If you are reading this, you have made it through this year, and it didn’t kill you, and dammit we’re all going to celebrate that fact. Of course, being a music podcast, we can only celebrate this occasion by doing what we do best—picking the albums of this year that helped us get here. So in this part two, we pick our most disappointing albums, our most surprising, and, yes, our Top 5 Albums of 2017. You’ll also hear even more returning guests revealing their own top fives, including a blast from our very distant past. So join us in salvaging the only things worth keeping from this blasted hellscape of a year, secure in the knowledge that we have survived, and that we may continue to survive, at least long enough to hear the next Guided By Voices album. Also: impersonations of dear friends, hardcore emotional realness, and the official sign of every song on Lorde’s Melodrama.
Thom looks awfully sad up there, and for good reason—2017, as a year, mostly served to prove that no dumpster fire is so heinous that it can’t be made even more dumpster-fiery. But because the universe is just packed with ironic twists, this was also one of the best years in music in recent memory (and not just because this was the year when your illustrious hosts first crashed on this awfully esoteric island). So, starting on this fine Saturnalia, we’re taking a break from our discographic discourse to look back at all the music that made existence just a little more bearable, even as the walls crumbled down around us.
The one issue with our format is that, while we get to explore so much music history in-depth, we rarely get to talk about all the contemporary artists that are making history right now. So there’s a lot of pent-up joy coming out in this episode, as we discuss top 40 surprises, the continued relevance of Flying Nun, and whether not having heard something really does make it new enough. And like any good Christmas special, we also take this time to look back at the work we’ve done, and even bring back a few fan-favorite guests to give us their take.
This episode, we go through podcasts past and our top five songs. Stay tuned next week for our top five albums!