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


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





  • Handy links

  • BOSTON-AREA LIVE SHOW ACTION


    Monday, January 24th
    Lomelda
    Alexalone
    @ the Sinclair


    Thursday, January 27th
    Ezra Furman
    @ the Crystal Ballroom


    Monday, January 31st
    The War on Drugs
    House of Blues


    Tuesday, February 1st
    We Are Scientists
    @ Sonia


    Thursday, February 3rd
    Reptaliens
    Yot Club
    Renata Zeiguer
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Saturday, February 5th
    An Evening with Bruce Dickinson
    @ the Shubert Theatre


    Saturday, February 5th
    Erasure
    @ the Orpheum


    Monday, February 7th
    STRFKR
    The Undercover Dream Lovers
    @ the Sinclair


    Tuesday, February 8th
    Courtney Barnett
    Shamir
    @ the Wang


    Thursday, February 10th
    Squirrel Flower
    Mia Joy
    @ the Sinclair


    Saturday, February 12th
    The Royal Arctic Institute
    Sleepyhead
    Chris Brokaw
    @ the Lilypad


    Saturday, February 12th
    Ian Sweet
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Friday, February 18th
    The Cribs
    @ the Sinclair


    Thursday, February 24th
    John Moreland
    Will Johnson
    @ the Sinclair


    Thursday, February 24th
    Sleigh Bells
    @ the Paradise


    Friday, February 25th
    Illuminati Hotties
    Fenne Lily
    Pom Pom Squad
    @ the Sinclair


    Saturday, February 26th
    The Beths
    Lunar Vacation
    @ the Royale


    Sunday, February 27th
    Bruce Cockburn
    @ the Wilbur


    Monday, February 28th
    Journey
    Billy Idol
    @ the Garden


    Tuesday, March 1st
    AFI
    Cold Cave
    @ the Royale


    Wednesday, March 2nd
    The Besnard Lakes
    @ O'Briens


    Wednesday, March 2nd
    Bruce Cockburn
    @ the Narrows, Fall River


    Thursday, March 3rd
    Punch Brothers
    Haley Heynderickx
    @ the Orpheum


    Friday, March 4th
    Nation of Language
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Saturday, March 5th
    Superchunk
    Torres
    @ the Paradise


    Saturday, March 5th
    Guided By Voices
    @ the Royale


    Monday, March 7th
    Pet Fox
    @ O'Brien's


    Monday, March 7th
    Microphones
    Emily Sprague
    @ Somerville Theatre


    Wednesday, March 9th
    Clan of Xymox
    The Bellwether Syndicate
    Aertex
    @ the Hard Rock Cafe


    Friday, March 11th
    Lady Pills
    @ O'Brien's


    Friday, March 11th
    Lewis Black
    @ the Emerson Colonial


    Saturday, March 12th
    Son Volt
    Jesse Farrar
    @ the Sinclair


    Monday, March 14th
    Ryley Walker
    TONSTARTSSBANDHT
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Tuesday, March 15th
    Marketa Irglova
    & Glen Hansard
    (The Swell Season)
    @ the Emerson Theatre


    Tuesday, March 15th
    Ministry
    Melvins
    Corrosion of Conformity
    @ House of Blues


    Wednesday, March 16th
    Tame Impala
    @ the Garden


    Saturday, March 19th
    Rick Maguire (Pile)
    @ Church of the Covenant


    Saturday, March 19th
    Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
    @ Sonia


    Saturday, March 19th
    The Dear Hunter
    The World Is a Beautiful Place...
    Tanner Merritt (of O'Brother)
    @ the Sinclair


    Sunday, March 20th
    Sleaford Mods
    @ the Sinclair


    Sunday, March 20th
    Dropkick Murphys
    Jim Lindberg (Pennywise)
    The Rumjacks
    @ Roadrunner


    Sunday, March 20th
    Henry Rollins
    @ the Wilbur


    Monday & Tuesday
    March 21st & 22nd
    Mitski
    Michelle
    @ Roadrunner


    Tuesday, March 22nd
    Nick Cave & Warren Ellis
    @ the Wang


    Wednesday, March 23rd
    Hrishikesh Hirway
    (The One AM Radio)
    Jenny Owen Youngs
    @ Crystal Ballroom


    Wednesday, March 23rd
    Hot Water Music
    @ the Sinclair


    Thursday & Friday
    March 24th & 25th
    Bleachers
    @ Roadrunner


    Thursday, March 24th
    Black Beach
    @ O'Brien's


    Thursday, March 24th
    They Might Be Giants
    'Flood' 30th annivesary
    @ the Royale


    Friday, March 25th
    Yard Act
    @ the Sinclair


    Saturday, March 26th
    Thao
    @ the Paradise


    Saturday, March 26th
    Car Seat Headrest
    Bartees Strange
    @ House of Blues


