Tag Archives: year end list

2020 Year-End Roundup

I wasn’t going to do a list this year. It’s not really a year I want to memorialize or look back on. Can’t we all just pretend that all the great music that came out this year actually got released in 2019 or 2021 and just forget 2020 ever happened? No? I guess not. It wouldn’t be fair to the bands that put all that hard work into their art just to have it drop in the crappiest of years. And there was some really exciting stuff released in 2020. Little bits of light shining out through the darkness.

I turned 40 this year … during quarantine, on furlough from my job, struggling with some really heavy existing anxiety that the global pandemic kicked into high-gear. I spent most of the year listening to — and filling out my record collection with — old favorites and comfortable, comforting, familiar albums. I’ve been buying a record a week beginning in April (on my birthday). And, because I can’t resist a good list, I even decided to document it, calling it “40 Years, 40 Records.” The project has given me something to look forward to each week, something to take my mind off of everything going on around me. In some ways, music has become even more important to me this year, than it already was. You can check out what I’ve bought so far this year on my Instagram (www.instagram.com/lionsdenlions) if that’s something you’re interested in. 

That being said, I did buy some 2020 releases and listened to some others and even managed to get to one show this year before everything completely went to shit. So … below is my un-ranked, un-quantified list of 2020 music stuff I liked in 2020.

[album] Sweeping Promises – “Hunger For A Way Out” (Feel It Records): Another year, another year-end roundup appearance from Lira and Caufield. Last year, their band Mini Dresses made the list with the stellar “Heaven Sent.” In 2018, they made the list as one of my favorite live shows of the year opening up for Wildhoney. Sweeping Promises deliver brilliant pop-tinged post-punk that brings to mind that early Rough Trade sound. 

[TRACK] Corvair – “Sunday Runner” (Paper Walls/Bon Mots Music) Rocking indiepop with boy/girl vocals from members of Eux Autres (who I have sorely missed). The first two tracks off their upcoming record have been aces. I’ve already pre-ordered the album. You should too.

[album] The Very Most – “Needs Help” (Lost Sound Tapes/Kocliko): TVM’s best yet? Quite possibly. It took Jeremy Jensen 5 years to make this album happen and the result is worth every second. Jeremy is joined by at least 10 guest vocalist, including Melanie Whittle (The Hermit Crabs),  Kristine Capua (Tiny Fireflies), and Cristina Quesada (Elefant Records). The songs have all the dream-pop goodness, boy/girl vocals, lush harmonies you’ve come to expect from TVM. It’s a winner.

[track] Jeanines – “Been in the Dark” (WIAIWYA): This track on the band’s EP on WIAIWYA clocks in at just under 2 minutes (1:59), so you might as well listen to it two or three times. Alicia Jeanine’s voice channels shimmering ’60s pop vocals to a T. I’m hearing equal parts The Seekers and Dolly Mixture, which is a winning combination. 

[track] Gary Olson – “Giovanna Please” (Tapete): The first single off of Gary Olson’s (Ladybug Transistor) debut solo album, which was released this year. This track, with sweeping strings, soft vocals and harmonies, was recorded in Norway, and brings to mind Scandinavian artists like Acid House Kings or Sambassadeur. It reminds me a great deal of Jens Lekman and is danceable in the same way. I’m a big fan. 

[album] Boyracer – “On A Promise” (Emotional Response): The indiepop legends are back with their 13th(!) full-length. Stewart Anderson is joined by Christina Riley (Artsick, Burnt Palms) and a veritable who’s-who from the pop world — previous band members Simon Guild and Laura Bridge, Mary Wyer and Anita Rayner (Even As We Speak), Penny McBride (Cannanes), longtime Boyracer members Matty Green, Jen Turrell, Ged McGurn and Ara Hacopian, and more. On A Promise offers 16 passionate pop-punk gems.

