Favorite 50 albums of 2019

by Woody on December 12, 2018

1. Lucy Dacus – Historian (Review)

2. Parquet Courts – Wide Awake!

3. Courtney Barnett – Tell Me How You Really Feel

4. Phosphorescent – C’est La Vie

5. Father John Misty – God’s Favorite Customer

6. Ryley Walker – Deafman Glance (Review)

7. Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever – Hope Downs (Review)

8. Trampled By Turtles – Life Is Good On The Open Road (Review)

9. Sarah Shook & The Disarmers – Years (Review)

10. rayLand baxter – Wide Awake (Review)

11. boygenius ep

12. Superchunk – What A Time To Be Alive (Review)

13. Shame – Songs of Praise (Review)

14. Courtney Marie Andrews – May Your Kindness Remain (review)

15. Mitski – Be The Cowboy

16. The Dirty Nil – Master Volume (Review )

17. Phil Cook – People Are My Drug (Review)

18. Neko Case – Hell-On

19. Hinds – I Don’t Run (Review)

20. Unknown Mortal Orchestra – Sex & Food (Review)

21. The Beths – Future Me Hates Me (Review)

22. Bat Fangs – s/t (Review)

23. Gold Star – Uppers & Downers (Review)

24. Jeff Rosenstock – POST-

25. Camp Cope – How To Socialise & Make Friends (Review)

26. Car Seat Headrest – Twin Fantasy

27. Hop Along – Bark Your Head, Off

28. Marlon Williams – Make Way For Love (Review)

29. H.C. McEntire – LIONHEART (Review)

30. Lucero – Among The Ghosts (Review)

31. Clearance – At Your Leisure (Review)

32. Night Shop – In The Break (Review)

33. Kurt Vile – Bottle It In

34. The Nude Party – s/t (Review)

35. Haley Heynderickx – I Need To Start A Garden (Review)

36. Stoner Control – Alone In The City (Review)

37. Bonny Doon – Longwave (Review)

38. Speedy Oritz – Twerp Verse (Review)

39. Amen Dunes – Freedom (review)

40. Naked Giants – Sluff (Review)

41. Snail Mail – Lush (Review)

42. Saintseneca – Pillar of Na (Review)

43. The Love Language – Baby Grand (Review)

44. Phantastic Ferniture – s/t (Review)

45. The Moondoggies – A Love Sleeps Deep (Review)

46. Goat Girl – s/t (Review)

47. Marie/Lepanto – Tenkiller (Review)

48. Ron Gallo -Stardust Birthday Party (Review)

49. David Nance Group – Peaced and Slightly Pulverized (Review)

50. Gold Connections – Popular Fiction (Review)

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Shame – Songs of Praise

by Woody on December 4, 2018

I didn’t connect with this album til I wandered into the backyard of Hotel Vegas as Shame took the stage. The energy of the South London quintet was palpable. Two songs in and lead singer Charlie Steen was shirtless and bassist Josh Finerty was bounding around the stage like he was shot out of a cannon. It just all started to make sense and it has become the album I’ve dug into most since returning from SXSW.

The ten tracks bristle with an energy and anger that can only be found in youth. But the subjects he tackles and the deftness they display show a maturity beyond their age. Gold Hole is about a nasty old fucking man seducing a young woman in an exploitative manner. Tasteless sees Steen railing against the rampant consumerism and that’s followed by a full out rager in Donk. on Concrete Steen and Finerty fire verses back and forth, almost like an inner monologue debating whether to stay in a dead-end relationship.

Post-punk is a broad genre that fits many artists. Give me artists like Shame that make you feel every last note are the ones for me. This album has been a massive part of my 2018 rotation; always reaching for it when I need a jolt.

Follow me on Twitter at @WoodyHearYa or @HearYa

Shame is here

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Photo – Neil Krug

I saw that tweet from Ruban Nielson and I have to say, he’s right. With each album, Nielsen along long-time contributors Kody Nielson and Jacob Portrait consistently paint outside the lines. There’s no genre they won’t dip their toes in and none that they won’t blur with another.

