, but he deserves special recognition for reminding a bunch of youngsters (and more than a few old-timers) who the baddest baller ever to win a ring in the state of Texas really was, and it damn sure wasn't Kawhi freakin' Leonard. Hear more from Roosh on Optimo Radio's Live From the Underground Vol. 1 mixtape, available at optimoradio.com. NATHAN SMITH
"Dunked On," Froggy Fresh
During the NBA Finals, this comic gem became the song of the moment the moment the A/C went out in that raggedy-ass shack the San Antonio Spurs call home court. With LeBron grimacing from Heat-failure, my son went right to YouTube to introduce me to rapper Froggy Fresh's ode to B-ball victory. The song actually includes the lyric, "Why is James crying? 'Cause he just got dunked on!"
During the excessive timeouts and commercial breaks, my son showed me more of the joke-rapper's catalog, dating back to his pre-cease-and-desist days as "Krispy Kreme." I'm no Spurs fan and begrudgingly congratulate them, but their dominance allowed me to sing this song for a week or two with embarrassing enthusiasm. JESSE SENDEJAS JR.
"Ebb and Flow," Larry and His Flask
Maybe you wouldn't expect a perfectly executed musical existential treatise from Larry and His Flask. After all, the Oregon-based folk-punks' 2014 excursion through Canada has been cheekily dubbed the "Show Me Your Poutine" tour. But this stellar track philosophizes directly and honestly about "all that we know" about this life: "we all come and we all fade away." Listeners mature enough to understand and celebrate that fact should seek this track out and get jubilant with the five-piece "bluegrass traveling circus." JESSE SENDEJAS JR.
"Irregular Heartbeat," 50 Cent
Apparently, 50 Cent released a new album this month. I hadn't heard anything about it until Spotify suggested I give it a listen, and I must say that I was pleasantly surprised. It's certainly no Get Rich or Die Trying, but every track holds it own, especially "Irregular Heartbeat" featuring Jadakiss, which has 50 and Jada whispering threats above a minimalist beat.
Animal Ambition doesn't break the mold, but it serves as proof that 50 can still churn out a respectable album, even if G-Unit is no longer relevant. MATTHEW KEEVER
"It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels," Kitty Wells
Rolling Stone just released an issue (featuring cover star Miranda Lambert), trumpeting the magazine's new Nashville-focused digital offshoot Rolling Stone Country. As part of the launch festivities, the magazine proudly announced its picks for 100 Best Country Songs of All Time, which in "It's a Surprise to No One" news caused quite the earthquake among country fans and Texans alike.
The negative? Many country lovers felt their favorite artists were underrepresented in favor of pop-centric acts like Taylor Swift. But on the bright side, newer Nashville fans were able to discover classic talent like the ever-wonderful Kitty Wells. Sometimes overshadowed by the equally fabulous Patsy Cline, Wells sang heartfelt and honest songs about 20th-century life. "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonks Angels" might experience a dial spike due to the article, and if that's the case, I'm all for it. SELENA DIERINGER
List continues on the next page.