Friday, December 30, 2016

Esteban's Top 10

There are a number of albums that almost made the list but had to be cut...some of these would probably be higher up there if I had just had a chance to listen to them more. Childish Gambino - Awaken My Love , Laspely - Long Way Home , James Vincent McMorrow - We Move , Kaytranada -  99.9% and Wet - Don't You.

Also, this is my favorite song that wasn't on any album on my list...

Blood Orange - Best to You

The other guys are better writers so don't expect some great explanation for each pick, just take what i give you.  Ok, here we go!

Honorable Mention

Jim James - Eternally Even

I love his blending of styles and sounds.  Some songs have an almost hip-hop type beat and other songs get all trippy and go out there.  This album is a fun ride.  Also a big fan of his pronunciation.

The actual list.

10. Night Moves - Pennied Days

Hipster rock with a bit of that 80s sound.  I think I randomly heard about this album from someone mentioning them in a tweet.  Sometimes you learn about new bands in funny ways.

9.  St.Paul and the Broken Bones - Sea of Noise

That voice! Man has pipes.  This is just good music without all of the fuss of production etc.

8.  Drive-By Truckers - American Band

I haven't been listening to these guys as much as I used to but they still make amazing songs.  I am not one to really listen to the lyrics much but the way they tell stories always captures me.  Gun of Umpqua is a perfect example, I'm rocking out to the music when I realize its about a school shooting.  Also, the song What It Means has some of my favorite lyrics...

Astrophysics at our fingertips
And we're standing at the summit
And some man with a joystick
Lands a rocket on a comet
We're living in an age
Where limitations are forgotten
The outer edges move and dazzle us
But the core is something rotten
And we're standing on the precipice
Of prejudice and fear
We trust science just as long
As it tells us what we want to hear
We want our truths all fair and balanced
As long as our notions lie within it

7. Run the Jewels - Run the Jewels 3

The definition of bangers.  This is loud and aggressive rap while also being intelligent.  They are the only ones that make a sound like this.  I have been slower to like them than most but this album is great.

6.  Chance the Rapper - Coloring Book

This is one clever and positive man.  He goes in a difference direction than most and is original.  Every song has meaning and more layers than you initially think.

5.  Sturgill Simpson - A Sailor's Guide to Earth

Sturgill has such a badass voice.  He makes everything sound cool.  After making an album about tripping out on weird drugs why not make one full of life advice to your child?  I also really dig him embracing a full band sound.  Apparently he had this album for a bit but just didn't feel like releasing it for a few months.

4. Junius Meyvant - Floating Harmonies

Why not a singer from Iceland on here? Junius also uses a lot of horns and full band type sound.  It is fun, refreshing and just plain enjoyable to float along with.

3. A Tribe Called Quest - We Got it From Here...Thank You 4 Your Service

ATCQ are so good and despite the time between albums they didn't lose a step.  Also love the beats on this album.

2.  Bon Iver - 22, Million

This album didn't get nearly the hype of his last one as he went even weirder in sound and lyrics but I love it.  As I said before I listen more to the music and not so much to the lyrics and this album works perfectly for that.  I have no idea what any of the songs are about and I don't want to.  Each listen it means something different.  While the sounds got stranger and more random they somehow come together perfectly.  A great night time album.

1. Frightened Rabbit - Painting of a Panic Attack

Sad pants rock? Perfect for 2016.  This year has been a bit of a rough one with many people left asking a lot of questions of how did we get here and where do we go now.  This is a good album to listen to while thinking those thoughts.  This was produced by Aaron Dessner and I really like his influence giving it some of that National sound.

Ok, there you go.  My top 10.

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