I was driving with my wife and upon hearing, Hunnybee, she commented that it reminded her of a Prince tune both in his vocals and the ripping guitar solo towards the end of the track. A couple of tunes later, during the fuzzed out chugging rocker, American Guilt, she posed the question as to whether this was the same band. Affirmative I responded and I went on to soapbox that a UMO album was like reaching into a musical grab bag. One pronounced eye roll later, we had shifted on to yacht rock stylings of Everyone Acts Crazy Nowadays and she was utterly confused.

I think Nielson is one of the more under-appreciated innovators out there. Maybe innovate isn’t the right word. Maybe interpreter is the better word. He takes these disparate genres; runs them through the UMO prism and out comes something truly unique and beautiful.

Follow me on Twitter at @WoodyHearYa or @HearYa

UMO can be found here

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Silverbacks – Just In The Band

by Woody on November 30, 2018

Pilfered from their bandcamp page

Like Fontaines DC, Silverbacks hail from the Dublin area. They also play an up-in-your-face brand of punk. Art-punk or post-punk? Fuck if I know. I do know that is damn good and I’d like to hear more than these two tracks. Here’s some more info on them from their Bandcamp page.

Irish art punks Silverbacks delve into themes of false idolatry and deeper connection in their latest track ‘Just In The Band’ out Friday November 23rd on PK Miami.

Produced by Daniel Fox from fellow Dubliners Girl Band, JITB carries the same nagging unease as previous single Dunkirk with taut drums and unrelenting bass underpinning seasick guitar arps and Daniel O’Kelly’s blunt commentary on the ‘problems down the back’. Feedback soaked and frazzled, it sees the band step further away from their indie roots and more into the groove – if the groove covered itself in petrol and dared you to light the match.

Silverbacks are here

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Hayes Carll announces What It Is for 2/15/ release

November 29, 2018

Photo by David McClister Hayes Carll returns with his sixth album, and the first since 2016’s excellent Lovers and Leavers. Below are the first two tracks and based on these, What It Is will be another winner. Here’s some info from the PR team. He’s embracing the moment. Leaving the past where it belongs, accepting […]

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Ryan Bingham announces American Long Song for 2/15 release

November 29, 2018

Ryan Bingham is back with his first effort since 2015’s Fear and Saturday Night, an album that is my favorite in Bingham’s catalog. American Long Song will see the light of day on 2/15/19. Check out the first track and here’s some info on the track from the PR team. Wolves deals with the painful […]

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Durand Jones & The Indications announce American Love Call for 3/1 release

November 28, 2018

photo by Rosie Cohe Durand Jones & The Indications are back with their sophomore effort, and first on Dead Oceans/Colemine Records. This is straight-up baby making music in the spirit of late 60s soul. These guys were one of my big misses during SXSW ’18. Looks like I might get another crack down there. Here’s […]

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didi – Like Memory Foam (album review)

November 27, 2018

CREDIT: Hello Hillary Photo didi, a four piece from Columbus, OH that came together in 2013 when singer/guitarist Meg Zakany and drummer Sheena McGrath began jamming together before getting singer/guitarist Kevin Bilapka-Arbelaez and singer/bassist Leslie Shimizu. It took me a few listens to really find me way with this album. At first, I thought it […]

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Sloucher – Be True (album review)

November 26, 2018

Photo credit: Eleanor Petry Sometimes you can judge a book by its cover. You show me a picture of four white thirty-ish dudes from Seattle and I’m just expecting some 90s inspired indie guitar rock. And by golly, that’s just what I get here. Fronted by Jay Clancy, the band kicks out 10 tracks to […]

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Blank Range announce In Unison for 2/1 release

November 21, 2018

Photo by Joey Martinez Nashville’s Blank Range is set to release their sophomore album, In Unison on 2/1/19. Their debut, Marooned With the Treasure was a favorite of mine on 2017 and their live set backed that up. Here’s some info on the upcoming album from the PR squad. The ten songs on ‘In Unison,’ […]

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