Here it is – my Top Ten of ’17, starting with 10 and working up to the top spot. I’ll also list my favorite track from the album, that way you can try to get a glimpse into what sounds I truly like. This year I keep it short and sweet… ONE WORD REVIEWS!
As an aside, I’m super stoked that 30% of the list is Minnesotan.
10. The Flaming Lips – “Oczy Mlody”
Stand-out track: There Should Be Unicorns
9. P.O.S – “Chill, dummy”
Stand-out track: Sleepdrone/Superposition
8. Glassjaw – “Material Control”
Stand-out track: Pompeii
7. Pissed Jeans – “Why Love Now”
Stand-out track: Ignorecam
6. LCD Soundsystem – “American Dream”
Stand-out track: oh baby
5. King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard – “Sketches of Brunswick East”
Stand-out track: You Can Be Your Silhouette
4. King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard – “Murder of the Universe”
Stand-out track: Vomit Coffin
3. Lorde – “Melodrama”
Stand-out track: The Louvre
2. Craig Finn – “We All Want the Same Things”
Stand-out track: God In Chicago
1. Tyte Jeff – “Lutheran Teens”
Stand-out track: 1952
In addition to these albums, I also got into some specific artists and genres this year – ones that I should have already been listening to, but they were not on my radar for some reason or maybe they went under-appreciated until reexamination.
- King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard – I was sucked in by the novelty of a microtonal album, only to be wowed and then blown away at the prospect of 5 albums being released in the calendar year. Then I fell into the rabbit hole of their back catalog…
- Pissed Jeans – I went out on a limb by picking up their latest (Why Love Now) and was rewarded with a great heavy punk albums that also incorporates some metal/sludge and humor. Not bad for an album that looks like the opposite of those things.
- Devo – I had a soft spot for them for quite a while (Jocko Homo being the reason), and I even loved their last release (2010’s “Something For Everybody”), but my appreciation deepened thanks to a trip to Ohio (Devo’s home state). I solidified my love for “Q: Are We No Me? A: We Are Devo!” and “Freedom of Choice” and then dove into more songs (demos and Mark Mothersbaugh solo stuff).
- French Female Pop Singers of the 1960s – Francoise Hardy, France Gall, Brigitte Bardot, and even Edith Paif – all great artists of the French pop scene and finally making sense to me. There is something about hearing those types of songs, maybe it’s the Wes Anderson-like imagery?
- Straight-Edge Punk – Even though I have lived a straight-edge lifestyle for all my life (without ever knowing that this was a movement), I never was really into the straight-edge punk scene. So I decided to pick up a few albums, thanks to my visit to Washington, DC (home of the straight-edge scene). Minor Threat, Youth of Today, Shelter, XTRMST, and Protester to name a few specific artists, should you want to join me.
And If You’d Like To Listen To Some Of My Favorites…