Normally, when a band leaves a decade between their debut album and the follow up, you would accuse them of Stone Roses levels of indolence and indecision. Given that this is a Damon Albarn project such criticisms do not apply as in the meantime we have seen four Gorillaz albums plus a Blur reunion and a solo LP from the most prolific man in pop. Merrie Land is a fantastic album – albeit a short one – and recalls the more wistful tracks from Modern Life Is Rubbish, but with the added advantage of Paul Simonon baselines. Very much an album for our times, I have gone with ‘Gun To The Head”, but really any of the tracks are worthy of a place in this countdown.
I suspect this selection from Richard won’t be the only entry for Damon. In contrast, it’s unlikely that the artist(s) behind my #13 will see a repeat entry (from me at the very least). The track is a collaboration between two black emcee rappers – A$SAP Rocky from the US and London-based Skepta. While rapping is not normally to my taste, I have enjoyed listening to this ear-worm of a track since it’s release in June. Rocky is on record as saying the tune was written while “smoking of mad weed” and “they did the rhymes all tripping balls bro.” The pulsating, distorted buildings of the clip nicely capture that the “Niggas was high”. Here is “Praise The Lord (Da Shine) ft Skepta” by A$AP Rocky:
It’s been well-documented on this forum that I’m an unshamedly big fan of Teleman, so it’s no surprise to see them here once again. Not to be confused with the Pixies song of the same name, this was the first song released from their “Family of Aliens” album. I don’t think that it hits the heights of 2014’s “Breakfast” or 2016’s “Brilliant Sanity” but it’s always a delight to have a new collection of Teleman songs to listen to. As Roy has already posted this, and as a special treat for Christmas, here’s the Boxed In Remix version…
Although has been another year marked by ‘comebacks’ of 90’s & noughties artists, this lot have never gone away, despite shedding a bassist and a solo project or two. In these turbulent times, its reassuring that Interpol are always consistent, not attempting to be anything but Interpol – just consistently honing their song writing craft and producing a late period masterpiece, with this year’s very fine ‘Marauder’ LP. #13 ‘The Rover’