maandag 30 december 2019
The Top 100 of the 10s, part 2
20. Ghosteen. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds (2019)
Whether this truly is the best album made by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds ever, is something time will have to tell, but at this point in time for me it is. Somehow everything seems to be coming together on this album. His personal loss and sorrow, the power it seems to be giving him creatively, while his loyal sidekick Warren Ellis seems to have pushed all other band members aside and can work nearly exclusively with his band leader. The result is an extremely sad yet so powerful album. Ghosteen is speaking to his dad in volumes it seems, spurring him on.
19. Righteous Kind. Morgan Mecaskey (2012)
In the mid 10s I visited a website regularly I can't even remember the name of as I drifted away from it also. It contained free music from obscure artists, for free. I tried out some regularly and wrote about them. One of the earliest I found there was Morgan Mecaskey, a singer-songwriter from Cleveland, Ohio. Her Righteous Kind EP impressed me so much. And it never took off. In fact I haven't heard new music from her for years. Which is a shame hearing how talented she is. Dear reader, this is one of the must-hear albums on this list, because bands like Muse or Nick Cave find their respective ways to your ears anyhow. Artists like Ms. Mecaskey do not, but should. So go, now!
18. Ultraviolence. Lana Del Rey (2014)
The second album, the one after the big breakthrough, produced by The Black Keys' Dan Auerbach. Two worlds came together and blended like they do not often do. The darkness surrounding Ms. Del Rey connected to the rock world of Mr. Auerbach, without him taking her of her chosen path. They totally seemed to respect each other and morphed, leading to the surprisingly good Ultraviolence.
17. Violeta, Violeta Volume III. Kaizers Orchestra (2012)
And here is the final album. Allow me to be honest here. I haven't got a clue which album is which. All three are so good. If it had been bundled as a three volume album, like in the old days of the 70s or The Clash in 1980 with 'Sandinista', it would have stood even higher probably. Kaizers Orchestra is a band that is sorely missed by me and probably many, many others. But, we have the music. If anything, my feeling tells me Volume 3 is the biggest in sound, the most impressive one.
16. Love Songs For Robots. Patrick Watson (2015)
I never had much going with the music of this Canadian band with the name of its singer. Until this one was released in 2015 and I bought the LP almost immediately. The music is so fleeting, so ethereal. No one can grasp music but if it could this is the kind of music that would be like the proverbial eel in that bucket full of snot. Music that seems meant to escape, music that only touches a person ever so lightly. Music that contains the essence of beauty, eel notwithstanding.
15. Fast Forward. Joe Jackson (2015)
And this is that album by Joe Jackson that brought me back into his fold. When it was released I didn't even bother to listen to it. I left it for what it was, until being polite, as someone sent me the music to listen to, I did early in 2016. The result was a double album entering the home that is being played right up to this day. An album I have a relationship with just like I have with 'Night And Day' and 'Body And Soul'. I do not rank Fast Forward that high, but certainly just below them. Welcome back, Mr. Jackson and what a great show this winter in Paradiso. That is another list though for early next year.
14. I, II, III. Sunday Sun (2012)
Another album that was released as three EPs and then bundled into one release of three cds. Sunday Sun seemed to come out of nowhere and released three EPs in a few months time in 2012. The one containing even more beautiful songs than the other. Full of bright popsongs that sparkle, filled with delightful harmony singing. That breakthrough eluded the band, despite being in the right places and having airplay. On the brink of 2020 Sunday Sun at best is an inactive, at worst an ex-band. Time will tell.
13. Anaani. Cari Cari (2018)
An album from Austria. The only one on this list I can tell you, but what an album it is. Cari Cari is a duo that explores music without acknowledging conventions and barriers. The result is a fresh alternative pop album where the male-female voices bounce off on and the didgeridoo is the mystery instrument of choice. A really and totally unexpected, great album.
12. Remedies. Soup (2017)
The highest listing for an act from Norway. Again thanks to Erwin Zijleman Soup entered my life and made a fantastic impression on me. The well worked out alternative rock, with progrock leanings brings the listener in all sort of states of ecstasy. A lot is going on, themes return, long instrumental interludes, Soup is not afraid to stretch the imagination of its listener. All packaged in one of the most beautiful pieces of artwork as well. Artwork that doesn't stop until the b side of the single accompanying this album has revealed itself. Remedies is a great, imposing and impressive album in more than one way.
11. Uut De Bron. Broeder Dieleman (2015)
Uut De Bron is not your average album. First it is sung in a dialect of the Dutch language I do not hear every day, Zeeuws-Flemish. The music on the album veers from alternative folk, to field recordings of people, nature, the sea and back. As such it makes Uut De Bron a total work of art including oral history about times gone by, when people were still having apparitions inspiring them to give their lives to the church. Broeder Dieleman convinced me totally with this album. An album for those times when you can afford to do nothing else but listen to it all, excluding the world. Just me and my headphones. Uut De Bron indeed.