Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

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Jirin
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Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Jirin » Mon Feb 17, 2020 4:52 pm

Here's the results for this year's Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of the Year poll. Just as a refresher, everybody gets to nominate one album released in 2019, then everybody ranks all the ones they have heard from best to worst. Results are based on a win-loss formula, where if an album is ranked higher on the list on more lists that include both albums than its opponent, it gets a 'Win' against that album.

Voting was very close with the exception of two albums which did by far the best.

And the winner will automatically qualify for next year's Best Moderately Acclaimed Album.

Here's the results, #23 through #16. Rob left comments for every album, so they will be presented with the album.

23. Post Malone - Hollywood's Bleeding
Record: 0-21-1
Ballots: 13
Fans: Rdwdbob (4), bootsy (4)
Not fans: rumpdoll (23), bonnielaurel (22), Rob (23), Jirin (23), KingofTonga (14/14), Nassim (10/11)

Rob's comments:
Who is Post Malone? If this sounds like a cheeky and also somewhat smug question to ask about one of the most famous artists of his generation, I also ask the question somewhat more sincerely and deeply. For a guy who claims to sing about the truth and about things that happen to him there is very little of the man himself in these songs. He is a mercurial figure that apparently just has to show up and people say “Wow!”. Still, despite his own indisputable greatness people completely turn against him. He is the world’s ultimate victim. By far most of these songs are about Post Malone being wronged by others. It’s not all that clear why everyone is against him, as Post Malone writes some of the least detailed lyrics in music history, which gives off the feeling that he is complaining just to wallow in his self-pity. Still, he remains something of non-entity in all this. He certainly doesn’t write confessionals, so we can’t really get a grip of how he gets himself to be mistreated all the time by practically everyone. Post Malone exists out of time and place, a floating, shapeless spirit in a curious void that wails (in auto-tune to create even more distance) about his miseries seemingly unrelated to anything that happens on Earth or to people who actually have characteristics.
If this is all goes a bit far, I should say that I didn’t think it was all that offensive the first time around. It was already my least favorite album in this poll, but this is simply not my genre and I’m not fond of auto-tune. The second time I wanted to give it some more serious attention and focused more on the lyrics. The album’s nominator Edre Peraza claims he writes great lyrics and he does have a massive amount of fans, so perhaps there is something there. Spotify also has this feature for this album where Post Malone comments in a few lines on every song. These comments are awful and give little insight. It is just a lot of self-aggrandization (he loves to boast about how great the song you’re listening to is and how he is pushing borders forward; which borders remains unclear), blaming other nameless people for unnamed wrongs they caused him (he seems like the kind of person who holds a grudge simply because you might listen to a song by someone else) and curiously being very impressed by people who guest on his songs. That is the only positive of his, even if I think that this album would be more honest without guest features, as this is about Messiah Malone against the cruel, bitter world that only exists to wrong him. He also says weird things like calling Circles a Super Fleetwood Mac song (of course he doesn’t explain the connection) and saying that Saint Tropez is a feel good song (maybe in lyrics, but the tone is downbeat).
This album basically captures the mayor trend in popular music of the 2010’s that I hate most: complete self-absorption. It was a longer time coming, but I think Kanye West really blew it up. In popular music we now have to face endless lyrics about the singers themselves as special creatures who cannot accept, nor even fathom that the world does not revolve around them. They can only appreciate people if they do something for them (the guest features), but not on their own terms. These artists constantly feel wronged and need to assert their greatness over others in absurd and to me unrelatable lyrics. Despite talking about themselves endlessly there is no sense of self-examination; hardly a feel of the performer as a flesh and bone human being. These are the narcissists and I think narcissist pop and narcissist hip-hop have become actual genres. I’ve never been able to understand the mass appeal they have (it’s what makes it impossible for me to accept Kanye West as a mayor creative artist, in fact) and I can’t shake a feeling of these artists not wanting to grow up, be responsible and try to relate to the world. Their music is unintentionally cold, hostile, depressing, humorless even while cracking jokes and frankly scary. So yes, I learned to hate Hollywood’s Bleeding the second time around.
Disclaimer: This is a nasty piece of writing, I know. Basically I have felt the need to write something like the last paragraph for years, but kept putting it off, because I know that people relate to artists and there is no need to criticize them for it and I don’t have a way of talking about these artists in a more friendly term. Still, the writing on Post Malone’s album took this shape pretty much automatically and I wanted to talk about my thoughts and feelings honestly.