[track] Archers of Loaf – “Raleigh Days” (Merge): Raleigh Days opens with a few quick guitar strums and keyboard plinks before bursting forth with some much-missed rock-and-roll fervor. Driving guitar and earnest vocals propel the song forward, not letting up for the entirety of the track’s short 2:20 play time. Really glad The Loaf is back.

[track] Seablite – “High-Rise Mannequins” (Emotional Response): Bouncing bass and jangle give way to shoegazey guitars and dreamy vocals on the title track of Seablite’s latest EP. This is everything you want from a fuzzy, Sarah-inspired indiepop song.

[album] Peel Dream Magazine – “Agitprop Alterna” (Slumberland): This is pure fuzzy goodness. With buzzing guitars and vocals that sound more like an instrument than words. Just close your eyes, surrender to the drone and let PDM carry you away on a dreamy little field trip.

[album] Close Lobsters – “Post Neo Anti” (Shelflife): Probably my favorite band on the C86 tape, Close Lobsters are back with their first album 31 years — and they have not missed a beat. They’re as jangly, fuzzy and shimmery as ever. This is wonderful.

[track] The Flatmates – “Shut Up and Kiss Me” (Old Bad Habits): Indiepop royals The Flatmates released a new album this year. With shimmering lead vocals from Lisa Bouvier and driving pop-punk guitar, this track wastes no time — starting strong and not letting up, save for a brief organ bit about halfway through. The Flatmates continue to crank out fuzzy pop gems, just like they did in 1988.

[track] Peaness – “Kaizen” (Wipe Out Publishing): In Japanese, the word “kaizen” means “change for the good” and that’s what Peaness is clamoring for with this song. Pushing the listener to take a stand and “be a voice and not an echo” as “the living fabric of our tiny world / is slipping right through our fingers.” The song follows that upbeat, bouncy, punky pop that Peaness has basically perfected. 

[album] The Beths – “Jump Rope Gazers” (Carpark Records): The Beths offer a sleeker, but no-less exhilarating, follow-up to “Future Me Hates Me.” The band mixes in some power balladeering and some softer seriousness, but this collection of songs is still a whole bunch of fun.

[track] European Sun – “The Future’s Female” (WIAIWYA): European Sun is Steve Miles, who writes and sings the tunes, joined by Amelia Fletcher and Rob Pursey. This track also features guest backing vocals from Sarah Corrie (Velocette, Comet Gain). “The Future’s Female” is “a rallying cry for progressive people to have hope in a decade that threatens to be dark.” The song mixes poignant and personal storytelling with humor and playfulness, slagging off Brexit, macho men, and hyper-sexual male rockers without being preachy or political. The simple, hummable melody will be kicking around in your head for days.

[track] Fortitude Valley – “Wreck” (Fika): I love this song so much. Laura K’s voice perfectly channels ’90s alternative a la Juliana Hatfield. And Daniel Ellis’ (Martha) guitar playing reminds me of all the guilty pleasure alterna-pop I listened to in high school (and still do sometimes … I can admit it). The harmonies behind Laura as she sings “I’m a wreckkkkk” push this track into play-this-song-on-repeat-all-day territory. Can’t wait for the album. (Was this actually released in December 2019? Doesn’t matter, I loved it in 2020.)

[live] John Lodge of The Moody Blues at Cary Memorial Hall, Lexington, MA – 8 March: The only show I was able to attend this year was part of a belated Christmas gift for my father-in-law. COVID was just beginning to become serious, but events were still going on as planned. We probably shouldn’t have gone, but we did. John Lodge was the bassist for The Moody Blues, and also wrote a bunch of their songs. They played a bunch of well-known Moody Blues songs, some deep cuts, and some of Lodge’s solo work. I’m not a huge Moody Blues fan, but this show was fun. The sheer enthusiasm of Lodge and his band made it good. 

2019 Year-End Roundup

Here we go again! Below is my un-ranked, un-quantified list of music stuff I liked in 2019. As usual, this barely scratches the surface of amazing music released in 2019. I feel like I really dropped the ball on listening to new stuff this year. I haven’t even gotten around to listening to new music from Mammoth Penguins, Lost Tapes, Night Flowers, Patience, Strange Passage, or Ex Hex, which I’m sure would have made this list. These were just some of the tunes I kept going back to.



