Monday, December 25, 2017

SWSL Albums Of 2017

I've not done one of these for a few years now, but what the hell - it's Christmas. As ever, this comes with a caveat: I'm not claiming these are the best albums of the year (I've heard only an embarrassingly small fraction of the records that have populated most of the end-of-year lists you'll find elsewhere) - they're just my personal favourites.

10. BLANCK MASS - World Eater
Club classics for the apocalypse - very 2017, in other words.
Taster: 'Please'

I'm not sure it's actually better than her self-titled album, but MASSEDUCTION's arch avant-pop has finally landed her a spot in an SWSL Top Ten.
Taster: 'New York'

8. MARK LANEGAN - Gargoyle
It turns out that old dogs can learn new tricks - and not lose their trademark growl, bark and bite in the process.
Taster: 'Beehive'

7. JANE WEAVER - Modern Kosmology
Psych pop motorik par excellence from an artist really finding her own voice.
Taster: 'Loops In The Secret Society'

6. NADINE SHAH - Holiday Destination
I can't imagine there were many more potent, politically charged expressions of indignation released in 2017 than Nadine Shah's third LP.
Taster: 'Holiday Destination'

5. LCD SOUNDSYSTEM - American Dream
That James Murphy appeared to have bowed out with This Is Happening was a source of huge disappointment; that he hasn't, and that American Dream contains songs like 'Call The Police', is cause for serious celebration.
Taster: 'Call The Police'

4. MOGWAI - Every Country's Sun
A similar story: the marvellousness of Every Country's Sun was only magnified by the fact that it followed the letdown that was Rave Tapes.
Taster: 'Crossing The Road Material'

3. AT THE DRIVE-IN - in.ter
Not as earth-shatteringly good as Relationship Of Command. Very little is. Get over it - I did, and can now see in.ter as the familiarly incandescent follow-up it is.
Taster: 'Governed By Contagions'

2. THURSTON MOORE - Rock 'N' Roll Consciousness
Unmistakeably the work of the former Sonic Youth man - and hence a shoo-in for inclusion in any SWSL Top Ten. There are signs that the young punk is starting to become an ageing hippie, but he wears it well.
Taster: 'Turn On'

No other record released this year affected me so profoundly as Every Valley, the third LP from a band I hadn't previously taken much notice of. Sensitive, poignant, passionate.
Taster: 'They Gave Me A Lamp'

(The top five were my contributions to the Sounding Bored end-of-year poll, as revealed and discussed in Episode 24.)

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