In looking back over the year in music, I am reminded again of my good fortune to be involved in a Northern Colorado scene that continues to prove wrong those who attempt to define it. It is an ever-changing realm, developing on a daily-basis from the help of incredible organizations, non-profits, individuals, and of course, the support of its fan base. So, thank you to those involved, thank you to those who read, and thank you to those who play. Without further ado, I present my top five albums of the year.
1. The Yawpers – American Man
The album stops for nothing, a full-out sprint through a sweaty, Fear and Loathing landscape of desert, dirty blues and patriotism.
2. Von Stomper – Américado
Rollicking and boisterous, lyrically provoking or picturesque.
3. Qbala – Battle Cries EP
No line is wasted, the lyrics perceptive and clever, sometimes personal and sometimes humorous, though consistently bold and poetic.
4. Finnders & Youngberg – Eat the Moon
The banjo of Aaron Youngberg and the mandolin of Rich Zimmerman create wonderfully quick rhythms below the surface of songs, frequently coming up for air in brief bouts of picking ecstasy.
5. Nadalands – The Arbor Day EP
Lindenbaum’s songwriting consistently holds a significant validity, nonchalantly driving the listener to attend intently to each unfolding narrative.