Hey everyone! Here’s my best of list!
- Joel Sarakula – The Golden Age
This is good stuff, mixing soul, piano-pop, power pop, very creative and enjoyable.
- Attic Lights – Super De Luxe
This is one where I can’t decide what’s the best song, they are all so great. If you like brit-pop you will love this record.
- Fortunetellers – Get Them Good
I was upset about the breakup of Gold Motel, but this group (on the recommendation of Greta) definitely carries on that spirit, but does their own thing.
- Kelly Jones – Alta Loma
Although it’s a slight departure from her last album, it is great in other ways. Her voice is beautiful and the singer-songwriter feel works great.
- Eric Barao – Eric Barao
Fantastic power-pop that is big and brash and wonderful.
- Saves The Day – Saves The Day
Finally another great Saves the Day album, they got a little dark in the past few years, but this is a more accessible album with great songs.
- Valley Lodge – Use Your Weapons
Fun bubble-gummy pop. As soon as you think the album is going to let up, it hits you from another angle.
- The Yum Yums – …Play Good Music
Always great to hear from them, this is another perfect bubblegum pop album
- Hot Nun – Hot Nun
From the Well Wishers’ Jeff Shelton, this is a fun record, kind of glam, lots of rock and a short and enjoyable listen.
- Ex Norwegian – Crack
Great bouncy stuff from this band, a bright and engaging record.
- Kaliyo – Trapeze
This is a treasure from Andrea Perry and Sarah Sharp. Andrea Perry also had a solo album come out this year, which was great, but I love this one for its blend of the two voices and interesting songs.
- Bob Evans – Familiar Stranger
Loved to hear a new album from him, and this one showed a lot of growth as an artist. There is a cool atmosphere to this one, listen to it a couple times.
- Leagues – You Belong Here
This one is a great pulsating record a lot of power and feeling, kind of this style that is popular now, I think I heard a song on a Bose headphones commercial.
- Liar’s Club – Come And Go
Another great power-pop record with fun, colorful songs. This is the first I had ever heard of this band, so I checked the back catalog…great stuff.
- Secret Friend – Time Machine
Great pure-pop stuff from this album produced by Linus of Hollywood and featuring Willie Wisely and Kelly Jones on vocals. This came out the first week of this year and kept me entertained the whole year through!
- The Grapes Of Wrath – High Road
A great one from this band who play just great pop well, another group returning after a long hiatus… it was well worth the wait!
- The Sun Sawed In 1/2 – Elephants Into Swans
This one from has some great catchy tunes. Took some time to really get into it, but once I did, I was hooked. Another return from a hiatus.
- Prefab Sprout – Crimson/Red
A fantastic record, this band, who I only recently got into, makes such great pop albums, and this is no exception.
- The Joy Of Painting – Tender Age
A cool band with a great sound and rocking tunes, another in this kind of driving, echoey sound that has taken over this year.
- Wyatt Funderburk – Novel And Profane
Great to have a new album from the Second Saturday front man. This is a lot of good stuff. Poppy, and maybe a bit more mature than the band stuff.
- Yuna – Nocturnal
Another new artist, really good stuff, enjoyable songs, catchy. Great voice and style.
- The Duckworth Lewis Method – Sticky Wickets
Another fun cricket-based album. This time explores a few more song styles and is a little bit sillier and fun than the first.
- The Electric Soft Parade – Idiots
Another great return from this band. This album feels a bit more mature as well, and explores some new territory.
- Robbie Fulks – Gone Away Backward
If you’re not on board with Robbie Fulks, then who do you think you are? This is a great album with great songs, in a bit more stripped down sound.
- Of Montreal – Lousy With Sylvianbriar
I had almost given up on this group, but when I heard this I was pleasantly surprised to hear a great psychedelic record with shades of the Dukes of Stratosphear and classic 60’s sounds.
Other great stuff:
- Song: Little Games by The Colourist – I think this was another song in a commercial, but it is just full of energy and is catchy as heck!
- Song: Harlem by New Politics – Another great song heard in a couple commercials. Again, really catchy, and exciting song.
- Compilation: Drink a Toast to Innocence: A Tribute to Lite Rock is a great album with tons of great artists covering songs that I never knew were so good. I guess I might be into lite rock now…