Best of 2017
As these last days of 2017 wind down I’m left with a dreadful feeling of frustration for all this year has brought on. Endlessly tired, endlessly angst filled, and endlessly optimistic for all the changes that must come… because it must. But enough about the clownshow that is our democracy or the threat of nazi’s and nuclear war, this is suppose to be about the music. This year, my list reflects less the sonic future and recalls so much of my personal past. Some of my very favorites make a return here. Nearly every record’s somnolence mood perfectly matches the state I’m in due to a wee baby that sees me awake at 4:30 am every single day.
May 2018 bring us together peacefully.
Ruby Haunt — Nevada Tipped off by Keith Kenniff late in the year, this LP quickly became a favorite of mine for its simple shimmering beauty. Quite basic synth songs that cast wide open the imagination of traveling and lost love. Like all great pop bands, their b-sides EP ‘Abandoned Melodies’ is even better than their LP.
Waxahatchee — Out In The Storm Katie has perfectly crafted yet another gem of an LP that cements her place in the hearts of all that love indie rock. So far her entire catalog is flawless in its attempts to make me fall in love with each word and chord.
Slowdive — Slowdive Literally ten seconds into Slomo is all it really took to cast away any fear from what might be my most anticipated release. It’s pure bliss. Out of the ashes of some far away galaxy comes drifting in Neil Halstead’s voice as if twenty years never happened. Proof that class never fades.
Cigarettes After Sex — S/T Some review said ‘its a one note album, but a perfect one note’. I can’t disagree as this perfectly sets the mood for a long hot summer evening. Perfectly romantic.
Hiss Golden Messenger — Hallelujah Anyhow When your heart is in the gutter, MC Taylor knows just the words help you feel a little more at home in a charming southern way.
Clientele — Music for the Age of Miracles If ever a band made you look back longingly it is this band. Nearly inch perfect on record but absolutely a perfect live band. Their show this year at Neumo’s ranks as one of my all time favorites as Alistair held us all wrapt on each note.
Linda Perhacs — I Am Harmony A cool fall day driving out to Finn River Cidery as ‘Chimacum Rain’ comes on ranks as a memorable moment for me. My personal discovery this year was finding Linda’s 1970’s LP ‘parallelograms’ which is an absolutely beautiful hippy-psych-folk record that was long forgotten to time. This is her second LP after being revealed again and its just as lovely showing age is just a number. A gem.
Ride — Weather Diaries While not as instantly brilliant as Slowdive’s record, this got heavy rotation when it came out along with extended runs thru their entire back catalog.
Florist — If Blue Could Be Happiness Yet another unassuming bedroom pop record that sprang up just at the right time with its delicate warmth. A heartbreaking record filled with lost love and death of loved ones.
Kendrick Lamar — DAMN Simply the best record of the year end-to-end and back again. Who doesn’t like a lil bompton?
A Winged Victory for the Sullen — Iris This atmospheric soundtrack LP is perfectly suited to dreary days spent with books and coffee. Full of sparse passages that vividly paint pictures your in your mind.
The War on Drugs — A Deeper Understanding A predictably excellent record charting a course akin to what they’ve done in the past. In most cases, this would be a bad thing but yet it proves ever successful here.