With new music from Jack White and Aphex Twin, second albums from Warpaint and Lana Del Rey, new discoveries in the form of Future Islands or Mac DeMarco, 2014 was certainly a jam-packed year as far as music releases were concerned and this meant there was certainly a lot to choose from. Below are my top albums of 2014.
1. St. Vincent – St. Vincent
Described by Annie Clark aka St. Vincent as “A party record you could play at a funeral”, this was undoubtedly the best pop record of 2014 for me. Right from the get-go ‘Rattlesnake’ got you up and dancing. My favourite part was the character coming to life when Annie Clark performed this record on stage as St. Vincent, the almost ragdoll like choreography, brought such a wonderful, zany record to life. It’s an album brimming with hits and definitely the one I listened to most this year.
2. FKA Twigs – LP1
FKA Twigs is not too keen on the R&B label being put on this album, but that’s what it sounds like to me. However, it’s not any old R&B, no this is the most avant-garde, thrilling and filthy R&B album you’re likely to hear for a while. Each track is better than the last and then you get to the closing track, ‘Kicks’ and you immediately feel the need to listen to it all over again.
3. Caribou – Our Love
I loved 2010’s Swim so when I heard a new Caribou album was on the horizon in 2014 I was very excited and ‘Our Love’ did not disappoint. The single ‘Can’t Do Without You’ gave us a taster of what was to come and it was bittersweet electronica at its very best. I bought my tickets for the Vicar Street gig immediately after hearing this. Standing in a packed to the rafters venue hearing the entire album brought to life was an incredible experience.
4. Run The Jewels – Run The Jewels 2
I discovered this album late in 2014. I’d seen a lot written about it in the music press and the album cover intrigued me so I went onto Spotify and started to stream it and it’s been on repeat since! Run The Jewels 2 is the work of MCs El-P and Killer Mike. I think Q Magazine sum it up perfectly “They sound electrified by each other, trading battle rhymes with gleeful virtuosity.” It’s a blast, stick it on!
5. Lucius – Wildewoman
I’ll be honest; I loved the first single taken from this album, ‘Turn It Around’. It was fresh and exhilarating. So I was looking forward to the album release but it was a tough one to crack. Nevertheless, I stuck with it and on each listen a different track stood out. I’m glad I persisted because I bought tickets to see them live in Whelans where they performed ‘Two Of Us On The Run’ acoustically, which was one of the most magical, spine-tingling live music moments I was lucky enough to witness in 2014.