Bradley’s Almanac

[Nac Faves] My Favorite Music of 2004

Posted on January 17, 2005 at 10:41 am | No Comments

Without further ado, and later than most, I offer up my favorite discs and live shows from 2004. In no particular order…

Walking Concert – Run To Be Born

As Walter Schreifels gets older, his bands get mellower, step by sonic step. From Gorilla Biscuits to Quicksand, Rivals Schools to Walking Concert, it’s a progression strung together by his voice & guitar, and with songwriting that rarely lets me down.

download What’s Your New Thing? (mp3)


The Futureheads – Self-Titled

Wow. A little bit o’ Jam, a dash o’ Housemartins, borrows liberally from the old and ends up sounding, well, like the old. So it’s derivative as all get out, but it milks the good stuff. “Meantime” makes me want to jump around the room like a giddy schoolboy. One time I, uh, think I even did. And no, it wasn’t pretty.

download Decent Days and Nights (mp3)


The Album Leaf – In a Safe Place

No matter what mental state I’m in, Jimmy LaValle is able to relax me with just a couple keyboard notes and a programmed beat. The guy can do no wrong in my book, even with added guest vocals on a couple songs this time around.

download On Your Way (mp3)


The New Year – The End Is Near

With this album, the New Year fully embraces their Bedheady past and finds the perfect balance between what they are now and what got ’em here. Any wounds I suffered at Bedhead’s breakup are now entirely healed. I just wish ‘Chinese Handcuffs’ went on a little longer.

I wish that song was a whole day long… that’d be the best day, that day.” – kith

download Chinese Handcuffs (mp3) / download Disease (mp3)


The Arcade Fire – Funeral

Yeah, yeah. You knew it was gonna be here. From a slight buzz to all-out-hype faster than the strumming in “Power Out”, the supposed over-blogging and hipster backlash can all be ignored… not just because the songs on this album measure up, but because their live show exceeds it all.

download Wake Up (mp3) / download a complete live set (mp3s)


Pinback – Summer In Abaddon

While I’ve liked Pinback for a little while, it wasn’t until this record that I really loved ’em. Something clicked, and I’m digging through the back catalog with newfound enthusiasm. Looking forward to them live sometime this year.

download Fortress (mp3)


Ted Leo & The Pharmacists – Shake the Sheets

It’s a safe bet that any Ted release would end up in that particular year’s list, even it doesn’t reach the highs of the previous ones. Shake the Sheets is a solid record, with some great songs, but none that really hit me in that specific, receptive brainspot that certain songs do. That said, the tracks took on added impact when I saw them live, and made me appreciate the album even more.

download Me and Mia (mp3) / download some live tracks (mp3s)


Matt Pond PA – Emblems

Like Pinback, Matt Pond PA was a band I appreciated but wasn’t passionate about, but seeing them live and hearing Emblems all the way through changed that easily. Time to dive into the whole discography.

download Grave’s Disease (mp3)


Stereolab – Margerine Eclipse

I’d call this a much-appreciated return to form, but it’s not like they’d gotten terribly off-track with 2001’s Sound Dust. They’ve come full circle since the sterility of Dots & Loops, which nearly shoved me off of the Stereolab train. Glad I hung on, though.

download live tracks from 2004 (mp3)


Hot Snakes – Audit in Progress

They’ve got their sound, and they’ve got it down. A formula that works and works and works, that pummels and energizes and just makes me want to see them on stage again & again. As Chris wrote to me, “It’s no Rocket From the Crypt, but wow wow wow.” My sold-out-peel-session-seven-inch story ends sweetly: Chris bought an extra copy of that limited and long-gone Snakes’ vinyl, and sent it to me as a surprise. Most. Thoughtful. Friend. Ever.

download Hi-Lights (mp3)


Interpol – Antics

A disc that doesn’t only avoid the sophomore slump, but overcomes the worst leadoff track for a good album that I can remember. Took me awhile to get past that, but once I did… tracks 2 through 10 got constant play, with ‘Not Even Jail’ being one of my favorite songs of the year. And it’s not just because the ending of it gets me kinda nostalgic for Starlight.

