Words by Jon Milton and Mark Glenister
10. Minami Deutsch: Fortune Goodie
Any new music from Japanese Krautrock band Minami Deutsch is a wondrous thing. Whilst not exactly prolific (this is their third album in six years) the band do what they do and they do it very well. Fortune Goodie brings us ten new tracks melding fuzz, repetition and motorik, a winning combination I’m sure you’ll agree!
9: Traams – personal best
Personal Best comes just the seven years on from their last album ‘Modern Dancing’, and sees the band collaborate with the likes of Joe Casey, Soffie Viemose and Soft Lizard. It’s largely a triumphant return with ‘Breathe’ as the standout track. Personally I’d be happy with four ten-minute tracks like ‘Breathe’ across a whole album as its in that format they seem to excel.
8: Warmduscher – At the Hotspot
Who’d have thought we’d get to see Warmduscher play Glastonbury? On the telly too! The band have continued their upward ascent in 2022, winning many new friends along the way. ‘At the Hotspot’ doesn’t see the band at their best but its still a decent album, and it contains the brilliant ‘Wild Flowers’ and ‘Fatso’.
7. The Lounge Society – Tired of Liberty
The sheer amount of energy and ideas that the band pack into Tired of Liberty is mind blowing. The first nine songs twist and turn, scamper and slow and then scamper again restlessly with such effortless ease. Its easy to lose your sense of time. Brilliant stuff.
6. Bob Vylan – Bob Vylan Presents the Price of Life
Anger, contempt, purpose, meaning. The Price of Life is so raw, so real and so good. Very few artists seem brave enough to make a statement this direct these days, and in such an articulate fashion. Superb.
5. Yard Act – The Overload
Their status as media darlings and the rampant self-marketing that accompanied this release made Yard Act and the Overload very easy to dislike. However, this album is from start to finish excellent and the band are one of the best on the live circuit. And you can’t fault their industry. This may well be their moment in the sun and fair play to them.
4. Life: North East Coastal Town
From the moment that ‘Friends Without Names’ was released late last year it was looking likely that this would be a great album and it is. There is a wonderful maturity to North East Coastal Town that elevates the band from sounding like The Fall to sounding like Life and long may they continue in this vein.
3. Crows – Beware Believers
Whilst the first album had moments which felt like their live experience, this album sounds like a Crows gig from start to sweat drenched finish. This is the sound of band feeling comfortable with their sound, and a rhythm section that will pummel you senseless. It needs to be noted that these are the first tracks written with drummer Sam Lister being involved, and you can hear his and Jith Amara’s (bass)influence all the way, add to that the layered searing sounds and feedback from Steve Goddard (lead) and the dark, passionate, angry lyrics of James Cox, you have a very dark but beautiful album. It delivers on every track, hardly pausing for breath until the last few songs, the band wanted this experience for you and they do not disappoint.
2. TV Priest ‘My Other People’
TV Priest’s second album ‘My Other People’ lays bare singer Charlie Drinkwater’s experiences during the pandemic, a period in which he confesses he was in ‘a place where I was not, I would say, particularly well’. TV Priest’s second album represents a big step forward for the band. Where Uppers felt like a collection of songs, My Other People feels like a proper album, and one that will go down as a ‘flash of greatness’ from the band for years to come.
1. Gilla Band - Most Normal
Gilla Band's third album is a breathtaking achievement. Wow, wow, wow, it is brilliant.
The influences of electronic artists like Aphex Twin, Boards of Canada and the Chemical Brothers are pretty obvious on Most Normal, but what sets Gilla Band apart from these is the production, which so expertly melds analogue with electronica to create something unique. It is our of the year and a worthy winner.