2017 R.I.P.

Another year has come and gone. As with years I was consistently blogging, I kept Artboard 1track of the songs I was listening to and the new albums that were popping up and stashing a song or two into the “Top Tracks of 2017” mix as I went along, occasionally listening to the mix and deleting songs that didn’t either gel with the mix or didn’t make the final cut. This made the final mix much easier to create, mostly because it was mostly done. A little work beforehand can keep me as lazy as I’d like. As with last year, I’ve embedded the playlist in audio only format via 8Tracks and video format from our friends over at YouTube for whichever experience you prefer.

  1. Portugal. The Man | Feel it Still
    • You’ve probably heard this one out there this year, it’s the radio ear worm that won’t go away, but in a good way. Hopefully it won’t wear out its welcome too soon as they sometimes do. (video)
  2. The Shins | Mildenhall
    • Mr. Mercer has been writing some nostalgic songs that throw back to a time and place I’ve never been, but connect to personal emotions and memories. (video)
  3. Glassio | Morning House (Feat. Charles Fauna)
    • This is a great elctronic track, but the guest vocals really solidify this song, making it one of my favorites to go back to all year long. (video)
  4. Bleachers | Don’t Take the Money
    • Producer/Songwriter Jack Antonoff (Steel Train, fun.) knows how to write a catchy tune, this one is not different and it has a strong 80’s synth-pop vibe that I really dig. (video)
  5. Dan Auerbach | King of a One Horse Town
    • I’m probably in the minority here, (nothing new), but I think I prefer Dan here solo to his full-time job as half of the Black Keys. Musically, I just enjoy more the laid-back jangle with a little less volume. (video)
  6. Real Estate | Darling
    • Indie Pop is a trend you may be seeing here this year, and probably a bit more pop than the past few years. (video)
  7. Jay Som | The Bus Song
  8. The Drums | Blood Under My Belt
  9. Ingrid Michaelson | Celebrate (Feat. AJR)
    • This is one song that just missed last years list, being hedged off by Ingrids even catchier tune “Hell No” that made the list for the year. This year she put together an EP of five of the tunes from last years LP reworked with other artists joining her. (video)
  10. The XX | I Dare You
    • Indie Pop/ Synth-Duo that occasionally ride the line between ambient/ electronic music. Always good stuff from these Brits. (video)
  11. Haim | Want You Back
    • The pop end of Haim’s catalog steeped in 80’s catchy tunes, just fun times here. (video)
  12. Imagine Dragons | Believer
    • You’ve heard this one everywhere this year, glad to hear another good album from these guys. I wasn’t a big fan of their sophomore outing, but I have enjoyed this new one. (video)
  13. The War on Drugs | Thinking of a Place
    • If Bryan Adams fell into a coma sometime in the late eighties, woke up today and decided to make music with an indie producer that took him away from his “Mutt” Lange catchy choruses and let him ride out an 11 minute track. (video)
  14. Dams of the West | Death Wish
    • More side projects by bigger bands, this time from the Vampire Weekend drummer, Chris Tomson. (video)
  15. Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever | French Press
    • Rolling Blackouts C.F., is an Aussie Indie Pop band out of Melbourne, and this track has been a fun one throughout the last summer (video)
  16. Fleet Foxes | Third of May / Ōdaigahara
    • Avant-garde Indie or pretentious depending on my mood and probably more of a mix of the two, regardless of the fact I still enjoy some tunes by these folks. (video)
  17. Weezer | Beach Boys
    • Rivers writes some catchy tunes just like his spiritual guide Brian Wilson. It was just last year I posted “I don’t know how they keep putting a hook that I want to listen to over and over again in every album they put out.” I know lots of people who have put these guys in the category of selling out, but I’d honestly rather have more harmonies and hooks akin to the Beach Boys than more Pinkerton. I know those are harsh words, but my ears appreciate these tunes. (video)
  18. The National | Guilty Party
    • Depressing shoe-gaze that makes you want to wallow in it – in a good way. (video)
  19. Angus & Julia Stone | Chateau
    • Australian siblings make up this Indie Folk/Pop duo singing about the famous Chateau Marmont on Sunset Boulevard in L.A. (video)
  20. Ryan Adams | To Be Without You
    • Depending on how you count, this is his 15th album since 2000. Somehow, it’s still not enough. (video)
  21. The Band of Heathens | All I’m Asking
    • This group out of Austin, TX made a strong showing with their new album Duende. (video)
  22. Andrew McMahon In The Wildernesss | Fire Escape
    • The guy behind Something Corporate and Jack’s Mannequin on his second solo album is still putting out the pop, it may be a little less emo, but this one is fun. (video)
  23. Jens Lekman | To know Your Mission
    • Here is a tune about a Mormon Missionary and the songwriter in his teenage years discussing their respective missions in life and knowing what that is. (video)
  24. Van William | Revolution (Feat. First Aid Kit)
    • First Aid Kit does have a new album coming out in 2018, which I’m very much looking forward to, but in the meantime I’ve been enjoying this fine tune with the sisters and Van harmonizing as they do so well. (video)
  25. The Killers | The Man
    • I go back and forth on this track, I really enjoy it, but it’s highly derivative, is that a bad thing? Sometimes, not always. Maybe the dust needs to settle a bit more before I make a definite decision, but I don’t think I really need one in this case. (video)

Let me know in the comments what your favorite song/album of the year was/is. Also, what from my list do you disagree with or agree with?

