For the last five years I've compiled a favorite albums list for my private TinyLetter audience, what started as a fun way to recap the year has turned into my reader's most anticipated message of the year. It gets me all gooey that it gets them all gooey.
This year was an interesting one, because unlike years back - there is a serious vibe cutting across all these seemingly disjointed lawns. I would love to know if you agree with my assessment, or what made it to your top list : ) Drop your thoughts in the comments!
10. Bitchin Bajas - Bajascillators
This album commanded my full attention the first time I heard it. Modular synthesis you don't mind sipping on. You can feel the air you're swimming in when you listen to it. Very trippy. I encourage you to listen to the album in the dark the first time you check it out, you won't be disappointed.
9. Sunni Colón - JúJú & The Flowerbug
MMmmm chill dancey vibes with this one, the beats are too smooth. It's made for feeling yourself, for cooking dinner in the kitchen with someone you're playing grab ass with. When the soft brass comes out, you might find yourself thinking about lounging beachside under an umbrella, working on your tan.
8. Miel De Montagne - Tout Autour De Nous
French pop does something to my brain that I've only heard Ambien users talk about. It instantly relaxes my shoulders and my brain feels like it's being wrapped up in a warm blanket that just came out of the dryer. It's the difference between a brick of creme cheese and whipped cream cheese.
7. Varsovia - Diseñary y Destruir
Watching Los Espookies (Dadaism's much anticipated revival, quite possibly the best show on TV since Daria) was my gateway drug into the world of Varsovia. They are the most delicious blend of glitch pop sexy trance rave bubbly goth ska to ever roam the Earth. Honestly, my quality of life has significantly improved since I got into the Los Espookies soundtracks, brimming with all the Latine electro punk bands I've always dreamed of finding.
6. Pity Party (Girls Club) - Hard Times / Bad Trips
Low-fi snacks for the hunger heartbreak leaves you with, full stop. I'm so curious what pedals/vocoders they use because the texture of their music is smoldering and I can't get enough. Many of these songs would make great candidates for holding above your head outside your crushes window.
5. Thee Sacred Souls - Thee Sacred Souls
I was raised on Smokey Robinson, The Temptations, Delfonics, Otis Redding - so the second I heard this band, I went weak at the knees. Nuevo soul at it's finest, it's always gonna be a big hell yes from me. They are beyond. Set the mood on fire with this gem.
4. Freddie Gibbs - $oul $old $eparately
I'm gonna put it out into the universe now, I wanna do some cover art or liner notes for this man. He's from Gary, I'm from Hammond - we're forever neighbors, let's make this happen. I feel like dude jumped up and grabbed the GOAT title while everyone else has either snapped off or gone silent. It's nice to see dudes like him and Anderson .Paak flourish in a time where most rappers care more about selling shoes than making music.
3. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Cool It Down
I've been a lifelong fan of the YYYs and it's really cool to see them receive acclaim like never before with this one. The opening track does what few opening tracks do these days, it instantly transports you to the universe they wanna take you to. It sets the tone in an expansive way, gives you something to relish, to sink your teeth into. It's cool to see a band own their evolution, they've continue to refine their sound with every album and this one proves to be masterful.
2. SZA - SOS
I'm kind of at a loss, what can I say that the memes and reaction vids SZA posts haven't already said? She is the true MVP, plain and simple - you can quickly gather that from every record this album shattered upon release. She's the only woman out there calling out fuckshit from fuckbois, she don't let em get away with pinche NADA - doing women everywhere a great service. I bow down in admiration, your grace.
1. Cannons - Fever Dream
I can eat disco for breakfast, so I find this album particularly satiating. The beats are unstoppably groovy - vintagesque indie pop rock that requires big booty bouncin right out the gate. Every track becomes an instant favorite, the production is so solid it makes my mouth water. Great hype jams for when you need to turn up the mood but want to maintain a chill atmosphere.
5. Cute Heels, Dmitry Distant, Norwell - Parallels
4. Blood Orange - Four Songs
3. Dr. Dre - ETA (with Snoop Dogg, Busta Rhymes, Anderson.Paak)
2. Azizi Gibson, Freddie Gibbs - Hate To Say It
1. marinelli - Dipshit
Best guilty pleasures
3. Sipper - fuck sex
2. Dashboard Confessional - All The Truth That I Can Tell
1. Bright Eyes - Old Soul Song (for the New World Order) [Companion Version]
1. I'm in Hell with Owen Thiele: favorite moments of episodes past
(link works best on a phone, I go on at 48m19s)
Gives mega Loveline vibes from the late 90's and thus brought me so much joy this year. Nothing was off the table, nothing was prepared, the host always forgot to promo the show - it was a very punk rock way to go about something as official as a contracted SpotifyLive podcast. I appreciate anyone who makes a mockery out of formalities, and the irreverent expectation of the show was a breath of fresh air. After the first unhinged episode I listened to, I was hooked - which says a lot because I don't even fuck w podcasts, so imagine my jaw-dropping bewilderment when the host randomly brought me on stage to interview me while I was casually listening to his last broadcast. In conclusion, I forgot to plug myself or House of Egregious because my brain turned into an actual soufflé during the surprise interview. Owie, hope you make good on your word and let me be the producer of your next pod, I promise I will slay. Loving you!
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Here is where I share announcements of all shapes and sizes, and deep dive into my art and music making practices. I aim to demystify the creative process for BIPOC women & NBs.
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