o u r n o t e s + y o u r s o u n d
Rob Dietz's #acatop25. Follow Messr. Dietz on Twitter: @rdietz55
1) I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For - Hyannis Sound - Quite possibly the best collegiate solo of all time. Excellent texture work in the arrangement that evolves throughout, resulting in a pretty perfect climax to the piece.
2) Say You Love Me - Naturally 7 - Just creates an amazing mood. Phenomenal solo.
3) Dive Into You - The House Jacks - Arguably the best original a cappella song ever released. Certainly one in which the fact that it's a cappella enhances it in critical ways (not true of many originals).
4) The Dry Cleaner from Des Moines - Cadence - Perfect feel and groove, super tight harmonies, awesome trumpet imitations. The breakout in the middle is stellar.
5) Red Dress - The House Jacks - Just a damn good pop song.
6) Gravity - UCLA Awaken A Cappella - First original on BOCA, beautiful backgrounds, and, oh yeah, has Sara Bareilles pre-fame on solo! In many ways, I prefer this version to the one she released on her debut album (the light perc and chorus harmony really add to the song, in my opinion).
7) Hello Goodbye - Overboard - Ridiculous Nick Girard solo. Cover does justice to the original while perfectly capturing the new feel.
8) Widow In Paradise - RPI Rusty Pipes - Beautiful, emotional singing. Hip Hop beat enhances the song in all the right ways, modernizing the sound without overshadowing the meaning.
9) More Love - The House Jacks - This was a perfect start to one of the Jacks' best albums. Garth and Austin destroy the leads, and the intro bit (after the noise intro) sets the mood perfectly. This was my jam in high school.
10) 1234 - Virginia Sil'hooettes - Sweet production choices enhance an already solid arrangement. Banjo is tight.
11) Feels Like Today - Hyannis Sound - Amazing lead, and one of the most transcendent moments on record in the a cappella universe at 2:24.
12) Mama Who Bore Me - Divisi - A really well developed arrangement that balances frenetic activity against gorgeous padded backgrounds.
13) The Moment I Said It - Cornell Chordials - Perfectly nuanced background singing. The sopranos kill it.
14) The Kill - Off The Beat - Grittiest collegiate solo of all time. Rare to hear a college singer actually scream.
15) Paranoid Android - Tufts Beelzebubs - A game changing arrangement that brought the meaning of recorded energy to a whole new level.
16) Keeps Getting Better - Duke Out Of The Blue - Great lead and harmonies. Creative arrangement covers the sonic gaps of the all-female sound really well.
17) Baba O'Riley - Dear Abbeys - Another amazing Vic Sandman solo. Just nails it.
18) Home - Sonos - Cool balance of live and effected singing. Creates a really distinct atmosphere. Plus, this group blends like no other.
19) Yeah - Divisi - Tons of energy. Pretty much single handedly raised the bar for all-female a cappella at the time.
20) Folket Från Eä- Riltons Vänner - All I can tell you about this song is that it's about the people in a legendary town called "Eä" (and I only know that because I ran into Riltons Vänner at a Dunkin' Donuts when they did the East Coast Summit in Oswego). Other than that I have no idea what they're saying, but it's so beautifully sung that I don't care!
21) Blower's Daughter - MIT Logarhythms - These guys got a lot of well deserved attention for the emotion they put into this song. It really moves me.
22) After The Goldrush - Euphorics - One of the most authentic tracks off one of the most charming albums I've ever reviewed. You can heard that they know *exactly* what they're singing about.
23) You Can't Stop Me - Rajaton - Super frantic, energetic arrangement. Ridiculous blend across several timbral shifts.
24) 25 Or 6 to 4 - Ex-Boyfriends - They packed more songs into this arrangement than I can count, but somehow it still works perfectly.
25) Denial - S.T.C. - Off Tat Tong's second solo project. Tat created a soundscape on this track that was pretty revolutionary in a cappella at the time. The tune builds incredibly well.
Strong Honorable Mention - Time After Time - Blue Jupiter - One of the best live arrangements I've ever heard. Does more with 4 voices than most college arrangers do with 15.