December 23, 2014 by tincanreview
After 12 months of brilliant new music it’s time for Tin Can Review HQ to compile theTop 10 Albums Of 2014! As always the competition has been fierce and deciding upon just 10 releases is close to impossible. Once again we’ve chosen artists who we feel have taken a step forward rather than covered familiar ground. The below list is in no particular order and each is worthy of your attention.
A big thank you to all our listeners, we look forward to more fun in 2015!
Blue Rose Code – ‘The Ballads Of Peckham Rye’
The latest offering from songwriter Ross Wilson (Blue Rose Code) features an impressive cast of musicians including Kathryn Williams, Karine Polwart and Danny Thompson on double bass. It’s the quality of the songs however that sets this apart from anything BRC has produced before. Lead single ‘One Day At A Time’ alludes to a life of recovery and this album sees the songwriter in the form of his life.
Danny And The Champions Of The World – ‘Live Champs!’
Danny And The Champions Of The World are one of the best UK live acts around. Over the years there have been a few line up changes but the current formation is their most formidable. This double album captures them in front of a sold out London crowd and is a perfect representation of what a great live band should be. With a new studio album in the pipeline you’ll be hearing a lot more of them in 2015.
Anthony D’Amato – ‘The Shipwreck From The Shore’
Anthony D’Amato‘s debut release for New West Records was recorded in just 11 days with producer Sam Kassirer. The album avoids any ‘singer/songwriter with an acoustic guitar’ cliches through some excellent arrangements and lyrical ideas. D’amato proves he can continue to write great songs and shows no sign of a creative drought.
Vikesh Kapoor – ‘The Ballad Of Willy Robbins’
Even by their standards, it’s been a good year for UK label Loose Music.
2014 has seen the release of two Sturgill Simpson albums (one Grammy nominated), the aforementioned ‘Live Champs’ and this stunning debut LP from Vikesh Kapoor. The songs paint a sadly familiar picture of working class struggles but are delivered with fresh perspective and powerful sincerity. While focussed on the American Dream, the message is meticulously crafted and universally recognised.
Jess Morgan – ‘Langa Langa’
(Amateur Boxer Records)
With her third album Norwich based songwriter Jess Morgan has struck gold.
Fusing together a variety of folk influences, the songs are delicate but confidently delivered. The melodies are sweet and the stories linger long after they are told. A beautiful record and one which continues to impress.
Police Dog Hogan – ‘Westward Ho!’
(Union Music Store)
They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but Police Dog Hogan seem to have disproved this with their new album ‘Westward Ho!’. The album is the first to be released through Union Music Store (home to Hatful Of Rain and the Jamie Freeman Agreement) and despite its American sounding title the action largely takes place in the South West of England. The best representation of the band’s live sound yet.
Sam Semple – ‘Mystery Songs’
Sam Semple is no stranger to songwriting. However owing to some impressive collaborations with artists such as Tom Baxter he’s only just got around to recording his debut LP. The result is something truly special. Intelligent and completely engaging, the songs reflect on what has passed whilst wondering where the road might lead.
Jonah Tolchin – ‘Clover Lane’
Still in his early 20s, New Jersey based Jonah Tolchin has produced an album which veteran songwriters would feel proud of. From the opening stomps of ‘Mockingbird’ to the gentle picking of ‘I’ll Be Gone’, it’s difficult to imagine a more perfect collection of songs. However hearing ‘Spirit Come Down’, a new track which was performed live for the first time on Tin Can Review, his next release is set to be just as impressive.
Mirel Wagner – ‘When The Cellar Children See The Light Of Day’
Mirel Wagner‘s latest album is not for the faint of heart. Recorded on a secluded island off the coast of Finland, the songs are delivered with minimal accompaniment and sang in a little more than a whisper. The lyrics and melodies conjure dark images but often glimmer like a coin at the bottom of a well. Surprising and satisfying in equal measure.
Dan Whitehouse – ‘Raw State’
For his latest album Dan Whitehouse has re-recorded a selection of older songs to show how they’ve developed on the road. With Danny George Wilson and Chris Clarke at the helm (Danny And The Champions Of The World), the production is grittier and more fitting to the subject matter. The end result sees a highly imaginative songwriter establishing a new creative foundation.
When the calibre is so high there are always going to be some favourites we have to leave out of a top 10. If you’re still hungry for more we highly recommend the following:
Birds Of Chicago – ‘Live From Space’ (Birds Go South)
Bronwynne Brent – ‘Stardust’ (CD Baby)
Ags Connolly – ‘How About Now’ (Drumfire Records)
Dave McGraw & Mandy Fer – ‘Maritime’ (DaveAndMandyMusic)
Noah Gundersen– ‘Ledges’ (Dualtone)
Caroline Rose – ‘I Will Not Be Afraid’ (Little Hi! Records)
Sean Rowe – ‘Madman’ (Anti Records)
The Vagaband – ‘Medicine For The Soul’ (Eggsong)
Ryan Bingham – ‘Fear And Saturday Night’
Released January 19th
Eyes For Gertrude – ‘Residential Bliss’
Released 24th January
(Eyes For Gertrude)
Andrew Combs – ‘All These Dreams’
Released January 26th
Harry Harris – ‘Songs About Other People’
Released January 26th
(Wild Sound Recordings)
Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors – ‘Medicine’
Released: 26th January
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