Per a post from Tankboy calling out music reviewers for publishing their best-of lists too early, I decided to delay mine as close to the New Year as possible. No, I'm not going to wait until 2015, but I did push it off as much as I could allowing myself as solid a shot as possible to listen to 2014 music. Hey, December 28 ain't too bad for a YEBO Music list, right?
I still didn't listen to as much as I might have otherwise liked mostly because I don't have the free access to all the new music that professional reviewers get. And, lord knows, I ain't about to spend an entire paycheck just on music especially since so little of it moves me to really want to listen to it too much. So, what you're getting is a top seven list. Why seven? Why not? I think I'm starting to like seven.
7. Wild Cub - Youth
Probably the first album I ever bought using what I'm now dubbing "Progressive Purchase," in which I pick up one or two highly rated (by fans) tracks, let them impress me, then go buy a couple more a couple weeks later, a couple more, and a couple more until "Complete My Album" in iTunes lists it for about a dollar or so. Might seem weird but it saves me from being disappointed when an album has one or two great songs and the rest suck. I discover it prior to having wasted money. And this album was no waste of money at all. Every song from this Nashville-based band is a very solid effort with standout vocals from Keegan Dewitt. Although an early cut of the album was self-released in 2013, this deluxe version was given a label treatment in January.
Check out "Thunder Clatter" and "Straight No Turns."
6. Charli XCX - Sucker
I had intended to review this album prior to this list coming out, but I just didn't like what I wrote. Charli XCX's sophomore LP hit me pretty square in the face from the first listen and it's been on pretty constant rotation since then.
Check out "London Queen" and "Gold Coins."
5. Future Islands - Singles
Samuel T. Herring has such a unique voice combined with the beautifully pulse-quickening electronic programming and keyboarding of Gerrit Welmers and string work of William Cashion. I wish I'd glommed onto this sooner.
Check out "Spirit" and "Seasons (Waiting On You)."
4. Phantogram - Voices
It's been a while since I've listened to this album and I almost forgot it had been released in 2014. But some very recent listens helped me to recall how much I enjoyed it. I swore I reviewed this album, but, if I did, I can't find it.
Check out "Fall in Love" and "Nothing But Trouble."
3. TV on the Radio - Seeds
Read my review.
Check out "Happy Idiot" and "Lazzeray."
2. Foo Fighters - Sonic Highways
Eighth album. Eight songs. Recorded in eight cities. Each track accompanied by one of eight hourlong documentaries highlighting the song's inspiration and the recording process. An ambitious project, to be sure. And it paid off handsomely for Dave Grohl and his Merry Men. Admittedly, I was kinda upset that the album didn't contain more than eight tracks, but what was included works very well together. Quite seamless despite the differing influences.
Check out "Something From Nothing" and "In the Clear."
1. St. Vincent - St. Vincent
This self-titled fourth album from Annie Clark, AKA "St. Vincent," has easily been my go-to album since its release. When I want quirky, I pick St. Vincent. When I want shredding guitars, I pick St. Vincent. When I want introspective lyrics, I pick St. Vincent. There's something for every mood on this record. My love for it has not waned a bit and I don't see that happening anytime soon.
Check out "Birth in Reverse" and "Every Tear Disappears."
I have to give an honorable mention to Primus' new album Primus & the Chocolate Factory. Why isn't it included on the list? It's an album of covers, nothing original on it at all. Well, the spin that Primus gives it is original, that's for sure. But still not quite the same.
Here's a list of a few albums I'm looking forward to in 2015, based on information from Wikipedia:
- Fall Out Boy - American Beauty/American Psycho - due out January 20
- Faith No More - Title TBA - due out April 15
- Björk - title and date TBA
- Garbage - title and date TBA
- Red Hot Chili Peppers - title and date TBA
What has been pumping into your ears and making you happy on a regular basis this year?