Sometimes the most pyrrhic ventures prove the most gratifying. Gleaning a decade’s worth of song in 2019 feels like sifting sand with a hula hoop, the enormity of the ever-accumulating archive sluicing through our woefully inadequate tools, its elusive pith elementally, stubbornly incompatible with the implements of capture at hand. Nothing like an egregiously mixed metaphor to communicate an aporia, a kind of category mistake: I get the sense that we should be doing anything else with the incalculable amount of music released this decade than grasping at straws, while the lion’s share slips through our fingers. If only taste didn’t imply abjection or preference a failure to hold.
But curation demands scission, and we can only deposit some faith that its trimmings might help make something of this most recent and most harried time slide into the future. All of which is to say that we at Tiny Mix Tapes are aware of the glorious futility of any enterprise as conceited as this.
Par for our predictably wonky course, TMT’s Favorite 100 Songs of the Decade are not arranged with the airless authority of the list. Less a ranking than a repertory, presented over the course of the next two weeks will be a succession of 10 themed mixes (count ‘em: that’s twice as many as usual). You don’t need to know what the word “phenomenology” means to understand that this decade’s myriad unruly soundings did not lend themselves to the schemes of valuation and accounting at work in the economization of life

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