With a huge output of great records and songs this year, there were a ton of contenders for this year’s best albums. So many of pop’s biggest names either took a gap year to tour last year’s records (Taylor Swift, Lorde), take time to build hype (Carly Rae Jespsen, Adele), or indulge in passion-projects (Beyonce, Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar), this year has been an open opportunity for a number of smaller acts and newcomers to make a big splash, and there’s been a ton. Continue reading
The idea of Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers, and Lucy Dacus forming a band and releasing a great EP almost sounds like a joke. While each is distinctive from the next, they’re all within the same ballpark; it’s sounds too good to be true. Also, this record is the real fucking deal. It wouldn’t be a shocker if it was a cheap cash-in EP for a massive tour, but it’s an unbelievably dynamic record. If each of these women wanted to quit their solo careers and just focus on boygenius, I’m sure it would be just as compelling. What makes boygenius an engaging listen is the exact same thing that makes each singer’s solo albums engaging, they’re strong women who find that strength in being vulnerable and emotional. Continue reading
Despite 2015’s Shame being a powerful debut filled with pounding hits (“Tommy”) and emotive ballads (“Heaven”), it didn’t really deliver nearly as much as one would hope a debut would. Kiley Lotz, Petal’s songwriter, vocalist, and guitarist, revealed in a recent piece for Out that this would be the first album where she has songs about her sexuality. Magic Gone sees Lotz jumping over any hurdles that Shame couldn’t completely clear. The songs are fearless and well-crafted on Magic Gone. Lotz retains the charm of her first album, but she holds nothing back here. Continue reading
Camp Cope has positioned themselves as a hyper-political pop-punk band that will fight against sexism, gun rights, sexual abuse, and so much more, but the Australian trio is so much more than that. While Camp Cope utilize their platform to speak about equality and representation, their best songs are deeply personal. The band writes numbers that rage and songs that can let your entire world break around you, and How to Socialise & Make Friends really makes way for both of those worlds. Continue reading
Despite deaths and elections, 2016 was an excellent year for music. There were so many great albums that it was hard to keep up. That being said, it’s time for the most controversial list, where the top 10 are decided. Take a deep breath.
10. Panic! At The Disco-Death of A Bachelor
When A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out first arrived in 2006, Panic! At the Disco was the most exciting mainstream rock band in the world. Pretty. Odd. in retrospect, isn’t a bad record, but it doesn’t have the same life that Fever does. In fact, the band didn’t even scratch that excitement until the release of the song “This is Gospel,” but on Death of a Bachelor, Brendon Urie sounds refreshed. The faux Sinatra songs like “Impossible Year” are irresistible, but he really shines on the songs that serve as bangers. “Don’t Threaten Me With A Good Time” or “LA Devotee” are genuine pop hits, and P!ATD’s best records are still to come if Urie can keep up this output. Continue reading