A month and a bit too late but never mind that, here we go.
You can download our podcast featuring my favourite songs of 2017 right here or click below to listen.
Favourite Albums of the Year – The Top 10
- Art Guards by Fishboy [Listen to our Fishboy interview podcast here]
- Lurcher by The Wednesday Club
- Peach by Deerful
- Songs From The Sides of Lorries by I Ludicrous
- Strike a Match by Sacred Paws
- The Rap Guide to Consciousness by Baba Brinkman
- Juniverbrecher by The Indelicates
- Slap Bass Hunks by Christian Fitness
- Echo Bridge by Gavin Osborn and the Comment Section
- Ojala by Lost Horizons
Another 20 favourite albums (in no particular order)
Kentish Longtails by The Len Price 3
Hindu Flying Machine by Mean Motor Scooter
Love in the 4th Dimension by The Big Moon
Revival Beach by The Burning Hell
Better Friend by Bill Botting and the Two Drink Minimums
Spring by Flies and Flies
Life Love and Billy Fury by The Bordellos
English Tapas by Sleaford Mods
Lightning Likes Me by Oh Gunquit!
Bobby Fuller Died For Your Sins by Chuck Prophet
How The West Was Won by Peter Perrett
Interplanetary Class Classics by The Moonlandingz
Spirit by Depeche Mode
Mind Yr Manners by Crumbs
You Might Be Smiling Now by The Just Joans
Come Play The Trees by Snapped Ankles
Intergalactic Sex Tourists by The Sex Organs
And Then Not Even Then by The Laureates
The Surfing Magazines by The Surfing Magazines
50 Song Memoir by The Magnetic Fields
Jelly by Charmpit
Favourite EP runners-up
Structure by Structure
The French Press by Rolling Blackouts C.F.
Volga Sturgeon Face by Nathan Hall & The Sinister Locals
The Road Part 3 by Radio KWG
Boot Hill Surf Club by The 99 Degree
Lookalike Bond by The Humdrum Express
City In Revers / Kendrick Road by The Leaf Library
Deepdreaming / Stargrazing by Thousand Yard Stare
Me and Joe by Max Gomez
Six of Seven by The Moon Apes
Bus Route to your Heart by Milky Wimpshake (20th anniversary re-issue)
Purple Rain: Deluxe Edition by Prince
George Best 30 by The Wedding Present
Indietracks in Derbyshire. Particular highlights this year were Chorusgirl, Crumbs, The Wedding Present, Charmpit, MJ Hibbett, Milky Wimpshake, Cola Jet Set, The Just Joans, The Wave Pictures, Model Village and The Tuts.
Have a listen to our review of the weekend.
See you there next July.
Top 20 gigs of the year
- Lost Horizons @ Soup Kitchen, Manchester (21st November)
- Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds @ Manchester Arena (25th September) [Listen to our podcast review]
- The Moonlandingz / Goat Girl / Pink Kink @ Invisible Wind Factory, Liverpool (25th March) [Listen to our podcast review]
- Snapped Ankles @ Soup Kitchen, Manchester (3rd October)
- The Wedding Present / The Primitives / Thousand Yard Stare @ Manchester Academy (27th May) [Read our review]
- Ash @ Central Station, Wrexham (17th August)
- The Dream Syndicate @ Bitterzoet, Amsterdam (23rd October)
- The Len Price 3 / Graham Day & The Gaolers @ 100 Club, London (4th March)
- Elvis Costello @ Bridgwater Hall, Manchester (19th March) [Listen to our podcast review]
- The Wedding Present @ Cadogan Hall, London (14th October)
- Gavin Osborn @ The Golden Eagle, Chester (16th September)
- The Burning Hell @ The Eagle Inn, Salford (22nd November)
- The Breeders @ Manchester Academy (17th October)
- Martha / ONSIND / Grotbags / Radiator Hospital @ Night & Day, Manchester (3rd January)
- Chuck Prophet / Max Gomez @ Deaf Institute, Manchester (17th February)
- Radiohead @ Old Trafford Cricket Ground (4th July)
- The Handsome Family @ RNCM, Manchester (22nd February)
- The Surfing Magazines @ Soup Kitchen, Manchester (1st September)
- The Who @ Echo Arena, Liverpool (3rd April)
- The Oh Sees / The Peacers @ Manchester Academy (14th June)
Here are some low quality photos I took at some of those gigs.
Proud wizard gig of the year
The gig by Billordo / Tremelo Ghosts that my fellow wizard Kicker O’Elves organised.
Favourite music books
Mostly not released in 2017 but I read them this year.
1. Lee, Myself and I: Inside The Very Special World of Lee Hazlewood by Wyndham Wallace
A tremendous account of a friendship between the great Lee Hazlewood and the author who was initially a fan, later a manager and collaborator. Highly recommended.
2. Keep On Running: The Unofficial Dexys Midnight Runners Fanzine
An anthology that brings together loads of fascinating interviews and anecdotes from fans and former bandmembers.
3. Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen
An in-depth and incredibly honest autobiography.
4. Triptych: Three Studies of Manic Street Preachers’ The Holy Bible by Rhian E. Jones, Daniel Lukes and Larissa Wodtke
Like one of those 33 1/3 books but far more analytical, personal and thorough. For obsessed fans of the album only!
Favourite non-fiction books
Inglorious Empire: What The British Did To India by Sashi Tharoor
Shocking and horrific stuff which made me feel ashamed of how ignorant I was about this period of history.
The Special One: The Secret World of Jose Mourinho by Diego Torres
Inside details of his time at Real Madrid. Hats off to this book for making me dislike The Moaning One even more than I already did. What an absolute monumental bellend.
Favourite fiction book
A Congregation of Jackals by S. Craig Zahler
Compelling and very violent Western written by the director of the film “Bone Tomahawk”
Favourite films / TV
As with the books, these weren’t necessarily released in 2017 but these were my favourite things I watched this year.
Blade Runner 2049
Flowers (Channel 4)
Back (Channel 4)
American Vandal (Netflix)
Stranger Things (Netflix)
The Barkley Marathons, The 13th, Man vs Snake, City 40, Meru, Virunga, Eddie: Strongman (all Netflix)
Favourite podcasts (other than ours of course!)
2 blokes discuss every Springsteen song in alphabetical order. They’ve been doing this for 2 years and they’re up to “P”
Starts off as an investigation into the porn industry but as usual with Ronson he goes off on several entertaining tangents
A man sits in his shed and retells the entire history of our nation. Far more entertaining than it sounds. Like a more laidback version of Dan Carlin’s much missed Hardcore History podcast.
MJ Hibbett puts on gigs, records them and puts them out as a podcast.
Interviews with drummers. Thankfully they don’t just talk about drumming. I particularly enjoyed the episodes with Lol Tolhurst (The Cure), Jim Sclavunos (Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds), Pete Thomas (Elvis Costello & The Attractions) and Bernard Purdie.
Author and super-fan Joseph Fink interviews Mountain Goats main man John Darnielle. Each episode is centred around one of the songs from his 2002 album “All Hail West Texas”