(None of the other comments are nearly this long. :) )

22. Maggie Rogers - Heard It In A Past Life
Record: 1-20-1
Ballots: 14
Fans: bonnielaurel (2), Rdwdbob (5), acroamor (2)
Not fans: rumpdoll (22), DaveC (23), Rob (22), Brad (23)

Rob's comments:
I heard it in this life, twice actually, but it is hard to recall. This seems very standard pop, with nothing to set it apart from the 23.847 similar pop albums that were undoubtably released the same year. Even the more popular songs, like Alaska, which predates the album by some years and seems to have been a big moment for Maggie Rogers, doesn’t become more than background music for me.

21. Mixed Matches - Late
Record: 3-17-2
Ballots: 13
Fans: bootsy (2)
Not fans: mileswide (21), DaveC (22), spiritualized (10/11)

Rob's comments:
Very pretty, mellow music. I had heard the term cloud rap before, but never looked into it, always thinking it wasn’t really a genre, but more something like Bandcamp, a place where hiphop musicians came together to share their work (the word ‘cloud’, made me think of internet storage instead of those intangible things in the sky). But this is basically hip-hop’s answer to dream pop. There is beauty here, but at the same time it barely becomes more than background music for me, whereas I feel it should have an amazing calming effect or else should start me dreaming while awake.

20. Helado Negro - This Is How You Smile
Record: 4-15-3
Ballots: 13
Fans: Nassim (1), spiritualized (5), Brad (5)
Not fans: Rob (21), Jirin (22)

Rob's comments:
I see a lot of comparisons for Helado Negro online, but apparently I’m the only one thinking of people like João Gilberto or Jorge Ben. Sure, they weren’t into electronica, but they have the same vocals: this extremely soft and tranquil way of singing. And like them, Helado Negro accompanies it with music that is as calm as the voice. So the sound is warm, inviting and sadly for me just a little too dull (as is frequently the case Gilberto and Ben). There are moments when he hits a melodious sweet spot – with Pais Nublado head and shoulders above the rest -, but usually it is too close to easy listening to truly work for me.

19. Little Brother - May The Lord Watch
Record: 3-13-6
Ballots: 10
Fans: bootsy (1), mileswide (4)
Not fans: bonnielaurel (23), Brad (22)

Rob's comments:
I don’t know anything about Little Brother’s previous work, but this sounds very old school, in a good way. May I say that these two guys just ooze class? Not in the usual “cool” of “hip” way of many of their genre fellows, but in a sophisticated kind of way. If that all makes them sound dull you are wrong, as their skits prove, which are genuinely funny. Despite their humor there seems a resigned sadness here sometimes that is rare in hip-hop. The only thing missing are some truly outstanding songs, but otherwise this is time well spent.

18. Alex Cameron - Miami Memory
Record: 5-14-3
Ballots: 10
Fans: Rdwdbob (3)
Not fans: Schuttelbirne (23), bootsy (21)

Rob's comments:
Here’s the formula: synths, hooks and sarcasm. There is little depth in the music but everything is as catchy as it should be and I noticed that most songs had wormed their way into my brain after only one listen. Despite all this pure pop focus, it is really as a lyricist that Cameron finds his identity. He tends to sing story-songs with more than a little nastiness in them, but he somehow can’t hide that inside he is a real softy. Still, his sneers make for extra great hooks that accompany the synth hooks and his secretly-a-nice-guy persona gives this something of a feel of a feel good album, even if I’m not sure if Alex Cameron would admit it.

