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Best of 2016


Soda Jerk
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It's that time again. List your bestest most favouritest releases of 2016.

Here's mine:

Bad Breeding - S/T
Deftones - Gore
Czarface - Fistful of Peril
Against Me! - Shape Shift With me
Dinosaur Jr - Give A Glimpse of What Yer Not
Megaflora - Redwoods
UXO - S/T
Death Grips - Bottomless Pit
Planes Mistaken for Stars - Prey
Dalek - Asphalt for Eden
NAILS - You Will Never Be One of Us
Dag Nasty - Cold Heart 7"
Russian Circles - Guidance
Vektor - Terminal Redux
Anaal Nathrakh - The Whole of the Law
Yuck - Stranger Things

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Tough for me to narrow it down, but he's the 10 I (probably) loved the most. No order:-

  • Neurosis - "Fires Within Fires"
  • Dillinger Escape Plan - "Dissociation"
  • Conan - "Revengeance"
  • Kemba - "Negus"
  • A Tribe Called Quest - "We Got It From Here..."
  • Azizi Gibson - "A New Life"
  • Isaiah Rashad - "The Sun's Tirade"
  • Danny Brown "Atrocity Exhibition"
  • Lushlife - "Ritualize"
  • Schoolboy Q - "Blank Face LP"
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Albums

1 - Weezer - White Album

2 - Biffy Clyro - Ellipsis

3 - The Julie Ruin - Hit Reset 

4 - Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool 

5 - Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Skeleton Tree

Films

1 - Deadpool 

2 - Nerve 

3 - Suicide Squad

4 - Ghostbusters 

5 - The Young Offenders 

Gigs

1 - The Julie Ruin, Paradiso, Amsterdam

2 - Reef, O2 Academy, Dublin 

I only went to 2 gigs this year. 

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  1. Black Peaks - Statues
  2. Oathbreaker - Rheia
  3. Gojira - Magma
  4. Milk Teeth - Vile Child
  5. Heck - Instructions
  6. The Fall of Troy - OK
  7. Future Of The Left - The Peace & Truce Of Future Of The Left
  8. Jeff Rosenstock - Worry
  9. Whores - Gold (bonus prize for song title of the year "I See You Are Also Wearing A Black T-Shirt")
  10. Batteries - The Finishing Line

Honourable Mentions: Bob Mould - Patch the Sky, Moon Tooth - Chromaparagon, Vredehammer - Violator, Cult of Luna and Julie Christmas - Mariner, PUP - The Dream Is Over, Architects - All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us, Inter Arma - Paradise Gallows, Martha - Blisters In The Pit Of My Heart, Greys - Warm Shadow, UXO - Uxo

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1. Sunflower Bean - Human Ceremony
2. A Giant Dog - Pile
3. Adrian Teacher & the Subs - Terminal City
4. David Bowie - Blackstar
5. The Julie Ruin - Hit Reset
6. Lizzo - Coconut Oil EP
7. Cate Le Bon - Crab Day
8. Honeyblood - Babes Never Die
9. Weaves - Weaves
10. Cupcake Ductape - Get Over It

I have been pretty crap at keeping up-to-date with new records this year so that's all I can think of. The first 6 are ones I listened to to death but the final 4 I need to listen to more in the next 19 days.

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I'm shit at remembering when things were released. Here's a few i know were this year.

 

goat-requiem-3600.jpg?1467068737

Goat - Requiem

Lovely worldy psychy vibes

 

Anderson Paak - Malibu

Soulful pleasantness 

 

Lee Scratch Perry - Must Be Free

Utterly mental. He's pretty much just babbling nowadays but it's strangely hypnotic. 

 

image embedding weirdly just stopped working

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On 11/12/2016 at 0:30 PM, Soda van Jerk said:

Oathbreaker - Rheia

Doing my annual tour of "genres that don't involve rapping" and this is fucking great. Gives me the same kind of vibes I get from Deafheaven, who I love.

Did any really great punk records come out this year? Preferably not of the poppy/garagey variety.

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11 hours ago, Murrr said:

Doing my annual tour of "genres that don't involve rapping" and this is fucking great. Gives me the same kind of vibes I get from Deafheaven, who I love.

Did any really great punk records come out this year? Preferably not of the poppy/garagey variety.

Oathbreaker are great. Every record is such a huge step forwards from the one before it. They started as a more straight-up hardcore thing, but now they've got a whole load of stuff going on. I'd definitely recommend listening to the two before it.
 

