The ever knowledgeable Johnny Feeney returns to the blog once again, to share an eclectic selection of his favourite records from the year so far.
Always insightful and interesting, his guest posts always add an extra flavour the blog and I for one look forward to reading them – surely I’m not alone?
A huge thanks to Johnny as always, and on that note, I’ll leave you in his very capable hands.
10. Stealing Sheep – ‘Not Real’
The second album from Liverpool’s Stealing Sheep is awash with quirky, catchy psych-folk/pop songs with a habit of having disconcerting false endings to continually keep you on your toes while listening.
09. Slaves – ‘Are You Satisfied?’
While there’s no shortage of two-piece rock bands around at the moment, Slaves’ debut album delivers enough memorable tunes with primitive, meaty hooks and thundering drums to stand out from the crowd.
08. Thee Oh Sees – ‘Mutilator Defeated At Last’
With only 9 songs and 33 minutes long, San Francisco’s ultra-prolific Thee Oh Sees’ ninth album in seven years is a brilliant, brief blast of fuzzy, distorted psych/garage rock.
07. Viet Cong – ‘Viet Cong’
The Canadian drone-rockers’ self-titled debut album is hypnotic, repetitive and bleak but absolutely compelling. Expect stuttering, industrial beats and mazing guitars.
06. Jamie XX – ‘In Colour’
Jamie XX’s debut solo album comprises of introspective dance tracks with the ability to regularly stop you in your tracks with moments of startling beauty. With plenty of guest appearances and samples, ‘In Colour’ runs the gamut of UK club culture from house to garage without ever losing focus.
05. Nadine Shah – ‘Fast Food’
The second album from Newcastle’s Nadine Shah is a sombre affair of dark, brooding alt-rock. Shah’s deep, sultry voice is captivating while the songs are propelled by sinister, needling guitars and languid percussion.
04. Ezra Furman – ‘Perpetual Motion People’
Furman’s third solo album is eccentric, upbeat indie rock/pop heavily influenced by Spector-era 60’s pop and doo-wop. Incredibly infectious with some fantastic pop songs, Furman’s joyous tunes have the ability to put an added spring in your step.
03. Django Django – ‘Born Under Saturn’
Thankfully there’s no trace of the dreaded sophomore slump on Django Django’s second album. It feels almost like a tale of two halves – the first half is heavy on electronics and concentrates on the cosmos, while the second half showcases the band’s unique surf-rock guitars and layered harmonies.
02. Father John Misty – ‘I Love You, Honeybear’
The second album from former Fleet Foxes drummer J Tillman is a dazzling roller-coaster ride of emotions. Wonderfully produced and musically uplifting folk/Americana, Tillman’s cutting lyrics have the ability to consistently knock you to the floor.
01. Tame Impala – ‘Currents’
The Perth psych-rockers’ third studio album can hardly be labelled psych-rock there are so few guitars on here. What Kevin Parker and co have created though are synth-heavy, impossibly dreamy tunes that can take bits of mundane everyday life such as going to the dry cleaners and bumping into an ex and turn them into something wonky and wonderful. Spellbinding psychedelia at its very best.