12. Azealia Banks, “Chasing Time”
Of all the crazy variety on display on the long-awaited debut album by Azealia Banks, the one song that left the most lasting impression on me was “Chasing Time”. Banks first attracted attention fro her unique rapping skills, but it turns out she’s a tremendous singer, and “Chasing Time” places the focus on that side of her persona. There’s a decided ‘90s feel to the entire song, from the sassy R&B reminiscent of Gabrielle and Ce Ce Peniston, to rap-oriented sections that, incredibly enough, echo the sound of Technotronic. Yet with its menacing, pounding bassline, there’s a more modern sound always lurking underneath all the retro sentiment, making for a very appealing contrast. Banks displays terrific wit during her rap breaks and surprising soul during the bridges and choruses, showing incredible breadth. There’s too much talent on display here for mainstream success to not come her way eventually. You know it’s going to happen.