I think 2016 was a bit underwhelming for punk, certainly of the straight-ahead 4 chords and a chorus variety. Normally there's a good 10-15 stompers from the usual names, but not many this year.

Bad Breeding LP is really great, if you dig the anarcho-noise end of the punk spectrum. It's a bit tough to get in to. I heard it and thought - meh. Then I saw them in Bristol, and it just sort of made sense, for some reason.

The new Menzingers album is pretty nice, but it didn't blow me away. They never really do. They're just a pleasant band with catchy vocals. It's worth a listen, for sure, as it's unsurprisingly catchy as fuck.

You might dig the new Planes Mistaken For Stars record. It's punk as fuck, but really grimy and filthy. It's got a big booming doom-ish production, raw but huge, and the vocals sound like if Matt Pike gargled petrol. He barely has a voice left at all.

The new Descendents record is really fun. It doesn't quite make my list, but it's a good spin. It's quite a mature record, which is a bit odd, but it's a genuinely good listen. I find that when punk bands get old and rehash records, you especially hear it in the half-arsed vocals and they sound like old men, but I actually think Milo's vocals have never sounded as good as this.

The Jeff Rosenstock record is really good too. It's rather poppy. I don't know where your poppy-threshold lies, but this might certainly push it.

The new DANGERS record, The Bend in the Break, is a pure pissed off rager. I inexplicably missed it off my list. It definitely makes it. Maybe even top 3. There is no band more pissed off than Dangers.

Pears - Green Star is pretty cool too.

Want to re-live your inner 14 year old? Millencolin have a new album. It sounds exactly like you think it sounds before you even hear it. A solid 5 out of 10 sugary slick rocker that won't offend you in any way. Best review I read of it said "cartoon punk for people who are perpetually 14 and never got laid". Nails it. That's pretty much my favourite genre of music.

 

TL;DR: up the punx oi oi.

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Quite a tricky year to assess for music, with a lot of patchy or 'quite good' albums but not many that really excelled.  Probably more a year for individual tracks than whole albums.  Anyway, these were ones that I thought had a bit extra:

Kevin Morby ‘Singing saw’

Flock of Dimes ‘If you see me, say yes’

Form A ‘Physicalist’

Hannah Peel ‘Awake but always dreaming’

Honeyblood ‘Babes never die’

Laura Gibson ‘Empire builder’

Let’s Eat Grandma ‘I Gemini’

Preoccupations ‘Preoccupations’

Angel Olsen 'My Woman'

Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith and Suzanne Ciani 'Sunergy'

Not sure of the best, but possibly Kevin Morby. 

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In no particular order:

  • Angel Olsen - My Woman 
  • Okkervil River - Away
  • Skylar Gudasz - Oleander
  • Laura Stevenson - Cocksure
  • Ben Seretan - Bowl of Plums
  • Goat - Requiem
  • Nada Surf - You Know Who You Are
  • Haley Bonar - Impossible Dream
  • Xenia Rubinos - Black Terry Cat
  • School of Seven Bells - SVIIB

Difficult to pick between the Ben Seretan, Okkervil River, Skylar Gudasz or Xenia Rubinos are my favourite of the year.

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On 17/12/2016 at 10:40 AM, Murrr said:

Doing my annual tour of "genres that don't involve rapping" and this is fucking great. Gives me the same kind of vibes I get from Deafheaven, who I love.

Did any really great punk records come out this year? Preferably not of the poppy/garagey variety.

Like wor pal Soda Jerk, there wasn't a whole lot that grabbed me in punk this year but I'm pretty keen on the Break the Cycle by Giants which reminds me of Rise Against but less boring and more 'we like skateboards'.

Do you like Rancid? Do you wish Rancid had released a really good Rancid album this year? The Interruptors released a really good Rancid album this year:

 

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5 hours ago, Woodsinho said:

Like wor pal Soda Jerk, there wasn't a whole lot that grabbed me in punk this year but I'm pretty keen on the Break the Cycle by Giants which reminds me of Rise Against but less boring and more 'we like skateboards'.

 

I'd not heard Giants. That sounds pretty fun.

