Well here we are ladies and gents. December 31, 2014. This year I was twenty two. I didn’t have a lot to do. Next year I’ll be twenty-three and I hope my landlord doesn’t evict me. I created this page in June and since then, when time has permitted, have maintained a semi-regular blog with a healthy readership.
Healthy might not be the right word really. I don’t know the exact demographics from which my few thousand views have come. I’ve only seen a handful of your faces, and so for all I know, I may have a small underground following in rehab clinics, old people’s homes and cancer wards across the globe, rather than in the psych/slacker/garage/shoegaze/whatever niche that I kinda aimed for.
If you were wondering, the most-viewed post was my review of GUM’s Delorean Highway, followed by that of King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard’s I’m In Your Mind Fuzz.
So anyway, thank you to everyone who read an article, shared an article, subscribed, gave me feedback of any kind, emailed me requesting a review, or stalked me online, found out my real name and got a full backpiece done of my face surrounded by the lyrics to ‘NY State of Mind’.
And here, Tims and Timettes, are my personal favourite songs of 2014. Feel free to argue with me about my choices.
1. Ty Segall – ‘Green Belly’
In contrast to the T-Rex-inspired glammy stomp that predominated Manipulator, ‘Green Belly’ is a SoCal folk-rock outing where everything, from the guitar interplay to the twang in Segall’s vocals, is just right. Like if Neil Young was on a beach, but if he was happier this time around and was a blonde Californian.
This song is basically the sonic equivalent of the ‘1977’ filter on Instagram. Summery, more than a bit nostalgia-inducing, but still totally primal rock n’ roll despite (or perhaps because of) its harkening back to what is/was (in memory at least), a simpler time. And ‘Green Belly’ is also totally unpretentious, but I don’t think you can really put the word ‘unpretentious’ in the same sentence as the name of that photo app with all the filters.
2. Spookyland – ‘The Silly Fucking Thing’
This technically came out in 2013, but was released as a single in May, before which Spookyland were virtually unknowns. And look where they are now.
‘The Silly Fucking Thing’ in question could be one of countless silly fucking things. But what is unquestionably a silly fucking thing is the lack of truly deep, dark and depressed emotiveness that has predominated Australian guitar music for last little while, which this tune and this band totally subvert. It’s scarily difficult to write with your heart on your sleeve to a depth like this without sounding forced or insincere, but Spookyland have it down to a tee.
3. Client Liaison – ‘Feed The Rhythm’
I love Client Liaison’s early-’90s dance-pop/house/corporate world schtick. One part American Psycho, and one part sweat-soaked ecstasy rave, yet astonishingly self-aware without being a total pisstake of the much-maligned big hair-and-MTV era. It’s retro, but it’s totally contemporary, and moreover, going by the opinions of many of those around me, it’s totally in line with the current musical zeitgeist without being total hipster bullshit.
‘Feed The Rhythm’ is their best track yet, and the video clip is just something else altogether. This came on on MTV dance something when I was at the gym and I smiled like a schoolgirl.
4. Mac DeMarco – ‘Let My Baby Stay’
As awesome as that may have been, Mac DeMarco hasn’t put a drumstick up his ass in quite some time now. Not that his music has ever really reflected his onstage antics, though. He’s still the fun-loving jizz jazz crooner we’ve come to know and love over the last couple of years, but on the pretty little Beatleesque ditty ‘Let My Baby Stay’ our Macky, sentimental as he may already have been, treads tenderer ground than he ever has before. On the other hand, it is still as recognisably Mac as the slacker jangle pop he’s best known for, which makes it even better.
5. King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard – ‘I’m In Your Mind/I’m Not In Your Mind/Cellophane/I’m In Your Mind Fuzz’
These are all one song, really. ‘Everybody wants to suck you dry’. A four-song suite of theremins, Space Echoes, harmonica and mind control.
Happy 2015. Look after yourselves, be nice to people, go for walks often and make sure you sit down and read a good book every once in a while.