Wednesday, January 1, 2020

2019 Year in Review Music

So much to talk about when I think of the last year in music. One thing was a continued effort by myself to get back out to more live music. As much as I enjoy listening to music I so love watching a good band play and interact on stage and with the crowd, that is something that I can't even begin to dscribe how it makes me feel. After years of so many shows then a few years of very few I have been trying to be better at engaging in. Something I would also say that has become more and more an important factor in me and my connection to music is listening through headphones as the sounds just plain penetrate your brain in a different way! What is so encouraging is the amount of depth in songs and complete albums in a time where I think popular music is all about a hook and a hit song and nothing else. It truly was a great year!

So what I like to do every year is start a list in my phone or on a notepad as I hear something that impacts me as it is far to hard to just think of it all at the end of the year. With that as I looked over my list as was re listening I was struck with so very much that was great, far too much to do a top 10 list. What you find is my top 10 with a few others to please take a first or second listen too.

Others to take in:
Karen O & Danger Mouse- Lux Prima, Coldplay- Everyday Life, The National-I am easy to find, King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard- Infest the Rats Nest, Foals-Everything Not Saved will be Lost vol 1&2

10. Sturgill Simpson- Sound &Fury (What I loved about this album was a few things. I loved that rather than allowing himself to be put in a box he followed her heart and let it rip with his great band)

9. The Raconteurs- Help us Stranger (I know some people are quick to say it's like a Jack White solo album but I do not think they are listening to the true sound of what is being said. I love what he does with this band, it's a true band and I do think they all have a place to make it whole)

8. The Black Keys- Lets Rock (By far there strongest effort in many years, while not the complete stripped down sound of the early years I for one really like the full band sound. With these guys and The Raconteurs I think its safe to say that Rock and Roll is still kicking ass)

7. The Avett Brothers- Closer Than Together (These guys are true songwriters and and continue to blow me away. On this album they touch on many thoughts many people are feeling today. To truly appreciate them and their songs see them live)

6. Garry Clark Jr- This Land (Keeping with the theme of an amazing band and how they gel Garry has that. Yes he is a guitarist that blows you away but the licks have a place and are not just there to show off. A great groove and message is delivered on this album, also see them live now if you can!)

5. Bon Iver- i,i (The sounds that this man/band is able to put together is amazing and something that is hard to explain but is so very moving)

4. Brittany Howard- Jaime (The depth of feeling and songwriting was amazing to me and something I was not expecting. I have liked her work with Alabama Shakes but this was her taking her music to another place)

3. Billie Eilish- When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We... (The songs are complete and so much more than what I am afraid the mainstream public sees in them. Yes there are great hooks and beats but there is substance to the songs that I only hope people take the time to truly listen to, while I was resisting at first I could not help falling for them)

2. Michael Kiwanuka- Kiwanuka (His silky smooth and soulful music is just my soul needs so often. The lyrics on this album as very beautiful and full of hope)

1. Tool- Fear Inoculum (What do I say? I have waited so long for this album that I was afraid it could not live up to what I wanted, but yes it did! These guys are so much more than a "metal" band that people peg them as, they write songs that transcend time and have great depth. If you don't think you would like this album listen and give it a chance as with each 10 min+ song you weave all though space in you head that you feel in you soul)


Monday, February 11, 2019

My top albums from 2018

Holy cow I am late with this list and for that, I am so sorry, I am sure everyone couldn't live without this! 😏 With that said I will not keep you waiting.

10. Alice in Chains-Rainier Fog
9. Jeff Tweedy-Warm
8. A Perfect Circle- Eat the Elephant
7. Ty Segall- Freedoms Goblin
6. Muse- Simulation Theory
5. Brandi Carlile- By the way I forgive you
4. Chvrches- Love is Dead
3. Big Red Machine- Big Red Machine
2. Lord Huron- Vide Noir
1. Snow Patrol-Wildness


Thursday, January 18, 2018

Another Year, Another Albums list

Haha, it is almost funny that I have gotten to a point where I only do 1 post per year on this blog. I guess part of the reason is 1) I am so so much busier now than when I started doing the blog all those years ago. 2) I am super self-conscious about my writing abilities.  3) Does anyone really care what I have to say? I always say that I am going to try and do more with the blog as I do feel like I have lot's to share with people, but who knows if I will get around to it.

So one of the things I love about music is how the type of mood you are in can affect the way you feel about what you are listening to. That is what makes doing a list like this so hard. 2017 was for me an amazing year in music and made this guy a happy person. I lost many musical artists that I liked this year but I am reminded that their art will remain forever.  Well until next time I will get to the poll. This year features the top 13 since 13 is my favorite number. Drum roll, please.........

13. LCD Soundsystem- American Dream
12. Portugal the Man- Woodstock
11. Noel Gallagher high flying birds- Who built the Moon
10. Foo Fighters- Concrete & Gold
9. U2- Songs of Experience
8. Jason Isbell & the 400 unit- The Nashville Sound
7. Linkin Park- One more light
6. Arcade Fire- Everything Now
5. The Rural Alberta Advantage- The Wild
4. Blitzen Trapper- Wild & Reckless
3. Queens of the Stone Age- Villains
2. Manchester Orchestra- A Black Mile to the Surface
1. Ryan Adams- Prisoner

Not sure what to say other than to me Ryan is one of the greatest songwriters ever. He has passion and energy in his songs. I am not sure if I have ever heard a truly bad Ryan song?