» Tallies – Tallies (Kanine): This was definitely my favorite album of 2019 … and it came out in January. I’ve been waiting all year to put this at the top of my list. Dreamy, jangly, Canadian.

» Jeanines – Jeanines (Slumberland): If you haven’t bought this album yet, what are you waiting for? Classic indie-pop jangle … in the same vein as all those other Slumberland bands you love, but Jeanines make their own mark on the sound.

» Pushflowers – Close For Comfort (Forged Artifacts): Debut full-length from this Boston band channeling the 1990s.

» The Ballet – Matchy Matchy (Fika): I’m so glad this band is back.

» Mini Dresses – Heaven Sent (Joy Void): Boston-based dream pop (but it’s not really dream pop … don’t pigeon-hole them like that, OK?). Lira and Caufield can do no wrong … they also released great music as Dee-Parts this year and they have about 25 other musical projects which are continually pumping out new music (I think it must be up to 25 by now).

» Elva – Winter Sun (Tapete): Like if Allo Darlin’ and Making Marks got together and had a baby … oh wait, that’s exactly what this is. Wonderful, wonderful stuff.

» Tullycraft – The Railway Prince Hotel (HHBTM): I mean, Tullycraft had to be on this list, right? Of course.



» Robert Forster at City Winery
(Boston, MA) — 14 November

» Blondie at Rockland Trust Bank Pavilion
(Boston, MA) — 23 July

» Psychedelic Furs at House of Blues
(Boston, MA) — 9 July


» The Beths w/ Bad Bad Hats, Bad Moves at Brighton Music Hall
(Boston, MA) — 28 February

» The Chills at The Middle East Downstairs
(Cambridge, MA) — 20 February

March, April & May: 2018 year-end roundup

It’s that time again! Below is my un-ranked, un-quantified list of music stuff I liked in 2018. As usual, this barely scratches the surface of amazing music released in 2018 — it very well could have also included Alpaca Sports, Spook School, Colour Me Wednesday, The Smittens, Cut Worms, Featherfin, Lilith and a whole lot more. These were just some of the tunes I kept going back to.


» Young Scum – Young Scum (Citrus City/Pretty Olivia): This is probably, unofficially, my favorite release of 2018. I put off listening to them for a little while because of the band name (sorry), but once I finally heard it, I kept going back for more.

» Tracyanne & Danny – Tracyanne & Danny (Merge Records): I am so glad that this band exists. Their voices are the perfect combination.

» Night Flowers – Wild Notion (Dirty Bingo Records): Positive, uplifting and mesmerizing tunes. Check out the interview we did with Sophia in the latest issue of “March, April & May.”

» Simon Love – Sincerely, S. Love x (Tapete Records): Just really, really fun, catchy pop music.

» Mikey Collins – Hoick (Fika Recordings): I feel like this album should have gotten more love than it did. It’s really good and has some great earworms on it. I mean, you’ll be humming “Anchor in the Sea” for days.

» Free Cake for Every Creature – The Bluest Star (Double Double Whammy): I heard FCFEC play at the last NYC Popfest (RIP), but I was at the bar and then at the photo booth in the back of Le Poisson Rouge and I wasn’t really paying attention, and now I feel bad about it because this album is great.

» Soft Science – Maps (Test Pattern Records): Dreamy third full-length from this Sacramento band.

» Snail Mail – Lush (Matador Records): Lindsey Jordan is a boss.

» Say Sue Me – Where We Were Together (Damnably): Wonderful South Korean indiepop.

» Famous Problems – Hey! It’s Raining! (Where It’s At Is Where You Are): Wonderful mini-album released by former members of Butterflies of Love with a veritable who’s-who of indiepop legends as guests. Check out the interview we did with Jeff Greene in the latest issue of “March, April & May.”


