In June this year, I put together a Top 5 of my favourite albums of this year, which you can check out here. I’ve put together another one for the final six months now because as the year draws to close and I start to make a list of my favourite albums of this year, it is good to take a look at some good releases from the last 6 months. One of these admittedly is from April but only really made a massive impression on me in the last six months and two of these are EP’s but I recommend you check out all of these releases, you will not regret it.
Paolo Nutini – Caustic Love
Released: April 2014
‘Caustic Love’ is the third album from Scottish singer/songwriter Paolo Nutini. After releasing two successful albums and landing many charts hits, Nutini took plenty of time away from the music scene to pen and perfect his third album. That time away was a good decision as he has returned with one of the best solo artist albums to be released in a very long time. With rock tinges, jazz elements, that great soulful vocal sound he has all mixed with emotional lyrics delivered in a heartbreaking way and a sexy, sensual atmosphere throughout creates an album that is strong, well crafted and an utter joy to listen to. It is a great album and one of my favourites of this year, Paolo really has come back with a bang.
“an ambitious stab at morphing into a mature soul man. And it’s worked.” – James Bennett, The Guardian [source]
Read The Guardian’s ful review of the album and listen to ‘Diana’, my favourite track from the album, below:
Check out more from Paolo Nutini on Spotify
Death From Above 1979 – The Physical World
Released: September 2014
Probably one of the most anticipated albums of the entire year came from Canadian duo Death From Above 1979. Ten years after the release of their debut, when ‘The Physical World’ was released it sparked plenty of hysteria online and that along with their small club shows has made 2014 the year of DFA. It wasn’t until October that I heard the album after going to see the pair live and being blown away by how bloody good they are. The album is a must listen for anyone after some decent punk afflicted music with a plethora of riffs, distorted music and vocals a plenty and some thumping drum beats.
“It has been a long wait – multi-instrumentalist Jesse Keeler and singer and drummer Sebastien Grainger split in 2005 before reconvening for some live shows in 2011 – but admirers of their full-on assault won’t be disappointed by The Physical World.” – Jon Dennis, The Guardian [source]
Read The Guardian’s full review of the album and listen to one of my favourites ‘Right On, Frankenstein’ below:
Check out more from Death From Above 1979 on Spotify
Jungle – Jungle
Released: July 2014
One of the albums that has impressed me the most this year has been the debut self titled album from London outfit Jungle. It has been an album I’ve personally had on repeat since first listening to it with its sounds guaranteed to be heard in festival fields everywhere with the huge beats, psychedelic moments and funk afflictions. Coming from a modern day stance by shrouded their identities with mystery online, sneaking music out there and creating great content, all bagged the pair a record deal with the brilliant XL Records and since then the band has impressed with their debut and playing shows and festivals galore. A band to start loving now as they are sure to go far over the next few years featuring on many a festival line up.
“‘Jungle’ is a record designed to seep from barbeques the breadth of 2014, an ultra-modern rewiring of funk for Generation Y.” – Mark Beaumont, NME [source]
Read NME’s full review of the album and check out ‘The Heat’ from the album below:
Check out more from Jungle on Spotify
Cut Ribbons- Sail
Released: October 2014
By far, my favourite band discovery of this year has been the brilliant Welsh band, Cut Ribbons. After seeing them support Thumpers back in May, I have been a big fan since then and with the release of their wonderful new EP ‘Sail’ it seems like my appetite for their debut album has been whetted for now. The EP features four great tracks from the huge ‘In The Rain’ with its vocal harmonies, massive synths and infectious atmosphere to the more subdued final track ‘I’m A Wretch’ containing angelic vocals, soft guitars and retro tinged moments. It is a really impressive release and one I strongly recommend you all listen to, getting yourselves well acquainted with the great sound of Cut Ribbons.
“This is such a great EP that will clearly be a gem in the band’s catalogue of releases not just now but for years to come.” – Quote from my review of the album.
Read my review of the album here and you can check out the brilliant ‘In The Rain’ from the EP below:
Check out more from Cut Ribbons on Soundcloud
To Kill A King – Exit, Pursued By Bear
‘Exit, Pursued By Bear’ is the latest release from five piece To Kill A King and the next addition to their back catalogue after their excellent debut album ‘Cannibals With Cutlery’. This release features five new tracks that has seen the band grow their sound while carrying on with their brilliant formula of epic rock meets ambient indie. From calm love stories with a poignant edge told to the backing of parse guitars and haunting vocals of ‘Love Is Coal’ to the showstopper choruses and soulful vocals that feature throughout. It is a wonderful EP and a great follow up to that brilliant first full length release.
“From the openings of first track ‘Oh My Love’ this EP grabs you and pulls you into the grand sounds that To Kill A King love to make.” – Quote from my review of the album.
Read my review of the album here and you can check out title track from the EP ‘Oh My Love’ below:
Check out more from To Kill A King on Soundcloud
Other Noteworthy Mentions
– Slow Club – Complete Surrender
– Manic Street Preachers – Futurology
– Yumi and the System – Wonders of Origin