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2017 in Music

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2017 in Music

Postby numbersix » December 18th, 2017, 10:57 am

Well, stragglers and those who just can't move on, I'm thinking of posting my Top Albums and Tracks of the Year for those who are mildly interested (and, hell, those who aren't too).

Anyone want to join me?

I'll start tomorrow with 5 albums that missed my Top 10, then a track and an album every day.

Get your listening ears on.
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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby JohnErle » December 18th, 2017, 2:54 pm

I only have one album I would recommend this year, and I can already guess what the reaction will be around here, but I'll post something when you get closer to your #1.
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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby Leestu » December 18th, 2017, 11:01 pm

Yep, I've been looking forward to this. Always interested in what others have been listening to and sharing my favourites.
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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby numbersix » December 19th, 2017, 4:34 pm

Here goes...

Six's Almost-Made-Its, or 5 Instrumental Records to Drift Away With.

Thought I'd start a little different by including 5 instrumental and ambient records that I found were great to work to. Music with singing just distracts me from work too much, so I've taken to instrumental ones.

Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Luciferian Towers
GYBE's post-rock may seem dated, but their apocalyptic rock creates an appropriately dramatic atmosphere.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x1mei3AMm7g

Arca - Arca
The experimental artist's latest album features twisted and warped vocals to create an otherworldy effect
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qaLmizblY4g

Love Theme - Love Theme
Alex Zhang Hungtai's move to ambient music continues to astound, with a few electronic chunks thrown into the mix
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VcN7N42lXhM

Pharmakon - Contact
Margaret Chardiet makes her barrage of noise even more intense. Perfect for horror films.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMk7GLQtHnQ

Blanck Mass
A Fuck Buttons side-project reveals a penchant for thoughtful, transcendant electro
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gi8QMSMb-Bs
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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby JohnErle » December 19th, 2017, 5:25 pm

I'll have limited internet access after Thursday, so I've decided to post what little I have before then.

Since shutting down Dynamic Range Radio I've had little or no interest in keeping up with new music. So my only two contributions this year are albums from favourite artists I've mentioned a lot over the past few years, and they both make yet another appearance.

Partial Recommendation Y'all Will Probably Hate: Steve Earle - “So You Wanna Be An Outlaw?”

After the death of Merle Haggard, Steve Earle decided to return to his roots and make an album inspired by the outlaw country of the 70s he'd grown up with. The result is Earle's most overtly country album since the 80s, and consequently my least favourite album of his since before his post-prison re-invention. When he goes full-on country on the lead single, Lookin' For A Woman, I can hear the song and recognize that it's well-written, but it's just too damn twangy for me, so I can imagine what you guys would think of it. It's become a year-end tradition for me to try and educate you indie hipsters, metalheads, and Europeans on the difference between Americana and plain ol' country music, so when an icon of Alt-Country temporarily drops the alt, it makes my job that much harder.

There are a few tracks that don't feature pedal-steel guitar or that distinctive country twang, so I can recommend individual songs, if not the album. Fixin' To Die is a particularly fascinating song coming from Steve Earle, given his history of powerful songs about the death penalty.

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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby Leestu » December 19th, 2017, 7:56 pm

I had already listened to the Blanck Mass album and the Arca album this year. Liked the Blanck Mass album but the Arca album didn't do much for me at all.
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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby Leestu » December 20th, 2017, 5:38 am

It's been another great year for music. I've listened to over 100 albums released in 2017, with about 30 of those I've loved and listened to multiple times so after some tough cuts here are 5 excellent albums that missed out on my top 10.

Bully - Losing
I wasn't really a fan of Bully's debut album from a couple of years ago but it showed enough potential for me to check this one out. This one is much better. Her powerful voice is well suited for these songs about nervous anxiety disorder and the like, and dealing with a break up.
https://youtu.be/EtqaZsPdwDo

alt-j - Relaxer
A real grower of an album. The first alt-j album I've liked fully instead of just a couple of songs here and there. I spent a few late nights by a fire this winter listening to this album.
https://youtu.be/1XwU8H6e8Ts

The Big Moon - Love In The 4th Dimension
Even though I liked the singles this album took me by surprise in how good the whole album is. All quality songs with no filler. A slept on album in my opinion.
https://youtu.be/l6t3vNfl85E

Pond - The Weather
A psych pop band whose last album was my favourite album of that year and absolutely mindblowing live.
https://youtu.be/iHXPvBsXCAc

Tired Lion - Dumb Days
Debut album from a local band that are a lot of fun live. Very 90s alt rock influenced. I think they are huge Smashing Pumpkins fans.
https://youtu.be/jVtVCA3wAnA
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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby JohnErle » December 20th, 2017, 1:56 pm

Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit – The Nashville Sound

Steve Earle may have delivered a rare album I can't fully enjoy this year, but his heir apparent, Jason Isbell, stepped up to deliver another excellent roots-rock album. After two brilliant solo albums, Isbell reunited with his backing band, The 400 Unit, for an ironically titled album that has virtually nothing to do with the mainstream country sound associated with Nashville. The main difference between this album and his solo efforts is the fuller, heavier, full band sound on tracks like Cumberland Gap. You couldn't ask for a better piece of plaintive folk than Tupelo, and Hope The High Road is the ultimate anthem for any decent person trying to stay sane in Trump's America.

Hope The High Road


Cumberland Gap
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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby numbersix » December 20th, 2017, 5:16 pm

Quite liked Jason Isbell. Reminded me of Ryan Adams, although maybe that's because he's one of the few country (or alt-country) artists I know!

