Bob Boilen

Many of us in the U.S. are freezing this weekend and looking for warmth, but halfway around the world is an artist whose career in music is dependent on frigid weather.

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify or Apple Music playlist at the bottom of the page.

For nearly 10 years, NPR Music has recorded concerts from behind Bob Boilen's desk. During the holidays, the desk gets a little more festive, thanks to a snow machine, paper snowflakes and Stephen Thompson's hand-drawn Christmas tree. (It's labeled "tree.") Whether they perform original songs or new takes on holiday staples, these artists bring big sounds to the Tiny Desk.

Despite the flood of new music in 2017, there were songs I came back to over and over again. I still star-rate my downloaded songs in iTunes (the main reason I don't care to migrate to Spotify), so when the end of the year arrived I sorted my songs by star ratings and went back over the best of the bunch, then narrowed things down to a list of my 50 favorite songs of 2017, eliminating duplicates from the same record.

Effortless storytelling is at the heart of This Is The Kit. And the stories the band's only permanent member, Kate Stables, weaves are profound but sweet with a tone that quietly reels you in.

I know it seems absurd and headline-grabbing, but honestly this song is going to be the high bar to hit for guitar-driven, brokenhearted love songs in the coming year.