» Tallies – Beat the Heart (from forthcoming Tallies on Kanine): Tallies would have been up there in the LPs/EPs list, but their album doesn’t come out until January. I’ve pre-ordered it and you can bet it’ll be on next year’s list.

» Anna Burch – Tea-Soaked Letter (from Quit The Curse on Polyvinyl): The video for this song will make you fall in love with Anna Burch. You’ve been warned.

» Push Flowers – Wish U Would:  Really looking forward to this Boston band’s first EP (coming soon!).

» EZTV – Daytime (single on Captured Tracks/Secretly Publishing): I saw EZTV open for Ex Hex earlier this year and I think they stole the show (sorry, Mary Timony).

» Fortuna Pop! All-Stars – You Can Hide Your Love Forever: RIP Fortuna Pop! If you can name a band or artist that was on the Fortuna Pop! roster, they’re probably represented in some way on this farewell track.

» The Beths – Future Me Hates Me (from Future Me Hates Me on Carpark Records): I had a chance to see this band play in Boston this year and for some reason I didn’t go and I’ve been kicking myself ever since.

» The Proctors – Crystaline Part 2: I’m so glad this band is making new music.

» Kevin Hairs – Kevin Wants a Dog (from Freak in the Streets on GP Stripes): Kevin Alvir just makes good music, whether it’s as Lil Hospital, The Hairs or now, as Kevin Hairs (or any of his other projects), it’s all good. This song appeared earlier this year on the mix EP accompanying the latest issue of our “March, April & May” zine.

» The Natvral – Know Me More (from Know Me More on Kanine): I saw Kip play as The Natvral (opening for Tallies) in a mostly empty record store basement in Jamaica Plain. At first, I felt awkward because there were literally 4 people there that weren’t in a band, but it ended up being a really enjoyable, intimate experience. These songs are really great and showcase another side of the artist that fronts POBPAH. This track reminds me a lot of Donovan.

» Jeanines – Hits the Bone: OK, we get it, these demos are amazing. It’s time for a proper release now. Thanks.


» Johnny Marr at Paradise Rock Club
» (Boston, MA) — 21 October

» Ex Hex w/ EZTV at Great Scott
(Boston, MA) — 8 September

» Tracyanne & Danny at The Sinclair
(Cambridge, MA) — 21 June

» Lloyd Cole at City Winery
(Boston, MA) — 18 January

» Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark at House of Blues
(Boston, MA) — 9 March

» Elvis Costello & The Imposters at Boch Center Wang Theater
(Boston, MA) — 10 November

» Tallies w/ The Natvral at Deep Thoughts JP
(Boston, MA) — 14 October

» Paul Simon at TD Garden
(Boston, MA) — 15 June

» Wildhoney w/ Mini Dresses and Strange Passage at Great Scott
(Boston, MA) — 13 January

» Japanese Breakfast w/ Radiator Hospital at The Sinclair
(Cambridge, MA) — 2 June

March, April & May: 2017 year-end roundup

It’s that time again, right? 

Below are three un-ranked, un-quantified lists of ten LPs/EPs, songs and live performances that I enjoyed this year. Some of the recordings I listened to almost non-stop for long periods of time. Some of them I only listened to a few times, but they seriously made an impression. The list is not at all comprehensive. There were lots of notable releases this year, including music from A Certain Smile, Lisa Bouvier, The Primitives, The Darling Buds, Makthaverskan, Peaness, Star Tropics, The Luxembourg Signal and Panda Riot, just to name a few. Check out my top picks below.



» Lilith – Apology Plant (Disposable America)

» Alvvays – Antisocialites (Polyvinyl Record Co.)

