Top 5 Albums/EP’s That DON’T Suck [NOVEMBER 2018]

laverne yarrowLaverne – Yarrow
I’ve been waiting all year to find a new band that truly knocks my socks off, and they’ve been in my own city the whole time! Post-punk has always been a hit-or-miss genre for me. I’ve never been 100% on board. There are so many directions a post-punk band can go and I’m not necessarily down with all of them. In this case, Laverne has chosen the direction that leads directly to my heart. If someone gave me a kitten right now, I would name it Laverne. There aren’t Laverne’s anymore. When was the last time you even met one? Never? Yeah me too. Future parents, please start naming your kids Laverne again. Blanche too if you don’t mind. Even if you have a kid already, it’s not too late to change it’s name. If it’s young enough it will never know the difference. Truly though, this is the album I’ve been waiting months for. I’ll go right ahead and say so, prematurely, that it’s probably my #1 for 2018. I still have much contemplating to do on the matter but, right now, this feels like the one.   Listen on Bandcamp or Spotify

the ellis temper photographs from ohrdrufThe Ellis Temper – Photographs From Ohrdruf
Lyrics matter guys, and though you’ll never find anything on this blog that is weak lyrically, there still comes along an artist, from time to time, who really stands out. This time it’s a bedroom project out of New England called The Ellis Temper and if you get into these songs you’ll see what I mean. The title track Photographs From Ohrdruf, is for me (and should be for most people born in the past 40 years) so woefully relatable. It’s already a shoo-in for my Best Songs Of 2018 list, which will be coming up later this month. If you’re Canadian and you were around in the 90’s, you’re probably wondering who this guys voice reminds you of.. It’s Hayden. Remember him? Yeah, vague similarities, but a totally different bag here. At least you can go on with your life now without that bothering you.   Listen on Bandcamp or Spotify

j.knife ugly sidesJ.Knife – Ugly Sides
At first I was going to take a whole move-aside-julien-baker-there’s-a-new-kid-on-the-scene approach to this, but I decided against that. Instead I’m going with a move-aside-phoebe-bridgers approach. Haha kidding. Seriously though, this kid could go toe to toe with either of them. By the way, when I say “kid” I mean a poetically proficient 50 year old woman in the body of a fifteen year old girl. A fifteen year old girl in South Korea, by the way, where perhaps k-pop is soon to be j.knifed into irrelevance. I know I’m using all of the young-prodigy tropes to describe this album. I don’t know how to talk about this without talking about her age. It’s fucking impressive ok. And these songs are just rough cuts and drafts? What the hell are they feeding kids these days? When I was fifteen I could barely do up my own shoes, and that was with velcro!   Listen on Bandcamp

missing earth gold flor saltMissing Earth – Gold Flour Salt
Imagine you’re riding a horse through outer space. A spacehorse if you will. Such an adventure would require a soundtrack right? Also snacks, but most importantly a soundtrack. That soundtrack is called Gold Flour Salt by Missing Earth. I’m for real. Turn this up, open a bag of Takis purple, close your eyes, and imagine yourself on a goddamn spacehorse. No, I haven’t smoked anything. Look, if you don’t get what I’m trying to say here, then one of us is definitely unstable. This album is spacehorse music. I suggest you saddle up. In conclusion: spacehorse.   Listen on Bandcamp or Spotify

captain cutiepieCaptain Cutiepie – Self Titled
If there’s such a thing as garbage punk, this is the landfill right here. Swarming with land rodents and air vermin. This is so trashy, and that’s no dig at the character of these gentlemen. I’m talking about the way it sounds. I’m sure they’re fine folks, but it actually sounds like they built their own instruments out of scavenged junkyard scraps. I would expect to see stray cats and dogs following these guys from gig to gig. Gigs, by the way, that take place in the back alleys and impound lots of Sacramento. If you live there and you plan on attending one of these shows, bring pesticide and tuck your pant legs into your shoes. Also prepare yourself to be walloped about the head by the metaphorical fly swatter that is this music. Let none of what I’ve just said be construed as anything but the utmost admiration. This truly rocks you guys.   Listen on Bandcamp or Spotify

ENDNOTES: Thank you, whoever you are, for reading. I hope your search for new bands just got a little easier. I’m totally done with writing right now, so let me get to some announcements: As is tradition at thedoesntsuck there will be no Top 5 for December. I’ll be focusing my energy on the year-end top ten and the ‘best songs of 2018’ list, both of which will be posted at the end of the month. Of course I’ll still be keeping an ear on the new releases this month. Anything truly incredible will be mentioned on my twitter feed and considered for the year-end top 10. Don’t forget to dig through the scrap heap for tons more weird bands you’ve never heard of. Follow me on twitter to stay up to speed, and please write me a letter! (by letter I mean email). Take it easy -SD

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