The Line of Best Fit's 50 Best Records of 2014

The Line of Best Fit's 50 Best Records of 2014

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(Sandy) Alex G - DSU

June 17, 2014
Critic Score
77
14 reviews
As non-debuts go, they don't come much stronger.

Adult Jazz - Gist Is

August 5, 2014
Critic Score
79
14 reviews

The songs on this album seem to start at a small point in an undefined centre before pulsing outwards in all directions, changing form and structure as they go – in that respect, it’s almost impossible to describe what this music sounds like, or how it might make you feel.

Alvvays - Alvvays

July 22, 2014
Critic Score
79
24 reviews

Alvvays’ record is a hard-hitting, multi-faceted anthology of awesome, and sits pretty as one of 2014’s brightest debuts.

Angel Olsen - Burn Your Fire for No Witness

February 18, 2014
Critic Score
81
31 reviews

Olsen is a unique songwriter of incredible complexity and fearlessness, and despite her ostensibly considerable inner sorrow, she manages to deliver an album that is as equally exultant as it is despondent.

Aphex Twin - Syro

September 23, 2014
Critic Score
85
33 reviews

As much as anything in Aphex Twin’s back catalogue, Syro is an incredibly cohesive, immersive listen. 

Arc Iris - Arc Iris

Arc Iris - Arc Iris
March 31, 2014
Critic Score
78
6 reviews

Ásgeir - In The Silence

January 27, 2014
Critic Score
73
9 reviews

In The Silence is a complete package. It’s got pristine pop lacquer, it’s full of hum-along motifs, it’s got moments you can dance to and moments you can chill to; the lyrics are emotive, and every instrumental performance is as powerful as the Ark Of The Covenant.

Beck - Morning Phase

February 25, 2014
Critic Score
78
38 reviews

Morning Phase may not be the most forward-thinking entry in Beck’s chamelionic canon, and its attempts to live up to the bare-bones stylings of his last “folk” album fall somewhat short.

Caribou - Our Love

October 7, 2014
Critic Score
80
32 reviews

This passionate, unrequited love for life is brazen during Our Love. It's an emphatic 42 minutes of contentment, of genuine happiness that is so rare within music. 

ceo - Wonderland

ceo - Wonderland
February 4, 2014
Critic Score
72
15 reviews

You’ll need repeated relistens to fathom what the holy mackerel is going on half the time, as the first few will be spent jaw agape and scratching your bonce. When you do break through the alienating honey-gloss, inside is fuzzy, gut-warming morsels of intimate pop.

Damon Albarn - Everyday Robots

April 28, 2014
Critic Score
75
34 reviews

Poetics aside, Everyday Robots is an album of very carefully orchestrated chaos, a live congress of organic and synthetic textures; the instrumentation seems at once to be incidental and micro-managed, carefully situated in its utter formlessness.

Douglas Dare - Whelm

Douglas Dare - Whelm
May 12, 2014
Critic Score
80
7 reviews

East India Youth - Total Strife Forever

January 13, 2014
Critic Score
81
19 reviews

Total Strife Forever is breathtaking. It might get tough sometimes, lonely and desolate even, but Doyle’s catharsis will hoist you by the bootstraps into lusher pastures.

Esben and the Witch - A New Nature

September 9, 2014
Critic Score
77
8 reviews

Fear of Men - Loom

April 22, 2014
Critic Score
80
17 reviews

With Loom, Fear of Men have proven to be just as brilliantly complex as that natural wonder they so often invoke – deep, refreshing, mysterious, life-affirming.

FKA twigs - LP1

August 12, 2014
Critic Score
86
40 reviews

It’s not a record that’ll smack you in the face with bolsh and pace, and so in the inevitable repeated listens, as you listen harder, you’ll find yourself scurrying through various interpretations of the lyrics

Future Islands - Singles

March 25, 2014
Critic Score
81
32 reviews

Singles is an effortless wonder. Each and every track runs its course avoiding any pitfalls: they not once sound laboured or tryhard, and although this is still very un-standard pop, Future Islands fool you into believing this is the bar from which we gauge the charts.

Halls - Love to Give

Halls - Love to Give
February 10, 2014
Critic Score
76
4 reviews

Hookworms - The Hum

November 10, 2014
Critic Score
80
20 reviews

The Hum is a shattering, all-encompassing experience; there's climactic rage, broken organs and blank-eyed trance outs. 

Jessie Ware - Tough Love

October 13, 2014
Critic Score
73
28 reviews

Tough Love may hang its weight on an intimacy that was missing in parts from her debut, but it’s actually the elements around her vocals and lyrics that delivers the album’s biggest punch.

Katy B - Little Red

February 10, 2014
Critic Score
73
24 reviews

Brien and Geeneus have turned in a finessed and involving convergence between dance and pop that mixes timeless songwriting with an energized and gutsy production.

Kindness - Otherness

October 14, 2014
Critic Score
62
19 reviews

Korallreven - Second Comin'

November 4, 2014
Critic Score
81
5 reviews

Mac DeMarco - Salad Days

April 1, 2014
Critic Score
79
23 reviews

The record also proves that maturity does not mean creative death – this is complete album and in many ways his best.

