Saturday, 30 December 2017

A Brief Look Back - Albums of the Year

A couple of weeks ago, I dragged my tired old bones off to catch the great Richard Dawson in concert. Long suffering readers of this blog will know just how many years I've waited to witness Dawson treading the boards and I'm delighted to report that he not only lived up to, but exceeded all expectations. 'Peasant' is far and away my favourite new LP of 2017 and this was easily the best gig I've seen all year. Claustrophobic medieval avant-garde folk-noir never sounded so good.

As I've mentioned previously, heavy work commitments have left me with no time to knock out any kind of in depth year-end review - indeed, I'm actually typing this on Xmas Day, my first full day off for two weeks and my last until January 7th 2018! So here, off the top of my head and in no particular order, are a few of the other albums that have rocked my world in 2017.

Flotation Toy Warning - The Machine That Made Us
Sleaford Mods - English Tapas
Davy Kehoe - Short Passing Game
Alasdair Roberts - Pangs
Peter Perrett - How the West Was Won
Low Chimes - Illumine
Michael Head - Adiós Señor Pussycat
Mark Lanegan - Gargoyle
Bonnie Prince Billy - Best Troubadour
Cz101 - 100 Bar Blues
Causa Sui - Vibraciones Doradas
Joshua Abrams - Simultonality
The Prophet Hens - The Wonderful Shapes of Back Door Keys (a 2016 LP, released in Europe this year)
The Myrrors - Hasta La Victoria
Hollow Everdaze - Cartoons
Brix & the Extricated - Part 2
The Granite Shore - Suspended Second
Sparks - Hippopotamus
Kamasi Washington - Harmony of Difference
Robert Plant - Carry Fire
Colter Wall - s/t
Girl Ray - Earl Grey
Pugwash - Silverlake
Four Tet - New Energy
Idles - Brutalism
Jane Weaver - Modern Kosmology
Jake Xerxes Fussell - What In The Natural World
Heron Oblivion - The Chapel
Moon Duo - Occult Architecture 1 & 2
Holly Macve - Golden Eagle
Sacred Paws - Strike a Match
Terry - Remember Terry
Big Blood - The Daughters Union (this would've been my favourite were it not for Richard Dawson)
Nadine Shah - Holiday Destination
Micah P Hinson - Presents the Holy Strangers
Omni - Multi-Task
This is the Kit - Moonshine Freeze

Several of these records (and no doubt some of the others I've forgotten to include) were introduced to me by one or more of my esteemed blogging chums, for which I can never thank you enough. Over the past couple of years I've noticed that I'm falling ever further behind when it comes to contemporary releases, as reissues and new-old discoveries take up more and more of my attention. In 2017, for instance, three of my most played albums have been 'Bright Phoebus' by Lal & Mike Waterson, the Bob Dylan 'Trouble No More' box set and the marvellous Tony Williams Lifetime 'Live in New York', recorded in 1969, but issued for the first time this year on Hi Hat Records. There just aren't enough hours in the day. 'Time....' to quote the great John Cooper Clarke, '....the old enemy on the wrist'.

I'm off to enjoy another festive glass of wine, so I'll stop waffling and take this opportunity to wish one and all a happy, safe and peaceful 2018.


Ramone666 said...

Guess I have to check out that Richard Dawson album forthwith...
Happy new year, Swede!

Swiss Adam said...

A good read Swede.

Echorich said...

A festive and warm New Year's Eve to you Swede! Great list of albums and thank you for being one of the influences on my music listening in 2017...I look forward to the adventures in sound that 2018 will bring.

Walter said...

Once again great words and thank you for so much inspiration in music this year. Wish you a great New Year's Eve and a good start into 2018 Swede

John Medd said...

It sounds like you're up against it. I hope 2018 brings a level of much needed calmness to your life.

Brian said...

So many great albums here, and many of them introduced to me by you this year. A big thanks for that. Take care of yourself. Can’t wait to see what you cook up in 2018.

C said...

Great to see Jane Weaver pop up on so many end of year lists. Good luck with the workload and hope you'll get more of a break soon - you deserve it. Meanwhile, a very happy New Year to you and Mrs S!

Alyson said...

It will come as no surprise to you that I haven't heard of many of these artists/albums but visiting your/some of the other blogs, at least keeps me somewhat in the loop.

A Happy New Year to you and Mrs S - Hope the workload levels out to manageable proportions in 2018!

Anonymous said...

All the best for the New Year to you and Mrs. S!

Anonymous said...

It's a fucking good list mate.

Rol said...

Ha - I'm always amused when I see a year end list on which I own absolutely none of the records. (Although a few of them are on my Wants List.)

Happy New Year, Swede - don't work too hard!

Dirk said...

Swede, a very happy 2018 to you and the Missus also from my side: take good care and stay healthy!

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