Monday, 30 December 2013

a year in rebuke (or, things for your ears 2013)

Well, that was fun, wasn't it? 2013. Thanks for coming. We'll remember you as the year which.. oh, you know what? If you want a proper year in review you should probably watch Charlie Brooker's Newswipe 2013. It's probably on iPlayer already. I'm just here to tell you about nine (correction: TEN) good things you should put in your ears from the past year.

Ten Good Things You Should Put In Your Ears From The Past Year: 2013 Edition
(in no particular order)

Shovels & Rope: O Be Joyful
Second album from Michael Trent and Cary Ann Hearst, albeit their first under the S&R banner. An old-fashioned blues-country trip to the olden days in the Southern states.
See/hear: Lay Low (live at Pickathon)

Chris T-T & the Hoodrats: The Bear
First album in 3,934 years from Chris T-T, this time credited to a full band. Rockier than the normal folk fare but maintains the trademark personal T-T feel. No songs about Nick Clegg though.
See/hear: Gulls

Oxygen Thief: Accidents Do Not Happen, They Are Caused
This is a mini-album but it counts because I say it does. First full-band release from normally-acoustic Bristolian noisemonger. Set faces to melted.
See/hear: Terry Nutkins Salute

Frank Turner: Tape Deck Heart
Fiftieth album in two years from Winchester's own folk-punk hero and history/Iron Maiden buff. Probably the most personal album he'll ever commit to record and the most ambitious one to boot.
See/hear: Recovery

Jetplane Landing: Don't Try
Return of Derry's favourite rockers. Political leanings all but banished, replaced with rock, rock and some more rock. And bits for people to yell along to. This shit's important.
See/hear: Beat Generation... Ha!

Jamie Lenman: Muscle Memory
Another return, courtesy of ex-Reuben frontman, and a double album to boot. A mix of beautiful, exquisitely crafted numbers and metal designed to tear out your brain. Set faces to double-melted.
See/hear: Pretty Please

Emily Barker & the Red Clay Halo: Dear River
Gentle, wistful folk adventure courtesy of brilliant Aussie and band of chums. Tender, spellbinding, memorable.
See/hear: In The Winter I Return (live)

Off With Their Heads: Home
Disaffected two-minute punk rock at its growling finest.
See/hear: Nightlife

Blitzen Trapper: VII
Seventh album from American rock-country outfit, big on choruses, production values and sometimes murder. Remarkable consistency.
See/hear: Feel the Chill (live at WFUV)

Future of the Left: How To Stop Your Brain In An Accident
Darkly humourous, punchy, punky noise-rock. This is album four, and the spikes are as sharp as ever.
See/hear: Johnny Borrell Afterlife

a note from the author: I haven't heard the new Beans On Toast album yet, so calm down.

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