As we begin to close out the year I wanted to take a look back at the highlights and I am choosing to start with music, purely because I don’t think there’s any releases left.
If you follow this blog, or my Instagram you’ll come to expect something more alternative that what you’re likely to hear on the radio or trending on Youtube. I
It’s been a tremendous year for releases throughout the rock scene. We’ve been treated to heavy hitters like Bring Me the Horizon, Architects, A Day to Remember, Foo Fighters and even some Corey Taylor stuff.
Here’s my roundup of my best bits from the year.
Lets kick of with the best. Vukovi’s Fall Better was their second album that released right at the top of the year. For me it is the best record of 2020 and possibly my favourite ever. It sums up my music taste in 11 records.
Janine was able to pen some beautiful lyrics, whether it’s about her OCD, grief or mental health. At the very start, they promise some heavy fucking riffs and they do deliver. Tracks like White Lies, Play with me cos I can take it and Aura showcase Hemeish’s excellent riffage.
Best Track: Violent Minds
Best Lyric: ‘When I dream of you I always wake with a smile’.
Poppy’s I Disagree and I Disagree (more) were records I welcomed with open arms. As a guilty pleasure the end of last year I was looking forward to see what Poppy would do. The result is a mix of genres, but a heavy crash none the less.
I Disagree is perhaps one of the strangest things you could listen to. Poppy’s high pitched, playful singing is blended with grungy guitars and energetic drumming. It’s like pop mixed with metal with k-pop influences. Bite Your Own Teeth shows she can mix it with the heaviest but Sit/ Stay shows she still has a pop influence.
Best Song: Anything Like Me
Best Lyric: Stop, you’re making a scene, you’re coming at me with blood in your teeth.
Manic is a superbly written, well produced record from Halsey. It doesn’t just feel like another conveyor belt pop record but feels crafted in Halseys own studio.
The lyrics always feel personal and it’s clear they were written by her own hand. The mix of music you experience throughout shows Halsey’s creative but unfenced side.
Tracks like Graveyard or Without Me bring the energy with 929 & Ashley bring the honesty. The use of pop culture references is a great addition along side the features. Halsey has had a great year and this record is just the tip of the iceberg.
Best Song: 3am
Best Lyric: ‘I really was born at 9:29 on 9.29… and I’m a fucking liar’
I think this record was the biggest surprise this year. Not that we weren’t due a record but the style they came at us with.
Post Human: Survival Horror from Bring Me the Horizon is a standout. It features the likes of Babymetal, Amy Lee and Yungblud. I watched a reaction to one of their songs and they said ‘who pissed Oli off?’ That’s the tone of this long EP. Heavy, energetic and so well made it cements my thoughts that BMTH are one of the best at making music around.
Best Song: Kingslayer (Feat. Babymetal)
Best Lyric: ‘God is a shit head and we’re his rejects’
Bloxx – Lie Out Loud. The pop rock album that is such an easy listen was a great addition late in 2020.
Machine Gun Kelly – Tickets to my Downfall. This almost made it to the big ones up top, but alas it just falls short. It’s such a revival for pop punk and I hope Kelly brings more. Forget Me Too ft. Halsey is top 3 songs of the year.
Yours Truly – Self Care. Anyone that tries to be pop rock will always get the Paramore comparisons. Yours Truly feel different and I love their sound. Self Care is another brilliant easy listening record.
Stand Atlantic – Pink Elephant. Another pop punk, female led record. Another banger. Like That is an amazing song but Stand Atlantic are truly great crafts people.
Code Orange – Underneath. If you want metal, look to Code Orange. This is probably the heaviest record I’ve been listening to at the moment, but I just love it. Its full of great riffs and breakdowns but it is well put together to.
In 2021 we’re going to be treated to more Vukovi, Against the Current, Architects, A Day to Remember, Hot Milk, While She Sleeps, Wargasm and I’m sure a whole lot more. It’s going to be a treat and I look forward to see a few of these live, hopefully!