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Top 25 Albums Of 2016

December 12, 2016

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Alright friends, here’s my full album list.  Unlike my Top 50 Songs of 2016, there are Austin acts here. As always, this isn’t some sort of “critical” list, it’s just the albums that I jammed the most this year.  Enjoy.

PS – Here’s a playlist of all the albums on Spotify!

25) Deftones – Gore

While I’ve always liked the Deftones, I haven’t legit loved an album of theirs since 2000′s PonyGore wrapped me up though – it’s really well crafted and features some great songs.  I went back to it often in 2016.

24) Nothing – Tired Of Tomorrow

At first I was slightly let down by Nothing’s sophomore effort, but after I spent some quality time with it I became pretty damn attached.  If you’re into shoegaze, then you need to listen to Tired Of Tomorrow.

23) Explosions In The Sky – The Wilderness

I love me some Explosions In The Sky.  By the way, my instrumental album rankings for 2016 go like this: 1) EITS’ The Wilderness, 2) Russian Circles’ Guidance and then 3) Mono’s Requiem For Hell.

22) Tancred – Out Of The Garden

There isn’t a song on Tancred’s Out Of The Garden that isn’t infectious.  Definitely a must-listen for fans of 90s indie/pop rock.

21) Thao And The Get Down Stay Down – A Man Alive

Thao continues to be one of my favorite singer/songwriters of all time.  I just connect with everything she churns out.

20) Bleached – Welcome The Worms

Bleached took a step away from surf rock on Welcome The Worms and it turned out to be a great move for them.  This album is so energetic.

19) Yung – A Youthful Dream

This kid – 22-year-old Mikkel Holm Silkjær – out of Denmark really impressed me with his debut as YungA Youthful Dream is noisy in all of the right ways.

18) A Giant Dog – Pile

Austin’s very own A Giant Dog have long been a favorite of mine, so I love that they totally crushed it on Pile, their debut for Merge Records.

17) Savages – Adore Life

I was obsessed with Savages’ Adore Life for the first few months of the year.  Eventually I was able to wiggle myself out of its intense pull, mostly.

16) Preoccupations – Self Titled

Just in case you forgot, Viet Cong is now Preoccupations.  In regards to their self titled effort, I love that the majority of it sounds like Interpol on artsy steroids.

15) Cross Record – Wabi Sabi

Wabi Sabi is a rather ethereal effort from Cross Record, a newer band out of Austin.  The whole thing is really damn good and it totally turned me into a big fan of theirs.

14) The Hotelier – Goodness

For those of you that love anthemic rock (with a dash of emo on top), here’s Goodness from The Hotelier.  I passionately rocked this album a lot in my car.

13) Frankie Cosmos – Next Thing

There isn’t a single song on Frankie Cosmos’ Next Thing that isn’t soaked in sincerity.  She has one of those voices that makes everything feel so very genuine.

12) Terry Malts – Lost At The Party

Any time Terry Malts put out an album, you can count on it being high up on my list.  They write super catchy stuff and in general are reliably awesome.

11) Cymbals Eat Guitars – Pretty Years

Pretty Years is one hell of an album.  At one point will the masses open up to Cymbals Eat Guitars?  Those guys should be playing huge rooms.

10) White Denim – Stiff

Stiff is another high quality set of jams from White Denim.  They remain a really big favorite of mine.

09) Whitney – Light Upon The Lake

Light Upon The Lake is quite possibly the most accessible album that I came across this year.  Seriously, there’s not a single track on Whitney’s debut that isn’t instantly likeable.

08) Basketball Shorts – Hot And Ready

Hot And Ready from Austin’s Basketball Shorts was a big go-to for me in 2016.  It’s 20-ish minutes of pop punk perfection.

07) Angel Olsen – My Woman

My Woman made me go from liking Angel Olsen to loving her.  What a next level effort.

06) Chance The Rapper – Coloring Book

For a while there, I only listened to Chance The Rapper’s Coloring Book.  It’s an inspired, energetic effort that features a lot of great songwriting.  It’ll be interesting to see where he goes from here.

05) Kanye West – The Life Of Pablo

Kanye’s The Life Of Pablo is a manic listen with a lot of layers.  He sure does have a lot going on in his head.

04) The Coathangers – Nosebleed Weekend

The Coathangers really hit a home run with Nosebleed Weekend.  It has a ton of great hooks and just the right amount of snarl.

03) Frank Ocean – Blonde

Frank Ocean’s Blonde is a hypnotic experience.  I’m not even sure how often I’ve listened to the entire thing after only intending to revisit one particular song.

02) Car Seat Headrest – Teens In Denial

They may not sound alike at all, but Car Seat Headrest’s Teens In Denials is like Frank Ocean’s Blonde – they’re both really hypnotic listens.  That Will Toledo is one hell of a songwriter.

