Trev’s Favorite Albums of 2014
The last three years I have done this (check them out here: 2011, 2012 & 2013), I made Top Twenty lists. But, I don’t know…I guess this was either a lamer year for music, or I was just a lot lazier about seeking out good stuff (I’m actually positive it’s the later). There were certainly albums I liked just fine (Hozier, Jack White, Leonard Cohen, Beck), and a couple albums that might have made their way onto the list if I hadn’t just heard them for the first time in the last week or so (alt-J and Charli XCX). But, overall, the following ten are really the only albums I can think of that really stuck with me this year. Oh, I also want to throw a special “Honorable Mention” shout-out to the soundtrack for The Guest, which was by far the best movie soundtrack of the year, and actually received a lot more play from me than some of the actual albums on this list. Now, with that out of the way, onto my ten favorite albums of 2014:
10. FKA Twigs – LP1
It’s already cliche to say this is a really sexy album, so I won’t bother. But…it is.
9. Scott Walker + Sunn o))) – Soused
Scott Walker is 71 years old and putting out weird collaborations with Sunn o))). This is why Scott Walker is cooler than you will ever hope to be.
8. Pharmakon – Bestial Burden
Listening to this album through headphones while laying in bed in a dark room has made me feel uncomfortable and I’m pretty sure it led to a couple nightmares. This is a compliment.
7. Perfume Genius – Too Bright
My favorite artist find of the year. We can always use a good glam rock act out there.
6. tUnE-yArDs – Nikki Nack
Though I wasn’t quite as instantly smitten with this as I was with 2011’s WhoKill, Merrill Garbus’ third album was still a lot of fun, so I stuck with it. Dozens of listens later, I now realize this really IS her best work yet. Definitely one of the most exciting artists of the moment.
5. Ariel Pink – Pom Pom
No more Haunted Graffiti, but I’m not really sure how much that matters. A new Ariel Pink album is a new Ariel Pink album no matter what the moniker, and it’s always something to be happy about.
4. The War on Drugs – Lost in the Dream
This was a similar experience to what I said about tUnE-yArDs’ Nikki Nack, as I was initially a little let down that this album wasn’t as instantly gripping as 2011’s Slave Ambient. But, man, I just couldn’t shake this album after that first listen, and my love for it grew by leaps and bounds with subsequent listens. I might still prefer Slave Ambient, but I have to admit Lost in the Dream represents a pretty big leap artistic leap forward for the band.
3. EMA – The Future’s Void
Everyone has that one artist (or probably more) that they feel really frustrated over how few people seem to know about them. EMA is mine. She has now released two kick-ass albums that deserve a lot more attention. Plus, she has a song titled “Cthulu”on this one, so, you know…marry me.
2. Ty Segall – Manipulator
Ty Segall only released one album this year, which seems like slacking. But, it was perhaps his best effort yet, so I guess I’ll let it slide.
1. St Vincent – St Vincent
See that woman up there? She is my rock goddess. Annie Clark is my current favorite musical artist, above all others, and it’s really not even close. I love that she blew up this year, I love that she did so with an album even bolder and weirder than her previous offerings, and I even love how many people seemed incredibly put-off by her strange style when she guested on SNL. Heck, I even love her funky new hair style. What a great year for St. Vincent, and what a terrific album.