Saturday, 16 December 2017

Remy's Top 20 International Albums - 2017

Big Thief - Capacity Album of the Year
Photo: Shervin Lainez

Info: Here it is, the music I listen to in transit, at home and when I'm not listening to the great Irish independent music tsunami of the last few years, these are my vinyl pick-ups throughout the year. As with my 2016 Top 20 International Albums I'm going to keep this very short and just more or less let the choons speak for themselves. I do have to highlight a few of these however, Big Thief's Capacity was the stand out LP of the year, and it just so happens they are playing Whelan's on the 31st of March, YOU need to be there. 

I've also noticed that my musical taste is veering very strongly towards electronic music as I get older, reverse Benjamin Button, Button Benjamin maybe? I bought Mount Kimbie's Crooks & Lovers debut album on the back of a Sunday Times recommendation back in 2010 and listened to it every weekend for ages afterwards, it was an album that I found influenced so many acts. At Metropolis Festival this year I had the pleasure of seeing them live and it was a very different sound, but the Londoner's left an imprint, and Love What Survives is bang on the money.

I can't love Berlin's FJAAK enough, they're probably my favourite electronic act since Death In Vegas and Panda Bear, yet wildly different. 'Against The Clock' from their self-titled album is one of the best electronic tracks ever released (see video below), and it wipes the floor with many of their peers. Whilst a very different genre, it is the only song and video combo that got me close to one of the best studio performances I've ever seen, BADBADNOTGOOD's IV Recording Session last year, genius. Also, FJAAK habe den besten Instagram fur dich!

Sampha who featured on SBTRKT's stunning 2011 self-titled album released his own, Process, this year, his vocal was a defining part of that 2011 album, and here he brings all of that calm, warmth and pain into one place, it's beautiful. Alongside Big Thief, Marika Hackman's I'm Not Your Man was a go to album this year, 'Gina's World' being a perfect bullet of lo-fi alternative folk. Of the other albums I would highlight them all, obviously I wouldn't include them otherwise, you do need to hear them all. If you are stuck for time skip straight to Beck's abandonment on 'Colours' and 'WOW', Perfume Genius and King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard.

1. Big Thief - Capacity
2. Mount Kimbie - Love What Survives
3. Fjaak - Fjaak
4. Sampha - Process
5. Marika Hackman - I'm Not Your Man
6. Kendrick Lamar- DAMN
7. Four Tet - New Energy
8. Bonobo - Migration
9. Perfume Genius- No Shape
10. Gordi - Reservoir
11. Zola Jesus - Okovi
12. India Wells - Indian Wells
13. Nadia Reid - Preservation
14. King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard - Flying Microtonal Banana
15. St. Vincent - Masseduction
16. Fever Ray - Plunge
17. Pumarosa - The Witch
18. Beck - Colors
19. Japanese Breakfast - Soft Sounds From Another Planet
20. Jens Lekman - Life Will See You Now

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