2018 has been a wonderful year for album releases. Each month saw much anticipated records coming to our ears. Below is a list of our writers’ favourite records of the year, each having special and unique qualities which have enabled them to become fan favourites since their inception. We have listed our ‘Album Of The Year,’ alongside five more favourites released in 2018.
Album Of The Year: The Blinders – Columbia
When thinking of The Blinders, words such as relevant, intense, raw and unique come to mind. ‘Columbia,’ the Doncaster band’s debut outing, is a mish-mash of imagery, political commentary and dystopian guitar riffs. The album is sublime and as a result sees itself sitting top of our ‘Album Of The Year’ list.
2018 has been quite something for the trio. On and off the stage they have gone from strength to strength. With a fan base which grows by the hour and a whole list of industry supported, The Blinders are well placed to go far. ‘Columbia’ is a sign of intent, like a light beam which shines out across the night sky.
‘Columbia’ sits atop our list as it is a unique body of works. In times of political turmoil, the band’s mix of sound is otherworldly. Their guitar riffs and catchy drum beats mix with outspoken lyrics to create messages of uprising, revolution, solidarity and non conformity. The Blinders want a better world, ‘Columbia’ is just the beginning.
Best Tracks: ‘Gotta Get Through,’ ‘Brave New World,’ ‘I Can’t Breathe Blues’
Our 2018 Favourites:
Goat Girl – Goat Girl
The South London music scene has grown in stature over recent years, Goat Girl lead a charge of strong minded, vocal and relevant bands formed in the region. Following a string of impressive single releases, their self titled, debut release in 2018 was met with much critical acclaim. Gritty and hard working, Goat Girl’s sound holds daunting, meaningful elements of the country’s political and social issues. It is a relevant commentary, they may as well be flag bearers for an entire generation of artistic youths.
Best Tracks: ‘Viper Fish,’ ‘The Man,’ ‘Country Sleaze’
Arctic Monkeys – Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino
Yet another change in musical direction, 2018s ‘Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino’ almost tore fans of the Sheffield formed band into two. Those with an eagle ear heralded it as one of their greatest albums to date, for good reason. With dystopian riffs and elegant, concerning lyricism, Turner and co have created a commentary of modern life and all of its downfalls.
Best Tracks: ‘One Point Perspective,’ ‘Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino,’ ‘Four Out Of Five’
The Orielles – Silver Dollar Moment
Some might say that guitar music is now devoid of creativity, that everything has been done. To those people, I urge them to listen to The Orielles’ ‘Silver Dollar Moment.’ It is as innovative and impressive as any debut album is going to get! In a list dominated by debut albums, it is clear that new waves of guitar music will always come and go, the Halifax band are the epitome of such a statement.
Best Tracks: ‘Old Stuff New Glass,’ ‘Sunflower Seeds,’ ‘Snaps’
Starcrawler – Starcrawler
In your face LA rock and roll at its best. What Starcrawler lack in age and experience they make up for in raw talent. Arrow De Wilde are impressive, their self titled album is one of the best debuts of the decade. A collection of energetic tracks ridden with heavy guitar riffs best listened to in the life setting. They’re destined for the top!
Best Tracks: ‘I Love LA,’ ‘Pussy Tower,’ ‘Different Angles’
Shame – Songs of Praise
‘Songs of Praise’ is not just raw and impressive, but it boasts a level of wit and relevant lyricism destined to take them to the top. The London based band have constantly stretched opinion whether it be through track or social media presence, for all the right reasons no less. In a year where Brexit, the Conservative Party and neoliberal policies dominate the news sphere, Shame act as true spokespeople for a generation of youths.
Best Tracks: ‘Concrete,’ ‘One Rizla,’ ‘Gold Hole’
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