Worriers – You or Someone You Know: The record that truly accompanied me through this year. Every song could be my song of the year – and I plan on playing Grand Closing at midnight. Happy fucking new year.
Phoebe Bridgers – Punisher: Probably the best album of the year (though I haven’t given Fiona Apple’s new album enough time yet) From lyrics to production to artwork, a nearly perfect record.
Dream Wife – So When You’re Gonna…: My new discovery of the year. Rock’n’roll! Dream Wife are the kind of band that makes you look forward to the future with more excitement. If I could choose a first show to go to after this pandemic, it would be either Dream Wife or ..
Touche Amore – Lament: A great, almost positive postcore album. Touche Amore is the best hardcore band atm and I’d drive far to see them live. And Reminders is oddly life-affirming (especially if you combine it with the video.) Don’t have the physical vinyl, yet..
NOFX/Frank Turner – West Coast vs. Wessex: The album my wife and I listened to the most together. I can’t believe Thatcher Fucked the Kids isn’t actually by NOFX, or Eat the Meek actually by Frank Turner.
Bright Eyes – Down in the weeds, where the world once was
Algiers – There Is No Year
Laura Jane Grace – Stay Alive
I’m Glad It’s You – Every Sun, Every Moon
Porridge Radio – Every Bad
Fiona Apple – Fetch the Bolt Cutters
Bruce Springsteen – Letter to You
Run the Jewels – RTJ4
What are your faves of the year?
Lydia Loveless released a tremendous new record, Daughter, last Friday. It’s sad, twangy, rootsy and near perfect. Her voice is the beautiful match to her songwriting. There are many great songs on the album, including the singles Love is Not Enough, Wringer, and the album closer Don’t Bother Mountain. The stand-out track for me is September, a piano ballad about her childhood and teenage years. Loveless commented to Stereogum: “It allowed me to let go of a lot of pain, finally recording it, as it is a fairly old song I’ve never felt comfortable releasing.”
That feeling is palpable in the song. It’s the kind of song about being stuck in the wrong place with a right person, longing to leave the hellish place, and in that way made me think of the best moments of Bruce Springsteen, Tracy Chapman and Bright Eyes.
The addition of Laura Jane Grace’s voice in the chorus add extra depth and makes it perfect.
Daugther is out on Lydia Loveless’ own Honey, You’re Gonna Be Late label. Get it on Bandcamp.
For most, We Are At Home In Our Body is an obvious statement of fact. For many, We Are At Home In Our Body is a reaffirming mantra. For some, We Are At Home In Our Body is an unobtainable goal.
Not feeling at home in your body can come in various forms. Society not recognizing your body as something innately valuable. Your self not recognizing your body as innately valuable. Be it because of illness, disability, dysphoria, dysmorphia. Psychotic phases when you cannot write because your brain tells itself that your fingers do not belong to yourself and are disgustingly slow and imperfect. The constant phase of writing about your body, your brain and your self as if they are three separate entities forcibly sharing the same sphere.
We Are At Home In Our Bodies is also the title of For Everest’s stunning new album, their first full length. The album is about the feeling of unease with your body, the bodies of others, and so much more. The lyricism is ‘emo’ in the best possible way. The music swelling between intimate and orchestral, walls of guitar of an anthemic intensity. Sarah Cowell’s alto is amazing, and they harmonize with Nick Pitman in an effortless yet grand way rarely heard after the early Taking Back Sunday and Straylight Run albums. (And Brand New. There, now I have obvious emo reference bingo.) I fell in love with the album when the bass first kicked in. The production is so organic, clear and perfect – it could have ruined the feel of this emotional record all those situations and moments that are so far from clarity, perfection, or even organicity. Yet, For Everest have pulled it off. Record of the year.
We Are At Home In Our Body is out on Broken World Media, you can listen, fall in love, and name your price on bandcamp.