watch Interpol videos


Snow Patrol – The Final Straw

While my Snow Patrol enthusiasm has faded a bit from where it was this time last year, I’d be remiss to leave this disc off the list. It spent a lot of time in my player, and I saw ’em no less than four times in ’04. Thing is, I enjoyed each show a little less than the previous one. Too much of a good thing? Could be.

download live acoustic tracks (mp3)


The Sixth Great Lake – Sunday Bridge

This album renders the title ‘favorite discs’ inaccurate, unless of course you’re talking about the black wax kind… because it’s vinyl only for now. This choice isn’t a favor for friends (and what a weak favor that would be), but one that came from repeated flips from side A to side B and back over again. These three songwriters have never blended better than they have here, with four songs from each of them, Zach then Chris then Mike and repeat.

They were kind enough to let me share ‘Fool’, transferred from colored vinyl to mp3. Order the vinyl direct from the band, or ask your favorite independent record retailer, since Carrot Top Distribution is now on board. Fingers crossed for a cd release sometime in ’05.

download Fool (mp3)


Rilo Kiley – More Adventurous

A really good album kept from total greatness by 2 or 3 weak songs (*cough* token blake ditty *cough*), but the first three alone are just pure pop genius. I don’t think it has the personal staying power of The Execution of All Things, but time and distance will tell.

download a complete live set (mp3s)


Explosions In The Sky – The Earth Is Not A Cold Dead Place

Technically released in late ’03, but undiscovered by me until ’04, America’s answer to Mogwai grabbed me from the first note of the first epic instrumental. They’re taking this year off to record a Travels in Constants EP, and to write their next record, due sometime in 2006.

download Memorial (edit) (mp3) / download live sets


Elliott Smith – From a Basement on the Hill

A farewell that wasn’t supposed to be, it’s impossible to listen to this and not get sad… to not imagine of what his next album might have sounded like. I still can’t believe that he’s gone, it still doesn’t make sense.

download Twilight (mp3)



Also really liked

  • Ambulance LTDLP

  • Pilot to GunnerGet Saved

  • Sonic YouthSonic Nurse

  • Audio Learning CenterCope Park

  • Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind soundtrack

  • Sufjan StevensGreetings from Michigan…

  • Camper Van BeethovenNew Roman Times

  • Twilight SingersShe Loves You

  • Guided By Voices (RIP) – Half Smiles of the Decomposed

  • Magnetic Fieldsi

  • KillersHot Fuss

  • Garden State soundtrack


    Favorite reissues & collections

  • Guided By VoicesBee Thousand [Director’s Cut]

  • PavementCrooked Rain Crooked Rain [expanded]

  • LowRarities Box Set

  • The CureThree Imaginary Boys [expanded] & Join the Dots b-Sides box

  • SlowdiveCatch the Breeze

  • CurveThe Way of Curve


    Looking forward to in ’05

  • LowThe Great Destroyer (Jan. 25)

  • Lou BarlowEmoh (Jan. 25)

  • Trembling Blue StarsSeven Autumn Flowers (out now)

  • Field MiceReissues (Jan. 31 / UK)

  • The Wedding PresentTake Fountain (Feb. 15)

  • IdaHearts Like a River (Feb. 22)

  • Crooked FingersDignity and Shame (Feb. 22)

  • The House of LoveDays Run Away (Feb. 28)

  • Yo La TengoPrisoners of Love 2-disc collection (Mar. 22)

  • New OrderWaiting For The Siren’s Call (Mar. 29)

  • Summer at Shatter CreekAll the Answers (Mar. 29)

  • Mary TimonyEx-Hex (April)

  • Rob Dickinson (Catherine Wheel) – debut solo lp (date tbd)

  • Stereolab3 disc collection (April)

  • Sigur Rostitle tbd (possibly May)

  • Nada Surftitle & date tbd


    And hoping for news of

  • Wedding Present live in Boston?

  • Some new Sparklehorse?

  • new Radiohead?

  • Built to Spill?

  • Sun Kil Moon?

  • Jason Loewenstein?

  • American Analog Set?

  • and how about… the return of Arcwelder? I’m just sayin’.