Spotify Playlist  | 8Tracks Playlist


Obligatory Best of Songs (and albums) 2010

I know I’ve been procrastinating the blog and the sharing of music that really does bring me pleasure. Why do I not do it then? Well, I’m a very good procrastinator, and… well that’s all I got at the moment. This year, as with last, some of my favorite finds have been unearthed by tracking down the tunes to the TV show Chuck. I always look forward to that show, if for the music alone. Actually recently the soundtrack has outshone the plot by quite a few kilowatts.

Caveat: You’ll notice my “best of” mixes have nothing to do with actual “best” albums/songs, but rather what I liked best or rather what I like at this very moment better than the others. This is completely arbitrary to my personal taste and preference.

Here are some of my favorite songs that were released last year.

The Happiest Lamb|Audra Mae
In My Sleep|Austin Hartley-Leonard & Kendall Jane Meade
On My Way Back Home|Band of Horses
Howlin’ For You|The Black Keys
Beat The Devil’s Tattoo|Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
Crossfire|Brandon Flowers
The Ghost Inside|Broken Bells
Jackie Wants A Black Eye|Dr. Dog
I Like The Way This Is Going|Eels
The Diamond Church Street Choir|The Gaslight Anthem
Big Wave|Jenny and Johnny
Change Of Time|Josh Ritter
I Will Live On Islands|Josh Rouse
Think I’ll Go Inside|Joshua Radin
Little Lovin’|Lissie
Witchcraft|Matt Costa
Starting|Matt Pond PA
Precious Stone|Pete Yorn
Beg, Steal Or Borrow|Ray LaMontagne
Solitary Gun|Rogue Wave
I Can’t Get Enough|Rooney
Thieves|She & Him
King Of Spain|The Tallest Man On Earth
Holiday|Vampire Weekend

You can download the entire mix by clicking – HERE. (As with last years mix – it doesn’t fit on a standard CD-R, I was too lazy to whittle it down (again) and I couldn’t delete a couple songs, so if you want to fit it, you’ll have to pick a couple to remove before burning, if you still use those archaic discs.)

I usually don’t list my favorite albums, but without thinking terribly hard about it – off the top of my head the ones that stand out to me in the last year are (in no particular order):

Infinite Arms|Band of Horses
So Runs The World Away|Josh Ritter
Tomorrow Morning|Eels
American Slang|Gaslight Anthem
Brothers|The Black Keys
Broken Bells|Broken Bells
American VI: Ain’t No Grave|Johnny Cash
The Grand Theatre Volume One|Old 97’s
Downtown Church|Patty Griffin
Contra|Vampire Weekend

Happy New Year. (better late than…)

Obligatory Best of 2009

2009As we say goodbye and good riddance to 2009 and welcome in the new year and the promise of new and exciting things and hopefully a better year than the past, I’ve been looking over the music from the last year and reflecting. It hasn’t been a stellar year for music. Have we had a stellar year of music in the last decade? I’ve been enjoying the “best of” posts lately on various other blogs that seem to be far more ambitious and less lazy than myself and finding a few albums that I may have missed along the way. Looking through my music and sorting by year and reviewing posts this year it looks as if I neglected to post about a few albums that I’ve enjoyed this year. I’ve put up mixes of my favorite songs of the year for each of the last three years and this will be number four. I have probably been remiss in listing my favorite albums of each of these years including 2009, but if I feel a bit more ambition than I have lately, I may just have to start a new trend by doing just that. These “best of” mixes are usually just what I feel like are my favorite songs that have been released over the last year and some of which I probably posted here on this blog. There were quite a few good songs and/or albums this year in retrospect, I hope you enjoy.

Oh No|Andrew Bird
Wantin’ Her Again|Ben Kweller
French Navy|Camera Obscura
The Summer|Coconut Records
Fugitive|David Gray
That Look You Gave That Guy|Eels
Daddy’s Gone|Glasvegas
Airstream Driver|Gomez
Two Weeks|Grizzly Bear
First Train Home|Imogen Heap
Maybe|Ingrid Michaelson
All Is Love|Karen O and the Kids
Falling In Love At a Coffee Shop|Landon Pigg
Can’t Feel A Thing|Lucero
Never Had Nobody Like You (Featuring Zooey Deschanel)|M. Ward
Magpie To The Morning|Neko Case
Relator|Pete Yorn & Scarlett Johansson
Us|Regina Spektor
I Need To Know Where I Stand|Rhett Miller
When I Go|Slow Club
(If You’re Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To|Weezer
You and I (featuring Feist)|Wilco
Bitter Heart|Zee Avi

You can download the entire mix by clicking – HERE. (It doesn’t fit on a standard CD-R, I was too lazy to whittle it down and I couldn’t delete a couple songs, so if you want to fit it, you’ll have to pick a couple to remove before burning)

Happy New Year.