Friday, December 19, 2014

The Best Albums of 2014

After countless hours of record shopping, listening and headache-inducing contemplation, I present my picks for The Best Albums of 2014. As always, I've invited several of my trusted friends to share their favorites as well. I would love to hear your opinions and your own lists, so please post feedback in the comments section all the way at the bottom. If you would like to purchase any of the albums / songs - please click on the link below.

Bret Helm

Honorable Mentions
The Church - Further/Deeper
Marissa Nadler - July

10. Peter Murphy - Lion
09. J Mascis - Tied to a Star
08. First Aid Kit - Stay Gold
07. Lana Del Rey - Ultraviolence
06. Morrissey - World Peace is None of Your Business
05. U2 - Songs of Innocence
04. James - La Petite Mort
03. Future Islands - Singles
02. Sun Kil Moon - Benji
01. Ryan Adams - Ryan Adams

* This year's list was by far the toughest one to make. I love every record that you see listed. The biggest criteria that I use is quite simple: which albums did I listen to the most. I've taken these choices very seriously, and cut off anything that wasn't - in my eyes (and ears) - essential. The 12 records you see above are all gems. Thanks. - Bret

Purchase any of these albums here.
P.S. We do earn commission for purchases made through the Amazon links in this post and throughout the blog

Sarah Quarrie
Nashville, TN

10. FKA Twigs - LP1
09. Ex Hex - Rips
08. The Twilight Sad - Nobody Wants to Be Here and Nobody Wants to Leave
07. Ty Seagall - Manipulator
06. The Antlers - Familiars
05. Lucius - Wildewoman
04. Future Islands - Singles
03. Sharon Van Etten - Are We There
02. Strand of Oaks - Heal
01. Angel Olsen - Burn Your Fire for No Witness

Rick James Buttery
Melbourne, Australia | RJB's channel

10. @peace - @peace and the Plutonian Noise Symphony
09. Anders Ahlen Unit - Lines and Dots
08. Neneh Cherry - Blank Project
07. Takuya Kuroda - Rising Son
06. Fire! Orchestra - Enter
05 Ben Watt - Hendra
04. Sun Kil Moon - Benji
03. Mogwai - Rave Tapes
02. Krakatau - Water Near a Bridge
01. Ryan Adams - Ryan Adams

Jaymz Todd
Phoenix, AZ

10. D'Angelo and the Vanguards - Black Messiah
09. Jessie Ware - Tough Love
08. Glass Animals - Zaba
07. Perfume Genius - Too Bright
06. Mozart's Sister - Being
05. Strand of Oaks - Heal
04. Ava Luna - Electric Balloon
03. Afghan Whigs - Do to the Beast
02. Hunterchild - Hunterchild
01. Prince - Art Official Age

Dream Pop Jesse
Phoenix, AZ

10. Erlend Oye - Legao
09. The Twilight Sad - Nobody Wants to Be Here and Nobody Wants to Leave
08. God Help the Girl - OST
07. U2 - Songs of Innocence
06. Be Forrest - Earth Beat
05. Alvvays - Alvvays
04. Literature - Chorus
03. All Darlin' - We Come From the Same Place
02. Craft Spells - Nausea
01. Interpol - El Pintor

Jason DeWolfe Barton
Phoenix, AZ | Audra

10. Sonny Rollins - Road Shows, Vol. 3
09. Horrendous - Ecdysis
08. Matt Wilson Quartet & John Medeski - Gathering Call
07. Goatwhore - Constricting Rage of the Merciless
06. Thantifaxath - Sacred White Noise
05. Triptykon - Melana Chasmata
04. Agalloch - The Serpent & The Sphere
03. The Durutti Column - Chronicle XL
02. Chrome - Feel It Like a Scientist
01. Godflesh - A World Lit Only By Fire

Rob Clark
Northern IL | EoLoVoX

10. Warpaint - Warpaint
09. Sylvan Esso - Sylvan Esso
08. The New Pornographers - Brill Bruisers
07. Rosanne Cash - The River & The Thread
06. Joe Henry - Invisible Hour
05. The Family Crest - Beneath the Brine
04. Future Islands - Singles
03. Glass Animals - Zaba
02. Peter Murphy - Lion
01. St. Vincent - St. Vincent *

* I become a bigger St. Vincent fan with every record she releases. She trips many of the same triggers with me that artists like David Bowie and Kate Bush do. Creative and unique. Somehow I managed to bookend 2014 with fantastic St. Vincent shows, too, so there was no debating her status in this list. - Rob

Emma (Rob's daughter!)
01. Nico Vega - Lead to Light

Sample my Top Ten List:

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  1. my fave albums of 2014
    angel olsen: burn your fire for no witness
    the black keys: turn blue
    first aid kit: stay gold
    jenny lewis: the voyager
    john luther adams: become ocean
    jon hopkins: asleep versions
    leonard cohen: popular problems
    maria callas: remastered- the complete studio recordings, 1949-1969
    the new pornographers: brill bruisers
    rosanne cash: the river and the thread
    scott walker & sunn o))): soused
    she & him: classics
    st. paul & the broken bones: half the city
    tweedy: sukierae
    the new basement tapes

  2. These are all great lists! So much stuff to check out in an among the good stuff that I know. Thanks for letting me a part of this. I'm honored to be in such good company.

    1. Thanks Rob (and Emma) for being a part of this. :)

  3. Here is my top 10
    1) The War on Drugs – Lost in the Dream
    2) Elbow – The Takeoff and Landing of Everything
    3) Coldplay – Ghost Stories
    4) Damien Rice – My Favorite Faded Fantasy
    5) Perfume Genius – Too Bright
    6) The Drums – Encyclopedia
    7) Young The Giant – Mind Over Matter
    8) Ryan Adams (Self-Titled)
    9) St. Vincent – (Self-Titled)
    10) Beck – Morning Phase

  4. Great lists all!

    Here is My Top 10:

    10. Reptile Youth – Rivers That Run for a Sea That is Gone
    9. Flying Lotus – You’re Dead!
    8. The Secret Sisters – Put Your Needle Down
    7. D’Angelo and the Vanguard – Black Messiah
    6. U2 – Songs of Innocence
    5. BeyoncĂ© – BeyoncĂ©
    4. The War on Drugs – Lost in the Dream
    3. Prince – Art Official Age
    2. The Twilight Sad – Nobody Wants To Be Here and Nobody Wants to Leave
    1. Lucinda Williams – Down Where The Spirit Meets The Bone

    Here is the entire Top 30,with write-ups:

  5. no love for Broncho or Tv on the Radio? I'm a little sad. way too much love for u2!!! anyways we all love music. enjoy reading everyones take