Mica Levi - Under the Skin

March 17, 2014
Critic Score
81
4 reviews

The Under the Skin score matches Glazer’s understated, minimal aesthetic scene for scene. Never does the music outweigh the carefully constructed silences and – as all good film music must – it only ever adds to the potent illusion of a twisted, heart-rending reality.

Morrissey - World Peace Is None of Your Business

July 15, 2014
Critic Score
64
30 reviews

The prospect of this album should have any fan of inventive, addictive music trembling with anticipation.

Neneh Cherry - Blank Project

February 25, 2014
Critic Score
82
26 reviews

Produced by Kieran Hebden, performed by synth and drum duo RocketNumberNine and recorded in a five day burst of creativity, Blank Project is a rough and ready, powerful, flawed, intense and ultimately wonderful record.

Perfume Genius - Too Bright

September 23, 2014
Critic Score
85
31 reviews

Hadreas finally appears to have found a sound palette as provocative, forward-thinking and confrontational as his vehement, brave lyrical style.

Run the Jewels - Run the Jewels 2

October 28, 2014
Critic Score
86
28 reviews

This is the best relationship in rap music right now; more than producer/rapper, Render and Meline truly are brothers in arms and they’re here to give us all the push we need to take on the world.

Samaris - Silkidrangar

Samaris - Silkidrangar
May 5, 2014
Critic Score
79
4 reviews

Shabazz Palaces - Lese Majesty

July 29, 2014
Critic Score
82
30 reviews

It’s really quite beautiful. Comprised of seven “astral suites”, Lese Majesty feels closer to an electronic symphony movement than a conventional album. It’s also what makes it a “grower”. 

Sharon Van Etten - Are We There

May 27, 2014
Critic Score
85
33 reviews

It’s an album full of resonance, one likely to sink deep into your bones, and it should most certainly soundtrack any kind of romantic road trip. 

Shellac - Dude Incredible

September 16, 2014
Critic Score
83
9 reviews

Snowbird - moon

Snowbird - moon
January 27, 2014
Critic Score
75
12 reviews

Imagery of and metaphors involving woodsy spaces and forest critters abound, which could have easily presented themselves as wooly, hippie-chick silliness, but Raymonde and Dosen execute it all with sincere and flawless beauty.

SOHN - Tremors

April 7, 2014
Critic Score
74
20 reviews

If you’re looking for the next Disclosure, you’ll be sorely disappointed in the lack of future garage plastic. If you want to dive into a gooey, spiritual bout of hypnagogic jamais vu, then Tremors will be your guiding light.

Spoon - They Want My Soul

August 5, 2014
Critic Score
78
33 reviews

They Want My Soul may be the most varied thing Spoon have ever put out, but there’s nothing tentative about it. 

St. Vincent - St. Vincent

February 25, 2014
Critic Score
87
36 reviews

St. Vincent showcases a musician and songwriter in total command of her powers, complete with an imperious lilac-platinum bouffant that seems to announce the presence of indie’s undisputed Khaleesi.

Sun Kil Moon - Benji

February 11, 2014
Critic Score
84
24 reviews

On Benji, and even more particularly on some of the live versions featured on the additional disc that accompanies the first ten thousand copies, Mark Kozelek is at least as piercing and persuasive as in his best output over the last two decades.

Swans - To Be Kind

May 13, 2014
Critic Score
87
28 reviews

Swans are as furious and as boundary-pushing as they’ve ever been, and despite the meticulous composition of the album, there’s still the constant nagging suspicion that Gira has gone utterly, chaotically insane.

Taylor Swift - 1989

October 27, 2014
Critic Score
76
25 reviews

There's evolution with purpose in every fibre of 1989, and far from jettisoning her integrity in this drastic lunge, she's proved in her bold, risky decision that she's got courage in her convictions to pull it off and faith in her fans to accept the new direction.

The Bug - Angels and Devils

August 25, 2014
Critic Score
80
17 reviews

Angels & Devils does such a stellar job of blending the old and the new, and has the stones to shove Martin’s sinuous new ideas to the forefront. It’s that courage and singularity of vision that makes The Bug stand triumphantly apart.

1. The War on Drugs - Lost in the Dream

March 18, 2014
Critic Score
85
33 reviews

The record coalesces elegantly nonetheless, forming a flawless, ethereal artistic statement by a band who has clearly refined and perfected their craft.

Thumpers - Galore

February 11, 2014
Critic Score
68
12 reviews

Todd Terje - It's Album Time

April 8, 2014
Critic Score
81
26 reviews

For all the career curveballs Terje has so far served up, it was always expected of him to come up with something pretty extraordinary for his debut. Still, to pull it off with such vigour is a pretty impressive feat. 

Wild Beasts - Present Tense

February 25, 2014
Critic Score
82
26 reviews

Present Tense is a triumph of ideas that results in a ground zero for Wild Beasts. They’ve pulled off possibly the most intelligent, involving and profound record since OK Computer.

Young Fathers - Dead

February 3, 2014
Critic Score
80
15 reviews

It’s this capacity such wide-ranging diversity that keeps the record so remarkably compelling – Dead is an album built on a relentless barrage of sounds, ideas, and experiments. Whatever you think of the album itself, it’s certainly never boring.

Original Source: http://www.thelineofbestfit.com/features/articles/top-fifty-albums-2014
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