  • Previous year-end lists… 2001, 2002, & 2003

    Comments

    Leave a Reply


    Warning: Undefined variable $user_ID in \\NAWINFS02\HOME\users\web\b498\rh.bsearles\wp-content\themes\elements-of-seo\comments.php on line 78





  • BOSTON-AREA LIVE SHOW ACTION
    Thursday, April 11th
    Vulture Feather
    Feep
    Trip Sitter
    Trash Sun
    @ O'Brien's

    Thursday, April 11th
    Rosali
    Verity Den
    @ the Rockwell

    Thursday, April 11th
    Hotline TNT
    Cicada
    Rabid Few
    @ the Somerville Armory

    Saturday, April 13th
    Dead Gowns
    Kathy Snax
    Hannah Mohan
    Audrey & Karina
    @ the Loft, Somerville

    Saturday, April 13th
    DARK SPRING BOSTON FEST
    with Korine, House of Harm,
    Widow Rings, Allie Frost,
    Hemlock for Socrates,
    Midnight Psychic, the
    Spearmint Sea, and more
    @ the Middle East

    Sunday, April 14th
    Woods
    Avey Tare
    @ the Sinclair

    Monday, April 15th
    Matthew Sweet
    @ the Wilbur

    Wednesday, April 17th
    Metz
    Gouge Away
    Mulva
    @ the Crystal Ballroom

    Wednesday, April 17th
    Real Estate
    Marina Allen
    @ the Royale

    Friday, April 19th
    Quattracenta
    Thalia Zedek Band
    Rip Room
    @ the Midway Cafe

    Friday, April 19th
    Paul Giamatti's podcast "Chinwag"
    @ the Somerville Armory

    Friday, April 19th
    Drop Nineteens
    Greg Mendez
    @ the Paradise

    Saturday, April 20th Doc Hopper
    "Aloha" LP 30th anniversary with
    Shades Apart,
    Matt Charrette & the Truer Sound,
    and The Keeper Class
    @ O'Brien's

    Wednesday, April 24th
    Teen Suicide
    awakebutstillinbed
    @ the Crystal Ballroom

    Thursday, April 25th
    Landowner
    Autopolitan
    Uno Lady
    @ Deep Cuts

    Friday, April 26th
    Waxahatchee
    Good Morning
    @ the Orpheum

    Friday & Saturday
    April 26th & 27th
    The Town & the City Festival
    @ various venues in Lowell, MA

    Saturday, April 27th
    Kal Marks
    Grocer
    Bedroom Eyes
    Main Era
    @ O'Brien's

    Saturday, April 27th
    Belle and Sebastian
    The Weather Station
    @ the Orpheum

    Sunday, April 28th
    Yot Club
    Boyscott
    @ Brighton Music Hall

    Tuesday, April 30th
    Adult Learners
    Perfectly Lethal
    Over Ends
    Free with food donation
    @ Notch Brewing Brighton

    Tuesday, April 30th
    Teenage Fanclub
    @ the Paradise

    Wednesday, May 1st
    Ty Segall
    @ the Royale

    Thursday, May 2nd
    Outer World
    @ Deep Cuts

    Thursday, May 2nd
    The Decemberists
    Ratboys
    @ Roadrunner

    Friday, May 3rd
    Ra Ra Riot
    @ the Royale

    Saturday, May 4th
    Slothrust
    Weakened Friends
    @ the Sinclair

    Saturday, May 4th
    Lisa Bastoni
    & Sean Staples
    @ the Rec Room, Belmont

    Saturday, May 4th
    The Lights Out
    Gretchen Shae & The Middle 8
    Brian K & The Parkway
    @ Faces Brewing

    Sunday, May 5th
    Sheer Mag
    Pile
    @ Crystal Ballroom

    Sunday, May 5th
    CSS
    @ the Sinclair

    Monday, May 6th
    Cloud Nothings
    Hurry
    @ the Crystal Ballroom

    Tuesday, May 7th
    Puppy Problems
    @ the Rockwell

    Tuesday, May 7th
    Bad Religion
    Social Distortion
    (playing "Mommy's Little Monster")
    @ MGM Music Hall