01) White Lung – Paradise

Of all the EPs and LPs I listened to 2016, White Lung’s Paradise is the one that I jammed the most.  It’s loud and heavy and the best modern rock album I’ve come across in years. Congrats to the band for nailing it and grabbing the top spot on my list.

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Top 50 Songs Of 2016: Part 4

December 1, 2016

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And the list continues on.  Enjoy.

Part 1 is HERE.
Part 2 is HERE.
Part 3 is HERE.

PS – I got a ton of take down notices, so you’ll have to listen via Spotify.

20)  :Thee Oh Seees – Plastic Plant:  Out of all the music that Thee Oh Sees released in 2016 (two albums worth, to be exact), this track is my favorite.  Total jam.

19)  :King Khan – Never Hold On:  The normally noisy King Khan contributed this gem to the soundtrack for The Invaders.  He should do more slow burners.

18)  :Hazel English – Make It Better:  Here’s one that I’ve been glued to since I first heart it.  There’s just something hypnotic about Hazel English.

17)  :Chook Race – Sometimes:  If you’re all about jangly pop, then this one from Chook Race is a must-listen for you.

16)  :Tangerine – Sunset:  This infectious pop tune from Tangerine is totally something that more people should have been yammering about in 2016.

15)  :Terry Malts – Used To Be:  I’ve jammed the hell out of this Terry Malts song.  Those guys sure know how to write a hook.

14)  :Lucy Dacus – I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore:  I believe this one from Lucy Dacus was actually put out in late 2015, but I didn’t catch it until the re-release this year.  So it counts!  Anyhow, it’s a stellar track that drips with sincerity.

13)  :Car Seat Headrest – Does It Feel Good (To Say Goodbye):  This song by Car Seat Headrest is from the soundtrack for a short film called Loudini.  It makes me want so sit on a porch somewhere with a bottle of whiskey.

12)  :Nothing – ACD (Abscessive Compulsive Disorder):  If you still need to get in some quality shoegazing before 2016 fully comes to a close, I highly recommend doing it with this Nothing song blasting in your headphones.

11)  :Fujiya And Miyagi – Serotonin Rushes:  You’re dead if you can listen to this Fujiya And Miyagi track and not want to dance or at least smile.

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Nothing

April 14, 2016

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Good news!  We’re now only a month away from the release of Nothing’s new album, Tired of Tomorrow.  Every track put out so far (they’re all down below) has been a spectacular slice of 90s-enthused shoegaze, and I’ll be really surprised if the LP isn’t great.  Jump on the bandwagon, if you haven’t already.  Enjoy.

:Nothing – ACD (Abscessive Compulsive Disorder):

Tired of Tomorrow is due out May 13 via Relapse Records.  You’ll be able to see the band at Sidewinder on June 28.

Bonus Videos:

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Quickdraw: White Lung, Nothing, Colleen Green, Moonface And Siinai, Haybaby

April 4, 2016

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Music!  Enjoy.

:White Lung – Kiss Me When I Bleed:  I’m really loving White Lung these days (check out their other recently released single here).  Their decision to move to a cleaner, more modern sound was smart.  Paradise is due out May 6 via Domino.  See the band at Sidewinder on July 13.

:Nothing – Eaten By Worms:  ”The song is very much about being in pain and dancing with the feverish curiosity of whether this life is anymore significant then what comes after or what came before. It’s very much about letting go.” – Domenic Palermo of Nothing.  Well there’s that.  Now take this slow burner and have a great Monday!  Tired Of Tomorrow is due out May 13 via Relapse.  See the band at Sidewinder on June 28.

:Colleen Green – Between The Lines:  Colleen Green has a new EP that she’s describing as being “Ramones-Core”.  I guess I hear that here?  Either way, I’m into it.  Colleen’s self titled EP will be out May 13 via Infinity Cat.

:Moonface and Siinai – Risto’s Riff:  Moonface (aka Spencer Krug from Wolf Parade) has teamed up with Finland’s own Siinai for a new full length.  This first single is a legit rocker, and I can’t wait to hear whatever else the two acts have cooked up.  My Best Human face is due out June 3 via Jagjaguwar.

:Haybaby – Joke-Rope:  Here’s a rad new one from Haybaby.  The more I listen to it, the more I fall in love with frontwoman Leslie Hong’s moody voice.  The Blood Harvest EP is due out April 29 via Tiny Engines.

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Quickdraw: White Lung, Nothing, Summer Cannibals, Parquet Courts, Wire

February 29, 2016

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Music!  Enjoy.

:White Lung – Hungry:  This new White Lung single weirded me out at first.  They’re usually so fierce, and this doesn’t even kind of make me feel like they want to burn down my house.  A cleaned up sound does fit them well though.  Paradise is due out May 6 via Domino.

:Nothing – Vertigo Flowers:  There’s a big wall of guitars on display here, and I’m all about it.  Nothing’s sophomore LP will definitely be a year-end favorite of mind if it has more of the same.  Tired Of Tomorrow is due out May 13 via Relapse.

