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Year End Lists – Staff

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 10. Hop Along – Bark Your Head Off, Dog [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] Frances Quinlan is a rare breed. Few vocalists can turn a melody in as many directions, alternating between raspy falsetto and out-of-breath shouts in a way that sounds both melodically pleasing and emotionally poignant. But we already knew that […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 30. Amorphis – Queen of Time [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] There are seemingly as many highlights on Queen of Time as there are years Amorphis have been active, but these iconic Finns should be cheered for augmenting their folk and progressive leanings while adhering to their trademark blueprint. Founding bassist Olli-Pekka Laine […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 50. Cursive – Vitriola [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] It’s probably been since 2006’s The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me since I’ve heard a band this accurately summarize a total loss of hope and innocence. The overarching theme damns both politics and society, deeming both “fucked” as guitar chords slash away […]

Welcome back to the greatest show on the internet! The SMA’s have returned! Duh – Sowing’s Music Awards?  It’s cute that you pretended to forget – it’s only the biggest name in sputnik user profile, end-of-year, blog-based award shows.  It’s kind of a big deal. So anyway, after a one year absence, the SMA’s are […]

50-26  |  25-1   (25) Manchester Orchestra – “Lead, SD” A Black Mile to the Surface   Imagine the heart-wrenching emotional reach of a track like “Colly Strings”, only blasted through the sleek production of an album like Simple Math. This is Manchester Orchestra in peak form. –Sowing   (24) Lorde – “Hard Feelings/Loveless” Melodrama   2017 […]

50-26  |  25-1   (50) Frank Ocean – “Chanel” Chanel – Single   Frank’s been labeled (by me) a Modern Day James Joyce, 12 months ago, when “RAF” and “Slide” weren’t even a thing. Truthfully, he exceeds his own influences, and renders himself as his own auteur. “Chanel”, a song that juggles sexuality and 21 […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 10. Vince Staples – Big Fish Theory [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] I have a special connection with Vince Staples’ music because my partner lives in Long Beach. The first time my partner drove me around Long Beach, I saw the city through the lens of the rappers that call it home and […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 30. Propagandhi – Victory Lap [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] Seven albums deep, Propagandhi know how to riff. They also know how to write evocative political lyrics. Combine these two qualities and it becomes difficult to craft a subpar record. Seven great albums in a row, Propagandhi have perfected their blast-to-the-face thrash-influenced punk. While […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 50. Sorcerer – The Crowning of the Fire King [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] 2017 was a solid year for epic doom metal, with some of the best releases of the last few years arriving in the form of Below’s Upon a Pale Horse, Doomocracy’s Visions & Creatures of Imagination, and Arduini/Balich’s Dawn of Ages. However, if […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 10. Against Me! – Transgender Dysphoria Blues [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] Stream: “Transgender Dysphoria Blues” (3:16) From the opening punch of the track of the same name, Transgender Dysphoria Blues is a haymaker of unapologetic transgender perspective made to come across in one of the few avenues of emotion we […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 30. The Antlers – Familiars [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] Stream: “Intruders” (5:25) By now, everyone knows what to expect from a record by The Antlers, and Familiars sees the American indie rock/dream pop outfit choosing not to buck that trend by tunneling even deeper into the niche that they’ve been […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 50. Thou – Heathen [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Unofficial Facebook] Stream: “Into the Marshlands” (6:58) Thou have been creating some of the most soul crushing doom metal ever set upon human ears for the last several years. Heathen is no different. It’s an unholy manifestation of distorted guitars and the burliest of […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 10. Jenny Hval – Innocence is Kinky [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] Language is the issue at the heart of Innocence is Kinky: how it changes by dialect, accent, personality, interpretation. “The voice,” Jenny Hval posits on “The Seer”, the album’s closing track, “is a wordless tissue, the fog from Heart […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 30. Frightened Rabbit – Pedestrian Verse [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] Whether unabashed optimist or sterling cynic, everybody can hear a bit of themselves in Pedestrian Verse. It’s a collection of solemn songs, and anybody who’s even vaguely familiar with Frightened Rabbit should have expected that from the minute they learnt […]

50-31 | 30-11 | 10-1 50. Summoning – Old Mornings Dawn [Official Site] // [Spotify] // [Facebook] Summoning have proven time and again that they are absolute masters of their craft, however small their niche may be. Not only are they arguably the best symphonic black metal band ever to play the genre, they take a concept […]

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