Originally I was going to go with a favorites-of-2018 post and follow it up with my end of year mixtape list, but while I was going over the releases this past year I found I just could not do it justice with only one post. Yes there were that many excellent albums out this year!
So instead, I’m doing a four-part post for the last four posts of the year with an overview of all the albums, singles, and EPs (and there were surprisingly many of the latter two!), focusing on each quarter. I’ll then follow up with my mixtape post on the 31st. Each post is going to be pretty long, so these should keep you entertained!
Starting with Q1, January to March…
BØRNS, Blue Madonna, released 12 January. Quirky alternapop that’s fun to listen to without being precious or cloying.
Sylvan Esso, “PARAD(w/m)E” single, released 12 January. A single-only follow up to 2017’s fantastic What Now, it’s light and fluffy fun.
Shame, Songs of Praise, released 12 January. Amazing and melodic punk similar to the really cool stuff you’d hear on 120 Minutes back in the late 80s I absolutely love this album.
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Wrong Creatures, released 12 January. Their best record yet — full of power and emotion and finely tuned into great songs.
tUnE-YaRdS, I can feel you creep into my private life, released 19 January. “Heart Attack” is up there as one of my favorite tracks of the year. Merrill Garbus is so much fun to listen to.
Django Django, Marble Skies, released 26 January. A strange band with an irresistibly catchy sound.
GoGo Penguin, A Humdrum Star, released 9 February. Rarely does an album blow me away this completely. Inventive jazz that infuses all different kinds of genres. One of my favorite albums of the year.
Lucy Dacus, Historian, released 2 March. A fantastic songwriter, I keep coming back to this album again and again. One of my favorites of the year.
Lucius, Nudes, released 2 March. “Woman” has to be my favorite song of the year; it’s so delicate and sparse, yet it wields so much power and emotion and the dual vocal melody is so perfect that it continues to give me shivers.
The Naked and Famous, A Still Heart, released 9 March. A stripped-down collection of their singles and album cuts, it’s a lovely and relaxing record. This one got some major play during my writing sessions.
The Neighbourhood, The Neighbourhood, released 9 March. They’ve gotten bolder and more experimental with each album, and this one nails it.
Editors, Violence, released 9 March. One of my “I will buy anything they release” bands, they didn’t let me down.
The Decemberists, I’ll Be Your Girl, released 16 March. One of their most heartfelt albums and one of their best. So many great tracks on this one.
Meshell Ndegeocello, Ventriloquism, released 16 March. She takes her favorite 80s soul and pop songs and brilliantly makes them her own.
Jack White, Boarding House Reach, released 23 March. I was surprised at how great this album was! I’m a passive fan, but this one is one of his best.
Preoccupations, New Material, released 23 March. This band gets better and better with each release. They can switch from Slowdive-y shoegaze to Wire-y punk seamlessly.
Failure, In the Future EP, released 30 March. An unconventional release, in which four parts of a full album drop each quarter, and they pulled it off perfectly.
Coming Thursday: 2018, Q2!