Here’s music to your ears – my top 10 albums of the past year.
It’s something I’ve been doing now for more than a decade – the likes of The Libertines and The Killers featured in my first selection back in 2004.
Since then each year household names like Jay-Z, Radiohead and Portishead have rubbed shoulders with the likes of Kvelertak, Phaeleh and Clean George IV, and this year’s no different.
This year has been one of the hardest to pick a shortlist from – I’d made a longlist into triple figures as the year progressed (available on request!).
But I’ve done it. There’s afro funk, there’s pop, there’s mariachi, there’s rock, there’s 10 albums that I’ve found simply unturndownable in 2014.
They are, in alphabetical order:
Badbadnotgood – III
Jazz prowess with a hip hop ethic from these Ghotsface Killah collaborators
GoGo Penguin – v2.0
Mercury nominated jazz act led the way in an exciting year for the genre
Keziah Jones – Captain Rugged
Nigerian Jones fused his African influences with raw funk and rock
Manchester Orchestra – Cope
2014 was the year that Manchester Orchestra went epic
Mariachi El Bronx – III
Traditional Mexican music played by a Californian punk band
Ought – More Than Any Other Day
A ramshackle rock classic in the making
Paolo Nutini – Caustic Love
Forget middle-of-the-road, this is the sound of a pop artist exploring his own avenues
Tom Vek – Luck
One man band Tom Vek makes it third time lucky with his electronic sound
Tune-Yards – Nikki Nack
Drum-led leftfield pop genius that deserves more limelight
Squarepusher x Z-MACHINES – Music For Robots
Robots playing guitars
Have a listen to a track from each album below, and let me know what you think to the selection – and who you’d have chosen.