|UserReviews 8Approval 97%Soundoffs 43News Articles 5Band Edits + Tags 21Album Edits 18Album Ratings 909Objectivity 75%Last Active 06-02-14 8:38 pmJoined 09-25-10Forum Posts 18Review Comments 2,526
|Favorites of 2014|
Have to say that 2014 has been a great year so far. Here's some of my rfavorites. What are rrsome of yours?
|1||The War on Drugs|
Lost in the Dream
With Lost in the Dream, Adam Granduciel throws his insecurities like javelins to the
wind, piercing and with pinpoint precision. It's a brutally personal, deeply affecting trip
through the American heartland and undoubtedly one of the year's finest albums. If
you haven't heard it, listen to it now. If you have heard it, listen to it again.
Modern progressive rock has grown increasingly stale to me with each passing year.
Gazpacho has repeatedly bucked that trend with with their unique blend of
atmospheric rock. Sporting dreary ambiance and stunning beauty in equal measure,
Demon isn't just the best progressive rock album of the year. It's a brave, headfirst
leap into new sonic territory for one of the genre's best kept secrets.
To Be Kind
I'm going to be totally honest and admit that I wasn't at all enamored with The Seer, and
I was skeptical when I decided give the newest album a shot. What came out of the
speakers crushed me like the hulk riding a woolly mammoth. Abrasive, destructive
and intoxicating, To Be Kind is a massive record - a true tour de force.
|4||Freddie Gibbs and Madlib|
Madlib's collaboration with Freddie Gibbs turned out far better than I expected it to.
Sure, Madlib is a brilliant producer, but Gibbs I wasn't head over heels for Gibbs's debut album.
Fortunately, the stars managed to align and both Gibbs and Madlib brought
their A-game for Pinata, which just might be the year's best hip hop album so far.
St. Vincent's self-titled fourth album is a strange beast. As mechanical as the album
often sounds, it's a surprisingly human affair. From the infectious robotic stomp of
Digital Witness to the evocative balladry of Severed Crossed Fingers, Annie Clarke's
fourth album perfectly counterbalances her new digitized aesthetic with the emotional
weight of her previous LP. It may not be better than Strange Mercy, but that's alright.
Clarke has established herself as a dependable force in indie rock.
Behind the Sun
Despite being a psychedelic band at its core, Motorpsycho has never accepted the
limitations of that genre. Running through jazz, country, prog and metal, the band is
certainly an eclectic outfit, and Behind the Sun finds that creativity firing on all
cylinders. Whether its the progressive splendor of Hell Parts 4-6 or the gorgeous
acoustics of Entropy, lovers of vintage psych and rock will undoubtedly find
something to love on Behind the Sun.
One of my favorite discoveries this year, Holy Vacants is a huge record. It's not huge
because of heavy guitar distortion or thick, foreboding atmosphere; it's huge
because nearly every detail, from the lyrical bombast to the brilliant song-craft,
comes together to form a cohesive body of work that refuses to be forgotten.
Guilty of Everything
While drenched in noise, Nothing never falls into the trap of completely obscuring their
songs beneath a bottomless sea of reverb. That choice makes every moment all the
sweeter given just how good each song is. Guilty of Everything isn't just one of the
year's best albums, but also one of the year's most promising debuts.
If I'd been told a few months ago that a new Wovenhand album would be one of the
year's best, I would have rolled my eyes. Dee's music had been on a downward slope
ever since Ten Stones, but his latest offering finds him roaring back to life. Zealous
and commanding as ever, Refractory Obdurate finds Dee expanding his sonic pallet in
new directions while crafting his best songs in years.
|10||Sharon Van Etten|
Are We There
Another new discovery this year, Sharon Van Etten immediately struck a chord with
me. I've always been a sucker for singer-songwriters, but Van Etten is a cut above
the standard fare and operates in the upper echelon. How she has yet to establish a
larger presence is complete mystery.
