So long 2013, and hellooooo 2014! There was an incredible amount I wanted to write about
this last year, yet here we are – a handful of posts written and more podcasts than you can shake a Zune at. I swear that made sense in my head. This is by no means all inclusive. I’ll still give out some awards like last year. Maybe we’ll have a couple of lists. Adam? Who knows. Anyway, let’s start this shall we?
2013’s 2012 Album of the Year: White Lung – Sorry
One of the few albums I actually wrote about earlier in the year. Also one of the few albums that has been on consistent rotation, this has been a shoe in for 2013’s 2012 since the first moment I heard it. I have yet to see them live, I missed my opportunity back in June when Adam went to 4Knots, but they are on the top of my list.
Recommended Tracks: Take the Mirror, The Bad Way
Surf Rock Album of the Year: Bleached – Ride Your Heart
Do you like surf rock? I love surf rock, and these women get it. More so than say Best Coast, but still in a similar vein. Catchier and cleaner, with more despair (like the best of the Beach Boys), but they sound like such nice girls. If it’s not snowing out by you, get in a car (or a skateboard or bike if necessary) and crank the album, let it pour over you, then go for a swim. Polar Bear dive anyone? Didn’t think so, me either. Oooh oooh oooh!
Recommended Tracks: Next Stop, Dreaming Without You, Waiting by the Telephone
The Album I Thought I’d Hate But Really Like Award: Superchunk – I Hate Music
I’ve never been able to get into Superchunk. Even after the influx of good reviews for Majesty Shredding, I still just didn’t get it. Something didn’t click with me. I initially laughed at the title of the album for it’s Replacements reference, but once I dug deep I found myself really enjoying the poppy tunes. If you’re still on the fence about Superchunk like I was give this one a shot. It might not win you over, but… well, what else do you have to do?
Recommended Tracks: Staying Home, FOH
The Album on Here I Like Most that Adam will Hate Most: Vampire Weekend – Modern Vampires of the City
What can I say, I like it. Poppy and quirky, even adventurous and weird. It’s not radio pop though, it’s not watered down enough and friendly for mass consumption. So I’ll wade through the crowds.
Recommended Tracks: Ya Hey, Diane Young, Step
Best Album by a Member of the Moldy Peaches: The Uncluded – Hokey Fright
This was an easy choice. Not only is this collaboration between Kimya Dawson and Aesop Rock hilarious, fun, funny, interesting, laugh inducing, clever and personal, but it also helps that Adam Green hasn’t put out a decent piece of music since the Peaches broke up. Binki Shapiro? Really Green? Get a life. Somewhere between folk, rock and hip hop is where this album falls. Weird tales of growing up in a laundromat, a love letter to sandwiches and a kick in the ass for anyone that needs one are just few of the lessons to be learned this time around. Did I mention it’s funny? Keep the music coming Kimya.
Recommended Tracks: Teleprompters, Scissorhands, Earthquake
Emo Album of the Year: The Front Bottoms – Talon of the Hawk
Remember in high school when things were simpler but we were just as miserable? Diving into the security of a Get Up Kids album and leaving the real world behind was more than a common occurrence. Is it the music that brings you to that state or was it the state of the world and your position in it? Did I really just ask that? New Jersey’s Front Bottoms have the formula down: bitter sweat and charismatic while being funny and personal, an acoustic guitar, maybe 5 chords, mix, blend, repeat. Seeing them at Maxwell’s (RIP) this summer was a real treat.
Recommended Tracks: Skeleton, The Feud
The Holy Shit This Band Wants to be Pavement Award: Parquet Courts – Light Up Gold
I think the title of this award says it all. A group of stoners from Queens who want to be Pavement write songs about walking around Queens while high that sound like Pavement. Sometimes it all just seems so simple.
Recommended Tracks: Picture of Health, Stoned and Starving, Caster of Worthless Spells
The Award to Adam or Myself for Putting out an Album: Poor Lily – Vuxola
Deal with it Adam, you put out a great album this year. Maybe I’m a little to close to the album, but I keep it on repeat. When someone comes to bother me at work, I just start playing Vuxola and they leave prominently. That may not seem like high priase, but if you knew what the people I worked with listened to you would. It is the exact reaction I want. Although I do take umbrage with the line, “We’re fish and nobody seems to know it.” You and I both know that I think this room’s a fishbowl, and I’m a fish.
Recommended Tracks: Justice Kennedy Has A Cold, Crunchy Skulls, Microwave
And now, since I’ve run out of categories (after only 8??? We had like 20 last year) here’s an unsorted list:
Savages – Silence Yourself
A Giant Dog – Bone
The Julie Ruin – Run Fast
The Handsome Family – Wilderness
Neko Case – The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You
Ceramic Dog – Your Turn
FIDLAR – FIDLAR
Joanna Gruesome – Weird Sister
Big Dick – Big Dick
I’m getting a list of the best songs of the year ready. So expect that soon. Or never, if I keep going at the pace I am now. Happy 2014 everyone!