Thursday, January 01, 2015

Top 10 Albums / 2014

Here are my top 10 albums of 2014 (in no particular order. Because I really couldn't decide an order.) My music taste is a giant genre spectrum--I surprise myself sometimes.

Ledges | Noah Gundersen

This album is literally everything. Noah Gundersen is one of the most talented songwriters and without a doubt one of my favorite musicians. Every song on the album speaks to me and the lyrics are laced with emotion. I had heard many of these songs before they came out on a legit album as he played them for various videos on youtube and was so stoked to see them recorded and brought to an album. I got the pleasure of seeing him live this past March and he did not disappoint.

Favorite Songs:
First Defeat, Time Moves Quickly, Dying Now

Borderland | John Mark McMillan

The long awaited new McMillan album. It felt like we had waited for this for ages. I swear I was counting down the days until this album was released. John Mark is one of the most interesting artists and I love his creative mind. His ability to take worship music and mold it to be something completely unique is a true art form. I absolutely love the concept for the album, the 'borderland' and exploring what that is.

Favorite Songs:
Love At The End, Heart Runs, Future / Past, Counting On

Lost In The Dream | The War On Drugs

I see this on so many 'Top 2014 album' lists and there is no reason why it shouldn't be on everyone's list. Most of all, I love the sound of this album. I want to take this and listen to it on my next road trip. Red Eyes has been one of my most played track this year. If you haven't had a chance to stream this, add it to your queue right now.

Favorite Songs:
Red Eyes, Burning, Lost In The Dream

Struggle Pretty | Penny and Sparrow

Hands down my favorite album of 2014. No question. I discovered Penny and Sparrow this summer at a point which could almost be considered fate. I got the chance to see them in KC this summer and it was one of the best shows I've ever been to. They have grown to be one of my favorite bands. Their songs are about love, struggle, disappointment, honesty and so much more. Not to mention the sound is incredible. If you're looking for one new band, pleeeease check these guys out. They are fantastic.

Favorite Songs:
Serial Doubter, Bread and Bleeding, To Haunt To Startle, Thunder, Reeth

Sweet Disarray | Dan Croll

I was straight jamming to Dan Croll this past summer. I love this guy's sound so much. The whole album is great and it's extremely strong for a debut album. Every song could be great on it's own too; Dan Croll has almost reinvented the wheel for indie pop.

Favorite Songs:
From Nowhere, In / Out, Wanna Know

ZABA | Glass Animals

Freakin' Glass Animals. These guys are so weird, but sooo good. Their sound is so unique, I can see why so many people are fans of these guys. Their rich layers and use of percussion on each track make you feel like you should be in another world. I had 'Pools' on repeat daily this last semester. They have an essence of Alt-J but so much more poppy and dancey; almost intergalactic, if music can be described like that. #peanutbuttervibes

Favorite Songs:
Pools, Gooey, Psylla, Black Mambo

Rivers In The Wasteland | NEEDTOBREATHE

This album is so much. So many things. Everything. It's almost a resolution for the band and all they have been through. I've been a fan of Needtobreathe for years and this album is one of my favorites. I listened to this album and this album only for a good portion of 2014. The whole album track order is a story, but each individual song on it's own is fantastic. I got to see these guys back in April and it was their first live show playing the new album, most of which they told us they had never played for a crowd before. SO. GOOD.

Favorite Songs:
Rise Again, The Heart, Multiplied, More Heart Less Attack

Diamonds | Johnnyswim

Yeee! Johnnyswim just makes me happy. I discovered these guys through a photographer that I follow on Twitter and was sold when I heard 'Diamonds.' They are a husband and wife duo which makes it even better. Their chemistry and harmonies are raw and beautiful all at the same time. If you're a fan of bands like The Civil Wars or The Lone Bellow, you'll like these guys.

Favorite Songs:
Diamonds, Home, You and I, Take The World

My Everything | Ariana Grande

Does this album stick out like a sore thumb among my list? If so, man. I don't even care. I really, really love this album. As far as pop albums go, it's a confident, intelligent and relatable album. Aside from the hits on the radio, there are some tracks on the album with meaning to them. Plus- she has an amazing voice, much more virtuosic than any other female pop artist in 2014.

Favorite Songs:
Just A Little Bit Of Your Heart, One Last Time, Best Mistake, My Everything

Sylvan Esso | Sylvan Esso

These guys are a fun little duo. It's insane that Sylvan Esso is only comprised of two people. My friend told me to check these guys out and I wasn't disappointed! They have a fun sound and seem so chill in all of the interviews I've watched. I imagine most of these tracks being played in a coffee shop or a chill environment. A must listen from 2014.

Favorite Songs:
Coffee, Hey Mami, Play It Right

Honorable Mentions:
1989 | Taylor Swift
Hozier | Hozier
Native Dreamer Kin | Joseph
I Forget Where We Were | Ben Howard

Thanks for reading! And feel free to share your favorites from 2014.