17. Saint Abdullah - Mechanical Flirtations
Record: 6-14-2
Ballots: 13
Fans: Jirin (1), KingofTonga (4)
Not fans: Schuttelbirne (21), bootsy (23), Rdwdbob (22)

Rob's comments:
Apparently a protest album of sorts (though without lyrics), this experimental record mixes various sounds, from field recordings in Tehran to jazz improvisations by guest musicians. I’m not sure what exactly the genre here is – Rate Your Music uses the unhelpful post-industrialism (the only thing all “post-“ genres seem to have in common is that they have little significant to do with the music they are “post” from). It sounds to me like a collage of various musical interests that mesh surprisingly well. There is much going on but it never becomes chaotic. I don’t think every track here makes an impression, but the best ones stand out all the more. Among these especially are Lanscapes of a Blind Man, which evokes something of a hazy soundscape of a street, complete with chants seeming to come from a mosque speaker, as well as the title track, which with the help of Hindu instrument santoor player Sahba Sizdahkhani creates a strangely tranquil ending for the album. I should also add that my second listening of this proved quite a bit stronger than the first, so maybe there is more potential for growth here.

16. Georgia Anne Muldrow - VWETO II
Record: 5-15-2
Ballots: 10
Fans: rumpdoll (1), bootsy (3), Jirin (4)
Not fans: Schuttelbirne (22), bonnielaurel (21)

Rob's comments:
A fine collection of jazz tunes, that like poll companion All My Relations doesn’t quite stand out. Again, all the tunes here are nice, but I miss the deeper layers or invention of the best jazz. Nonetheless, since this is a more melodious type of jazz and frequently a funky one too, there is some good times to be had here. Brokenfolks has the strongest invitation to rock the house, while Emo Blues is the only track here that seems to aim for deeper emotions as well as atmosphere. No other tracks seem quite as ambitious as these two and they almost belong on other albums.

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by mileswide » Mon Feb 17, 2020 6:58 pm

The ongoing 80s countdown, the start of the 2019 rollout and now the MAA '19 complete with comments from Rob on the same day? I clearly prayed to the right gods this morning!

Pity about Little Brother appearing already, it was the discovery of this game for me, going to dig into their back catalogue before the all-time albums poll (he says)
Don't you make it my dying...cough

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Jirin » Wed Feb 19, 2020 12:41 am

15. Bruce Springsteen - Western Stars
Record: 6-11-5
Ballots: 12
Fans: acroamor (4)
Not fans: rumpdoll (21), mileswide (22), DaveC (21)

Rob's comments:
This is Bruce Springsteen as you know him, but not quite. It contains his usual themes and brand of Americana that we have come to expect from the Boss over the decades, yet at the same time he sounds more laid-back and comfortable than I ever heard him. This is not one of his energetic E-Street recordings of course, but usually his more quiet albums still have a little urgency. Here I feel that Springsteen just wanted to record some songs because it felt good, regardless of the serious subjects that still sometimes pop up. If that makes it sound like a minor late album, well it is, but at the same time every song here is very good. Nothing from the top of his game, but I like everything. For people like me who consider themselves fans of Bruce Springsteen, this is a small gem.

14. Yola - Walk Through Fire
Record: 9-11-2
Ballots: 15
Fans: Rdwdbob (1)
Not fans: None

Rob's comments:
Pretty much every review I found of this mentions how old school Yola is, but few mention were her school can be found. So let me say that almost every minute of this album reminds of Dionne Warwick. That’s fine, Warwick never seemed to have got that many imitators and Yola pretty much holds her own. It’s a fine record, but whereas Warwick in her golden years mostly sung along perhaps the best selection of melodies Burt Bacharach ever wrote Yola has material that is not quite as great. All the songs here are good and there is no doubt Yola has a beautiful voice, but nothing here truly catches fire, if I may say so. But she certainly has potential to become something special.

