Stack Magazine Best of 2015
A best of 2015 listing that includes Mark Seymour and the Undertow’s Mayday album.
Author: Various, Stack Magazine.
Date: 2 January 2016.
Original URL: http://stack.net.au/music/features/best-of-2015
We asked our nine esteemed genre pundits which album they applauded harder than any other for STACK this year. Here are the results; read up and get in the know!
DEAF WISH – PAIN
“After eight years of slept-on albums and repeated hiatuses, Melbourne quartet Deaf Wish have signed to Sub Pop to release their best record yet. Pain showcases all the invigorating noise-punk you’d expect, but there’s much more happening too… a devastating brute of an album with surprising subtlety throughout.” (Sub Pop/Inertia)
DRUG CHURCH – HIT YOUR HEAD
“The best thing about New Yorkers Drug Church is their staunch swagger. Their music has tough guy guts that could amp your ego on your lowest days. Not unlike your standard, shitty hardcore band, this new album is swathed in attitude, big riffs and all of the feels, but has none of the generic breakdowns and monotonous vocals that hardcore seems to have thoroughly exhausted over the past decade.” (Shock)
STEVE TILSTON – TRUTH TO TELL
“The recent release of Al Pacino’s movie Danny Collins, inspired by the true story of a musician (Tilston) who receives a letter of encouragement from John Lennon 34 years after it was posted, will no doubt raise Tilston’s profile. Featuring 10- and 6-string acoustic guitars, double bass and autoharps, he sings of his early days in London, the passing of old friends and global destruction.” (Planet/MGM)
JULIA HOLTER – HAVE YOU IN MY WILDERNESS
“There’s something timeless, classic, yet utterly unique in the structure and arrangement of each track that defies easy description. There’s power – and restraint – in the performances, underscoring the emotional effect of the lyrics that explore subjects of love, trust, and balance in relationships. It’s packed with ideas and sounds that reveal themselves over multiple listens… endlessly rewarding.” (Domino/EMI)
VARIOUS – THE WIZARDS OF OZ: A MONSTROUS PSYCHEDELIC BUBBLE (EXPLODING IN YOUR MIND)
Monstrous Psychedelic Bubble
“Imagine there’s no country. It isn’t hard to do when entering the monstrous psychedelic bubble of London DJs Gaz Cobain and Brian Dougans. Their Amorphous net is cast across Australia/NZ for a third, thrilling trip of seamlessly blended psychedelic rock nuggets… there’s a fantastic self-contained universe to be discovered.” (Festival)
NEW GUM SARN – NEW GOLD MOUNTAIN
New Gum Sarn
“A bunch of kids punching eons above their age/weight division… imagine Radiohead with Tim Rogers’ crown-of-thorns reflection (Bad Soy), slice that between Girl’s most heartbreaking anthems, and add an odd, off-kilter twang and groovy unease which great New Zealand bands exude seemingly without effort… frighteningly amazing.” (Spunk)
MARK SEYMOUR AND THE UNDERTOW – MAYDAY
“This is the story of modern Australia, where it’s ‘one rule for the filthy rich, another one for the weak’, the nation is filled with ‘celebrities and sycophants’, desperate people seek asylum, shock jocks are ‘screamin’, and musicians are searching for meaning. The Undertow might lack numbers, but they’re capable of delivering both power and poignancy… Mayday is deeply moving.” (Liberation/Universal)
DAVE RAWLINGS MACHINE – NASHVILLE OBSOLETE
“Rawlings steps forward to take the lead while still supported by longtime musical companion Gillian Welch… the pair are a songwriting force keeping country music real and traditionally true. Great songs and impeccable, distinctive Rawlings guitar… it doesn’t get much better than this.” (Acony/Redeye)
TRIBULATION – CHILDREN OF THE NIGHT
“Retro rock is peaking at the moment with Ghost leading the way; unlike Ghost, Tribulation maintain their heavy metal roots. Jimmy Page once said that Led Zeppelin never wanted to copy the blues, just capture its mood. Tribulation do the same with heavy metal, emulating Zeppelin’s creativity, free spirit and occult tendencies for the modern metal fan.” (Century Media/EMI)