My Top Seven Albums of 2014
1. The Afghan Whigs – Do To The Beast
2. Cold Chisel – The Live Tapes Vol 2
Cold Chisel live in their prime. What’s not to love? Oh that’s right, you think they’re a bogan band full of bogans loved by bogans. Well you’re wrong. They’re uniquely Australian and part of the fabric our our society. For once the masses got it right, this band is worthy of their enduring popularity. Don Walker is one of the finest songwriters ever, and this album is a document of the brutal electricity of their early live shows. Jimmy Barnes is in brilliant form as the powerhouse frontman. Stop being a snobby hipster and get an education on rock & roll from Australia’s greatest rock & roll band in their prime.
3. Galapogos – Feel or Suffer
4. Galapogos – Strange Species
Any band that releases 2 quality albums in the space of 12 months is worth your time. Sit down, turn off the facebooks, put your iPhone out of arms reach, put some headphones on, shut your eyes and spend 40 minutes with this album on getting to know yourself. You might be surprised at what you find.
5. HITS – Hikikomori
HITS are the best live rock & roll band in the world right now and with ‘Hikikomori’ they’ve finally captured the excitement of their live shows on record. The album sounds like a derailing freight train from start to finish, with the band constantly threatening to crash in on themselves but ultimately emerging unscathed and triumphant. This is how punk rock should sound; it’s the aural equivalent of being smacked in the face with a hot iron. I mean that in the best possible way, this band will change your life.
6. J Mascis – Tied To A Star
J Mascis releases ‘Several Shades of Why’ Part 2 and proves he’s his generation’s Neil Young. A beautiful Sunday morning record.
7. Jimmy Barnes – 30:30 Hindsight
The new Jimmy Barnes album is fucking excellent. He’s singing better than ever, and the new versions of his hits are, mostly, more interesting or better than the originals. The Living End make ‘Lay Down Your Guns’ sound as if they wrote it themselves, and Joe Bonamassa gives a new meaning to the term ‘guitar hero’ on ‘Too Much Ain’t Enough Love’. This is without doubt the best record Jimmy Barnes has released since the early 90’s.
Most disappointing albums of 2014:
1. Bush – Man On The Run
Did anyone realise Bush had a new album out? It sounds like a better version of their last album. Buy it if you liked The Sea Of Memories. If you gave up on them after Razorblade Suitcase then move along, there’s nothing to see here.
2. Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways
Foo Fighters albums seem to be getting shinier and shinier, as if an extra coat of studio polish is layered on each time they make a new record. Just once, I’d like to hear them sounding like a rock band in a room; without the slick production. Opener ‘Something From Nothing’ and closer ‘I Am A River’ are the pick of the 8 tracks on Sonic Highways, with everything in between blending into one long over-produced riff-fest. Foo Fighters have proven they’re a great live band, full of dynamics, talent and excitement; unfortunately this record doesn’t do that justice.
3. Pixies – Indie Cindy
If you’re going to waste your time on this record get the version with the bonus live disc so you don’t feel completely ripped off.
By: Clint Morrow