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





  • Almanac Archives

  • Boston-Area Action

    Friday, October 18th
    Lynda Barry & Chris Ware
    talk comics
    @ the Brattle Theatre


    Friday & Saturday
    October 18th & 19th
    The Town and the City Festival
    returns to Lowell, MA!


    Saturday & Sunday
    October 19th & 20th
    Cave In
    Miltown
    @ the Sinclair


    Sunday, October 20th
    Vivian Girls
    @ ONCE Somerville


    Sunday, October 20th
    Stiff Little Fingers
    The Avengers
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Monday, October 21st
    Cave In
    @ Great Scott


    Monday, October 21st
    Nasalrod (with Spit from Fear)
    The Darker Hues
    Karate Steve
    @ Charlie’s


    Tuesday, October 22nd
    DIIV
    Chastity
    Storefront Church
    @ the Paradise


    Tuesday & Wednesday
    October 22nd & 23rd
    Against Me!
    “2 nights, 4 records, 48 songs”
    with Cursive & Dilly Dally
    @ the Royale


    Wednesday, October 23rd
    Flipper (w/David Yow on vocals)
    40th Anniversary Tour
    @ the Middle East Downstairs


    Wednesday, October 23rd
    Helmet
    @ the Paradise


    Thursday, October 24th
    Swervedriver
    @ Sonia


    Thursday, October 24th
    The Ash Gray Proclamation presents…
    The Astounds
    Greed Island
    Black Helicopter
    Park Doing
    @ O’Brien’s


    Thursday, October 24th
    Titus Andronicus
    Mal Blum
    @ ONCE Somerville


    Thursday, October 24th
    The National
    Marissa Nadler
    @ Agganis Arena


    Friday, October 25th
    Jenny Lewis
    The Watson Twins
    @ the House of Blues


    Friday, October 25th
    Jukebox the Ghost
    presents “Halloqueen”
    with Zach Jones & the Tricky Bits
    @ the Sinclair


    Saturday, October 26th
    Jay Som
    Gia Margaret
    Boy Scouts
    @ the Sinclair


    Friday & Saturday
    October 25th & 26th
    Steely Dan
    @ the Orpheum


    Saturday, October 26th
    Glider
    @ Once Somerville


    Saturday, October 26th
    Peter Hook & the Light
    @ the Paradise


    Sunday, October 27th
    Hovvdy
    Kevin Krauter
    Caroline Says
    @ Great Scott


    Sunday, October 27th
    Trashcan Sinatras
    performing ‘A Happy Pocket’
    and ‘Weightlifting’ LPs acoustic
    @ City Winery Boston


    Sunday, October 27th
    Cigarettes After Sex
    @ the House of Blues Boston


    Sunday, October 27th
    The Wonder Years
    Trash Boat
    Future Teens
    @ the Royale


    Monday, October 28th
    Fleetwood Mac
    @ the Garden


    Tuesday, October 29th
    Sleater-Kinney
    Joseph Keckler
    @ the House of Blues Boston


    Tuesday & Wednesday
    October 29th, 30th, & November 1st
    Steely Dan
    @ the Orpheum


    Wednesday, October 30th
    Bradley’s Almanac (that’s me!) presents…
    the New England Premiere of…
    STRANGE NEGOTIATIONS
    a David Bazan (Pedro the Lion) documentary
    7pm @ the Brattle Theatre, Cambridge
    with post-film remote director Q&A


    Wednesday, October 30th
    Devil’s Night at OB’s
    Special Halloween Show with
    Babes of Mutilation (Pixies)
    Fury Things (Dinosaur Jr.)
    The Knock Ups (as Hole)
    Queers of the Stone Age
    Corner Soul (as the Stooges)
    @ O’Brien’s in Allston


    Wednesday, October 30th
    Jónsi (Sigur Ros) & Alex Somers
    “The Riceboy Sleeps” Tour
    with the
    Wordless Music Orchestra
    @ the Wilbur


    Wednesday, October 30th
    King Princess
    Girlpool
    @ House of Blues


    Wednesday, October 30th
    The Milk Carton Kids
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Thursday, October 31st
    Marc Almond (Soft Cell)
    Hercules & Love Affair
    DJ Chris Ewen
    @ the Paradise


    Saturday, November 2nd
    Richard Buckner
    @ Atwood’s


    Saturday, November 2nd
    White Reaper
    The Nude Party
    Wombo
    @ the Sinclair


    Sunday, November 3rd
    Lost Film (record release!)
    Pushflowers
    Dee-Parts
    @ O’Brien’s


    Monday, November 4th
    The New Pornographers
    Lady Lamb
    @ the Royale


    Wednesday, November 6th
    Fruit Bats
    @ the Sinclair


    Wednesday, November 6th
    SUPERCHUNK AF
    “Acoustic Foolish”
    @ Somerville Theatre


    Friday, November 8th
    The Veldt
    New Aura
    Mint Green
    @ Dorchester Art Project


    Saturday, November 9th
    Lisa Prank
    @ O’Brien’s


    Sunday, November 10th
    The Last Waltz Tour
    a tribute to the Band
    with Warren Haynes, Jamey Johnson,
    Lukas Nelson, and more
    @ the Orpheum


    Sunday, November 10th
    The World Is A Terrible Place
    And I Am Not Afraid To Die
    with Harmony Woods
    @ Great Scott