    Wednesday, May 8th
    Todd Rundgren
    @ the Wilbur

    Wednesday, May 8th
    Chastity Belt
    @ the Sinclair

    Thursday, May 9th
    Cheekface
    Yungatita
    @ Brighton Music Hall

    Friday, May 10th
    Hot Water Music
    30 Year Anniversary Tour
    with Quicksand
    & Off With Their Heads
    @ the Royale

    Friday, May 10th
    Sarah Shook & the Disarmers
    @ the Cut, Gloucester

    Saturday, May 11th
    Bradley's Almanac (that's me) presents...
    SAVAK
    SAMUEL s.c.
    HEY I'M OUTSIDE
    PLAZA
    8pm @ O'Brien's

    Saturday, May 11th
    Ride
    @ Big Night Live

    Saturday, May 11th
    Hallelujah the Hills
    Colleen Green
    Mallcops
    @ Deep Cuts

    Sunday, May 12th
    Sunny Day Real Estate
    @ Big Night Live

    Monday, May 13th
    High On Fire
    Zeta
    High Command
    @ the Middle East
    Monday & Tuesday
    May 13th & May 14th
    Mannequin Pussy
    Soul Glo
    @ the Sinclair

    Tuesday, May 14th
    Swans
    @ the Paradise

    Wednesday, May 15th
    Wussy (duo show)
    @ an Allston living room

    Thursday, May 16th
    Helmet
    Cro-Mags
    @ the Middle East Downstairs

    Friday, May 17th
    Neil Young
    @ the Xfinity Center

    Thursday, Friday, & Saturday
    May 16th, 17th, & 18th
    Jukebox the Ghost
    @ the Sinclair

    Friday, May 17th
    Neil Young (solo)
    @ the Xfinity Center

    Friday, May 17th
    Ringo Deathstarr
    Ovlov
    The Veldt
    @ Deep Cuts

    Friday, May 17th
    Lenny Kaye & Friends
    "A 50th Anniversary Celebration of
    Nuggets!: Classic Garage Rock Songs"
    featuring Jon Wurster, Bill Janovitz,
    Ted Leo, Josh Kantor, David Minehan,
    James Mastro, Ed Valauskas, Hugo Burnham,
    Clint Conley, Tanya Donelly, Duke Levine,
    Barrence Whitfield, Tony Goddess, Willie
    Alexander, and more to come
    @ the Cut, Gloucester

    Friday, May 17th
    Special Sapphic Pride Show
    Ruby Grove
    Galaxy Cake
    Miss Geo
    Linnea's Garden
    @ the Loft, Somerville

    Friday, May 17th
    Neil Young & Crazy Horse
    @ the Xfinity Center

    Friday, May 17th
    Buck Meek (of Big Thief)
    @ Crystal Ballroom

    Saturday, May 18th
    Eldridge Rodriguez
    @ Sonia

    Saturday, May 18th
    The Messthetics
    James Brandon Lewis
    @ the Crystal Ballroom

    Monday, May 20th
    Echo & the Bunnymen
    @ the House of Blues

    Tuesday, May 21st
    Another Michael
    Tenci
    @ the Rockwell

    Sunday, May 26th
    Sunburned Hand of the Man
    @ the Cut, Gloucester

    Tuesday, May 28th
    Shannon & the Clams
    @ the Sinclair

    Tuesday, May 28th
    Brookline Booksmith presents...
    Kathleen Hanna
    "Rebel Girl" book tour
    @ the Wilbur

    Wednesday, May. 29th
    The Antlers &
    Okkervil River
    (solo & together tour)
    @ the Crystal Ballroom

    Wednesday, May 29th
    The Alarm
    Jay Aston's Gene Love Jezebel
    Belouis Some
    @ Brighton Music Hall

    Wednesday, May 29th
    Madness
    @ MGM Music Hall

    Thursday, May 30th
    Camera Obscura
    @ the Paradise

    Thursday, May 30th
    Nation Of Language
    @ the Royale

    Tuesday, June 4th
    Melt-Banana
    The Flying Luttenbachers
    babyaby_explores
    @ the Sinclair

