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06/21/09 at 08:31 PM by Blake Solomon
Adding to my previous post about the best 10 albums of 2009 to this point, I thought I'd point out my favorite single of the year.

It belongs to the lovely optimistic, free-spirited NYC group Harlem Shakes. The song in question is (which can be heard fairly regularly on XM's XMU station) "Strictly Game". Not only do I appreciate the "SaxMan"-esque saxophone playing, heavy bass drum and oh-so-jovial usage of DOOSH DOOSH electronics, but the chorus' focal point is one of the most simple and "HELL YEAH" moments you'll hear all year. The band joins together in a large chorus to assure us that "This will be a better year!"

As far as a RIYL, who knows, the singer reminds me of someone, but I can't put a finger on it. The band's first full-length Technicolor Health is a strategized hodge-podge of electronic grooves, clever lyricism and hope-inducing optimism (or is it optimism-inducing hope?). I guess if you like Vampire Weekend you will like these guys. But these days that is an amazingly vague statement. Sue my for indecisiveness if you'd like. Just click, check, read, whatever. "Strictly Game" makes me happy! Exclamation point happy!!

Check out some songs here: www.myspace.com/harlemshakes


"Strictly Game" live


Lyrics

"Up from the basement to my best friend's farm
Where we'll work so hard, we can do no harm

We'll till the land and duck our debts
Underneath soft sun, chewing Nicorette

This will be a better year
This will be a better year

Make a little money, take a lot of shit
Feel real bad, then get over it

This will be a better year

Oh I keep pushing boulders
I stay game till sun'll shake my shoulders
Oh, I keep feeling older
I stay game, stay game, stay game

The East Coast kids, man, we just don't know
Singing wait, wait, stop, drop me, go, go, go
But I'm taken by the hand to a blue pay phone
We can break blue laws with our skin and bones

And now I'm back in the city, I'm counting frick frick frick
Heard of milk great things, speaking soft and thick
He said, "If life gives you lemons, then thus god bade.
So put a little bit of bitter in your pink lemonade"

I'm sick of thee sheep, I'm sick of thou shepherd
Sick of dressing like a human when I'm feeling like a leopard
I'm sick of slow rock, I'm sick of quick quips
Sick of holding on to nothing when I just want to hold your hips

This will be a better year
This will be a better year

Make a little money, take a lot of shit
Feel real bad, then get over it

This will be a better year

Oh I keep pushing boulders
I stay game till sun'll shake my shoulders
Oh I keep feeling older
I stay game, stay game, stay game

[Nah, nah, nah...}"
Tags: blake, harlem shakes, strictly game
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