Yes, this again. And why not? I can’t remember what I had for lunch yesterday, much less what music or movies I dug last year. If I didn’t make these lists I’d have to live in – and maybe even occasionally enjoy – the present; a very foreign concept to an overly anxious hyper-focused pile such as myself.* Add to that a terrifyingly imminent and unknown future and what’s left? It’s hard to not just sit back and dig around in the archives of a safe and secure past. Put on a well-worn and familiar record and the highlight reel GLOWS.
Here’s to what we know and what we’ve seen and heard and loved.
Here’s to this past year.
The Best Albums
This is a hard list to compile every year as I always feel like I’ve been too focused on this or that artist and don’t branch out nearly enough. Why can’t I come up with a longer list? Why do I struggle to find five fuckin artists worth mentioning?
Why can’t I be more like Mike Brody???
Same story, different year, and here’s the best I could do. For what it’s worth, I loved EVERY track on the first two, and almost every track on the other three. This is big victory for the ears of someone with my sort of attention span.
- Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell – Hauntingly perfect. Better than Illinois. Beautiful.
- Daniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats – Daniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats – Just what I needed. Love this guy’s story, love this groups’s throwback vibe. Jake and Elwood would be proud.
- Tame Impala – Currents – Brilliantly released as tease after tease. In the end, I’d hoped for only slightly more when it was all laid before me.
- Unknown Mortal Orchestra – Multi-Love – Not quite as good as its predecessor, but very fun with a few instant classic tracks.
- Leon Bridges – Coming Home – Speaking of throwback, we need more doo-wop. We need more Leon.
The Best Films
- Ex Machina – YES. So good. Perfect. Never have I had such feelings for a robot.
- It Follows – GREAT new horror. Loved the anxiety caused by an unrelenting and persistent threat. So modern.
- Mad Max: Fury Road – I sighed and laughed off the first few scenes as “silly” and “dumb” but I was left feeling awe and it was just – let’s face it – beautiful.
- Inside Out – great, tho not epic; apropos to my effort toward seeing into the the minds and behind the eyes of my children.
- The One I Love – Quirky, fun, mysterious, well-written and acted. What else can we ask for?
From 2014 (’cause I’m a parent and I never get out):
- Interstellar – SPACE! Black holes!
- Boyhood – Perfect.
- Gone Girl – Very well written and executed.
- Edge of Tomorrow – Time travel FTW.
- Big Hero 6 – LOVED.
Stuff I really dug:
- Ken Burns – The Roosevelts
The Martian (the book, have yet to see the flick)
- Halt & Catch Fire
- Justin Townes Earle
Worst shit I saw this year:
- Dream House
*FTR: I love my life, but bitch a lot for effect. I’m happy and lucky and surrounded by the most beautiful, awesome, funny, intelligent, adorable, loving, kickass people a guy could ever hope to run into, let alone spend any time with. I’m amazed every.single.day.