So 2018 was an up and down year musically but as it happens every year when I look back I realize that an up and down year can produce some great music. My spotify mix (created by some algorithm) seemed to think I was primarily interested in country rock and to some extent , I was, but as you’ll see in this list my favorites, as in most played, are all over the spectrum.
1. Honestly this album could have been written in as #1 the day it was released. Its no secret I’ve become a huge Frank Turner fan. His live shows are amazing and on this record he diversified his style without sacrificing the passion. FT produced a perfect elixir for our tumultuous times with Be More Kind. Here’s an alternate live version of Little Changes
2. I’ve become huge fan of the Wild Feathers over the course of three stellar albums. The crisp harmonies , multiple vocalists and crack musicianship won me over. They are the closest thing I can imagine to a modern version of the Eagles, except from the South. From “Greetings from the Neon Frontier”:
3. i knew one song by Lucero before I saw them open for Frank Turner this year but what I saw prompted me to dig in to their catalogue and now I’m hooked. This band from Tennessee has been around for years . Their 2018 album “Among the Ghosts” has been in constant rotation for me since its release in August
4.The Record company followed a good first record with a great second album. This songs just blew me away (involuntary dancing alert)
*bonus track cuz its soooooo cool ( a Beastie Boys cover) not on album
5.This seemed to be the year when I “discovered” bands that have been around a while. This album caught my attention literally a couple weeks ago and blew up my top ten list. Rock, pop with some R&B influence for good measure. Cant stop playing this song from from the album “Take Good Care”
*bonus- My 19 year old with her own college radio show loves this song……but I found it first
6. This years top ten is chock full of FTRP (Frank Turner related product) in the sense that I first encountered these bands because they toured with him. Here’s another one. The Arkells are a great band from Canada that reminded me of Fitz and the Tantrums who made this list a few years ago. Great pure pop music
7. Death Cab for Cutie “Thank You for Today” Ive liked a song here and there by this band but I like this album top to bottom, especially this one.
8. The Vaccines are a London based indie band. Their album “Combat Sports” is great English pub rock. This song demands demands a sing-a-long every time I hear it
9. Some bands have the ability to make you feel like you’re standing in a small club listening to them play. Nathaniel Rateliff and the Nightsweats do just that. This song channels Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes in the best possible way.
10. One of my favorite songs of the year came off Ryan Culwell’s album “The Last American”. He captures the feeling of everyday people struggling to get by the way Bruce Springsteen did on Darkness and Nebraska
Thats just a smattering of some of my favorite albums of the year. Wishing everyone a great 2019.
Thanks for checking us out,
2 thoughts on “Mike’s Top 10 albums of 2018 (imho)”
Good stuff, thanks for highlighting! As I pointed out to Paul, I had not heard of The Wild Feathers and will further check them out. I’m also planning to take a closer look at Nathaniel Rateliff, an artist I only know by name. Ryan Culwell sounds intriguing as well.
That’s three out of ten, a much higher success ratio than what I usually find when I go by the charts! I know looking at the charts these days isn’t the smartest way to find good music.
And I’m not saying I don’t like the other artists you highlighted. All this means is the above three are the ones who intrigue me the most, based on my initial impression!
Thanks Christian, I really enjoy looking for new music. Admittedly some of the artists on my list aren’t truly unknown, but some of them are just new to me this year. Paul is actually better at finding the true diamonds in the rough. He has a knack for finding unknown artists that are interesting.
I’m looking forward to another year of music and seeing what you and our other blogger friends are up to.
Happy new year,
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