I wasn't hearing the Rise Against vibe at all. Then the chorus comes in, and I was all like Pat Smear

tumblr_ljfrxjfmQL1qh3icjo1_500.gif

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 12/12/2016 at 11:44 AM, kirsten said:

1. Sunflower Bean - Human Ceremony
2. A Giant Dog - Pile
3. Adrian Teacher & the Subs - Terminal City
4. David Bowie - Blackstar
5. The Julie Ruin - Hit Reset
6. Lizzo - Coconut Oil EP
7. Cate Le Bon - Crab Day
8. Run The Jewels - RTJ3
9. Honeyblood - Babes Never Die
10. Weaves - Weaves

I have been pretty crap at keeping up-to-date with new records this year so that's all I can think of. The first 6 are ones I listened to to death but the final 4 I need to listen to more in the next 19 days.

Revised list thanks to last-minute surprise release by RTJ. It'll probably earn a space higher in the list the more I listen to it, but it was a great soundtrack to unwrapping presents alone. Sorry Cupcake Ductape. 

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Friends in Theory - Friends in Theory

This list is in no order, but I put this one at the top as I think it's something am-mus posters might like. It's an indie-rock EP, sometimes twangy, lush, or techy-tinged (I stumbled it on a math rock channel, but, only slightly). It's female-fronted, I think a break-up album and sounds kind of like an adult Taylor Swift (although turns out it's Swedish).

Elephant Gym - Work

Another EP. Nice jams which alternate between indie rock and funky jazz. Mix of instrumentals and female vocals.

Intervals - The Shape of Colour

This was Dec 2015*, but since everyone is/was putting these together in December... Even if you can't stomach an album of INSTRUMENTAL SHRED, but like fist-pumping power metal/rawk, you should do yourself a favour and give these two tracks a bash:

 

Plini (featured on the above track) - Handmade Cities

Posted about this guy in the favourite musos thread, and this is his first full length. I prefer his EPs tbh, but that's a very high bar and this is still great.

Animals as Leaders - The Madness of Many

A bigger name instrumental band I've never managed to get into before but... This one is not as arresting as the Intervals and Plini records; it's more rambling and noodly (or wanky, if you prefer). On The other hand, still loads of nice sounds and it really builds steam in the latter half.

Radwimps - Your Name. [and] Human Bloom [i.e. 2 albums[

The first of these is an OST for some anime, so it's a grab bag of piano OST stuff, jazz and their more signature indie rock. The latter is more their signature sound (although bear with the ill-advised opening English strains, which sound like non-vintage Feeder, or something, and the faux-rap number)

Here's a highlight which is on both albums:

 

Meshuggah - The Violent Sleep of Reason

It's a Meshuggah album, which probably tells you all you need to now about how it sounds and whether you like it.

Hiromi Uehara - Spark

Posted about her in the best musos thread too, and this is her 2016 offering. Like planting your face in a massive jazz cake. If you are not entertained by jazz, the highlight of the album (for me) is a very pretty OST/classical piece:

Cartoon Theory - Planet Geisha

A deliberately wacky/genre-bending thing ("ambidjent") which maybe doesn't come off 100% of the time, but some very nice moments. (and Plini is on this too).

 

* Speaking of 2015, I'm sure everyone will recall I only had a top 2. So I'd like to add For Giants- You are the Universe (also my top personal discovery of 2016) to my 2015 list. Which rounds it out to a top 3 (everyone will doubtless be relieved), and totally all guitar, all the time (which everyone will thus be stoked to go back and listen to...).

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Best EPs because I'm listening to one of them and it's good.

Coldfront - Is This Where They Found You? Punk rock in the style of Title Fight and The Story So Far.

Puppy - Vol II. The band Billy Corgan wishes he'd started. The best of 80s metal riffing with wimpy vocals like you get on Ween records or whatever. It's good. The drummer dude's got a floor tom on his rack, always a good sign that a band means Business.

 

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Albums:

Danny Brown - Atrocity Exhibition

WOMPS - Our Fertile Forever

Young Thug - JEFFERY

Mitski - Puberty 2

Angel Olsen - My Woman

Hudson Mohawke - Lantern

Solange - A Seat at the Table

Frankie Cosmos - Next Thing

Teenage Fanclub - Here (not necessarily because it's an outstanding album, more just because I went through all their old stuff again, which was great fun)

 

EPs/singles etc

Catholic Action - Rita Ora/L.U.V.

Spinning Coin - Albany

LENIN DEATH MASK - Three Hits

 

tbh, 2016 was a year of discovering all sorts of old stuff I'd never listened to before. So there you go. 

 

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