Following on from my run down of my top 27 – 11 albums from 2014, the top 10:
10: Paolo Nutini – Caustic Love. For some reason I’d never truly listened to Paolo Nutini until Iron Sky was touted by Bella Caledonia as an anthem for the Yes campaign. I could tell it was special seconds in to the song. Iron Sky is a stand-out track I’d say but the whole album is excellent.
9: Plastikman – EX. Plastikman’s first album ‘Sheet One‘ is now 21 years old, but it still sounds fresh today – a true classic. Richie Hawtin shows that he’s still one of the best producers on the planet with his album EX…
8: Future Sound Of London – Environment Five. FSOL: my all time favourite producers. The diversity of high quality sounds that FSOL have produced since releasing Accelerator in 1991 is unrivalled in my book. The 1994 album Lifeforms is the pick of the bunch for me, but Environment Five adds more quality to the back catalog:
7: SOHN – Tremors. The number one album of 2014 for SJ, Tremors has been on steady repeat in the Darling house. His live performance was certainly up there as a highlight of the year as well.
6: Kiasmos – Kiasmos. Ólafur Arnalds & Janus Rasmussen: Two artists who had been working on completely different projects come together to produce an album of absolute beauty. If I hadn’t only discovered this mid way through December it could well have been my number 1 pick. Stunning:
5: fatima –Yellow Memories. Floating Points on the production, fatima on the vocals. It works!
4: Caribou – Our Love. Some personal nostalgia – one of the biggest annual conferences in the world of seismic exploration is the EAGE. In 2010 it was in Barcelona and the conference finished just as the Sonar festival was gearing up… as I switched an intense work environment for one of the greatest festivals I’ve ever been to, Caribou was coming on stage – SUN! – a lifelong goosebumps moment. I thought Swim would be Caribou’s finest moment but I think Our Love may have surpassed it…
3: Clark – Clark. I’d only had very brief exposure to Clark before this self-titled album and I don’t recall that being a pleasant experience. Perhaps I’m mistaken though as Clark is a work of absolute genius! This one definitely pushes a few boundaries, but it manages to move them in the right direction every time.
2: Dark Sky – Imagin. I was first introduced to Dark Sky while sitting in The Drake bar in Glasgow. I can’t remember the track that was played in the bar, but it could have been any one from the album as every track is a winner.
1: Beck – Morning Phase. I think Morning Phase is Beck’s 12th album but it was the first that I’d ever really listened to – and then I listened to it about 100 times in succession. It is one of those genre defying albums but I’m going to call it ‘psychedelic classical folk’ and hereby declare my love for psychedelic classical folk! If you know of any other psychedelic classical folk albums out there, please let me know.