The Best Songs in Dallas Music, 2009: Ishi and "Pastel Lights" Have Us Falling At No. 14

[Editor's Note: Over the next couple of weeks, I'll be presenting my favorite local songs of the year, counting down from No. 25 to No. 1, one track a day. Today, we take an in-depth look at song No. 14 on the list--and click after the jump for a free download of the track. Lastly, keep checking back to see how the list pans out, and, also after the jump, check out songs No. 40-26 in the Top 40 list that will update as it grows...]

No. 14: Ishi -- "Pastel Lights"

ishilive.jpg
Dustin Hollywood
Ishi
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It was a banner year in the local electro-dance scene, what with the explosion of electro-loving hipster-hoppers, the national successes of area act VEGA and Neon Indian, and the incredible promise showcased by local dance-inducing upstarts such as Fizzy Dino Pop and Darktown Strutters. But, of all of these outfits, perhaps none developed as loyal a following, or showcased a faster ascent, than Ishi.

Bonus mp3: Ishi -- "Pastel Lights"


Part of the credit for the band's fast-growing draw goes to the band's energetic live show, which finds the four-piece outfit bopping about stage with an alluring and, well, kinda sleazy on-stage swagger. The rest of the credt? Look no further than the band's impressively curated electro-pop audio aesthetic. It can be heard in even the band's cover songs--try not walking away impressed from the band's live cover of The Bangles' "Walk Like an Egyptian." But, without a doubt, the crown jewel of the band's impressive early output is its magical song, "Pastel Lights."

Like the band itself, the song's something of a sneaker, starting off slowly and building up to an all-out party feel with the introduction of the synth line that enters the song a minute in. And once there, the song never relinquishes its grasp, continually teasing listeners with its bevvy of bleeps, bleeps, cuts and melodies.

With a growing on-stage confidence and the promise of this early output, 2009 indeed proved good year for Ishi. But 2010 is looking even better.

The Top 40 Local Songs of 2009 (Links to music videos and free song downloads available where applicable; links to streams where neither a download nor video exists.)
40. The Wax Museums -- "Safety in Numbers"
39. Macon Greyson -- "Pushing Strings"
38. The Burning Hotels -- "Austin's Birthday" (video)
37. The Riverboat Gamblers -- "DissDissDissKissKissKiss" (video)
36. Salim Nourallah -- "Endless Dream Days"
35. The Phuss -- "Preacher, Preacher"
34. The Southern Sea -- "These Things Always End Badly"
33. Fungi Girls -- "Pacifica Nostalgia"
32. Giggle Party -- "Jason Bought a Hatchet" (video)
31. Carter Albrecht -- "Country Living" (stream)
30. This Old House -- "At Risk"
29. Occult Detective Club -- "You'll Follow Me" 
28. Bad Sports -- "Nothing But Agitation"
27. Darktown Strutters -- "Quakertown"
26. The Crash That Took Me -- "Patricia Lynn" (stream)
25. Red Monroe -- "Pat Mayse Lake"
24. Danny Balis -- "Tethered"
23. Sleep Whale -- "Cotton Curls"
22. PVC Street Gang -- "Cutlass" (video)
21. Air Review -- "Jura"
20. Xrabit & Damaged Good$ -- "Follow the Leader" (video)
19. Doug Burr -- "The Righteous Will Rejoice"
18. Seryn -- "We Will All Be Changed"
17. galleryCat -- "Say Say Say"
16. Sunnybrook -- "Waving Hands"
15. The O's -- "You've Got Your Heart"
14. Ishi -- "Pastel Lights"
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...and be sure to keep checking back, as this list will update daily
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