    Sunday, March 27th
    Kishi Bashi
    @ the Sinclair


    Wednesday, March 30th
    Sparks
    @ the Shubert Theatre


    Thursday, March 31st
    Parquet Courts
    Hailu Mergia
    @ the Royale


    Friday, April 1st
    Brian Jonestown Massacre
    Mercury Rev
    @ Roadrunner


    Friday, April 1st
    Low
    @ Columbus Theatre
    in Providence


    Sunday, April 3rd
    Andy Shauf
    @ the Paradise


    Monday, April 4th
    Holy F*ck
    @ Sonia


    Monday, April 4th
    Airborne Toxic Event
    @ the House of Blues


    Tuesday, April 5th
    Perfume Genius
    Hand Habits
    @ the Royale


    Wednesday, April 6th
    Spoon
    Margaret Glaspy
    @ the House of Blues


    Wednesday, April 6th
    James Vincent McMorrow
    @ the Royale


    Thursday, April 7th
    Bright Eyes
    @ Roadrunner


    Thursday, April 7th
    Circle Jerks
    7SECONDS
    Negative Approach
    @ the Paradise


    Friday, April 8th
    Mogwai
    @ the Paradise


    Friday, April 8th
    Snail Mail
    Joy Again
    @ the Royale


    Friday & Saturday
    April 8th & 9th
    The Town & the City Festival
    a stacked lineup of artists
    @ venues around Lowell, MA


    Saturday, April 9th
    Slow Crush
    @ Sonia


    Tuesday, April 12th
    We Were Promised Jet Packs
    Weakened Friends
    @ the Sinclair


    Wednesday, April 13th
    Big Thief
    @ Roadrunner


    Thursday, April 14th
    Alt-J
    Portugal. The Man
    Cherry Glazerr
    @ Agganis Arena


    Thursday, April 14th
    Cowboy Junkies
    @ Cary Memorial Hall


    Thursday, April 14th
    Yumi Zouma
    @ the Sinclair


    Sunday, April 17th
    Jack White
    @ Agganis Arena


    Sunday, April 17th
    Godspeed You! Black Emperor
    @ the Columbus, Providence


    Thursday, April 21st
    Fruit Bats
    @ the Sinclair


    Friday, April 22nd
    Letterkenny
    @ the Orpheum


    Saturday, April 23rd
    Aimee Mann
    @ the Chevalier


    Monday, April 25th
    Fontaines D.C.
    Just Mustard
    @ the Paradise


    Tuesday, April 26th
    Pedro the Lion
    Oceanator
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Tuesday, April 26th
    Guerilla Toss
    @ the Crystal Ballroom


    Friday, April 29th
    The Zombies
    @ the Cabot, Beverly


    Friday, April 29th
    Hovvdy
    Molly Parden
    @ the Sinclair


    Sunday, May 1st
    OMD
    @ House of Blues


    Monday, May 2nd
    Cat Power
    @ the Paradise


    Tuesday, May 3rd
    Olivia Rodrigo
    Holly Humberstone
    @ Roadrunner


    Thursday, May 5th
    Julianna Barwick
    Malibu
    @ the Sinclair


    Sunday, May 8th
    Destroyer
    @ The Sinclair


    Tuesday, May 10th
    Pup
    Cloud Nothings
    @ House of Blues


    Thursday, May 12th
    Beach Bunny
    @ House of Blues


    Sunday, May 15th
    Dry Cleaning
    @ Crystal Ballroom


    Wednesday, May 18th
    Shout Out Louds
    @ Brighton Music Hall


    Thursday, May 19th
    Joe Jackson
    @ the Shubert


    Sunday, May 22th
    Eels
    @ the Paradise


    Tuesday, May 24th
    Royal Blood
    @ the House Of Blues


    Friday to Sunday
    May 27th to 29th
    Boston Calling Fest
    @ Harvard Athletic Complex


    Friday to Sunday
    May 27th to 29th
    Wilco's
    Solid Sound Festival
    @ MASS MoCA


    Sunday, June 5th
    The Antlers
    @ the Sinclair


    Saturday, June 11th
    Kraftwerk
    @ the Wang


    Thursday, June 16th
    Jonathan Richman
    with Tommy Larkins
    @ the Wilbur


    Saturday, June 18th
    The Zulus
    @ the Paradise


    Tuesday, June 21st
    Waxahatchee
    @ Roadrunner


    Wednesday, June 22nd
    Tears for Fears
    Garbage
    @ the Pavilion


    Monday, June 27th
    Ty Segall
    & Freedom Band
    @ the Royale


    Sunday, July 10th
    Brian Wilson
    Chicago
    @ the Xfinity Center


    Friday, July 15th
    Bikini Kill
    Alice Bag
    @ the Wang


    Friday, July 22nd
    Beach House
    @ Roadrunner


    Tuesday, August 16th
    Goo Goo Dolls
    @ Some Bank Pavilion


    Tuesday, August 16th
    Peter Hook & the Light
    Playing Joy Division's
    "Closer" & "Unknown Pleasures"
    @ the Paradise


    Thursday, August 18th
    Sharon Van Etten
    Julien Baker
    Angel Olsen
    Spencer
    @ the Pavilion


    Friday, September 10th
    Red Hot Chili Peppers
    St. Vincent
    Thundercat
    @ Fenway Park


    Thursday & Friday
    September 15th & 16th
    Vundabar
    @ the Sinclair


    Sunday, September 19th
    New Order
    Pet Shop Boys
    @ Some Bank Pavilion


    Wednesday, September 21st
    OSEES
    Bronze
    @ the Royale


    Wednesday, September 28th
    Pavement
    @ the Wang


    Monday, October 3rd
    The Killers
    Johnny Marr
    @ the Garden


    Saturday, October 22nd
    June of 44
    @ the Middle East Down