It’s that silly time of year when we ascribe arbitrary rankings to the music created by our favorite artists. And, I’ve already seen a few lists from the likes of Paste or Rolling Stone (among others) that I find completely off the mark. Now, our ATH End of Year list will be a team effort, so here is a list of records I adored that probably won’t end up on too many other “Best of Lists,” though I think they should! Again, no particular order, just ten albums you should enjoy. …that you might have forgotten about.
Way back in the day, and by that I mean about 15 years ago, I always had Elf Power in my listening rotation. Somehow, they drifted a bit, or I drifted a bit, but on their new single, it’s really taking me back…might have to crack open my CD storage. While the track opens with this ornate bit of piano, vocals join in to carry the beauty. Suddenly, you’re halted, distortion rings atop the piano and the song grows fuzzy, matching the track’s video portrayal. And then, done. Quick substance, quick hit, then back to the next track. This is how I fell in love with the band, and I’m ready to do so all over again. Their new album, Twitching in Time will be released on May 12th via Orange Twin.
I’m in love with Nana Grizol‘s latest album; there’s an underlying earnestness that carries the album on, joined by clever lyricism that might go overlooked by the masses. But, those of you longing for the purity of indie rock that gave birth to blogs in the early 00s will surely find the band’s work, such as this number, intoxicating. There’s no bells and whistles (though there are some horns), but rather a simplistic approach built around songwriting and innate accessibility for every listener. I’m already saving a spot for Ursa Minor in my year end list, and you’ll do the same if you’re looking to get carried away in music once again; album out now via Orange Twin.
Those of you that press play on the video below will immediately understand why I’m so in love with the latest from Nana Grizol. Something in the songwriting recalls the purity of our forefathers from 90s college rock, like Malkmus. But, with that in mind, there’s clearly more of a message in the lyrical content, as Theo Hilton finally has found a voice for his storytelling. Heavy-hitters from Athens helped Hilton flesh out the songs you’ll hear on Ursa Minor, such as the beautiful burst of horns in this tune. Look for the release on March 31st via Orange Twin.
When an email hits and it names drops both The Glands and Presidents of USA, I’m definitely going to spin it. Luckily, this new track from The Hernies does just what it promises, brandishing a brand of quirky power-pop. I mean, come on, they’re dropping Star Wars references amidst infectious hooks, fuzzing up the world with those riffs. For me, this is what good tunes sound like, and I’m going to keep coming back for more. The band release their new album, If You Can’t Think Then You Cannot Be Afraid of the Consequences of Your Actions; it’s being released by Orange Twin on April 28th.