Well, folks, it looks like it’s that time of year again. I don’t know whether it was the change of job giving me more time and space for listening to music, or whether it was a particularly good year. Either way, for me, there were so many amazing records this year that it was difficult to get it down to ten, so I went for the traditional twelve instead!
Here we go:
12 Squarepusher – Damogen Furies
I read all the reviews (something I usually try to avoid) before I finally decided to get this. They ranged from the positive: ‘a work of genius’ to the very negative: ‘ a load of misdirected noise’. Which both sounded pretty good in my book! I’ve been listening since Big Loada in 1997 and have got quite a few Squarepusher LPs, but he hasn’t always hit the mark in recent years. This, though, is a very much a return to form. Deep bass, loads of squelchy repetitive stuff and as aggressive as he has sounded in years. A great record!
11 Cat’s Eyes – The Duke of Burgundy
I loved Cat’s Eyes first album, the combination of Farris Badwan‘s (him out of the Horrors) deep baritone and Rachel Zeffira‘s lush arrangements (and voice) made for a perfect late night record. This album is the soundtrack for the art house S&M-themed lesbian love story film of the same name. Farris thought it would be out of place for him to have his male voice on the album as there are no male characters in the film. So instead we get Rachel’s clear soprano voice with Farris confined to lyrics (there aren’t too many) and guitars. I’m not usually a fan of soundtrack albums, but I like the way that the incidental motifs coalesce into a beautiful and coherent whole to give a perfect late night accompaniment to a glass of red wine and good (lesbian S&M) book.
10 Lightning Bolt – Fantasy Empire
This was promoted as the more accessible, family-friendly Lightning Bolt, which was very worrying for us long-time fans! Fear not, the Brians are as noisy and obtrusive as ever and ‘Fantasy Empire‘ slots easily alongside other LB classic albums as a brilliantly anarchic 50 minutes of noise. It also goes to show that a Panthersan Best Of… where LB only make number 10 means that 2015 was an amazing year for music!