Friday, January 15, 2016

Favorite Music of 2015 Share on Tumblr

I only got around to doing four posts this year, and one of them was my favorite music of 2014!  Recently I have gotten hundreds of hits.  I wonder what people are looking for?  They must be so disappointed.

As always, I preface my list by saying this is a very personal list, not necessarily the "best," or "most important" music of the last year.  I don't even know what's good anymore.  If I'm even a bit familiar with what's on other year-end lists I usually find it's something totally dreadful and dull.  And we won't even talk about the Grammys.

Still on my list from last year, Charli XCX.  I continued listening to her a lot this year, even searching out her old albums and unreleased rarities hosted on obscure blogs.  I continue to adore her because she's badass, angry at the right things, but also because she has so much positive energy, she's so "real," intelligent, funny, sensitive, and vulnerable.  Also, she can't dance (try as she will), which makes her such an endearingly under-choreographed performer.  I had so much respect for her last year when she quit a successful tour because she couldn't find the peace of mind for songwriting while on the road.  That clearly demonstrated she's first and foremost a composer.  

Here's a little something from last year that she hasn't recorded yet.  Charli only busts it out for her live shows and it's quite something as you shall see (it actually starts 39 sec in):



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PINS.  Couldn't have gotten through the year without these four tough chicks from Manchester.  But they scare me a little bit.




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I fully embraced Ringo Deathstarr this year.  It was hard at first to reconcile how they combine the dense seriousness of the Shoegaze thing with their sort of stoner goofiness, but in the end I was won over.  Respect to all members of the band but, in my opinion, Alex should be the only one doing vocals.  Just saying...



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Wolf Alice / No Joy.  I still get these two bands confused because I listened to their albums back to back repeatedly.  They are both female-fronted, guitar based bands that compose songs of Pop catchiness with a noise-rock approach.  Both albums have great guitar tones, and they know how to arrange for the basic two guitar, bass, and drums ensemble.





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Gwenno.  I was a big fan of the retro girl group, The Pipettes, of which Gwenno Saunders was a member.  Who'd have imagined that she would eventually release an album sung in Welsh, with songs about politics based on a sci-fi novel, titled Y Dydd Olaf?  Who'd have imagined that such an album would be so beautiful and rapturous?  Or that it would be such an artistic success that it would be nominated for the Mercury Prize?  Life is full of surprises.  Sometimes they're even good.  

   

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Colleen Green.  The shades, the drum machine.  She's so "normal," yet so impossibly cool. 

    

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Lana Del Rey - Honeymoon.  Remember when LDR first emergered?  People weren't sure what to make of her.  Was she for real?  A parody?  Delusional?  Genius?  Brain damaged?  After Dan Auerbach produced Ultraviolence, he went on record about how brilliant she is to work with.  Since then, she's considered a rare and ineffable "artiste," now taken seriously beyond reproach.  I hate that about the music industry.  After "the big rock guy" endorses the female musician, everybody breathes a sigh of relief, and decides she's legit after all.  Honeymoon is a somber affair, full of faded, atmospheric regret and tragedy, more wistful than the darker Ultraviolence, yet still another masterpiece of vision.

  

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NOTS.  At a loss for words here.  They're just, je ne sais pas, quelque chose de sp├ęcial.







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Rose McDowell - Cut With The Cake Knife.  Rose's demos for the what was supposed to be the second Strawberry Switchblade album saw the light of day almost 30 years later.  The tracks do in fact sound like demos, although they're very nicely done, and they have an 80's datedness to them due to the available technology of the time.  Make no mistake however, this is a delightful, charming, most wonderful album, I treasure every second of it.  Rose, that sweet, beautiful, enigmatic creature, dressed like a dominatrix, singing like an angel, and making some of the most delicious pop music ever recorded.  Truly, this a joy.




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Favorite books of 2015:

None.  Don't have the time.

Favorite movies of 2015:

None.  Don't like movies.

;)