The 20 Best Songs We Heard in June
"Jungle (Remix)," Ambassadors & Jamie N Connors feat. Jay Z
I remember when Imagine Dragons' "Radioactive" crept into my head and became the most ubiquitous commercial song of the past two years. Couldn't escape it if I tried. Then the World Cup happened, and the "Jungle" track came and the remix followed suit along with its inclusion in the Hercules commercial. Yeah, I'm not getting rid of this thing quickly, either. BRANDO
"Latch (DJ Premier Remix)," Disclosure feat. Stan Smith
This song is so smooth, sensual, and cool as can be, but adding the DJ Premier touch puts it at No. 1 on my Spotify playlist. Absolute chillax mode engaged. MARCO TORRES
"Love Never Felt So Good," Michael Jackson feat. Justin Timberlake
From the late King of Pop's recently released Xscape album, and on the five-year anniversary of his death, this track is precious. The spirit of Jackson runs through JT's veins, making us sing and dance to this supremely catchy tune. MARCO TORRES
"People Forget," Antemasque
The latest from former At the Drive-In and Mars Volta members Omar Rodriguez-Lopez and Cedric Bixler-Zavala skews a lot closer to the former group than the latter, trading in prog rock for more traditional song structures and some nice screaming vocals from Bixler-Zavala that recall one of his greatest influences, Texas legend Roky Erickson.
They've retained some melody, but they're rocking out harder than they have in years. It's a welcome return to form and shows the band at their most lively in some time. COREY DEITERMAN
"Pressure Drop (Ska Version)," Toots & the Maytals
Ever since I heard Los Skarnales perform this song in Spanglish during the encore of their 20th-anniversary show at Fitzgerald's on June 20th, I've been playing this regularly when I need a pick-me-up. It reminds me of the times I attempted to play in a ska band in high school. MARCO TORRES
"Rollin' & Tumblin'," The Gaslight Anthem
Handwritten was one of my favorite records of 2012, one I still listen to regularly, which is why I was worried that The Gaslight Anthem's next release might be a letdown. Luckily, if "Rollin' & Tumblin'" is any indication, the New Jersey quartet has every intention of coming back swinging.
Raspy vocals are layered above pulsing percussion and energetic guitar licks on this short, sweet single. It's true to their sound but also offers something different from the Handwritten days -- something bluesier and perhaps even rawer. MATTHEW KEEVER
"Seen It All," Jeezy feat. Jay Z
To be honest, trap rap has its days where it's really, really good and others where its a boring parade of 808 drums, hi-hats and tough-guy talk. If hearing Jeezy paired with DJ Mustard for eternity was going to make me swear off the Snowman, then his getting Cardo's whiny production and an above average, possible verse-of-the-year guest appearance from Jay Z on "Seen It All" restored my faith. BRANDO
List continues on the next page.