Here's my Top Ten+ Favorite Albums of 2014,
(mind you, these are what i enjoyed listening
to this year. These have nothing to do with
top 40 radio, Rolling Stone, MOJO, or
Eugene Weekly influences. There was a couple of
77s albums (Gimme a Kickstart…) i couldn't get a
hold of (Mike) so i couldn't listen
to them (i don't like PayPal).
I'll have to mention a couple of albums that
didn't make it in my top ten, BUT were fun to listen to.
One was MEHLIANA (Taming the Dragon)
by Brad Mehldau & Mark Guiliana;
& two(!) BRIAN ENO & KARL HYDE
albums, Someday World and High Life.)
starting with Number 10...
10. Jack White - Lazaretto
String man Jack had such a table spread of guitar
dishes on Lazaretto. His precise chicken cluck guitar picking
hits the notes perfectly that bb king would thumb up.
His lyrics were a diary of blues, heartache and 'leave me alone' strokes.
9a. Pinnick Gales Pridgen - PGP2 and
9b. Chevelle - La Gargola
These two hard hitting albums were a nice balance if you wanted to
hear some (more) great guitar work from who i consider to be
'Jimi 2' guitarist Eric Gales (on PGP2).
8. Daniel Lanois - Flesh & Machine
'Producer of sound' master Daniel Lanois had/has a great
atmospheric pool of his slide, drums and sync machines.
Some vocal at the beginning BUT all instrumental after that.
Great to listen to in the dark!
I wonder what Songs of Innocence would sound like if
The Larry Mullen Band would of let him produce s.o.i.?!
7. The Secret Sisters - Put Your Needle Down
Laura & Lydia Rogers voices are so melodic and
pleasing to the ear and mind.
This album was, also great because
T Bone Burnett produced it and makes the music sound like
a lot of his 80s solo stuff!
6. Simple Minds - BIG MUSIC
Yes, and i mean BIG MUSIC!
Turn it up loud on a great stereo.
5. Johnny Cash - Out Among the Stars
JC meant to hide this, i think, and then reveal to JC Jr. for a nice 2014 gift!
Every song with Uncle John is warming and fun and the stories in
each song is right on and personal.
Faves: If I Told You Who It Was and I Drove her Out of My Mind.
4. Steve Taylor & The Perfect Foil - Goliath
It seems like a lot of Taylors (my last years #1 !) are
blessed with GREAT lyric writing.
The Foils are tight, fun and sharp. It's been too long between
Steve albums. This album was a little too compact, but
punchy (like a cue ball). I would've liked a longer album!!
3. Heath McNease - Among Thieves
I hope Heath is blessed with all the great music he puts out.
This album is so good with the very personal, terse lyrics and
his great guitar work. (Do i mention his guitar work and have
Jack White at #10?!).
His lil' film Fort Wayne is a great match to this album.
2. The Call - A Tribute to Michael Been
Featuring Robert Levon Been of BRMC
Have you noticed there's several repeat groups from my choices last year?
BRMC, Heath McNease, Pinnick Gales and Pridgen, etc.
This is very close to my number one choice for 2014. The only reason it
not being 1, is that U2 was in the crowd.
The complete CALL concert (24 songs - to pledge music members),
the 14 songs album and the DVD of the concert was such a
supply of great, memorable music from The Call!
The awesome, haunting part of it was that Robert Been
(bass and vox) captured the soul of his dad.
The song 'You Run' just melts you in memory and Robert does a
great job of channeling and chanting Michael.
1. U2 - Songs of Innocence
5 years in the making, Songs of Innocence (plus the disc 2 bonus material)
contains the past in lyrics humbly and the music with a neon wave
of synth sound (not SO new, attested to ACHTUNG, POP, and all the Fruitleg, Spiceleg and U2DJ Remixes, etc.).
CRITIQUE TIME: The music is produced and layered in a little too much
synth to me. I missed a lot of Edge's guitar, it seemed he just added
some, in the songs, to let us know he's there.
The guitar solo in Sleep Like a Baby Tonight, buzz's like a bee and is
pretty cool. (Sorry [why is he doing this to his top album?]…) the song
Iris (i know it's to/for his mother) shouldn't be on the album.
It seem's like too sappy and the song structure is staggered.
BUT, it is still the number one album, to me for 2014,
regardless of my critical dents.
The album starts to take off, for me, at Volcano and each
song after that gets better.
The variety of sound, beat and story
are strong and have you shadow punching with delight.
MORE GUITAR in Songs of Experience!
1. Daniel Amos - Doppleganger The 'Alarma Chronicle' Volume 2
Double CD Deluxe
2. Emmylou Harris - Wrecking Ball Double CD/DVD Deluxe
3. Roy Obirson - Mystery Girl Double CD Deluxe
Favorite Bob Dylan Tributes:
1. From Another World - A Tribute to Bob Dylan
Musicians from around the world did great renditions
of Zimmy's songs
2. Bob Dylan in the 80's
(My favorite Dylan era)
THANX to SKIP'S RECORDS & CD WORLD for
alot of these albums!!