» Guggi Data – Pop/Rock (Luxury Records)

» The Courtneys – II (Flying Nun)

» Fazerdaze – Morningside (Flying Nun)

» Mini Dresses – Mini Dresses (Joy Void)

» Sunny Summer Day – Traveled Backwards (Lidia Records)

» The Pains of Being Pure at Heart – Echo of Pleasure (Painbow)

» The Just Joans – You Might Be Smiling Now (Fika Recordings)

» Pale Spectres – Pale Spectres (Cloudberry Records)


» Mammoth Penguins – The Child (from John Doe on WIAIWYA)

» Brad San Martin – Song about “Soul Finger” (from Shoot Tomorrow/Learn Tonight on Jigsaw Records)

» Laura K – Apologise (from Art is Hard Records’ Postcard Club series)

» Jens Lekman – Wedding in Finistère (from Life Will See You Now on Secretly Canadian)

» Diet Cig – Maid of the Mist (from Swear I’m Good At This on Frenchkiss Records)

» Frankie Rose – Love in Rockets (from Cage Tropical on Slumberland)

» The Fireworks – Better Without You Now (from Dream About You on Shelflife)

» Last Leaves – The Hinterland (from Other Towns Than Ours on Lost and Lonesome)

» My Teenage Stride – Christopher Come (from Living in the Straight World on Unblinking Ear)

» Girl Ray – Don’t Go Back at Ten (from Earl Grey on Moshi Moshi)


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» Psychedelic Furs at Paradise Rock Club (Boston) – October 14

» Brian Wilson presents Pet Sounds at The Hanover Theatre (Worcester, MA) – April 30

» Alvvays at Paradise Rock Club (Boston) – October 3

» Belle & Sebastian at Blue Hills Bank Pavilion (Boston) – August 2

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» Jens Lekman at Brighton Music Hall (Boston) – March 15

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» The Pains of Being Pure at Heart at The Sinclair (Cambridge, MA) – June 14

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» Pants Yell (reunion benefit show) at Atwood’s Tavern (Cambridge, MA) – March 26

» The New Pornographers at House of Blues (Boston) – April 25

» Frankie Rose (opening for The Pains of Being Pure at Heart) at The Sinclair (Cambridge, MA) – June 14

» Colleen Green (opening for The Wedding Present) at Great Scott (Boston) – April 16

March, April & May: 2016 year-end roundup

This is not a best-of list. This is not a top-10 list. 

Lately, I’ve had a love/hate relationship with year-end “best-of” lists. I love to read them and, usually, hate the results. Boiling down a year’s worth of music into ten (or 25 or 50 or 100) ranked bands or songs or albums just doesn’t really do the trick anymore. And let’s not even talk about number ratings. 

Below, is a mostly-random, un-ranked, un-quantified list of LPs, EPs, tracks and live shows that I enjoyed this year. Some of these I listened to almost non-stop for long periods of time. Some of them I only listened to a few times, but they seriously made an impression. The list is not comprehensive. There’s a lot I left out and a lot I didn’t get a chance to hear. I also included February Records releases because, let’s face it, I like them and I listened to them a lot.


[LP] Flowers – “Everybody’s Dying to Meet You” (Kanine) — I love this band. Flowers’ first LP was my favorite album of 2014 and “Everybody’s Dying to Meet You” might be my favorite album of 2016, though I won’t commit to that. Check out track 4, “All At Once.”

[EP] Strange Passage – “Shine and Scatter” (self-released) — This Boston quartet channels late-’80s/early-’90s UK post punk. The four-track EP is the kind of thing you’ll listen to over and over. Check out track 3, “Shine and Scatter.”

[live] Miracle Legion (with Winterpills) at The Outer Space, Hamden, CT – July 16 — I’m so glad this band got back together. This show was great. It was also nice to get back down to the New Haven area for a show.

[live] Allo Darlin’ (with Simon Love, Chorusgirl and The Spook School) at Baby’s All Right, Brooklyn – NYC Popfest May 20 — I didn’t know at the time that this would be my last chance to see Allo Darlin’ (and possibly the last NYC popfest as it goes on hiatus). It was definitely worth the five-hour bus ride to New York for their set alone.

[track] Peaness – “Oh George” (House Plants Records) — A smart garage-pop anti-love song to George Osborne.


