Monday, December 12, 2016
2016 Favorite Albums (Numbers 50-41)
It was a pretty great year for albums. I had a very difficult time narrowing the list down to fifty. I will be counting down to my number one record which will be revealed on Friday.
Sleigh Bells - Jessica Rabbit
At this point in their career, Sleigh Bells didn't appear to have any more tricks up their sleeves. With Jessica Rabbit, Sleigh Bells finally find a way to take their initial, brash approach and meld it with a more mature vision. While there are still many jeep rattling tracks here, it is the quieter, more nuanced songs that stick long in the memory.
Phantogram - Three
As Phantogram move closer to pop stardom, they still retain enough of their original edge to keep pulling me back in. Although Three felt more like a tentative step forward than a quantum leap, tracks like "Funeral Pyre" and "You Don't Get Me High Anymore," show that the duo can weave a masterful spell with ease.
Tove Lo - Lady Wood
Swedish pop star Tove Lo throws down another solid set of tracks that find her bemoaning the state of modern love and seeking solace in clubs and partying.
Olga Bell - Tempo
The hookiest art pop record of the year. The quirkiness is so charming you will be too busy dancing to realize this is an experimental record.
Totemo - Desire Path EP
Expertly textured electronica from Tel Aviv singer Totemo. These five tracks are so intricate, you almost need an archaeologist to discover each and every layer.
BASECAMP - In Stone EP
Gorgeous future R&B tracks with a bent towards electronic textures.
Balance and Composure - Light We Made
One of my favorite rock albums of the year, Light We Made showed Balance and Composure embracing more electronic textures and elements, but keeping them subtle and in the background, letting their clean hooks be the focus. This feels like their The Bends, and I am excited to see where they go from here.
Underworld - Barbara Barbara, We Face A Shining Future
Barbara Barbara, We Face a Shining Future, is not a record that immediately hits you over the head or in the gut, it is a slow burner that reveals its charms delicately. Once it does, however, you understand and feel its sublime nature.
The Range - Potential
Amazing record that takes painstakingly curated clips from young performers found on YouTube and intertwines their words, their hopes and dreams, with skyscraping electronics.
Deftones - Gore
On their best record since White Pony, Deftones expertly merge their metal roots with sonic experimentation.