BEST ALBUMS OF 2014:
1 Lucius - Wildewoman (Play It Again Sam )
From seemingly nowhere came this glorious indie-pop marvel by Brooklyn’s Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig. One-half grandstanding big chorus pop, the other intimate country-esque numbers - taken together, Planet of Sounds’ Album of the Year.
2 Ásgeir - In The Silence (One Little Indian )
The Icelandic phenomenon comes to Europe and what a welcome presence, this special and gifted talent is. Another outstanding debut.
3 AC/DC - Rock or Bust (Columbia )
Lean, mean, and a damn near perfect 35 minutes of prime blues-rock from the Aussie survivors. AC/DC is rock’n’roll.
4 Morrissey - World Peace Is None Of Your Business (Harvest )
Another old master to return in 2014 and he delivered with possibly his most sonically diverse album to date.
5 Ariel Pink - pom pom (4AD )
If Noel Fielding had an evil twin, LA’s Ariel Pink would be it and pom pom was 2014’s most wonderfully OTT, bizarre, and eccentrically uninhibited album.
6 Dum Dum Girls - Too True (Sub Pop )
Classic pop, punk, indie, and eighties rock combine seamlessly in Kristen Walchez’s first truly essential album.
7 Wild Beasts - Present Tense (Domino Records )
Wild Beasts continue to trod the path of exclusive commitment to their muse, yet again forging intelligent and sublime art-rock.
8 Parquet Courts - Sunbathing Animal (Rough Trade )
They worship at the altar of Pavement and The Velvet Underground, but doesn’t it inspire them to create some fantastic music?
9 Field Mouse - Hold Still Life (Topshelf Records )
In love with 1990s shoegaze, the American quartet’s bittersweet melodies and wall-of-sound distortion were the ideal setting for their tales of 20-something life.
10 Pixies - Indie Cindy (Pixiesmusic )
The EPs were hit and miss, but what a difference when grouped together as an album - consistent, surging with energy, conviction, and a point to prove.
Various artists - Warfaring Strangers: Darkscorch Canticles (Numero Records )
The Doors - Weird Scenes Inside The Goldmine (Elektra )
Soundgarden - Superunknown (A&M )
THE 2014 PLAYLIST - THE BEST SONGS OF THE YEAR:
‘Torrents’ - Ásgeir
‘Rimbaud Eyes’ - Dum Dum Girls
‘Hearbeats’ - September Girls
‘Lost On Me’ - Arc Iris
‘Another Toe In The Ocean’ - Pixies
‘Mr Tembo’ - Damon Albarn
‘Simon Ferocious’ - Mogwai
‘Hey, Doreen’ - Lucius
‘Staircase At The University’ - Morrissey
‘Barry Richardson’ - So Cow
‘The British Are Coming’ - Weezer
‘Black Ballerina’ - Ariel Pink
‘Grace Lake’ - Thurston Moore
‘Every Time The Sun Comes Up’ - Sharon Van Etten
THE BEST GIGS IN GALWAY 2014:
Paul Heaton & Jacqui Abbott, Thursday October 30, Seapoint
Ásgeir, Saturday April 12, Róisín Dubh
YUCK, Thursday May 1, Róisín Dubh
Jeffrey Lewis & The Jrams, Wednesday August 27, Róisín Dubh