Friday, January 1, 2016

Best Of: 1st half of the decade (2010-1015)


Gayngs 'Relayted' 2010
One of the most imaginative ensemble albums ever created, the 22 member Gayngs  recorded 'Relayted' of the course of a year, and at the sexy 69 BPM, to incredible success, and has yet to release a follow up.

The Deloreans "American Craze" 2011
The Dynamite blast of the Deloreans 2nd LP mixes 1930s sentiment with equal parts Lounge Axe and B-52s stylized pop delivered with polished talent.   A must have for any fan of post-90s Louisville  rock. 

 The Fervor "Arise Great Warrior"  2011
Released within a month of American Craze, The Fervor's 'Arise' is a brutal and heartbreaking exploration through the choppy waters of love, that only a husband and wife group can deliver. Ben and Natalie Felker front The Fervor, with Ben's slick guitar, and Natalie's undeniably honest look into Love and Loss, through expert vocals and smooth keys. 

Death Grips "Exmilitary" 2012
The brilliantly executed 1st full length album by art-rap's damaged duo M.C. Ride &  Zach Hill is an excellent example of the anatomy of a madman's dream. It will cause you to question your entire life, and possibly reality it's self.

DMX "The Weigh In" 2012
 In 2012 DMX released 2 hard hitting LPs, the first ‘The Weigh In’ for free (in current hip-hop mixed tape style) as a prelude to ‘Undisputed’. I think both albums  are well worth any DMX fan's collection, but I keep finding myself going back to the Weigh In, as it is more gritty and with unabashed inflections that read like a prison diary that DMX was so good at in his early albums such as ‘It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot.’ It is also a  free album so nothing is stopping you.

 Bonnie "prince" Billy S/T 2013
One of the best albums entirely recorded, produced, and released by one man; and of of Will Oldham's most personal and heartbreaking works to date.

Frankie Cosmos "I'm Sorry I'm Hi Let's Go" 2013
Musician Greta Kline (AKA Frankie Cosmos) captures those awkward teen years in a musical diary as only the daughter of Kevin Kline and Phoebe Cates could.

Howell Dawdy "Mixtape" 2014
From the alter-ego of Lydia Burrell (which is the alter-ego of Alex Smith) this paranoid Art-Rapper is connecting the dots and exposing international (and inter-personal) conspiracy theories so we don't have to.

Scott H. Biram "Nothin' But Blood" 2014
Texas blues One Man Band, Scott H. Biram's Nothin' But Blood album plays like a schizophrenic jukebox jumping from head on collisions  like "Alcohol Blues" with lines like "You don't love me Mamma like you say you do, You can't be my woman sucking and fucking some other motherfucker too" straight into quiet and endearing tracks like "Never Coming Home"  with lines that will break your heart like "woke up thinking my soul had flown, I thought I'd died somewhere in the night. Yes I'm still just drifting on, got nowhere to do it right." It's full on honesty meets expert blues and country picking.

Dr. Dre "Compton" 2015
Who says Dre has lost touch? this 3rd solo release (in as many decades) has just as much fire power and creativity as anything Dre has ever worked on.

Leon Bridges "Coming Home" 2015
Born Todd Bridges, and transformed into the time machine that is Leon Bridges, this record will take you into the past as well as the future.

 Printed Pop:

  Life by Keith Richards (2010) this massive and energetic autobiography by Rolling Stones founder Keith Richards is an honest and open portrayal of Life as a living god.

With Amusement for All: A History of American Popular Culture since 1830 by Leroy Ashby (2012/updated edition) is the first comprehensive look into the history of pop culture (and also confirmed my suspicions that Pop culture was indeed born right here in the Derby City).  It's a must for anyone who has ever framed a movie poster, album cover, or comic book for proud display or safe keeping.

Hip Hop Family Tree by Ed Piskor (2013) is an amazingly detailed and thought out history of Hip Hop with it's origins in Bronx, NY. Not only has Ed Piskor painstakingly drawn out this history in Graphic novel format, but has also put all of it up to view free online. I got mine in paperback format from Phantagraphics. Hip Hop Family Tree vol.1 & 2 made it onto the New York Times Best Seller list of 2013 and is a must for anyone who enjoys the mythology of rock music and it's gods.

Supernatural Strategies for Making a Rock 'n' Roll Group By Ian Svenonius (2013) This book  came out in 2013, and promptly changed my life. It comes from a man whose work in The Make Up changed my life, and life path, back in the 1990s. Supernatural Strategies is a sweeping look into the social significance of Rock music in society, and is truly genius. this is no surprise coming from the man who has brought us The Nation of Ulysses, Make Up, the music podcast Soft Focus, and his first book The Psychic Soviet.  I buy this book everytime I see it just so I can hand it off to someone and maybe change their life too. It should be required reading for anyone who has made the choice between  making music or keeping a job, or buying records versus saving rent money. 


  Stones In Exile Directed by Stephen Kijak(2010) The amazing and at times unbelievable story of the making of  The Rolling Stones Exile On Main Street. Follows The Stones from their UK exodus, French explosion,  and brief L.A. refuge while wrapping up recording for this magnum opus of an album.

  The Sheik  Directed by Igal Hecht (2014) The true story of Khosrow Vaziri's flight from Iran under threat of assassination to U.S. Olympic medallist, to hated WWF character The Iron Sheik, to -finally- beloved American icon.


Jason Noble 1972-2012

Jon Cook 1973 - 2013

Jason Molina 1973 - 2013

Andrew Vititoe 1982 - 2015

Visit our other 'Best of' Lists here including our Best of 2000-2010 list.

No comments: