The VPME Awards – Part 2 Albums of The Year Five To One

Yesterday we had a rant about the wrecking ball that was 2016 (HERE ) and listed our albums of 2016 from 10-6 . Today it’s 5 to 1, and no ranting 😉 .  These are the records that helped me through a horrible bastard of a year, they may not be your favourites, but that’s cool because wouldn’t it be dreadful if we all liked the same thing?  Feel free to let me know your favourites if you are so inclinced.  Cheers.

5. Nick Cave – Skeleton Tree


Skeleton Tree is an emotionally challenging listen and you’d have to have a heart of stone not to be moved by this beautifully, raw, bleak yet inspiring album. It’s been said much of the album was written before tragic events enveloped Mr Cave and his family, but for the listener, it remains impossible not to link the two when contemplating such an astonishingly intimate dark collection of songs.

4. Amber Arcades – Fading Lines


Amber Arcades is the project of Dutch singer-songwriter Annelotte de Graaf and her first album Fading Lines is a quite wonderful debut. Wistful beauty, a knowing yet nuanced bittersweetness and a yearning sense of melancholy are at the core of De Graaf’s evocative songs and she has delivered a multilayered album that is far more musically intricate than it may initially appear.

3. Primal Scream – Chaosmosis

Primal Scream - Live Albert Hall, Manchester 2ndApril2016 Photo By Andy Von Pip

Bobby Gillespie has always been an avid consumer of music, a restless spirit never content to limit himself to one style or genre, or simply reheat and rehash a winning formula,  a fact which has consistently made Primal Scream such a fascinating and occasionally infuriating proposition. Chasosmosis continues Primal Scream’s chameleon-like an ability to shape shift as they deliver arguably their most ‘pop’ album to date. This is pop with a political bent but ultimately shines it’s light on positives and as such is imbued with a sense of optimism and beauty. Something I desperately needed in 2016.

2. Kate Jackson – British Road Movies

Kate Jackson header VPME

If you’re excepting a Long Blondes style record, you’d perhaps be best advised to pop ‘Someone To Drive You Home’ on. However, if  you’re a fan of beautifully crafted sophisticated, evocative British pop music, full of wistful poetry and passion then ‘British Road Movies’ is the album for you – Review/ Interview

1.Minor Victories – Minor Victories


“The remarkable thing about Minor Victories self-titled debut album isn’t just the astonishing quality of the music produced but also the fact that the band members, as the sleeve notes point out – ‘never shared the same air.‘ Meaning that the album was created ‘remotely’ – ” by swapping ideas, songs, fragments and finished recordings via broadband connections.”  Given this way of working and the differing expectations ( ‘we probably didn’t start off with the same vision’ ) over what this collaboration should yield, the resultant album is a majestic, life-affirming triumph. ” Review


With nods to The Anchoress’s Confessions of A Romance Novelist, Kristin Kontrols  X-communicate, Beverly’s  The Blue Swell, and Deap Vally’s  Femejisim

Leave a Reply