[live] Teenage Fanclub (with Skylar Gudasz ) at the Sinclair, Cambridge, MA – Oct. 17 — First time seeing Teenage Fanclub. Did not disappoint.

[LP] Bent Shapes – “Wolves of Want” (Slumberland) — Literate indiepop with a touch of college-rock. From Boston. Check out track 5, “Realization Hits.”

[EP] half sour – “Charm School” (Disposable America/Too Far Gone) — Bratty, punchy “slacker-pop” from Boston. Check out track 1, “Ten Year Tenure.”

[LP] The Very Most – “Syntherely Yours” (February Records) — OK, just a little bit of bias here, but not much. This is a great record. We’d been talking with Jeremy for a long time about teaming up for a TVM release on February and we finally got around to it this year. Jeremy reworked nine TVM tunes into synth-pop songs with guest vocalists. Adriano do Couto of Postal Blue, Colin Clary of the The Smittens, Charles Bert of Math and Physics Club, Lisle Mitnik of Tiny Fireflies and more were featured. The album is still available to download. Check out track 1, “Good Fight Fighting” (featuring Adriano do Couto).

[track] The Monkees – “Me and Magdalena” (Rhino) — That Monkees album (“Good Times!”) that came out this year is actually pretty good. This song is pretty great even if it is written by Ben Gibbard. Gibbard should forget about Deathcab for Cutie and just write songs for Mike Nesmith and Mickey Dolenz to sing.

[EP] The Beths – “Warm Blood” (self-released) — Fun, upbeat New Zealand guitar pop. Check out track 3, “Idea/Intent.”

[LP] Fear of Men – “Fall Forever” (Kanine) — Atmospheric. Ominous. Beautiful. Check out track 6, “Island.”

[LP] The Tuts – “Update Your Brain” (Dovetown) — This album is infectious. Check out track 2, “Tut Tut Tut.”


[live] Elvis Costello and The Imposters at the Orpheum Theatre, Boston – Oct. 25 — This is the third time I’ve seen EC and the first time I’ve seen him with a full band. Great show.

[LP] Math & Physics Club – “In This Together” (Fika Recordings) — Get some of the band’s best EP tracks, B-sides, rarities and unreleased songs all in one place. Check out track 16, “Weekends Away.”

[track] Dexys – “Both Sides Now” (100% Records / Rhino) — This cover from the album “Let The Record Show: Dexys Do Irish and Country Soul” has been a constant on my YouTube playlist. I want to live inside this video.

[live] The Go-Go’s (with Best Coast and Kaya Stewart) at House of Blues, Boston – Aug. 8 — This show was so much fun. Lots of dancing. Lots of singing along. Lots of beer.

[track] The Pretenders – “Holy Commotion” (BMG/Clouds Hill) — I don’t even want to hear the rest of the album that this track is on — the Chrissie Hynde/Dan Auerbach (Black Keys) team-up that is “Alone.” I enjoy this song, though.

[live] The Cure (with the Twilight Sad) at Agganis Arena, Boston – June 16 — I’m not usually one for arena shows, but I can’t be blamed for sitting in the nosebleeds to see The Cure. Playing a lengthy set and then four encores, I got to hear everything I wanted to.

[LP] V/A – “Constant and True: A Tribute to the Songs of Rose Melberg” (February Records) — Here’s another little bit of horn-tooting. Jeremy Jensen of The Very Most curated this amazing tribute compilation to Rose Melberg and we got the honor of getting to promote it. In all honesty, this album has been consistently playing in my car or in my headphones since it came out. Every one of these 21 tracks is a winner, with covers by The Hermit Crabs, Rocketship, Boyracer, Emma Kupa, Marc Elston, John Girgus, Seapony and more. Copies are still available. Check out track 21, “My Broken Heart,” covered by Rocketship.

— Danny

2015 year-end list


I wasn’t planning on writing a year end list this year until Danny convinced me to. Being an adult took over this year – I changed jobs, I bought a house, and then proceeded to spend the last 6 months fixing up said house. Suffice to say, I didn’t listen to a lot of new music. There is definitely some overlap between Danny’s list and this one, but I feel that’s to be expected.

