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Katie O. - Local Love writesCHIRP Radio Best of 2014: Katie Owens

CHIRP Radio Best of 2014

Throughout December, CHIRP Radio presents its volunteers’ top albums of 2014. Our next list is from Local Features Director Katie Owens.

This list is not exhaustive and I'd like the reader to know I love listening to local music and anything reminiscent of The Beatles and The Strokes.

#1NE-HI by NE-HI (Manic Static)
NE-HI NE-HIBUY: Reckless / Permanent / iTunes / Insound / Amazon

NE-HI's first full length has been on heavy rotation on my record player and headphones since its debut in March. I love this album for its energy, mantra-style lyrics and its perfectly poppy, sunny rock 'n roll. It's not just a local classic, it's a classic through and through.

#2Last War by Haley Bonar (Graveface)
Haley Bonar Last WarBUY: Reckless / Permanent / iTunes / Insound / Amazon

This was my female anthem album of 2014. The songs really resonated for me, and how can you go wrong when you have achy lyrics accompanied by pop rock.

#3Just Enough Hip To Be Woman by BRONCHO (Dine Alone)
BRONCHO Just Enough Hip To Be WomanBUY: Reckless / Permanent / iTunes / Insound / Amazon

I loved BRONCHO's first album and after four long years of waiting I was rewarded with an album composed of songs worthy of being released as singles. BRONCHO sets the standard for great, catchy rock. Class Historian and Kurt were my favorite tracks.

#4Wild Onion by Twin Peaks (Grand Jury)
Twin Peaks Wild OnionBUY: Reckless / Permanent / iTunes / Insound / Amazon

This album grew on me over time. Immediately I was drawn to the B-side for its slower, more moody songs. The B-side is still my favorite but when combined with the punchier A-side it's another great album from one of my favorite locals.

#5Burn Your Fire For No Witness by Angel Olsen (Jagjaguwar)
Angel Olsen Burn Your Fire For No WitnessBUY: Reckless / Permanent / iTunes / Insound / Amazon

Angel has this incredible talent for piercing your heart and soul with each of her songs. She's crafted incredibly beautiful music with poignant lyrics and wailing guitar. She's captivated us all once again with this stellar third album.

#6Saturnalia Regalia! by Monomyth (Mint)
Monomyth Saturnalia Regalia!BUY: Reckless / Permanent / iTunes / Insound / Amazon

It's not a list, unless I include someone from the UK. Monomyth put out great, jangly rock with a whole lot of quirk on Saturnalia Regalia!. One of my favorite songs describes the regret of leaving a beloved pet outside who ultimately dies of exposure to the cold.

#7Love Chills by YAWN (Old Flame)
YAWN Love ChillsBUY: Reckless / Permanent / iTunes / Insound / Amazon

YAWN, you guys put out a great album. You've got some of that tasty tribal rock they excel at, infused with electronic music and a whole lot of soul. Put on your headphones, and play this end to end, you'll have a smile on your face and will be better prepared to take on the world.

#8Water Liars by Water Liars (Fat Possum)
Water Liars Water LiarsBUY: Reckless / Permanent / iTunes / Insound / Amazon

Water Liars really get me. Or perhaps I really get them. I wasn't someone who described myself as liking anything related to country music until I heard Water Liars. Water Liars are so much more than any adjective you could ever dream up to describe them. You get a little country, rock, folk and some of the best lyric writing in the music industry. Their third full length packs heart aching songs, as expected, but also injects songs easily described as 'happy.' What more could you ask for?

#9Last Time For Everything by Shiloh (Bersek)
Shiloh Last Time For EverythingBUY: Reckless / Permanent / iTunes / Insound / Amazon

Shiloh, better known as Logan Square's 111th most popular band, put out on of my favorite albums of the year. Had it gotten on my radar a bit earlier, I feel strongly it would be even higher on this list. For anyone who likes garage rock with punk details, this is something you need to get your hands on. 9am is THE track.

#10Hunger by Dan Melchior Und Dan Menace (Castle Face Records)
Dan Melchior Und Dan Menace HungerBUY: Reckless / Permanent / iTunes / Insound / Amazon

It's so weird and I love it so much. Beyond the other world (aka are you from planet earth?) lyrical sensibilities, you've got the fuzzed out rock that sets the mood for a very appealing album.

Best EP's:

Landmarks, Self-titled, Walk-In Records

BUMMER, self-titled (formerly of Young Jesus) The Symposium, Drugs

Best 7":

Dream Eagle, Heavy Dreams, Public House Sounds


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Categorized: Best Albums of the Year

Topics: best of 2014

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