    Monday, November 11th
    Samiam
    Moving Targets
    F.U.’s
    Far Above The Ground
    Rockin’ Bob’s Punk Band
    @ ONCE Somerville


    Tuesday, November 12th
    Ra Ra Riot
    @ the Sinclair


    Tuesday, November 12th
    Chastity Belt
    Strange Ranger
    DJ Carbo
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Thursday, November 14th
    Tool
    Killing Joke
    @ TD Garden


    Thursday, November 14th
    Circa Waves
    Parks
    @ Great Scott


    Thursday, November 14th
    Robert Forster (Go-Betweens)
    @ City Winery Boston


    Friday, November 15th
    Hiss Golden Messenger
    @ the Sinclair


    Friday, November 15th
    White Denim
    @ the Paradise


    Saturday, November 16th
    Caspian with the
    Losander Chamber Orchestra
    @ the Cabot in Beverly


    Sunday, November 17th
    (Sandy) Alex G
    Tomberlin
    Indigo de Souza
    @ the Royale


    Tuesday, November 19th
    FKA twigs
    @ the House of Blues


    Tuesday, November 19th
    Mikal Cronin
    @ Great Scott


    Tuesday, November 19th
    Angel Olsen
    Vagabon
    @ the Royale


    Wednesday, November 20th
    Beach Bunny
    Another Michael
    @ Great Scott


    Thursday, November 21st
    Robert Gordon
    Chris Spedding
    Diablogato
    @ ONCE Ballroom


    Friday, November 22nd
    Matt & Kim
    @ House of Blues


    Friday & Saturday
    November 22nd & 23rd
    Letters to Cleo
    Speedy Ortiz
    @ the Paradise


    Sunday, November 24nd
    Robyn Hitchcock
    @ City Winery


    Tuesday, December 3rd
    The Joy Formidable
    Twen
    Bryde
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Wednesday, December 4th
    Lucy Dacus
    Haley Heynderickx (solo)
    @ the Royale


    Wednesday, December 4th
    Thurston Moore Group
    @ ONCE Somerville


    Thursday, December 5th
    Twin Peaks
    with Ohmme (afternoon show)
    and Lala Lala (night show)
    @ the Sinclair


    Saturday, December 7th
    J. Robbins (Jawbox/Burning Airlines)
    full band show
    @ Great Scott


    Sunday, December 8th
    The Fixx
    Royston Langdon
    @ Big Night Live


    Sunday, December 8th
    Cher
    with Nile Rogers & Chic
    @ the Garden


    Monday, December 9th
    Stove
    @ ONCE Ballroom


    Tuesday, December 10th
    Pile
    @ the Sinclair


    Tuesday, December 10th
    Turnover
    Men I Trust
    Renata Zeiguer
    @ the Royale


    Wednesday, December 11th
    Pixies
    Kristin Hersh Trio
    @ Big Night Live
    (new venue near TD Garden)


    Wednesday, December 11th
    Turnover
    Men I Trust
    Renata Zeiguer
    @ the Sinclair


    Wednesday, December 11th
    Battles
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Friday, December 13th
    Mount Eerie
    & Julie Doiron
    @ the Somerville Armory


    Friday, December 13th
    Ween
    @ the House of Blues


    Friday, December 13th
    Kevin Devine
    & the Goddamn Band
    An Horse
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Saturday, December 14th
    The Cult
    “A Sonic Temple” Tour
    with Spirit Animal
    @ the House of Blues


    Thursday, Friday, & Saturday
    December 19th, 20th, & 21st
    Lucero
    @ the Sinclair


    Saturday, December 21st
    Piebald
    @ Great Scott


    Saturday, December 21st
    Daughters
    Health
    Show Me The Body
    @ the Paradise


    Saturday, December 28th
    The Push Stars
    @ the Paradise


    Thursday, January 2nd, 2020
    The Felice Brothers
    @ the Sinclair


    Monday, January 6th
    Motion City Soundtrack
    @ the House of Blue Boston


    Saturday, January 11th
    Book of Love
    DJ Chris Ewen
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Thursday, January 16th
    Camper Van Beethoven
    @ the Middle East Downstairs


    Sunday, February 1st
    Nada Surf
    Aaron Lee Tasjan
    @ the Sinclair


    Sunday, February 1st
    Cold War Kids
    @ the House of Blues


    Thursday, February 13th
    Tim and Eric
    2020 Mandatory Attendance World Tour
    @ the Orpheum


    Wednesday, February 19th
    Sloan play “Navy Blues”
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Saturday & Sunday
    February 22nd & 23rd
    Hot Water Music
    @ the Sinclair


    Saturday, March 14th
    Lower Dens
    :3ION
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Friday & Saturday
    March 20th & 21st
    Dashboard Confessional
    The Get Up Kids
    @ the Paradise


    Sunday, March 22nd
    Dashboard Confessional
    @ the Paradise


    Tuesday, March 24nd
    Caribou
    @ the House of Blues


    Wednesday, March 25th
    Keane
    @ the Orpheum


    Thursday, April 2nd
    Sofi Tukker
    “RIP Shame World” Tour
    @ the House of Blues


    Tuesday, April 14th
    Patrick Watson
    @ the Sinclair


    Friday, April 24th
    Dead Can Dance
    Agnes Obel
    @ the Wang