Best Music of 2017
But that list is made up of favorite songs and as we all know, albums are very different animals. Albums are like novels. A great album is one you can put on and listen to beginning to end and never get tired of it. I've done the hard task of choosing my favorite albums of the year below and including my reasoning for eleven of them. I hope you find something you love to listen to on the playlist. Here's to 2018 being another great year of music.
My favorite songs of the year--all 75 of them:
And, my favorite albums of the year:
producers, Teddy Thompson) but I also love it because it perfectly captures the tone of these dark days when we are so often trying to make sense of what's happening to our country and trying to find the light. The songs have been perfectly chosen and these sisters sing together in ways that can tear you down and lift you up all at the same time. I love everything about this record. I also love this short film about the album that was done by Bitter Southerner, so please check it out. And you also will want to see the sisters covering my favorite Tom Petty song, which can't even be ruined by that one asshole who won't stop talking (pardon my language, but there's always that one asshole at a live show who thinks everybody cares about hearing him talk as loudly as possible, isn't there? People who talk at live shows and movies need to be tarred and feathered. Just sayin'.)
title track, "Any Party", "Century" (most interesting video of the year), or any song on the album. Also, if you ever get a chance to see her live, do it. You'll see a true musical genius on stage who will make everyone in the room feel her deep love for music.
Cumberland Gap," which perfectly captures this moment in Appalachia, "Anxiety," which perfectly captures, well, anxiety. There's "If We Were Vampires," which is one of the best love songs I've ever heard. I dare you to listen to it closely and not get a knot in your throat. Song after song, Isbell is at the top of his form here, I think, and I love this whole record.
Dirty Rain", "Blood Hunters" (in a "Stranger Things" inspired video). Personal favorite: "Better Way".
Oh La La" I'll give you a dollar. If you can listen to "Clouds (Song for John)" without eventually singing along, I'll give you another one. Not really. But you get my point. You'll also want to check out this NPR article about the record.
link. Favorite tracks: Title song, "Never in My Wildest Dreams", "Malibu Man", "Shine On Me", "Stand By My Girl".
Hungry Ghost" , "Living in the City".
Dreams Don't Come True", "High School", "Only Blood", "Bless My Heart"...well, I could go on but I'd end up naming every song on the album. Give her a listen. Instead of adopting an "if you can't beat them join them", Presley has instead decided that since the country establishment won't accept her she'll just flip them a defiant middle finger (listen to the angry and hilarious song "Country" for proof of that). This coal miner's daughter native of Beauty, Kentucky is a powerhouse. So is this album.
"It Don't Suit Me (Like Before)" and "Sallisaw Blue".
Should've Been Me," which is my favorite song of the year, period, with a deeply moving video. May wrote the song during the demise of a serious relationship while being fed up by legislators who refused to give women's issues the respect they deserve. By the time the song had been recorded it had also become a commentary on the national conversation surrounding the elevation of men who brag about sexual assault yet get voted into the highest offices of power anyway. Watch the video, please, and also give "Call Me" a listen while you're at it.
Thank you, and happy listening.