Wednesday, 15 January 2014

2013 | Top 10 listens!

OooH YEAH! I had a flipping wicked time listening to music in 2013. Here's some highlights...

Jaga Jazzist | Live With Britten Sinfonia 
My favourite band. Having seen Jaga perform with the sinfonia in 2012, its a huge treat to listen back to this collection of orchestral space prog. Jaga make long form melodies glide over super funky textural jazz grooves and weave complex yet clean compostions out of the snazziest concepts. For my money, 2013 peaks completely at the gutwrenching climax of Oslo Skyline.

Boards of Canada | Tomorrow's Harvest
I found myself shoving my ear through a Brick Lane storefront letterbox to hear mere morsels of this release. Secrecy, codes, mystery, treasure hunts. Then it came out and is now possibly my favourite BOC LP. Reach for the Dead carries haunted melancholy vintage synths all the way into a scary euphoric darkness. Later tracks are more uplifting, but the BOC fear still grips me all the way through.

Disasterpeace | Somewhere
Written for Nicolas Menard's animated short, Somewhere is a perfect little snapshot of a sad synthy space story. I'm always impressed with how warm and fuzzy Disasterpeace's chiptune songs are. The human touch is always there. 

Giant Claw | Attorney Struggle
Scary but sweet! I learnt how to be a Giant Claw fan this year... Claw's compostions attack you with nefarious music weapons and naughty villain themes but there's also triumphant hero fanfares and very sweet wah-wah adventure melodies, but often of course... GIANT FUCKING OPERATIC MONSTER ADVENTURES. 

Starcadian | Sunset Blood
Simple pleasures; 80s dreamwave, imagined sci fi movies, melancholy robot singers and catchy-as-hell pop hits. Sgt. Tagowski is so freaking funking freaky, I don't what to do when it comes on. Wicked slick producing on Starcadian's first LP!

Vulfpeck | My First Car
A great little pocket funk record. 'The Birdwatcher' is my cheer up track!

ESPRIT 空想 | 「 g i r l s  o n l y 」
Found myself getting into Vaporwave in 2013, and its a no brainer to me. Nostalgia and tongue in cheek throwback grooves. I'm loving the way  g i r l s   o n l y  was put together... smooth bass tracks lead groovily into scratchy VHS ads. Naughty. 

Daft Punk | Random Access Memories

I just can't resist melancholic - electronic - robot -  funk -  disco -  jams. I think Daft Punk made a classic with RAM. To me, Beyond sounds like jazzy Fleetwood Mac AI software that can calculate the perfect equations for soulful arpeggios and palm muting.


C-jeff | Big Steel Wheels
Knew it'd be good. An 80s progressive chiptune metal action movie! C-jeff wastes no time getting you straight in the scene. Complex prog compositions, fiery live guitars and super dramatic themes over smooooth organ chord drops. More than one listen required! A Thousand Bridges is a crazy catchy driving piece with wicked story telling.

Plini/Sithu Aye | I

Still listening to tons of Prog Metal right now. And for sure Plini, Sithu Aye and David Maxim Micic are making my favourite tracks. Just melody everywhere, giant sounds with intricate jazz details, layered textures with synth and lots and lots of heart. 

Pajjama Jane Papaya

This year Pajjama went on a beach holiday! No one's going home without hearing Pajjama. Proggy fusion synth jazz with a great sense of humour. Just listening to the cheeky round bass that opens Sunny & sour gives me the impression that these guys have the best fun making music. Everything about it sounds researched and composed, but also loose, live and genuine. Pachinko Devil is just a total hit. Can't wait for Pajjama's first LP coming soon :D

Thats 11, oh well haha.
Thanks very much to all music makers, you pull me through!

No comments: