Most Listened to Albums of 2016

If you know me, you know I have to be listening to music 24-7. My music taste is predominately indie and alternative, so the reviews I do will be on artists from that genre. These are a few the albums that I’ve been playing the most so far this year. I’ll include some thoughts and favorite songs.

  • Mac Demarco: Salad Days Demos
    • Review: Although the Salad Days album is arguably one of the best indie records ever, the Demo version is super overlooked. The music is more raw and its a lot easier to pay attention solely to the groovy guitar riffs and quirky warped, scratchy vinyl sound that Mac has acquired as his own throughout his career. If you’re familiar to Mac’s older music, like his album “Rock and Roll Night Club” which are tracks featuring low-pitched vocals and slowed down DJ skits, Salad Days is such a different sound. The Demos sound so much more experimental and really show off his instrumental skills, not to mention his creative lyrical base. It brings us back to a sort of psychedelic (good drug trip, not bad) 70s sound.
    • Favorite Tracks:
      • track 7: Pepperoni Playboy
      • track 10: Go Easy
      • track 8: Brother
      • track 3: Ken The Wolf Boy

leftsides (mac demarco)

  • Leif Vollebekk: North Americana
    • Review: Leif Vollebekk is an artist that I just recently discovered earlier this year, and I’m so happy that I did. This album is one of those that there isn’t one song that you can say you dislike. I can’t put my finger on my favorite aspect of the album, so I’ll just name them all. One is that each song sounds sort of like a one take. It’s usually the little things that catch my attention in music. In some of his songs, he speaks in the beginning and it feels like you’re sitting in a dimmed coffee shop late at night, watching him play on a stool. You can hear him swallow in between words and the finger picking and strumming of the acoustic guitar sounds like each chord is its own song because they’re so carefully played. The rasp of his voice paired with the way he enunciates each word is amazing. I feel like his lyrics were originally journal entries, poems or stories before the music was placed behind them. This was an impressive sophomore album for Vollebekk following his first record, “Inland“, which is also a favorite of mine.
    • Favorite Tracks:
      • track 2: Off the Main Drag
      • track 5: At the End of the Line
      • track 1: Southern United States
      • track 6: Takk Sömuleiðisleftsides blog (leif vollebekk)
  • Blind Pilot: 3 Rounds and a Sound
    •  Review: This album from 2009 is the band’s first album and one of my all time favorites. The album as a whole is super mellow, and they’re from Portland, Oregon so they’re automatically from a cool music scene. The front man, Israel Nebecker’s voice is so so beautiful and the lyrics seem to be so carefully written to grasp the meaning perfectly. The melody of each song will get so stuck in your head, fit perfectly in any situation, and if you’re a guitar player (or desperately trying to teach yourself like me), I would suggest any song off of this album to learn.
    • Favorite Tracks:
      • track 5: One Red Thread
      • track 4: Poor Boy
      • track 8: I Buried a Bone
      • track 2: The Story I Hearda0fc070e692161d09c222f57555c7651.640x640x1
  • Dave Matthews: Crash
    • Review: Dave Mathews Band, formed in Charlottesville, Virginia, is the best jam band there is. Crash, from 1996 is probably my favorite album of his. I grew up listening to him, and haven’t stopped. The band (including the drummer, a saxophonist, a trumpet player, a guitarist, a violinist, and a bass player) put together each song as a work of art and its insane. Seeing them live was one of my favorite concerts that I’ve ever been to because each member’s full energy is put into each song, making it a sick experience. In short, if you have any sort of appreciation for music, you’ll enjoy listening to not only this album, but all of them.
    • Favorite tracks:
      • track 3: Crash into Me
      • track 8: Let You Down
      • track 9: Lie in Our Graves
      • track 4: #41


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