13. William Tyler - Goes West
Record: 10-11-1
Ballots: 15
Fans: acroamor (1), Kingoftonga (3), nicolas (5), spiritualized (4), Rob (5)
Not Fans: None

Rob's commens:
I think I mentioned it somewhere before, but I was planning to nominate this album myself, before someone beat me to it. This is very classic American primitivism. If you know the genre, you know what to expect. It is basically the sound of Americana, country and the like, but made more expansive, with more complex compositions and a feel of improvisation. I find this type of music when done well very soothing somehow, with an additional dose of atmosphere. It sounds unapologetically old, but not stale or dusty. It just feels like you are drifting away on an old pioneer wagon through the deserts of the old west. William Tyler manages to make this sound deep and lived-in. It is also somewhat funny that even a track called Man in a Hurry sounds tranquil, while still fitting the title.

12. Matana Roberts - COIN COIN Chatper 4: Memphis
Record: 9-9-4
Ballots: 13
Fans: Schuttelbirne (2), Nassim (4), bonnielaurel (5), Jirin (5)
Not fans: Rdwdbob (23), nicolas (10/11), spiritualized: (11/11)

Rob's commens:
If Cochemea presents one side of the jazz spectrum during this poll, we find Matana Roberts on the others side. This is the type of jazz you’ll never find in lounges, with its improvisation, love of dissonance and sense of fiery politics that feel evident even when there are no lyrics involved. But whereas the first half sometimes seems to disintegrate into oblivion, slowly the album allows more melody and more harmony in its composition. Just when we are a little past the halfway time we find an actual song, Her Mighty Waters Run, which could be an old spiritual. It’s appearance after so much chaos chilled me and after that there even seems room for the uplift of Raise Yourself. Not an easy album and I can’t say I completely got it after two listens, but there is a big reward here and beauty that can’t be missed on even the first try.

11. JAMBINAI - ONDA
Record: 11-8-3
Ballots: 11
Fans: DaveC (1), Kingoftonga (1), Rob (4)
Not fans: Jirin (21)

Rob's comments:
Post-rock, like other expansive rock genres like metal and prog, has been combined with folk music before, but I never heard it mixed with Korean folk. It creates a sound that to my ears is completely fresh and more than often breathtaking. From the first note of opener Sawtooth I was transported to a world as depicted on the cover art: ancient, rough and sublime. As per usual for the genre there is at least one extremely long track, in this case the thirteen minutes In the Woods, which is actually one of the calmer and more meditative moments. In contrast, closer Onda goes for mayor uplift and grandiloquence. The musical palette and expertly crafted tonal shifts keep Onda from becoming more than a gimmick matching of styles, but makes it into something truly spectacular and beautiful.
Last edited by Jirin on Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Jirin » Wed Feb 19, 2020 12:50 am

I was thinking of doing 10-6, 5-3, 2-1, but looking at the scores, 15-8 are really close together, and 7-3 are really close together, so I'll do 10-8 tomorrow then 7-3 the next day.

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Schüttelbirne » Wed Feb 19, 2020 8:18 am

I'm pleasantly surprised my nomination made the Top 10.

I think Anna Meredith will take the title here easily.

Here's my predicted top 10:

1. Anna Meredith - fibs
2. Andrew Bird - My Finest Work Yet
3. Rhiannon Giddens - There Is No Other
4. Craig Finn - I Need a New War
5. Cochemea - All My Relations
6. Amyl & The Sniffers - Amyl & The Sniffers
7. The HU - Gereg
8. Abronia - The Whole of Each Eye
9. ORBI - ORBI - The Oscillating Revenge of Background Instruments
10. Nathalie Joachim & Spektral Quartet - Fanm d'Ayiti

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by mileswide » Wed Feb 19, 2020 5:59 pm

Schüttelbirne wrote:
Wed Feb 19, 2020 8:18 am
I'm pleasantly surprised my nomination made the Top 10.
You and me both! Fanm d'Ayiti's a worthy top tenner, you get a real sense of it telling a social history without being preachy and Alléluia's particularly gorgeous.

