Connor’s Albums of the Year

22. Atoms for Peace- Amok

Thom Yorke and Flea jam out. Cool electronic vibes with a new Radiohead sound. Dank bass riffs. If you love Phish, this might be your #1, or #2 if Phish released an album this year.

21. Queens of the Stone Age – …Like Clockwork

7th grade me would’ve been a lot more pumped for this. It’s good experimental rock music. Nothing will beat Songs For the Deaf in my eyes, though this is an interesting take on the Queens’ sound. Rock on.

20. Earl Sweatshirt – Doris

I was hyped for this all summer, with “Whoa” and “Chum” having been out for a WHILE, it ended up being that those were two of the best songs on the album. Those are great songs that are hard to top, but I was hoping for more consistency. The song featuring Frank Ocean is sick though, and the “Centurion” beat is crazy. The rest is so-so in my opinion. The Earl Mixtape is better.

19. Yo La Tengo – Fade

This is really great and should probably be a lot higher on my list. It came out in the very beginning of the year. The vibe is mellow and melodic. This thing is endlessly listenable. I can’t see how anyone would dislike it. I’ve always enjoyed Yo La Tengo, but I’ve never been super passionate about them. That being said, I would recommend this to ALL

18. Owen – L’ami Du Peuple

Another solid release from Owen. My favorite song is “The Burial”, which is one of the few Owen songs not to feature an acoustic guitar. “Tonight, I’m a priest/ Shrouded in your quilt/ And you will see/ Truth in me/ So f***ing say something.” OOOohhhhh. “Who Cares” is great too.

17. The Story So Far – What You Don’t See

Pop/punk angsty songs about girls done right. I wish I was 15 again so I could get a girlfriend, get dumped, and listen to this all the time.

16. Nine Inch Nails – Hesitation Marks

I saw NIN with my dad last month. They were my favorite band as a youngling, and I still hold TR in a very high regard so this meant a whole lot to me. Hands down the best light show I’ve ever seen. You can check out footage here if you’d like. Unreal stuff. The music is leaning on electronica, but in a good way. Still \m/

15. Oneohtrix Point Never – R Plus Seven

This is weird stuff that sounds abrasive and terrible to most people I know. It’s all instrumental, experimental, synthy, electronic music. It can take you places though. I wish I could explain it better. This could easily be your nightmare. I think it’s incredibly interesting. Listen and let your thoughts wander.

14. Tim Hecker – Virgins

Very similar to Oneohtrix as far as genre and style are concerned, though the sound is very different. This was made with live instruments and manipulated later which makes for a very organic experimental sound. There are so many layers and things going on here. Enthralling. The first track sounds like the earth is ripping apart. Close your eyes and imagine%%*&!)@*&^^&^%%{}”{“}{}”}{}”}{“”{}”{}”}{}”}{}}{}”}}”:]

13. Volcano Choir – Repave

Justin Vernon does post-rock stuff. Same old cryptic lyrics that could be interpreted a bunch of different ways. Thumbs up. This is my favorite song from the album and the best music video of the year (besides “Wrecking Ball”)

12. Touche Amore – Is Survived By

You can feel the passion behind Jeremy Bolm’s voice as he screams every line. This album is about leaving something meaningful behind after you die. Congrats dude, cause you did.

11. The Dismemberment Plan – Uncanny Valley

The Dismemberment Plan will always have a special place in my heart. Emergency & I is one of my favorite albums ever. I was beyond psyched when they announced a new album and tour. Shoutout to Ted for seeing the show with me. They definitely have not lost any of their talent or songwriting ability, despite not having the same emotional overtones of depression, isolation etc. When bands reunite to make a new album, I’m always worried it’s going to suck based on countless examples. Not only did this not suck, it’s very good.

10. Deafheaven – Sunbather

This is the prettiest death metal album you will ever hear. The vocals are unintelligible screams over a crashing wall of sound. Double bass all over the place. It’s rare to find music with such an immediate strong emotional impact. It can bring you even higher on a good day or turn immense sadness into something worth experiencing. HEAVY

9. Old Gray – An Autobiography

“I’ve been digging a grave/ For the parts of my brain/ That still work.” Spoken word mixed with singing mixed with screaming + emotional lyrics = post-hardcore at its finest. Similar to La Dispute. Mosh hard.

8. Tyler, the Creator – Wolf

I used to hate Odd Future and I don’t even remember why now. Tyler is a great producer, skilled lyricist, and he’s just a cool person. “IFHY”, “Jamba”, and “Tamale” are my favorites, but the songs are consistently good, laced with emotion and realism (most of the time)

7. The Joy Formidable – Wolf’s Law

This is basically prog rock which is awesome. Weird time signatures and crazy guitar parts abound. I saw them open for Foo Fighters a while ago and I didn’t know anything about them. They had a gong onstage. A gong. Ritzy, the female lead vocalist/guitarist is the coolest.
Editor’s Note: Guest appearance on the descriptions for the next two albums by DJ Sammy

6. Waxahatchee – Cerulean Salt

Listen to “Brother Bryan” and “Swan Dive” on repeat and “Peace and Quiet” because those are the best songs on the album, and are beautiful, and make my heart hurt xoxo.
-from dj sammy of new paltz hollaaaaaa

5. Into It. Over It. – Intersections

Thank you Samantha you’re the coolest person ever and I’m so glad that you have such an awesome taste in music (she wrote this). Evan Weiss makes new school emo songs with intricate guitar playing and excellent lyrics. “Your Antique Organ” is especially beautiful.

4. The World is a Beautiful Place and I am No Longer Afraid to Die – Whenever, If Ever

I was ecstatic when this came out. It was the perfect transition album for this stage of my life.
“The world is a beautiful place but we have to make it that way.
Whenever you find home we’ll make it more than just a shelter.
And if everyone belongs here it will hold us all together.
If you’re afraid to die, then so am I.”


3. The National – Trouble Will Find Me

I love every National album in a different way. I can define periods of my life in chronological order with albums by the National starting in 9th grade. I won’t do that though. Every song on here is gorgeous, lyrics are heartfelt and poignant. What more could you want? You could want a ferret, but ferrets aren’t music.

2. The Front Bottoms – Talon of the Hawk

The Front Bottoms affect me like few other bands. It’s almost impossible for me to be sad when listening to them. They make sense of bad experiences I’ve had, shed light on unrequited love, bring clarity to cluttered thoughts, and turn monotony into fun. I can’t say enough good things about this band. There’s a reason their crowds know just about every word to all of their songs and sing along the entire time.

1. Kanye West- Yeezus

A lot of people hate this album. Which is fine. I think Kanye knew it would be polarizing and he doesn’t care. Those clamoring for a return to Graduation type material are not going to get it. This is noisy, industrial, new school hip-hop in the best possible way. It’s a logical progression from the style of MBDTF. I love the sounds on this album, right from the very beginning. While I may not be in love with Kanye West as a person or celebrity, I do love his music. Certain samples from old songs are manipulated to perfection, and come out of nowhere. The lyrics are incredibly egocentric, but creative, emotional, and captivating the whole way through. “Blood on the Leaves” is one of the best songs ever. “Bound 2” is phenomenal. Front to back genius. Sorry.

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