Album #10
Bjork - Utopia



A companion to Bjork's last album, while the former was a break-up album full of pain and loss, this is the sound of bjork discovering love and hope. It's dreamy, whimsical, and Arca's production gives the Icelandic weirdo a fresh vibe.


Track #10
Algiers - The Underside of Power



The Atlanta act had an impressive second album with this title track showcasing a mix of what they do best - electro, blues, post-punk, and politically-charged lyrics with as much hope as dismay.
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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby Leestu » December 21st, 2017, 5:25 am

Album #10
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard - Polygondwanaland


The album that King Gizzard released for free including links to make your own vinyl record for those so inclined. On this album they explore polyrhythms, mixing primitive tribal beats with futuristic electro sounds (and a dash of prog - the enjoyable sort, not the look how good I am sort). Taking into account the whole universe that they are creating - I'm probably wrong but - I see this album as the aftermath of the destruction that occurs in Murder of the Universe. Great album highlighted by the opening and closing tracks. This is the closing track TheFourth Colour. If you listen make sure you listen to the whole 6+ minutes for the full effect.





Like every year most of my ten favourite songs are from my ten favourite albums so for diversity this year it is :-

Nine songs you probably haven't heard but are worth listening to! and my best song of 2017

Song #10
The Babe Rainbow - Peace Blossom Boogy


From the same record label as King Gizzard (owned and operated by one of the King Gizzard drummers) this song is straight from the hippy 70's via 2017.

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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby Leestu » December 21st, 2017, 7:25 am

Like every other year I'll probably end up listening to most of these albums in full but it'll take me a couple of months mixed in with all the other music I listen to. In the meantime I'll keep listening to the individual songs as we go along.
GS!YBE - Like most of their music I enjoy it when I hear it but I just can't think of a set and/or setting where I would choose to listen to it. Although my oldest son often chooses to listen to them for inspiration when he's drawing but I'm not creative like him.
Arca - tried again with this song but still too fucked up glitchy (?) and not musical enough for my tastes.
Love Theme - never heard of them...it was interesting enough
Pharmakon - hah! Definitely horror movie type stuff. A bit offputting at first although It started to grow on me as it went on, but my youngest son (who's into skip hop and punk) was just shaking his head and going wtf!
Blanck Mass - this is good. Some interesting sounds. Like I said earlier I quite enjoyed this album when I listened to it.
Steve Earle - I've actually started to get into a bit of alt-country over the last couple of years (enough to be able to recommend some if I had to) and from that have listened to some Americana and country albums this year (not all of them good though ;) )so maybe persistence does pay off sometimes John. This was decent enough to enjoy. Liked his vocal delivery.
Jason Isbell - wasn't too keen on these though...but he gets a lot of great reviews so that's my issue I guess.
Bjork - Been on my (long) to listen to list since it came out but haven't got around to it yet. Apart from The Gate, which I love and have listened to a lot. Didn't like her last album much though (I blame Arca lol). This song was not as great as The Gate but fascinating typical Bjork strange video. Irrelevant personal trivia: The first date I went on with my wife was a Bjork concert circa 1996.
Algiers - Another already on my to listen to list. I thought their debut album was great.
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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby numbersix » December 21st, 2017, 7:41 am

Album #9
King Krule - The Ooz

This guy has been hyped since he was a teen. I’ve only really given him a go this year, but man is he deserved of the early accolade. It’s hard to describe his music, but the album sounds like a millennial’s world, incorporating all sorts of seemingly incompatible sounds (rock, indie, jazz, lounge music, hip-hop) and making them sound coherent. It’s the sound of experimentation, delivered with intensity and often sincerity. The little fucker.




Track #9
Feist – Pleasure

Feist’s latest album sucked hard, but at least the title track, a sort of wish-I-was-PJ-Harvey tune, is pretty awesome.

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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby JohnErle » December 21st, 2017, 1:43 pm

Ryan Adams is a fair comparison for Jason Isbell, but I much prefer the latter. There's an authenticity to Jason Isbell that I've rarely heard in Ryan Adams since the end of Whiskeytown. And you certainly should know Steve Earle by now, even if you refuse to acknowledge his brilliance. ;-)

Hopefully my year-end lists had at least a little to do with opening your ears to Alt-Country, Leestu!
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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby Leestu » December 22nd, 2017, 4:01 am

Album #9
Daniele Luppi - MILANO


An Italian composer gets Parquet Courts as his band and Karen O from Yeah Yeah Yeahs as a guest vocalist. Every song is great. Love the duet with Andrew Savage and Karen O on Pretty Prizes but musically Flush is my favourite song off the album.


Song #9
Stella Donnelly


The guitarist from a local all girl punk band (Boat Show) goes acoustic for her solo ep. This is a powerful song that reportedly has had people in tears, including the singer herself, during live performances. (She's the one in the Melvins t-shirt in the video). I haven't had a chance to see her live yet myself (although I have seen Boat Show) and she was meant to be playing at the New Years Eve show I am going to, but she has had to pull out as she has been drafted to fill in for the Methyl Ethel guitarist at an interstate NYE festival. Disappointing for me but good for her!

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Re: 2017 in Music

Postby Leestu » December 22nd, 2017, 6:18 am

I thought King Krule's last album, 6 Feet Beneath The Moon (Easy Easy would be one of my favourite songs of that year - the way he sings the lines "When positivity seems hard to reach, I keep my head down and my mouth shut, Cause if you going through hell, We just keep going" has stuck with me for years) was great and on this one he has progressed and it's even better. One of the quality albums of this year.
Never got into Feist, song was okay, sounds like the album isn't.
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