Neige hasn't exactly had the best track record as of late. Good thing, then, that he's
absent from the latest Lantlos album, which turns out to be the group's best effort to
date. Moving away from the harsh black metal soundscapes and into more vibrant
sonic territory, Melting Sun sets itself apart from the band's discography in all of the
|12|| ||Todd Terje|
It's Album Time
Admittedly, I'm not one for dance music. Sure, I've enjoyed the occasional album, but
my relationship with the genre has been tenuous at best. It's Album Time, however,
just might be the record to change that relationship permanently. Infectious like a
parasite, this record sunk its teeth into my brain and refused to let go. Delorean
Playing both jazz and hip hop isn't a novel concept in 2014, but BadBadNotGood feels
fresh regardless. III is the Canadian trio's first full set of original compositions, and it's
also their best album yet. Smooth and inviting, III is the kind of record to lose yourself
in while on the couch at night, with your favorite drink in hand.
|14||The Great Old Ones|
It's a beautiful thing when a band improves on every aspect of their sound and comes
back better than ever. The Great Old Ones have done exactly that with Tekeli-Li, their
second record. Feral, beautiful, and expansive, the French black metal band can chalk
up a win with one of the year's best records.
Few albums this year are likely to feel as personal as Ledges. Over the course of
eleven tracks, Noah Gunderson establishes himself as a unique force in the over-
saturated indie folk scene. Over the course of eleven tracks, Gunderson relates
deeply intimate stories of loss and longing with the aid of his guitar, various strings
and piano. It's gorgeous, and it shouldn't be missed.
I've always loved the winter, and Nadler's music has always taken me there. It's easy to imagine falling snow burying the roofs of
abandoned houses as Nadler's ghostly voice floats above her icy acoustics. July may not be a perfect record, but it's certainly one
that's going elicit some sort of reaction ? even if that reaction is huddling for warmth.
|17||Bohren & Der Club of Gore|
Hilarious album cover aside, Bohren's latest album finds the band in surprisingly solid
form after the disappointing Beileid. As the title suggests, the piano is brought to the
forefront, and the results are often stunning. It may not be Black Earth 2, but Piano
Nights is undoubtedly a strong entry in the doom jazz ensemble's catalog.
Ultima II Massage
It's no secret that Thomas Fec's Black Moth Super Rainbow project has been on a
downslide in recent years, making the success of Ultima II Massage all the sweeter.
Here, Fec and company have created their strongest set of songs in years and, as
always, an utterly bizarre psychedelic trip.
Very few bands in the realm of mainstream metal are as consistently good as
Chevelle, and that's not just due to Pete Loeffler's always outstanding vocal work -
Chevelle has the songwriting chops to drop album after album of quality tunes. La
Gargola is no exception.
I'll get this out of the way first: Atlas is not quite as good as its predecessor, Days.
Even so, Real Estate proves that they still have a number of fantastic songs up their
sleeves. This is a record that's best listened to with the sun shining and the windows
|This took a while, but I'm glad to have finally finished it.|
|1 is also my favorite. I like 11 a lot too. Nice list.|
|hey if you liked sharon van etten i'd recommend the new lykke li too. not quite as good but still top-notch singer-songwriter stuff|
|16 is so brills|
'drive' and 'was it a dream' are both 6/5
|year isn't half over yet...|
|years been pretty shit so far to be honest.|
Death grips changed that tho
|@titan Close enough!|
|2 is my aoty so far|
|@klap Thanks for the rec! I've heard a lot about her, but I'll be sure to check her out now|
@tommy Can't get enough of Dead City Emily either.
@ Onirium Yeah, it's brilliant for sure
|I really like 14. New Saor is also fantastic bm.|
|minus chevelle this is a really fucking good list|
in the sea of fucking shit 2014 lists that are made goddamn this is up there for one of the best. thanks for reminding me of the new wovenhand and not making a fucking shitty list
|@Pots Haha, thanks for the input. It's much appreciated. Glad to see that I could remind you to check out Wovenhand. The album is sweet.|
|Piano Nights was really boring imo.|
|i keep neglecting to listen to that motorpsycho album because i cant get over how much the band name reminds me of motorhead and i have great disdain towards that awful band|
|Well they sound nothing alike, so no worries there!|
|well yeah i know i read a review for it and it sounded like id dig it but STILL|
|good list man|
|props for 11, still need to check out 14|
|@adace1 14 might be my favorite metal album this year. Definitely give it a spin!|
|Great list man, lotsa favs here|
|what the fuck are you talking about on 4|
gibbs is one of the most critically acclaimed rappers of the last 5 years
|@Hep Kat lol probably could have said that better for sure. I just meant to say that I wasn't
impressed with his solo album. Thanks for the heads up.|