Friday, January 13, 2017

Hello again- Top albums 2016

Ha, it's almost becoming a funny side joke with me and some people how I only blog 1 time a year for my top albums list. I will admit that I often find myself with things to say but no time to write them down. As you maybe have seen on here I am not the best writer, but still, have lot's to say. Hmm, maybe 2017 I can be better? This past year had it all for me, Metal, Country, Hip Hop, Punk and everything in between. In fact, this year was a year where I will expand my list to my favorite number of 13. Anyway here is my list and let me know what you think!

13. Sioux Falls- Rot Forever
12. The Record Company- Give it Back to you
11. Radiohead- A Moon Shaped Pool
10. Metallica- Hardwired to Self Destruct
9. Kings of Leon- Walls
8. Wilco- Schmilco
7. Blink 182- California
6. The Avett Brothers- True Sadness
5. Sturgill Simpson- A Sailor's Guide to Earth
4. A Tribe Called Quest- We Got it from Here...
3. Bon Iver- 22, A Million
2. Margo Price- Midwest Farmers Daughter
1. Kaleo- A/B
This band from Iceland brought it with this album. It has power, soul and feeling oozing from it. It was a pleasure to come across this.



Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Top 10 of 2015 Kurt list

Wow has a year gone by already? I guess it's that time for my yearly top 10 albums list. So this year for me was a great year for new music. It was very hard for me to just do a top 10 list. What I really liked was that there was so many different styles that moved me this year.  A few albums that missed the cut but I would for sure check out are Noel Gallagher's high flying birds- Chasing Yesterday, Major Lazer- Peace is the Mission, El Vy- Return to the Moon, Leon Bridges- Coming Home, Chris Cornell- Higher Truth. So not to bore you anymore drum roll please...........

10) Muse- Drones : This band always delivers great driving/pounding rock anthems

9) Garry Clark Jr- The story of Sonny Boy Slim : The next great Blues guitarist from Austin. I can almost hear Stevie Ray playing with him. I got to see him live sometime soon.

8) Ryan Adams- 1989 : Who else can take a pop queens songs and make them his own? The answer is no one can. These songs has a new life with him behind the wheel.

7) Alabama Shakes- Sound & Color : My first listen I liked it but with each spin I found I fell more and more in love with the groove of this album.

6) Puscifer- Money Shot : One word.. Maynard. Yes I listen to this and become hypnotized by what I hear and also become more and more excited for the Tool album this year!!

5) Grimes- Art Angels : I will have to admit I did not know much about Grimes before this but man did she deliver. These pop/ dance tracks make you want to move.

4) Jason Isbell- Something more than Free : What more can I say other than great classic singer songwriter americana. Makes you want to get on the road, roll the windows down and see the country.

3) Wilco- Star Wars : This is the Wilco I know and love. I have seen them so many times but would love to hear them play these songs in a dark theater where I could just sit back take the wall of sound and let me mind wonder.

2) Modest Mouse- Strangers to Ourselves : One of my favorites did not disappoint at all. The groves that they bring are second to none. I was so bummed to miss their show in the cities this summer.

1) Chvrches- Every open eye : After the first album I did not know if they could match the intense emotional feel songs but not only did they match it, they took it to another level. This album always is a pick me up so well played Chvrches, well played!!

Sunday, January 4, 2015

My Best Albums of 2014

Like past years I like to list my top 10 albums of the past year. And like last year it has been like a year since my last post, dude am I lame huh. So here you go drum roll please..............

10. Haley Bonar- Last War
9. TV on the Radio- Seeds
8. David Guetta- Listen
7. Trampled by Turtles- Wild Animals
6. Benjamin Booker- Self Titled
5. The New Pornographers- Brill Bruisers
4. Sia- 1000 Forms of Fear
3. Linkin Park- The Hunting Party
2. Alt J- This is all yours
1. Pixies- Indie Cindy

It was such a great year for me in music. There was so many good albums that I could have easily put on my top 10 list. Plus I found myself listening to many different styles of music this year which was fun. In the end I went with the return of the Pixies. These guys like many others have gotten back together after many years away but these guys came back with music that for me was totally on par with the past albums for sure!

Friday, February 28, 2014

Go South Young Man

Wow was that something. As I sit here thinking about my last trip with my buddy Steve and his Marathon Adventures group to Chile and Antarctica I can't help but think about how big this world is and yet also how small it can be.  This was the second year I was lucky to be able to help with this tour. While there I was able to see all the beautiful sights and to meet lot's of amazing people. I saw people who were looking to run two marathon on two continents in 5 days. That was no small feat for anyone but yet they all pushed thru and got it done. On the other hand it was also cool to be able to look around and talk to people who live in the places we were at and see that no matter what language you speak we all have a pride for the places we come from. For me that is Minnesota and all it's glory. 
So while I hope to be able to keep traveling to places like this in the future, it is nice to always know that I will come back and have my love for my home and my people made stronger!