Also can't see beyond FIBS to win the thing but then I expected Springsteen and Matana Roberts to still be in contention :whistle:
Jirin wrote:
Wed Feb 19, 2020 12:41 am
Not fans: rumpdull (21)
There's no need to throw insults just because you don't agree with rumpdoll's opinion of Western Stars!
Don't you make it my dying...cough

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Jirin » Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:01 pm

mileswide wrote:
Wed Feb 19, 2020 5:59 pm
Jirin wrote:
Wed Feb 19, 2020 12:41 am
Not fans: rumpdull (21)
There's no need to throw insults just because you don't agree with rumpdoll's opinion of Western Stars!
Fixed, sorry about that. ;)

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Jirin » Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:09 pm

10. Cochemea - All My Relations
Record: 10-9-3
Ballots: 11
Fans: nicolas (2), Shuttelbirne (5), rumpdoll (5)
Not fans: Brad (21)

Rob's comments:
This is a jazz album by one of the founders of Daptone Records and the saxophone player for Sharon Jones’ group The Dap-Kings. As such you might expect that this isn’t the heaviest piece of jazz around and you would be right. This is a very mellow affair, almost catchy and melodious, without wild improvisations or any attempts to reinvent the genre. That’s fine, as the record’s got soul. Still, I feel that in the large history of jazz this hardly stands out and I suspect that of all the albums in this year’s poll this might be the one I’ll have the hardest time recollecting by January next year. I do like the Native American chanting (Cochemea has some Native heritage) that is added to some tracks, though.

9. Abronia - The Whole Of Each Eye
Record: 12-8-2
Ballots: 11
Fans: mileswide (1), Brad (3), DaveC (4)
Not fans: None

Rob's comments:
This psychedelic type of rock which functions most successfully as a guitar work-out appeals to me, so I could easily enjoy The Whole of Each Eye. Still, there is nothing on here that feels truly unique or exceptional, so that basically once it is done I forget about it. Compared to the transcendental guitar music of – say - Jambinai in this same poll this just doesn’t stand out.

8. ORBI - ORBI: The Oscillating Revenge Of Background Instruments
Record: 12-8-2
Ballots: 13
Fans: rumpdoll (3)
Not fans: mileswide (23), Nassim (11/11)

Rob's comments:
Although reconfiguring various kinds of music through another genre is hardly original, it is rarely done as good as here. This a Dutch, classical orchestra that for one moment decided to form a band that paid tribute to metal and prog, so we get reimaginations of works by Pink Floyd, Metallica, Led Zeppelin Dream Theatre, Muse and unexpected choices like Kurt Weill and one actual classical piece in Motivy. There is also Cthulhu, an original piece by Florian Magnus Maier, a Dutch metal artist who also sometimes works as a guitar player in classical concerts. A friend of the ORBI musicians, he gave them this as yet unrecorded composition by him. It is one of the highlights, next to Orion, Hey You, Octavarium and Uprising (seems that song is much better off without lyrics). Metal and prog are genres that lend themselves more easily for classical interpretations than your average pop style, as they are more expansive, but these are not lazy covers. Sometimes the pieces get a whole new feel tone and depth. Most remarkably, a large part of these songs suddenly gain a warm quality that is absent in the originals.

Tomorrow 7-3 will be unveiled, these five are so close to each other in the standings they could have ended up in any order.

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Jirin » Fri Feb 21, 2020 1:29 am

7. The HU - The Gereg
Record: 15-5-2
Ballots: 12
Fans: spiritualized (1), nicolas (4), bonnielaurel (4), mileswide (5)
Not fans: None

Rob's comments:
Heavy metal mixed with Mongolian throat singing… It’s amazing of course! It doesn’t take itself too seriously, so instead of being just a novelty act they become one of the most celebratory, foot stomping and downright catchy metal albums of the decade! Every song is a hit – at least in an alternative universe where mainstream media play anything with Mongolian throat singing.