    Tuesday, June 4th
    Joe Jackson
    @ the Wilbur

    Wednesday, June 5th
    Andy Summers (The Police)
    @ Cary Hall, Lexington

    Thursday, June 6th
    Jason Narducy & Alison Chesley
    duo/reunion show
    @ Q Division Studios, Cambridge

    Thursday, June 6th
    Reverend Horton Heat
    @ the Crystal Ballroom

    Friday, June 7th
    Swansea Sound
    Jeanines
    @ O'Brien's

    Saturday, June 8th
    Joe Pera
    @ the Wilbur

    Saturday, June 8th
    John Cleese
    Q&A, plus a screening of
    "Monty Python & the Holy Grail"
    @ the Chevalier Theatre, Medford

    Monday, June 10th
    Dan Boeckner (Wolf Parade) @ Brighton Music Hall

    Monday, June 10th
    Bleachers
    Samia
    @ MGM Music Hall

    Tuesday, June 11th
    Protomartyr
    @ the Crystal Ballroom

    Thursday, June 13th
    Jon Langford & the Bright Shiners
    @ the Cut, Gloucester

    Thursday, June 13th
    Quasi playing 'Featuring "Birds"'
    Jeffrey Lewis
    @ Crystal Ballroom

    Thursday, June 13th
    Aaron West & the Roaring Twenties
    Future Teens
    Maura Weaver
    @ Brighton Music Hall

    Thursday, June 13th
    Comedy Bang! Bang!
    with Scott Aukerman & Paul F Tompkins
    @ The Wilbur

    Friday, June 14th
    Dylan Earl
    Tiger Saw
    Audrey & Karina
    & one more artist tba
    @ the Loft, Somerville

    Saturday, June 15th The Umbrellas
    @ 4th Wall
    @ the Capital Theatre, Arlington

    Sunday, June 16th
    Pixies
    Modest Mouse
    Cat Power
    @ Xfinity Center

    Wednesday, June 19th
    Future Islands
    @ Roadrunner

    Thursday, June 20th
    Roger Daltrey
    KT Tunstall
    @ the Pavilion

    Friday, June 21st
    The Church
    The Afghan Whigs
    Ed Harcourt
    @ the Royale

    Friday, June 21st
    Blushing
    Airiel
    Bodywash
    @ Deep Cuts

    Saturday, June 22nd
    Ted Leo & the Pharmacists
    playing "Shake The Sheets"
    with guests
    Ekko Astral
    @ the Paradise

    Saturday, June 22nd
    Guided By Voices
    The Moles
    @ the Royale

    Tuesday, June 25th
    Jon Anderson (of Yes)
    playing “Yes Epics, Classics, and More”
    @ the Shubert Theatre

    Tuesday, June 25th
    Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit
    Courtney Marie Andrews
    @ Roadrunner

    Wednesday, June 26th
    Blue Oyster Cult
    @ the Lynn Auditorium

    Friday, June 28th
    Dry Cleaning
    @ the Paradise

    Friday, June 28th
    A Day To Remember
    The Story So Far
    Four Year Strong
    Pain of Truth
    @ Suffolk Downs

    Friday, June 28th
    Janet Jackson
    Nelly
    @ TD Garden

    Saturday, June 29th
    Buffalo Tom
    @ Boarding House Park, Lowell

    Sunday, June 30th
    Les Savy Fav
    @ Somerville Armory

    Sunday, June 30th
    Pedro the Lion
    Squirrel Flower (solo)
    @ Crystal Ballroom

    Wednesday, July 3rd
    Grails
    @ Crystal Ballroom

    Tuesday, July 9th
    Alanis Morissette
    Joan Jett & the Blackhearts
    Morgan Wade
    @ the Xfinity Center

    Friday, July 14th
    Daryl Hall & Elvis Costello
    @ MGM Music Hall at Fenway

    Sunday, July 16th
    Los Campesinos!
    @ the Paradise

    Monday, July 17th
    Totally Tubular Festival Tour
    with Thomas Dolby,
    Tom Bailey (Thompson Twins),
    Modern English, The Romantics,
    Men Without Hats, & more
    @ MGM Music Hall