Hey, we haven’t updated this blog in over a year! It was a busy year. A good year. Especially for the ears.
Without further ado, here’s my year in review. Let’s see if the other ILTSOI dudes can step up too…
Nothing can stop us now.
FAVORITE 14 OF ’14
1. Tove Lo – Queen of the Clouds
An absolutely perfect album from start to finish. Catchy, melodic Swedish pop at its finest.
2. Sam Smith – In The Lonely Hour
The lush soundtrack to heartbreak and unrequited love, with a voice so smooth you want to wrap yourself up on the sofa and pass out with a smile on your face (and tears drying on your cheeks).
3. Tori Amos – Unrepentant Geraldines
Return to form (groan) for my favorite singer of all time.
4. Taylor Swift – 1989
Can’t deny the pop perfection. The love might wane with time, but there’s no denying this beast of an album.
5. Alt-J – This Is All Yours
You thought their debut was funky and mind-blowing? Add a million more layers and a tighter control on the soundcraft. A lush journey into funky town.
6. Interpol – El Pintor
The second “return to form” (repeated groan) on this list. Tight, melodic, groovy. Everything that self-titled shitfest was not.
7. Run The Jewels – RTJ2
Very rarely do I hear a song and exclaim, “Fuuuuuuuuuck!!!” This is an entire album of that. The lyrics wow, the melodies are delicious, and everything is just hard as fuck. And Zach de la Rocha.
8. Royksopp – The Inevitable End
A perfect way for them to go out: darkness, groove and a continued roster of perfectly curated guest singers.
9. Lana Del Rey – Ultraviolence
Not as good as her debut, but the throwback lushness saves this from sophomore slump status. A time machine.
10. War On Drugs – Lost In The Dream
This is #1 on most of the year end lists, and with good reason. It’s a propulsive, immediate and absolutely dreamy journey through soundscapes. Dylan, Springsteen, Arcade Fire. It’s all here.
11. Kaiser Chiefs – Education, Education, Education, War
One of my favorite bands. They’ve only disappointed me once in 4 albums. They won’t win any awards, but consistently releasing start-to-finish pogo-pop-rock perfect albums contribute to their long-lasting place in my heart.
12. Coldplay – Ghost Stories
Their worst, hands down. But it’s not that bad. I’ve grown to enjoy this more than when they released it in the summer. Because it’s NOT a summer album. It’s cold, sad, lonely, introspective. Casual fans will love the Parachutesness of it all. I appreciate that it’s a peek into Chris Martin’s ruined heart. Take this break, come back with another life-affirming opus. *hugz*
13. Pharrell Williams – G I R L
Skateboard P is actually pretty underrated: he’s been producing amazing bangers for over a decade, and yet he’s just blown up in these past 2 years (thank you Daft Punk and The Voice). This is just another release of Pharrell gems. Get the throwback party started.
14. Crosses – †††
Deftones will never release anything “classic” now that Chi Cheng passed away (just like — less morbidly — Interpol will never release anything of top caliber without Carlos D), but this Chino side project comes close. It’s sexy, groovy, relatively calm. Chino’s voice can still send shivers down a spine like no other.
Albums I listened to to-death that weren’t released this year: Bastille, Clutch, Katy Perry, Avicii, Avatar, Fitz and the Tantrums
Albums that kinda let me down: U2, Beck, Black Keys
FAVORITE SONGS OF 2014
As always, this is based purely on play count on my iTunes. I may have listened to them in other places (see: ipod, burned CD) but this is a fair indicator of my earworms of the year.
1. Lorde – “Yellow Flicker Beat”
2. Coldplay – “Magic”
3. Pharrell and Daft Punk – “Gust of Wind”
4. Iggy Azalea and Rita Ora – “Black Widow”
5. Goldroom – “Embrace”
6. Ariana Grande and Zedd – “Break Free”
7. BANKS – “This Is What It Feels Like”
8. Interpol – “Tidal Wave”
9. Royksopp and Robyn – “Monument (The Inevitable End Version)”
10. Tori Amos – “Trouble’s Lament”
GIGS OF 2014
1. Avicii – TD Garden – June 25
An absolute party from start to finish.
2. Tori Amos – Boston Opera House – August 15
First full Toriphile experience for me: waited all day with a group of fans/new friends for a glimpse of Tori, then drinks, then a perfect setlist. If we actually got to talk to her, it would have been the most perfect day of 2014.
3. Arcade Fire – Xfinity Center – August 19
Nice to see them in a huge amphitheater. Their sound and presence needs all that space.
4. Clutch – Lupo’s – September 5
Rocked. The. Fuck. Out.
5. Lady Gaga – TD Garden – June 30
Finally. Happy birthday to me.
6. OneRepublic – Blue Hills Bank Pavilion – June 24
All hits, all the time.
7. Nine Inch Nails (with Soundgarden) – Red Rocks – July 21
My all-time bucket list venue. My all-time favorite band. Maybe I’ve seen Trent too much lately. Maybe my mind wasn’t in the right place. An otherworldly experience.
8. Jimmy Eat World – Lupo’s – October 18
Futures isn’t my favorite Jimmy album (see: Bleed American) but hearing it start to finish was something else. Finally got “Nothingwrong” and life is good.
9. Katy Perry – TD Garden – August 1
Much like OneRepublic, this was just an unfair barrage of hits that would make any artist blush. What a party.
10. Cibo Matto – The Sinclair – February 8
A comeback tour, a new album, old friends. But when you don’t play “Sci-Fi Wasabi” as you originally wrote it, this nagging fan loses a little interest.
11. Iggy Azalea (and Austin Mahone) – Gillette Stadium – June 15
Free. Yeah nothing beats that.
It was a good year. Hopefully another year doesn’t pass without an update… Make it a good one!