6. Nathalie Joachim & Spektral Quartet - Fanm d'Ayati
Record: 16-6-0
Ballots: 12
Fans: Schuttelbirne (1), Rob (2), Jirin (2)
Not fans: nicolas (22)

Rob's comments:
Nathalie Joachim was schooled as a classical music player, but has kept an interest in her Haitian roots. Basically she combines both backgrounds into one of the best fusions of classical and folk I have yet heard. The whole album feels like it comes from a tropical island (as far as I can judge such things), with a bright vibe and lot of local colors, but at times it feels deeper than such things usually do, probably because of the classical influence that is subtly woven through it. It ends up sounding like an album that soothes my mind and body, yet feels a lot richer than the other calm albums that appear in this poll, with only William Tyler’s Goes West as a competitor. The spoken word entries give some background about the overlooked presence of women in Haitian music which is nice, but frankly I would have preferred things to stay completely instrumental, simply because of the wonderful flow. A true hidden gem, this one.

5. Amyl & The Sniffers - Amyl & The Sniffers
Record: 16-5-1
Ballots: 11
Fans: spiritualized (2), mileswide (3), Rob (3), rumpdoll (4), DaveC (5)
Not fans: None

Rob's comments:
Sometimes the choice not to reinvent the wheel can be the right one. This is pop punk played straight. Nobody is trying to surprise you with new musical inventions or lyrics that were never considered before. Why does it still stand out though? Well, consistency is a big part of it. With a running time just under 30 minutes, but with 11 songs there is no fat and everything here bangs hard. It gets me jumping, it makes me want to scream; like the best punk it is all emotions and no frills. The lyrics are memorable, in a catchphrase kind of way and they are varied enough. So we get both a great rejection and a love song (Angel and Got You respectively), we get a message of devious intent (Control) and the title-says-all Some Mutts Can’t Be Nuzzled. Every line is given special treatment by Amy Taylor, who sounds like Poli Styrene from X-Ray Spex, but with less anger and more relish. On the album’s highlight, GFY, she even knows how to make a standard line like “Go fuck yourself” sound entirely fresh – and delightful. So, maybe it will not be able to reinvent punk for a new era, but there are few straight-ahead punk albums from any decade that are so consistently entertaining and memorable.

4. Andrew Bird - My Finest Work Yet
Record: 18-3-1
Ballots: 13
Fans: Brad (2), Nassim (2), bonnielaurel (3), Schuttelbirne (4), acroamor (5), Kingotonga (5)
Not fans: None

Rob's comments:
I have a hard time rating this. Despite feeling everything here is solid there is also something missing. Some kind of character that sets Bird apart from other singer/songwriters. This is my second attempt at trying to get into an Andrew Bird album and again it doesn’t click. The voice is good, but like so many others. The compositions have beauty, but don’t stick. The instrumental part should be all up my alley, but don’t really connect. The lyrics are sharp, but others are sharper. I dunno, maybe he and consequently this album will reveal themselves to me one time – such things have happened to me quite a few times with singer/songwriters, but at the time of writing I’m not really feeling this one. Except Sisyphus, which is one hell of a song.

3. Rhiannon Giddens & Francesco Turrisi - There Is No Other
Record: 18-4-0
Ballots: 14
Fans: bonnielaurel (1), nicolas (1), Kingoftonga (2), Jirin (3), Schuttelbirne (3)
Not fans: Rdwdbob (21)

Rob's comments:
I already knew Rhiannon Giddens possessed an amazing voice, but up till now she was someone who had some great songs, but no great album. I don’t think that changes quite here, but this might be her best yet. Giddens is a very traditional folk/ country singer; someone who is not bend on reinventing genres, but just appropriating these styles through her own voice and stories. She wrote some great stuff in the past (see especially the stunner At the Purchaser’s Option), but this time she mostly performs some very old traditional, mostly with a religious element. It was perhaps inevitable that she would put out such a record once. She is accompanied here by Francesco Turrisi, a very good guitar player whose American primitivism style gives this album a deep sound. They match each other well and if like me you like your fair share of traditionals you will find here some beautiful versions of many classics, with highlights in Wayfaring Stranger, Brown Baby, Little Margaret and even He Will See You Through, a spiritual that normally wouldn’t be my thing.