In no particular order:

The Arctic FlowThe Luminous Veil

Lost TapesLost in Youth

Owl & MouseDepartures

Postal BlueOf Love & Other Affections

Tiny FirefliesThe Space Between

Funeral AdvantageBody is Dead

Alpaca SportsWhen You Need Me The Most

Tim the MuteWhy Live?

The Spook SchoolTrying to be Hopeful

Thee AHsNames

Share your favorite albums of the year with me! What have I missed out on?

Happy New Year, everyone. We’ll see you in 2016!

— Kristin

2015 year-end list


Every year I waffle back and forth around this time trying to decide if I’m going to do a year-end list. This year, it really wasn’t until I saw Knute’s from Eardrums Music wonderful month-by-month lists that I decided to put one together.

There was a lot more really great music this year than I had originally thought. Some standouts for me were The Go! Team, who I’d never really listened to before this year. Cozy Catastrophes, who we released an EP with last year, put out a great full-length this year on Jigsaw Records. Boston’s own Funeral Advantage had one of my favorite albums this year.

Here, in (mostly) no particular order are fifteen of my favorite releases from 2015. Kristin will be posting her’s later this month. — Danny

The Go! Team The Scene Between
(Check out the track “Catch Me on the Rebound”)

Funeral AdvantageBody is Dead
(Check out the track “You Sat Alone”)

(Check out the track “Wheezer”)

The FireworksSwitch Me On
(Check out the track “Runaround”)

Mammoth PenguinsHide and Seek
(Check out the track “When I Was Your Age”)

Tiny Fireflies The Space Between
(Check out the track “Youth”)

Lost TapesLost in Youth
(Check out the track “Slumber Party”)

Joanna Gruesome Peanut Butter
(Check out the track “Honestly Do Yr Worst”)

Wild Honey Sleep Through It
(Check out the track “Sleep Through It”)

Space DazeCapture a Thing
(Check out the track “Was Never”)

Cozy CatastrophesHave You Ever Heard of Cozy Catastrophes?
(Check out the track “Hideaway”)

Big Quiet Big Quiet
(Check out the track “Punk Floyd”)

Alpaca SportsWhen You Needed Me the Most
(Check out the track “Just Like Them”)

Virgin SuicideVirgin Suicide
(Check out the track “There is a Glace Over my Eyes”)

SeaponyA Vision
(Check out the track “Everyday All Alone”)

Best of 2014

We almost totally flaked out on year-end lists this year. But, here they are, for what they’re worth.

I listened to a lot more new music in 2014 than I usually do, but I know I still barely scratched the surface of what was out there. Some of these albums I liked instantly and listened to them over and over. Some of them took a while to grow on me.

10. Fear of Men – Loom
9. Fireflies – In Dreams
8. Martha – Courting Strong
7. Ex Hex – Rips
6. Allo Darlin’ – We Come From The Same Place
5. Dum Dum Girls – Too True
4. The Hobbes Fanclub – Up At Lagrange
3. Alvvays – Alvvays
2. Withered Hand – New Gods
1. Flowers – Do What You Want To, It’s What You Should Do

Per usual this year, I tried to steer perfectly clear of all the hype bands. Yes, that’s right, I still have not heard the Alvvays record. Nor do I plan to, regardless of how many times someone tells me I “need” to hear it. Sorry, folks!

I also don’t think this year was extraordinarily great for albums. Singles and EPs, perhaps, and I still have every intention of writing about those elsewhere, but I had trouble coming up with 10 albums I absolutely loved this year. I have instead settled on five. Three of these five albums really had to grow on me before I began to fully appreciate them and I’m awfully glad they did:

1. Withered Hand – New Gods
2. Martha – Courting Strong
3. Glamorous Life Savers – Resurrected Elsewhere
4. Allo Darlin’ – We Come From The Same Place
5. The Hi-Life Companion – Our Years in the Wilderness