Lana Del Rey: Ultraviolence
If you were to tie me up, gag me and stick me in a remote location for the rest of my life — and I could only listen to one album again — it would be this one. Every single song on this album is golden. When you start the album, you enter into a dream-like world — a boundless world of raw emotion and energy. The album feels almost ethereal — as though you are walking in the abyss being sang to by an angel.
Stand out tracks for me include: Ultraviolence, West Coast and The Other Woman.
As an aside, I encourage you to buy the Deluxe Edition of this album – if only for the song Black Beauty. Black Beauty is one of my favourite of all of Lana’s songs. The transition from The Other Woman into Black Beauty, is one of the best song transitions I’ve ever heard.
Why Black Beauty wasn’t included on the regular album release, I have no idea.
Lorde: Pure Heroine
I first heard of Lorde when Weird Al Yankovic released his song “Foil” — a parody cover of Lorde’s “Royals”. My next taste of her music came from the Trailer for Assassin’s Creed Unity. The song was a cover of “Everybody wants to rule the world” by Tears for Fears — and is phenomenal.
Her music isn’t like anything I have really heard before — she is her own thing. Her music and stage presence are up there with all the greats. I have since listened to this, her debut album, on repeat for the past two or three months and it never tires.
Stand out songs include: Tennis Court, Royals and White Teeth Teens.
Cherlene: Cherlene (Songs from Archer)
Archer is one of my favourite TV series of recent years. Fans of the show will know that series 5 of Archer — named “Archer: Vice” — was a temporary departure form the usual back drop of fictional intelligence agency ISIS.
During “Archer: Vice” Cheryl/Carol took on the new name of Cherlene, and was pursuing a career in outlaw country music. To my surprise, the songs that were featured throughout the show were compiled into this album. And before you think it’s just going to be a gimmick album, let me tell you it is not.
This is a genuinely good country album and can be enjoyed by anybody regardless of whether they have seen the show or not.
Stand out songs include: Danger Zone (a duet with Kenny-frickin-Loggins), Cherlene’s Broken Hearts and Auto Parts, and Eastbound and Down.
I came across Foxes through a Google Play recommendation. At first listen it didn’t strike me as something I would enjoy. But I gave the album a chance. And I’m glad I did. Glorious is an energetic, thoroughly enjoyable, synthpop album from start to finish.
It brilliantly mixes thumping pop anthems with haunting soundscapes — all tied together by this woman’s amazing voice.
Stand out songs: Let go for tonight, Night Glo and Echo. Also if you plan on getting the Deluxe Edition you will hear a live version of Clarity, which is worth getting just for that song.
Kacey Musgraves: Same Trailer, Different Park
This album was a recommendation by Andrew Clarke, along with four other albums. This one stood out to me above the rest and has since recharged my love of country music.
Every song on this contemporary country album is a gem and I never tire of listening to it front to back. You can easily get lost in the stories and faultless melodies of Same Trailer, Different Park.
I should mention that this album was actually released in 2013. But since it’s so damn good — and I heard it first in 2014 — I decided to include it anyway.