Well, we made it. 2017 is about to end, and my oh my what a year it’s been! Truthfully it feels like this whole year has just blown right by me, and I can hardly believe its already over!
Before I wax poetic, however, let’s get to the reason we’re here: to talk about all the awesome music that came out this year! From farewells to triumphant returns, 2017 was an overall pretty great year for music if you think about it. So I wanted to take a moment to share with you my annual top 10 favorite albums that came out this year!
Ready? Here we go!
10. Broken Social Scene – “Hug of Thunder”
Featuring all 15 original members of the ever shifting Indie rock band Broken Social Scene. The album features fantastic instrumentals, soothing vocals, and the songs constantly feel like they’ll explode into streamers and confetti at any given moment. I’ve been a fan of this band for many years, and I’m glad to see them release another really solid album.
9. Born of Osiris – “The Eternal Reign”
Now this album technically came out 10 years ago, but this 2017 reissue sees an epic overhaul to the death core band’s already intense release. I don’t know what it is, but I’ve been on a huge metal kick lately, and Born of Osiris has been right at the forefront of that binge. I’ve always been impressed with their combination of melodic and technical musicianship, and the intense vocals that both sing and scream, I feel, really sets the band apart from others in the genre. “The Eternal Reign” gives us a fresh introduction to an already familiar sound, and if you’re into metal you should look into this one.
8. The Flaming Lips – “Oczy Mlody”
I talked about this album at the beginning of the year in a previous post, so my readers are already familiar with my opinion of this one. While previous releases were layered with heavy distortion and white noise, “Oczy Mlody” is more atmospheric and broad with it’s sounds and electronics. Lead singer Wayne Coyne’s vocals, as unique as always, remains calm and subdued like in previous releases, however the accompanying music actually matches the calmness throughout most of the album. Something that long-time Lips fans haven’t seen since the 1990’s.
7. Alice Cooper – “Paranormal”
Another album I’ve already gone over in a previous post. I’ve said what needs to be said about it. However, I still wanted to include it in this list because it’s definitely worth checking out and, like every other Alice Cooper release, is a lot of fun.
6. He Is Legend – “few”
I’ve long felt that He Is Legend is a very under appreciated band. I’ve loved every one of their previous releases, and “few” was a successful crowdfunded effort. You get a feel of 90’s era rock/metal throughout in that you can head bang but also really enjoy the vocals. I think this North Carolina band should get more recognition than they do, especially for all the effort they put into every album. And clearly their fans would agree.
5. AFI – “AFI (The Blood Album)”
I have to admit that when AFI released the single “Snow Cats” prior to the album’s debut, I was really worried we’d have another “Crash Love” on our hands. Thankfully the two additional singles that followed, “White Offerings” and “Aurelia” put that fear to rest. Sure, AFI isn’t anywhere near the band they used to be, nor does it look like we’ll ever see a true return to form on that front, but they’ve at least been releasing enjoyable music. I was satisfied with 2013’s “Burials,” and this album was played on a regular basis for quite a while after it’s initial release. With tunes like “Still A Stranger” and “Hidden Knives,” I was pleased to find that there are solid tracks on the album aside from the singles.
4. Flogging Molly – “Life is Good”
I love Flogging Molly. I love all their albums, I love watching them play live, and I even love all three T-Shirts I have of theirs. “Life is Good” is the first full-length album release the band has put out since “Speed of Darkness” six years ago, and in that time frame you can really tell how the band channeled their every day, blue collar roots. Simultaneously folksy and driving, like previous albums, “Life Is Good” is an enjoyable and relatable listen from start to finish.
3. PVRIS – “All We Know of Heaven, All We Need of Hell”
It’s a rare occurrence these days to see band have a sophomore album be more successful than an already successful debut album, but PVRIS did just that with this one. Of all the albums on this list, I must admit this one impresses me the most. With darker fueled themes of anxiety and heartache, lead singer and guitarist Lynn Gunn channels the soaring vocal stylings of Florence + The Machine and combines it with the PVRIS sound we heard on their first album. “All We Know of Heaven, All We Need of Hell” is definitely one worth checking out.
2. Foo Fighters – “Concrete and Gold”
Foo Fighters is one of those bands that have proven time and again that they can basically do no wrong when it comes to their albums. Each one has been full of memorable hits, and “Concrete & Gold” is no exception. Even with the official addition of a full-time keyboard player, Foo Fighters serve as a constant reminder that Rock is not dead; it’s thriving.
1. Queens of the Stone Age – “Villains”
Come on, are you really surprised at my number one pick? My readers and YouTube subscribers were probably already expecting “Villains” to be at the top of this list. This album has seriously not left my car since I got it, and I have yet to tire of it. The band has a knack for changing up overall sound of each of their albums, and yet every single one has that undeniable Queens of the Stone Age feel to it. “Villains” kicks off with the amazingly catchy “Feet Don’t Fail Me Now” and dives right into the album’s first single “The Way You Use To Do” without missing a beat. The second single, “The Evil Has Landed” which is subsequently my favorite song on the album, has this amazingly catchy and driving end to it that makes you want to get up and dance! I can’t dance, but it makes me want to nonetheless. So yeah, “Villains,” check it out.
Well there you have it. My favorite albums of 2017. It’s been an…interesting year to say the least, but we saw some fantastic music this year and I’m optimistic about 2018 because of it.
What are some of your favorite albums from 2017? Let me know in the comments below, and don’t forget to follow me on YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram to see all the fun things I’ve got planned for the coming year!