This is like 7 weeks late, but I thought it still would be nice to put together.
I will do my top 10 albums and top 5 EPs, both in order. It was a great year for music, and as always, I listened to way too much. It was so hard to narrow it down.
Top 10 Albums
- Jon Bryant – Twenty Something
Amazing album cover to cover. Jon continues to get better, and everything he puts out strikes a chord in my heart. He truly is a gifted songwriter. This album is amazing, and there’s no other way to say it. It’s a masterpiece, playing with your heart constantly.
- Thrice – To Be Everywhere Is To Be Nowhere
The long awaited return of Thrice lived up to the hype. Thrice is one of my favourite bands, and this album picked up right where they left off. Some great songs that show their heavy side, and others the reflect their more introspective soft side. I think it all works cohesively, and would recommend checking this whole album out.
- Boston Manor – Be Nothing
This release surprised me with how good it was. Their previous EP’s were good, but by no means would they be in my top 10 albums of the year. But this album took a dark, raw turn from their early pop-punk, showcasing instead a maturity in songwriting that usually takes a band years to reach. I love the guitar work and the vocals especially on the album. Melodically inspiring and all together original.
- Invent, Animate – Stillworld
Invent, Animate blew me away with this album. They took all the components of their last album and kicked them up a notch. Every time I go back and listen to Stillworld, I hear something new I hadn’t heard before. The guitar work is amazing, and the sense of the songwriters to allow space to happen in their songs is genius. Some beautiful melodic moments, and some ultra-heavy moments all combine for a great album.
- Vanna – All Hell
All Hell is a testament to the importance of buying physical albums for me. I bought this at Warped Tour in August of 2016, and it stayed in my car’s stereo for the following four months of the year (to my wife’s displeasure). Vanna has always been around, but I was never a huge fan until this album. They have one of the best metalcore love songs I’ve ever heard on this album, and overall it’s a great, heavy album.
- The 1975 – I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It
Yes, like everybody else this year, I was a huge fan of this album. The 1975 are absolute genius songwriters, and their willingness to stay true to artistry on this record solidified that in my mind. Chorals, funk, 80’s synthwave, instrumental prog-rock are all genres touched on throughout the course of this cohesive 17 track album. It truly is an accomplishment that deserves recognition.
- Like Pacific – Distant Like You Asked
Some good old Canadian pop-punk, this album came out in February last year, and I found myself constantly returning to it. This band brings an aggressive passion to pop-punk that doesn’t exist in a lot of bands music.
- Knocked Loose – Laugh Tracks
The next big thing, Knocked Loose put out a banger of an album that goes in hard, and doesn’t stop until the very last song. They bring a refreshing flavour to a stagnant genre, and they don’t care about doing anything but bringing the heavy. If you wanna bang your head, listen to this album.
- Silent Planet – Everything Was Sound
Silent Planet are the smartest, most underrated band in the scene right now, and this album solidifies them as masters at their crafts. Their vocalist uses footnotes in his lyrics. Footnotes. All instrumentation is incredibly skillful, and they are not afraid to write about social issues that actually matter. This album proves yet again that these guys know what their doing, and they do it incredibly well.
- Architects – All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us
Following up Lost Forever // Lost Together was no easy feat, and while I don’t like this record as much as that one, this one definitely comes close. This record carries the heartbreaking weight of the death of their main writer and guitarist Tom Searle from cancer shortly after the album was released. This album continues to prove that Architects are a step above the rest of the genre in talent and passion, and this album deserves to be heard in the memory of Tom.
Top 5 EPs
- Wordsplayed – Clowntown
A newcomer to the hip-hop scene, I found myself returning to this EP over and over. I love his flow, his quirky/witty lyrics, and the beats he uses are always banging. If Wordsplayed continues rubbing shoulders with Social Club Misfits and Andy Mineo, he will soon find himself rubbing shoulders with them on the charts as well. Keep doing what your doing.
- First Ghost – Secret Talk
This Ontario band I first discovered through their Drake cover blew me away with this EP, showing some incredible depth in their songwriting skill. This is definitely an indie rock EP worth checking out.
- Blood Youth – Closure
Blood Youth are the next big thing, I’ll say that right now. They put out this amazing EP, showing their not afraid to shy away from the typical chug-chug synonymous with this genre. Keep your eyes on these guys as they gear up to release their first full length this year.
- Turnover – Humblest Pleasures
Just two B-Sides from their 2015 album Peripheral Vision, Humblest Pleasures was just that: a pleasure to listen to. Turnover continue to push the boundary, ever-evolving, and I continue to enjoy all the music they put out. This two track EP will be enough to tide me over until I get a new full length from them.
- Stick To Your Guns – Better Ash Than Dust
This was a great EP, showcasing that their lead singer can actually sing incredibly well, and it works well with the heavy style they play. Never ones to shy away from controversial content, STYG passionately commentate on many issues plaguing our world today. Passionate, heavy, and unrelenting, this EP is worth your time.