The Songs We Can't Escape

Gorillaz feat. Bobby Womack and Mos Def

The unlikely, long-running project of cartoonist/illustrator Jamie Hewlett and pop auteur Damon Albarn has a knack for successfully bringing together styles that really shouldn't complement each other. "Stylo" keeps the streak alive, grinding blaxploitation vet Womack's gritty funk, Albarn's blue-eyed soul, and a quick, potent Mos Def rap within the framework of stargazing disco psychedelia.

David Guerra feat. AKON
"Sexy Chick"

This single doesn't really need vocals. That bouncy, hyphy-derived pulse powering "Chick" works just fine by its lonesome, dance-floor crack-pipe intoxicating, capable of inspiring movement from the most stubbornly sedentary of nightlife decriers.

"Moon Rocks"

There's a disingenuousness to how this pair approach their rhymes: They rap with a faux hesitancy, as if they conceived of a hip-hop group in the car on the way to the house party over a box of blunts and are fumbling their way through off-the-cuff freestyles. But Rapdragons are iller than that, know it, and make a point of revealing their hand by degrees on each and every song on the Ten Stories High mixtape. Here, they're disarmingly laconic and airily on-point over the Reading Rainbow theme, of all things.

Rhymefest feat. Phonte
"Say Wassap"

The act of writing songs about scamming on club divas by playing playa psychoanalyst is no less bullshit dishonest than actually scamming on club divas by playing playa psychoanalyst.

"Who Makes Your Money"

This dry-ice popsicle courts abstraction even as it entrances. Is Britt Daniel splitting the self into selves? Is he abdicating the self's achievements to some external agent or celestial interloper? Is money really, literally "money" in this equation, or does it represent some sort of private ecstasy known only to the singer, as evinced by his unabashed "oooh, oooh, oooh" ejaculations?

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