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Top 25 Albums Of 2017

December 6, 2017

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Here are the albums I listened to the most this year.  Enjoy.

25) Alvvays – Antisocialites

Antisocialites is a catchy, occasionally infectious collection of tunes from Alvvays.  Definitely a worthy follow-up to their self titled debut.

24) Julien Baker – Turn Out The Lights

Julien Baker’s Turn Out The Lights isn’t exactly an easy listen, but it’s worth the effort.

23) Wolf Parade – Cry Cry Cry

Cry Cry Cry might be my favorite Wolf Parade album.

22) Growl – Won’t You

Austin’s own Growl really hit a home run with the indie pop-leaning Won’t You.

21) Alex Lahey – I Love You Like A Brother

Alex Lahey is an anthem-making machine.

20) Molly Burch – Please Be Mine

Please Be Mine is proof that Molly Burch is one of Austin’s best artists.

19) The Courtneys – The Courtneys II

The Courtneys sophomore effort has a whole slew of very catchy tracks.

18) SZA – Ctrl

SZA’s Ctrl is one of the best R&B albums I’ve heard in a long time.

17) White Reaper – The World’s Best American Band

White Reaper always rip it up.  The World’s Best American Band is their most complete effort to date.

16) Taylor Swift – Reputation

Reputation is no 1989, but it is a super solid effort.  Few have hooks like Taylor Swift.

15) LCD Soundsystem – American Dream

American Dream is a really nice comeback album for LCD Soundsystem.

14) Walker Lukens – Tell It To The Judge

The Jim Eno-produced Tell It To The Judge is one of my favorite albums to come out of Austin in 2017.  Nicely done, Walker Lukens.

13) The xx – I See You

Admittedly, I wasn’t a big fan of The xx’s I See You when I first heard it, but I came around (real hard) after experiencing the songs live.

12) Mount Eerie – A Crow Looked At Me

Mount Eerie’s A Crow Looked At Me is a devastating album.  I can’t even believe I listened to it as much as I did this year.  Guess that just goes to show how well done it is.

11) Hazel English – Just Give In/Never Going Home

I got lost in Hazel English’s hazy Just Give In/Never Going Home quite a lot in 2017.

10) Japanese Breakfast – Soft Sounds From Another Planet

Soft Sounds From Another Planet is so fantastic that it has made me a Japanese Breakfast fan forever.

09) Spoon – Hot Thoughts

Hot Thoughts is Spoon not giving a whole lot of fucks, and I like it alot.

08) Jay Som – Everybody Works

I don’t do any sort of “best new artist” award here at SOTO, but if I did it would go to Jay Som for the excellent Everybody Works.

07) Gang Of Youths – Go Farther In Lightness

I just recently (maybe a month ago) got into Gang Of Youths’ Go Farther In The Lightness, but it’s had such an big impact on me that I had to give it a high spot on this list.  Just amazing stuff.

06) Waxahatchee – Out In The Storm

If I were sorting this list by number of play-throughs, Waxahatchee’s Out In The Storm would probably land in the top spot.  It’s such a great indie rock album.

05) St. Vincent – Masseducation

Somehow Masseducation is simultaneously St. Vincent’s weirdest and most accessible album.  I love it.

04) The War On Drugs – A Deeper Understanding

The War On Drugs just keep getting better and better.  A Deeper Understanding is a real attention-grabber.

03) Protomartyr – Relatives In Descent

Protomartyr dialed back the intensity just a bit for Relatives In Descent, and it resulted in an album that I have yet to get enough of.

02) Kendrick Lamar – DAMN.

Come on.  It’s Kendrick Lamar.  This guy is currently unstoppable.

01) The National – Sleep Well Beast

I’ve always liked, not loved The National, so it’s wild to me that their Sleep Well Beast ended up being my favorite album of 2017.  Here I am though, declaring all my love for it.  If you haven’t spent any time with it, be sure you fix that real fast.  It’s one of those efforts that just swallows you up whole.

For the heck of it, here are five albums that almost made my Top 25.

Bully – Losing
Conor Oberst – Salutations
Do Make Say Think – Stubborn Persistent Illusions
Jay-Z – 4:44
Why? – Moh Lhean

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Show Of The Week

September 13, 2017


There are a lot of great touring acts in town this week – Tei Shi, Broncho, GoldLink, Ben Folds – but the one that I think has to be tagged as must-see is Japanese Breakfast.  I really dig their 2017 release, Soft Sounds From Another Planet, and I can only imagine that its variety of rad sounds (shoegaze, indie rock, electronic) will make for a great evening.  Be at Barracuda this Friday.

Tix are $12 in advance of the show, $14 the day of.  Mannequin Pussy and The Spirit Of The Beehive will open.

BONUS Show Recommendations:

- Hidden Ritual, So Pitted, Pataphysics, Slugbug at The Electric Church
- The Slants, BLXPLTN at the Mohawk
- Otis Wilkins (of Otis the Destroyer), Acey Monaro (of Go Fever), Little Mazarn at Austin Beer Garden Brewing Co.
- Tei Shi at Stubb’s

- Quicksand, No Joy at the Mohawk
- Ben Ottewell (of Gomez), Jonathan Terrell at The Sidewinder
- John Wesley Coleman III at Austin Beer Garden Brewing Co.
- She Sir, The Harms, Semihelix, Tusk Her-Super Psych Pillow Fight at The Swan Dive
- Lance Herbstrong, BUHU, Canvas People, The Human Circuit at Empire Control Room
- Shakey Graves, Parker Milsap at ACL Live at the Moody Theater

- Kevin Morby, Shannon Lay at the Mohawk
- Broncho, Billy Changer, Growl at Barracuda
- Big Bill, Shivery Shakes, Sleeping Lessons, Scenery, Brother Sports at Cheer Up Charlies
- Young Tongue, Bantam Foxes, Batty Jr., Oh My Love at The Swan Dive
- GoldLink at Come and Take It Live

- Open Mike Eagle, Sammus at Barracuda
- Ben Folds – Paper Airplane Request Tour at Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheater

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