I’d like to thank everyone who has in some way supported The Vinyl Warhol in 2014. This blog has already exceeded all of my expectations, an I can only hope it continues to do so. I look forward to bringing you even more great material in 2015. Enjoy.
5. Rich Gang – Rich Gang: Tha Tour Pt. 1
Although technically a mixtape, I have to give the number five spot to Rich Gang – specifically Young Thug and Rich Homie Quan. In 2014, Young Thug dropped hip hop on its head by disregarding technical flow and coherent lyrics, and instead opting for spastic ramblings and energetic barks. When paired with the melodic slurs of Rich Homie Quan, this ATL powerhouse duo brings some of the wildest bangers of the year.
“Flava,” “Tell Em (Lies),” “Imma Ride,” “Keep It Goin”
4. Caribou – Our Love
Dan Snaith is atop a new breed or singer-songwriter where an artist creates deeply personal electronic music.On Our Love, he produces the most beautiful love songs 2014. Every synth note oozes emotion, and each song is a sonic journey narrated by Snaith. “Can’t Do Without You,” a song that repeats the same line for almost four minutes, reads like the greatest love story ever told.
“Can’t Do Without You,” “Silver,” “Julia Brightly,” “Mars”
3. The Casket Girls – True Love Kills the Fairytale
This Summer, I was honored to intern at Noisy Ghost PR, promotion company for Savannah-based record label, Graveface Records. My introduction to Graveface, which would lead to my internship, was The Casket Girls. True Love Kills the Fairytale is 10 songs of bleak synth-pop gold. Every melody sung by sisters Phaedra and Elsa Greene is an earworm that infects the listener’s brain. Ryan Graveface (Black Moth Super Rainbow) blackens the sisters sweet voices with thick, eerie instrumentals. The result is an acid-soaked nightmare.
“Same Side,” “Chemical Dizzy,” “Ashes to Embers,” “Secular Love”
2. St. Vincent – St. Vincent
I had St. Vincent fever all year. At one point I dyed my hair the same grey that she’s been sporting in 2014. What so enthralled me into the world of Annie Clark was the eccentric sounds created on her fifth record. On “Huey Newton,” she is a merciless tyrant setting forests ablaze with her heavy guitar rifts. The next song “Digital Witness,” is bouncy and sarcastic, both in its instrumental and lyrics. On St. Vincent, Clark creates her own alien world for each song containing a different sonic atmosphere. Each world contains its own beauty and showcases Clark as the supreme leader.
“Huey Newton,” “Digital Witness,” “I Prefer Your Love,” “Bring Me Your Loves”
1. Run the Jewels – Run the Jewels 2
In 2014, Killer Mike and El-P did not just create the most hard-hitting, brutal hip hop album in recent memory; they built an album that mirrors this year’s societal turmoil brought on by the killings of seemingly innocent human beings by the police meant to protect them. I’m not going to say RTJ2 perfectly soundtracks the race issues of the past 12 months, because many of its lyrics do glorify violence that is not accurately representative of the culture I’m speaking about. What I am claiming is that the passion in this album, and the message behind a chunk of its lyrics evokes similar emotions to how I felt watching buildings burn in Ferguson the night of the officer’s acquittal. I urge you to watch the speech Killer Mike delivered that night. In it he beautifully articulates, “Riots are only the language of the unheard.” This album is a riot. Listen up.
“Jeopardy,” “Oh My Darling Don’t Cry,” “Close Your Eyes (And Count To Fuck),” “All My Life,” “Early”