2018: Top Ten Albums

I obviously haven’t listened to every album that’s come out this year (let’s be real.. no one has), but these are the records that found their way to my ears and in some way or another were written especially for me. The following are my personal favorite albums from the past year with a few extra honorable mentions that I couldn’t fit in, but still wanted to notate as worth checking out if you haven’t already.


Honorable Mentions

El Ten Eleven | Banker’s Hill | Topshelf Records

Favorite Tracks:  Phenomenal Problems, Reverie, You Are Enough

Shame | Songs of Praise | Dead Oceans 

Favorite Tracks:  One Rizla, Tasteless, Concrete

The Drowns | View From The Bottom | Gunner Records

Favorite Tracks:  Eternal Debate, Take Me Back, Where’s Bobby?

Eels | The Deconstruction | E Works Records

Favorite Tracks:  Be Hurt, Today Is The Day, There I Said It

Gouge Away | Burnt Sugar | Deathwish Inc.

Favorite Tracks:  Only Friend, Ghost, Dissociation

The Top Ten

10 | J Mascis | Elastic Days | Sub Pop

Favorite Tracks:  See You At The Movies, Web So Dense, Everything She Said

9 | Turnstile | Time & Space | Roadrunner Records

Favorite Tracks:  Real Thing, I Don’t Wanna Be Blind, Generator

8 | Tiny Moving Parts | Swell | Triple Crown Records

Favorite Tracks:  Applause, Caution, Feel Alive

7 | Phosphorescent | C’est La Vie | Dead Oceans

Favorite Tracks:  C’est La Vie No. 2, Christmas Down Under, New Birth in New England

6 | Wye Oak | The Louder I Call, the Faster It Runs | Merge Records

Favorite Tracks:  It Was Not Natural, Symmetry, The Louder I Call the Faster It Runs

5 | Kurt Vile | Bottle It In | Matador

Favorite Tracks:  Bassackwards, Rollin With The Flow, One Trick Ponies

4 | mewithoutYou | [Untitled] EP/LP | Run For Cover Records

Favorite Tracks: 9:27a.m. 7/29, Julia (or, ‘Holy to the LORD’ on the Bells of Horses), Winter Solstice

3 | Low | Double Negative | Sub Pop

Favorite Tracks:  Quorum, Fly, Always Trying To Work It Out

2 | Courtney Barnett | Tell Me How You Really Feel | Milk! Records

Favorite Tracks:  City Looks Pretty, Charity, I’m Not Your Mother I’m Not Your Bitch

1 | IDLES | Joy As An Act Of Resistance | Partisan Records

Favorite Tracks:  Danny Nedelko, Colossus, Never Fight A Man With A Perm

2018: Best Creator Owned First Issue

This weekend starts the last month of the year, which also kick starts my annual excursion for looking backwards on things that made the year less sucky.

We all have routines and schedules that get in the way of happiness, and we also have friends and family that assist in moving the pendulum back toward the positive when moments sway too heavy. Read More

Batman’s iPod

Batman spends a lot of his time alone in the cave, brooding about with the many frustrations that come along with being the man dressed in black as a bat alone in the darkness. Some may say the darkness is self-provoked. Others, coincidentally, couldn’t care less.

What does he listen to as he battles the villains of Gotham when he’s not losing himself in his self-depreciating thoughts?

How does he regroup and refocus?

Why does this even matter?*

*it really doesn’t.. I did this to keep my mind off of other more important but rather stressful circumstances.

In the end, we find out that one of The Bat’s guilty pleasures is a terrible nü-metal band from the mid-90s.  Read More

13 essential frightened rabbit

To some, music is a background; a simple nullification of the voidance to silence. To the other some, music is a passion; a collected series of human existence with song to fill that silence. To the few, music is a lifeline; that thread you desperately hold onto so that you do not fall into the void that the first some was seeking avoidance.  Read More

13 essential by the national

Last year began in a way, for me, that could only have been worse if I were in direct impact of one of the many California fires. Things got off to an incredibly rocky start when what turned out to be my last pick from the right side of the debate for commander-in-chief was preparing to be sworn into office. (Kasich was my gop preference, although I would have even taken Rubio or Jeb over the eventual DT.) Read More

Best Albums of 2017 | The Top 10

The holidays snuck up on me this year. I didn’t realize it could be nearly seventy and also the winter solstice. But hey, it’s Fresno. So as we say goodbye to the holidays and to twenty seventeen let me remind you (and the future me) of what my favorite music from the past year was. I’ve already reflected upon the music that impacted me this year beyond my top ten, and here is where I end the conversation.

Cheers🍻 Read More

Best Albums of 2017 | Runner Up Top 10

As promised, here is part two of my three part series of my favorite music from this twelve month nightmare I was told was supposed be called twenty seventeen. I truly hope you enjoy reading this as much as I did putting it together.

Cheers🍻 Read More

Best Albums of 2017 | Honorary Mentions

Hard to believe that twenty seventeen is already almost over.

I specifically remember back in the early-nineties as a preteen imagining ahead to the year two thousand. I would fantasize about things such as what I would look like as I aged, if I’d still be reading comics, and even doing simple math in my head calculating how old I would be once I reached the specific year being imagined. Twelve year old me would be in for a surprise seeing what the me of twenty seventeen has become. Some good, some bad, all of it me, and I am still managing to perfect the style which is able to portray the best version. Often disappointed and sometimes surprised, I am able to take this all in stride while enjoying one of my first loves: music. Read More

13 essential by the ataris

It can be more than a bit embarrassing being caught singing your heart out as you lose yourself in a song by The Ataris when you are as close to 40 as I am. Although the mental venture isn’t as often as it once was I will admit that it does still happen on occasion. Read More

A Preview: Prevention Songs, Vol. 1

Knowing where your food is grown and where your clothes are made should be just as important as what fuels the passion in the music you consume.

I remember when a compilation album was my preferred way to discover new music. Many years in my youth was spent browsing record store shelves searching for the best cover among the cd’s filed under “various”.  This scavenger hunt for new music was that search for the next big thing, my new favorite band that you hadn’t heard yet, the band that sang the song your friends would be singing tomorrow. This was what defined my early days as a fan of music. It truly was an art form in both directions. A unique way to consume music and a creative way to sell it to a variety of eager ears. Fat Music, Songs From The Penalty Box, Atticus: …Dragging the Lake, Punk Bites, and various soundtracks from the 90s would conduct the effort to navigate the discoveries.  Read More