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Eric Wiersema writesCHIRP Radio Best of 2017: Eric Wiersema

CHIRP Radio Best of 2017

Throughout December, CHIRP Radio presents its volunteers’ top albums of 2017. Our next list is from volunteer Eric Wiersema.

2017 has been an incredible year for music and I listened to over double the amount of new music than I usually do thanks to reviewing 46 albums for CHIRP this year. I listened to around 100 full albums total and here are my top 10!


#1   Always Foreign by The World Is A Beautiful Place and I'm No Longer Afraid to Die (Epitaph)
BUY: Reckless / Amazon

The World Is A Beautiful Place and I'm No Longer Afraid to Die Always ForeignExcellent third album from the emo revivalists/post-rock blenders! Think Sunny Day Real Estate meets Explosions in the Sky. If you're skeptical about the emo revival, give the track "Marine Tigers" a listen and thank me later!



#2   Lotta Sea Lice by Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile (Milk! Records)
BUY: Reckless / Amazon

Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile Lotta Sea LiceTwo of my favorite folk rockers doing a collaboration album? Yes please! The whole album is gold especially "Over Everything," "Fear is Like a Forest," and "Continental Breakfast!"



#3   Science Fiction by Brand New (Procrastinate! Music Traitors)
BUY: Reckless / Amazon

Brand New Science FictionLong Island emo legends return for their fifth and final album after an 8 year hiatus and it was definitely worth the wait! Jesse Lacey and co channel the sounds of all four of their previous albums and break new ground as well resulting in the perfect culmination of their 18- year career.



#4   Near to the Wild Heart of Life by Japandroids (ANTI-)
BUY: Reckless / Amazon

Japandroids Near to the Wild Heart of LifeWhile Celebration Rock will always be my favorite Japandroids album, this long-awaited follow-up is far from a dud. High-energy anthemic garage rock/punk is what these guys do best and they deliver as advertised! Give the title track, "North East South West," and "No Known Drink or Drug" a listen and see for yourself!



#5   Infinity Maps by Panda Riot (self-released)
BUY: Reckless / Amazon

Panda Riot Infinity MapsI'm a sucker for shoegaze and our local heroes fail to disappoint! Give "Helios," "Ghosting," and "Arrows" a listen to tide you over while Kevin Shields takes the next 20 years or so to put out the next My Bloody Valentine album.



#6   Nothing Valley by Melkbelly (Wax Nine)
BUY: Reckless / Amazon

Melkbelly Nothing ValleyAnother Chicago band takes the number 6 spot. Melkbelly puts out blistering noise rock with hints of '90s grunge. No wonder Speedy Ortiz's frontwoman Sadie Dupuis decided to sign them! Go dig up your old flannel and give "Off the Lot" and "Kid Kreative" a listen!



#7   You're Not As ______ As You Think by Sorority Noise (Triple Crown Records)
BUY: Reckless / Amazon

Sorority Noise You're Not As ______ As You ThinkA powerful emo album inspired by the loss of two of frontman Cameron Boucher's friends, one to suicide and another to a drug overdose. The album takes you through Boucher's grieving process and proves to be a very heavy and rewarding listen.



#8   Losing by Bully (Sub Pop)
BUY: Reckless / Amazon

Bully LosingThe sophomore album from the Nashville grunge revivalists. What sets Bully apart from other bands in the scene are frontwoman Alice Bognanno's blistering screams who could give both Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love a run for their money. Give "Feel the Same," "Kills to be Resistant," and "Seeing It" a listen!



#9   Hiss Spun by Chelsea Wolfe (Sargent House)
BUY: Reckless / Amazon

Chelsea Wolfe Hiss SpunThe gothic singer-songwriter goes full-fledged doom metal on this album. Give "16 Psyche" and "Vex" a listen to experience the sludginess for yourself!



#10   Phases by Angel Olsen (Jagjaguwar)
BUY: Reckless / Amazon

Angel Olsen PhasesIt is pretty safe bet that whenever where Angel Olsen releases an album, even if it's a B-sides compilation, it is nearly guaranteed to make my year-end list. I usually ignore B-sides albums but I'm so glad that I didn't pass this one up. None of the 12 tracks feel like B-sides or filler at all and exemplify Angel Olsen at her best. I'm especially enjoying the increased hints of country incorporated in her brand of folk rock. Give "Sweet Dreams" a listen, definitely one of my top 5 songs of the year!


Honorable Mentions

Meat Wave - The Incessant
Ty Segall - Ty Segall
Marika Hackman - I'm Not Your Man
Japanese Breakfast - Soft Sounds From Another Planet
Alvvays - Antisocialites




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Categorized: Best Albums of the Year

Topics: best of 2017

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