:Summer Cannibals – Go Home:  Summer Cannibals’ front woman Jessica Boudreaux is quickly becoming a favorite of mine.  She’s just got a great voice (it’s kind of like a more punk rock version of Alicia Bognanno from Bully).  Full Of It is due out May 27 via Kill Rock Stars.

:Parquet Courts – Berlin Got Blurry:  “Nothing lasts but nearly everything lingers in life.”  What a line.  On another note, this is easily one of Parquet Courts most accessible tracks.  Human Performance is due out April 8 via Rough Trade.  The band will play Levitation in April/May.

:Wire – Nocturnal Koreans:  You have to give it up to Wire for the way they’re still trucking along and churning out quality tunes.  They started in 1976!  Nocturnal Koreans is due out April 29 via Pinkflag.

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Stream This

November 21, 2014

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From the depths of the SOTO inbox, I present to you your weekly serving of the latest and greatest album streams and videos.  Enjoy.

FULL ALBUM STREAMS

Please note that the majority of the streams expire as soon as the albums are released, so don’t wait too long to check them out.

ALBUM OF THE WEEK ➡ Ariel Pink – Pom Pom

Two Inch Astronaut – Foulbrood
Flake Music – When You Land Here, It’s Time To Return
Your Old Droog – Self Titled
Gala Drop – II
September Girls – Veneer EP
Squrl – EP #3
Sunbeam Sound Machine – Wonderer
Cursive – The Ugly Organ (Deluxe Edition)

MUSIC VIDEOS

⬆ VIDEO OF THE WEEK ⬆
Run The Jewels

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Quickdraw: Trail Of Dead, Diarrhea Planet, Shivery Shakes, Viet Cong, Nothing

October 16, 2014

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Music!  Enjoy.

:And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead – A Million Random Digits:  Just last week I noted that the upcoming Trail Of Dead album could be a really good one, but now there’s this second single and I’m just ready to say that it for sure will be.  I haven’t heard the band sound this great since 2009′s The Century of Self.  Seek out IX when it gets released on November 11 via Superball.

:Diarrhea Planet – Bamboo Curtain:  While I tend to prefer my Diarrhea Planet dialed all the way to 11, their “slower” tunes are far from bad.  Case in point, this 90s-esque pop rock tune that’s voiced by drummer Casey Weissbuch.  The Aliens In The Outfield EP is due out November 18 via Infinity Cat.

:Shivery Shakes – Recurring Dreams:  Austin’s own Shivery Shakes will soon release their debut full length, and I’m sure it’s going to be a wonderfully breezy, easily accessible pop effort.  If you haven’t already, make a note about them.  Three Waves & A Shake is due out on October 21 via Austin Town Hall/Punctum.

:Viet Cong – Continental Shelf:  If you’re like me and have been a little slow to fully come around on Viet Cong, then this song is going to completely change that.  It’s a fantastically crafted piece that I can’t seem to take off of repeat.  The band will release their self titled album on January 20 via Jagjaguwar.

:Nothing – July The Fourth:  About midway through my first listen of this shoegazey effort I couldn’t help but notice that Nothing sound like a more raw version of Whirr.  Then I realized that this track is the flip side of a split 7″ with Whirr.  I should probably go outside or something.  The Whirr/Nothing 7′” is due out November 17 via Run For Cover.

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Stream This

April 4, 2014

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From the depths of the SOTO inbox, I present to you your weekly serving of the latest and greatest album streams and videos.  Enjoy.

FULL ALBUM STREAMS

ALBUM OF THE WEEK ➡ EMA – The Future’s Void

Ghetto Ghouls – Self Titled
Tweens – Self Titled
HighasaKite – Silent Treatment
School Of Language – Old Fears
Off – Wasted Years
Protomartyr – Under Color Of Official Right
Ital Tek – Mega City Industry
Todd Terje – It’s Album Time
Avey Tare – Enter The Slasher House
Little Racer – Modern Accent EP
SoftSpot – Mass

MUSIC VIDEOS

⬆ VIDEO OF THE WEEK ⬆
Pure X

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Stream This

February 28, 2014

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From the depths of the SOTO inbox, I present to you your weekly serving of the latest and greatest album streams and videos.  Enjoy.

FULL ALBUM STREAMS

ALBUM OF THE WEEK ➡ The Men – Tomorrow’s Hits

Ume – Monuments
The Grand Budapest Hotel – Soundtrack
Eagulls – Self Titled
Trust – Joyland
Posse – Soft Opening
Real Estate – Atlas
Nothing – Guilty Of Everything
Rick Ross – Mastermind
Pharrell – Girl
Frankie Cosmos – Zentropy
Ava Luna – Electric Ballooon
Bart Davenport – Physical World
Roman Remains – Zeal
Wake Owl – The Private World Of Paradise
Dark Mean – Samuel The Phoenix EP
We Are Scientists – TV en Francais

MUSIC VIDEOS

⬆ VIDEO OF THE WEEK ⬆
The Coathangers

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