February 2, 2017

Eric’s Favorite Albums from 2016

1.  Frightened Rabbit - Painting of a Panic Attack    

Love me some Frightened Rabbit. The National's Aaron Dessner's fingerprints are all over this album, and the partnership is a hauntingly beautiful one. Somehow, this album is both deeply sad and uplifting at the same time. Seeing this album performed live flawlessly was also an amazing experience.      

2. Paul Cauthen - My Gospel     

Great throwback country album; cut from the same cloth as Merle and Waylon. This album probably benefitted the most from being released late in the year, because its been front of mind for the last few weeks, and I can't stop listening.   
3. Augustines - This is Your Life

Of course, by now I'm super predictable with my Augustines love, but even after nearly a decade of Augustines/Pela fandom, I still find the passion and emotion in their songs to be nothing short of addicting. If they are truly calling it quits for good, I will forever miss putting their albums in my top ten lists.              

4. Sturgill Simpson - A Sailor’s Guide to Earth    
Another country throwback who can channel the great ones with his own creativity. Clearly, the album is revered in and out of the country music scene and its really not surprising why. 
5. Photo Ops - Vacation

I think most people needed a good feel-good album during this rather dark 2016, and Vacation was that album for me. Echoing the harmonies and patience of Pet Sounds, this album washes over you like a warm summer day and lifts the spirits like an ice cold High Life.

6. Michael Kiwanuka - Love & Hate        

One of the more thought-provoking and emotional albums of the year for me. Kiwanuka gives his powerful tracks time to develop, which may turn some people off, but damn does he do a good job of capturing the mood. This is a brilliant album. 

7. Lake Jons - Explore EP              

I don't usually put EPs on my top ten albums list, but this one did an exception job of winning me over with just six stellar tracks. Watch out world, Finland's coming!     
8. The Record Company - Give It Back To You    

Rock and roll, people, doesn't lie. The Record Company gets down to business with some bluesy, rockin' tracks that come straight at you like some of the best bands from the 70s.  

9. Kings of Leon - WALLS             

KoL bounces back from the mailed-in Mechanical Bull album with WALLS. Do I love WALLS beginning to end? No. However, the 7 or 8 tracks that I do like are good enough to carry this album into the Top 10 for me. What can I say, I just like Kings of Leon.  

10. The Bones of J.R. Jones - Spirit’s Furnace      

Folksy, bluesy, and catchy... you put this on, and people will want to know who it is, how you found him, and when he's coming to town.     

11. Pete Yorn - ArrangingTime  

"She Was Weird" was my favorite track, but there are a lot of memorable songs packed into this album. A very pleasant collection of organized, multifaceted tracks.     

12. The Cave Signers - Banchee

One of favorite "acquired taste" bands. I kept forgetting about and then remembering this album, and listened to it a ton at work. The Cave Signers are certainly not for everyone, but this album works for me.           

13. Daniel Ellsworth & The Great Lakes - Bemidji     
Another EP! "Always/Never" is the track that drew me end, but the rest of the album makes you want to stay. I definitely over-listened to this album.    

14. Kishi Bashi - Sonderlust        

I am a huge Kishi Bashi fan and love his live show. This album dropped off a little bit for me from his prior releases, but his talent and songwriting are still astounding.   

15. Kaleo - A/B 

The best tracks off this album have been out as singles for quite some time, so I didn't feel as excited by the full album when it dropped. With a little more polish, this band should be able to do amazing things in the upcoming years.


Kerry Schultz said...

Awmercy your collections seems really nice!! I guess I'll try out one of these soon.... Hopping to see this years recommendations soon aswell!! Keep it up and Thank you for posting it here!