Album Reviews

Best Albums of 2016 – Killian Laher

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Our intrepid reviewer Killian Laher takes a look back at the best albums of 2016:

10 Radiohead – A Moon Shaped Pool

Look beyond all the hype and preconceptions about this band and you’ll find some great songs and fine music.

Daydreaming:

 

9 David Bowie – Blackstar

If there’s one album which cast a long shadow over the year it’s this one. Apart from being David Bowie’s last album, it also features 2 or 3 of the strongest songs he released in many years. A fitting epitaph.

Lazarus:

 

8 Dinosaur Jr – Give A Glimpse of What Yer Not

Business as usual from Mascis and co, what’s impressive about it is it rocks just as hard as anything else in their back catalogue.

Goin Down:

 

7 Nick Cave – Skeleton Tree

An album like this exists on a different plane to most as it’s impossible to escape the weighty background to it. There is some fine material on this album.

Girl In Amber:

 

6 Mogwai – Atomic OST

Mogwai are arguably going through the peak of their career, having moved on from the crashing noise of their early work. In time people will look back on this phase of Mogwai and recognise is for what it is – a period of consistently high quality music.

U-235:

 

5 Richmond Fontaine – You Can’t Go Back If There’s Nothing To Go Back To

Richmond Fontaine’s final album distils what they do best into a set of broken-down American loser songs, some harrowing. They will be greatly missed.

A Night In The City:

 

4 Bob Mould – Patch the Sky

Who would have thought 15 years ago that Bob Mould would be producing music this vital at this point in his career. This album is a little more uneven than Beauty & Ruin but the high points are very high indeed.

Hold On:

 

3 Ryley Walker – Golden Sings That Have Been Sung

The lad is a bit of a ‘spacer’ but he writes exquisite, expansive folk-rooted songs. His influences are less prominent here than on his previous work.

The Roundabout:

 

2 DIIV – Is The Is Are

An album like this just reinforces the cliche of the troubled genius making great music. A great bunch of vivid, life-affirming guitar rock tracks.

Under The Sun:

 

1 The Amazing – Ambulance

My most-listened to and most-enjoyed album of the year. The most sumptuous guitar layers – one to truly immerse in.

Ambulance:

 

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