Final two coming tomorrow!

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Jirin » Sun Feb 23, 2020 8:13 pm

2. Craig Finn - I Need A New War
Image
Record: 20-2-0
Ballots: 14
Fans: Brad (1), Rdwdbob (2), DaveC (3), nicolas (3), Nassim (5)
Not fans: None

Rob's comments:
The man behind The Hold Steady – a band I have only a passing familiarity with – has proven once again that he is a great storyteller. That’s basically what you get here: stories that frequently work as character sketches. The production is sparse but creates the right atmosphere. That is not what you come here for. It is for Finn’s delivery which seems perpetually caught between the sneer and the sincere, as well as what he is telling you. And with this quality in tales, that is enough.

Which means the winner, as many predicted, is...

1. Anna Meredith - FIBS
Image
Record: 21-1-0
Ballots: 14
Fans: Rob (1), rumpdoll (2), mileswide (2), DaveC (2), acroamor (3), spiritualized (3), Nassim (3), Brad (4), bootsy (5)
Not fans: None

Rob's comments:
It starts with Sawbones, a track that keeps building and building into a frenzy and an even bigger frenzy. It ends with the gentle Unfurl, on which Meredith sings in a voice that sounds a lot like Julia Holter. In the middle we have a deep exploration of a sound. Anna Meredith sounds like a kid in a toybox exploring everything electronic music can do. It turns out she has a background in classical music, which might explain the easy way she changes style, tempo, and instruments, as well as the many layers her music possess. Most songs are loud and with great speed. I’m convinced that Bump played on higher volumes has the power to crush able-bodies men. In between there are some gentler, but no less captivating tracks. Vocals and lyrics are used sparingly, but are effective. The best of all: Anna Meredith has decided to release these songs so others can delight in her joy for music. I wouldn’t have given this a listen if it didn’t appear here, but now it is in the running for Album of the Year for me!

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by DaveC » Sun Feb 23, 2020 10:53 pm

Thanks Jirin.

I wouldn't have listened to Craig Finn or Abronia otherwise and both are keepers.

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Jirin » Mon Feb 24, 2020 2:41 pm

My biggest discoveries of this game were Fanm d’Ayati and VWETO II.

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Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Brad » Mon Feb 24, 2020 4:56 pm

Thanks Jirin! The bracket for MA tournament has been updated with the winner!

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Rob
Die Mensch Maschine
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Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2012 3:53 pm
Location: Nijmegen, The Netherlands

Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by Rob » Mon Feb 24, 2020 6:17 pm

Thanks, Jirin.
Great to see Fibs win!

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mileswide
Full of Fire
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Joined: Wed May 01, 2019 5:08 pm
Location: Nottingham, England

Re: Best Moderately Acclaimed Album of 2019 - RESULTS

Post by mileswide » Tue Feb 25, 2020 2:23 am

DaveC wrote:
Sun Feb 23, 2020 10:53 pm
I wouldn't have listened to Craig Finn or Abronia otherwise and both are keepers.
I'm too bigheaded not to be flattered, I'm made up that you got into my choice of Abronia! I discovered the album when Spotify was down and couldn't think what I wanted to hear on YouTube, so I genuinely searched "2019 new album" and it was a complete fluke I found something of the calibre of The Whole of Each Eye after scrolling down!

Brilliant noms everyone, a good 2/3 of which I wouldn't have heard otherwise. Particular thanks to Jirin and well done Jackson, I knew FIBS beforehand but it earnt its title; I enjoyed it even more than my #1!
Don't you make it my dying...cough

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