Consequence of Sound's Top 50 Albums of 2014

Consequence of Sound's Top 50 Albums of 2014

Original Source →

50. Merchandise - After the End

August 26, 2014
Critic Score
73
20 reviews

49. Warpaint - Warpaint

January 21, 2014
Critic Score
75
34 reviews

Although it’s admittedly a patient listen, Warpaint plucks at a different petal each time through it in its entirety. It’s truly a triumph for a group of women whose colors are singular and run incredibly deep.

48. Andy Stott - Faith in Strangers

November 18, 2014
Critic Score
81
16 reviews

Stott looks patiently inside whirring machines and pulls out their constructed heartbeats; Faith in Strangers is simultaneously a machine and movement, a noun and a verb.

47. Lower - Seek Warmer Climes

June 17, 2014
Critic Score
71
13 reviews

46. Big K.R.I.T. - Cadillactica

November 11, 2014
Critic Score
81
11 reviews

Cadillactica ... is a confident piece of work even during the slower jazz rap sections.

45. (Sandy) Alex G - DSU

June 17, 2014
Critic Score
77
14 reviews

At its best, DSU cycles through that duality with aplomb, which will serve as an excellent introduction to his gigantic discography for all new fans. Yet it’s also a reminder that Giannascoli is getting older, both as an artist and as a human being. And for better or worse, things don’t necessarily feel the same.

44. The Preatures - Blue Planet Eyes

September 30, 2014
Critic Score
76
4 reviews

43. Ryan Adams - Ryan Adams

September 8, 2014
Critic Score
74
25 reviews

Ryan Adams can be seen as an emotionally mature take from an artist who is able to think in terms of career, able to look beyond selfish reasons for creating art, and able to give fans something that can be both pleasant to listen to and enjoyable to perform on a nightly basis. 

42. Kool A.D. - Word O.K.

Kool A.D. - Word O.K.
March 20, 2014
Critic Score
74
2 reviews

41. Ought - More Than Any Other Day

April 29, 2014
Critic Score
80
11 reviews

Ought’s blistering More Than Any Other Day, the Montreal-formed quartet’s debut, is a post-punk album on the surface, armed with barbed wire guitars and conspicuous hi-hats. It works best, however, when it’s hastily becoming something rather than settling itself into one pocket. 

40. Cameron Esposito - Same Sex Symbol

Cameron Esposito - Same Sex Symbol
October 7, 2014
Critic Score
83
1 review

38. SBTRKT - Wonder Where We Land

September 23, 2014
Critic Score
71
26 reviews

37. PUP - PUP

April 7, 2014
Critic Score
78
7 reviews

36. YG - My Krazy Life

March 18, 2014
Critic Score
78
12 reviews

35. Arca - Xen

November 4, 2014
Critic Score
78
17 reviews

34. The Men - Tomorrow's Hits

March 3, 2014
Critic Score
74
23 reviews

The fact that The Men have already been so prolific, have earned veteran status as fast as any act in rock history, has meant that they can’t help but write samey songs from time to time. But those who don’t sleep don’t rust, either, which helps explain why Tomorrow’s Hits is unsurprisingly excellent.

33. MØ - No Mythologies to Follow

March 11, 2014
Critic Score
76
19 reviews

Hardly a cookie-cutter pop voice, she’s brash but not abrasive and can be sultry without being hammy. Those songs showcase the versatility of her croon, while also updating the pop ballad form with Vindhahl’s metallic, glitchy production.

32. Future Islands - Singles

March 25, 2014
Critic Score
81
32 reviews

Three years after their back-to-back records, time has served Future Islands well, especially given their expansive growth and their ability to forge their strongest qualities to precision.

31. Flying Lotus - You're Dead!

October 7, 2014
Critic Score
84
35 reviews

The album works best as a single, unified listen, the instrumental stretches inspiring just as many shivers as the Kendrick and Snoop Dogg features (if not more).

30. Aphex Twin - Syro

September 23, 2014
Critic Score
85
33 reviews

SYRO peaks as Aphex Twin’s most accessible album since his ambient works. But a published gear list of over 130 items attests that the production is no less technical.

29. together PANGEA - Badillac

together PANGEA - Badillac
January 21, 2014
Critic Score
76
4 reviews

28. Swans - To Be Kind

May 13, 2014
Critic Score
87
28 reviews

In its droning self-focus, To Be Kind exposes the core, both its own and the listener’s, revealing the visceral building blocks of the song as well as the acts of listening and existing.

27. Damien Rice - My Favourite Faded Fantasy

November 11, 2014
Critic Score
75
11 reviews

While his style remains inconsistent and his lyrics can verge on cheesy, the music never gets stale. Each word is sung like the weight of his world depends on it.

25. Schoolboy Q - Oxymoron

February 25, 2014
Critic Score
76
23 reviews

The moral of Oxymoron, though, is that Q couldn’t have made a much better album being the rapper he is.

24. Ty Segall - Manipulator

August 26, 2014
Critic Score
80
25 reviews

It’s all at once contemporary enough to thrive in a market that demands constant innovation, yet nostalgic enough to shepherd the spirit of a bygone era on which the genre is founded.

22. Perfume Genius - Too Bright

September 23, 2014
Critic Score
85
31 reviews

Despite its heightened complexity, Too Bright still fosters an intelligible world where Hadreas can bridge the distance between his vulnerability and self-assuredness.

21. Shellac - Dude Incredible

September 16, 2014
Critic Score
83
9 reviews

20. G Herbo - Welcome To Fazoland

February 17, 2014
Critic Score
73
3 reviews

19. Todd Terje - It's Album Time

April 8, 2014
Critic Score
81
26 reviews

The hour-long record could’ve benefited from either less early material or more new. At any rate, this definitely winks at the whimsicality of the album’s title, and more importantly, It’s Album Time finds Todd Terje shattering dance music stereotypes.

18. Beyoncé - Beyoncé

December 13, 2013
Critic Score
83
28 reviews

It trafficks specifically in lost arts like sequencing, pacing, and mastering. It’s not concerned with moving units. It’s concerned with Beyoncé’s self-exploration, in a complicated, incredibly intriguing way.

17. Sharon Van Etten - Are We There

May 27, 2014
Critic Score
85
33 reviews

Are We There functions best as the portrait of an artist coming into her own, while hopefully putting some of her demons to rest.

16. Weezer - Everything Will Be Alright in the End

October 7, 2014
Critic Score
69
29 reviews

In revisiting those times, in trying to get back in touch with that man, he and the rest of Weezer have created something that’s completely unique to their catalog, a record that tries its damnedest to feel alienated by the conflicts of the past, but discovers that it’s actually at peace with them.

15. Lykke Li - I Never Learn

May 5, 2014
Critic Score
73
26 reviews

Much like Angel Olsen’s also excellent album from this year, Li isn’t exactly blazing new territory in terms of emotional revelation but is in uncomfortable territory, realizing that her voice is her own and using it for what feels true to her.

14. Strand of Oaks - Heal

June 23, 2014
Critic Score
77
14 reviews

HEAL is a rock record, unabashed in its influences and unbridled in its execution.

13. Lana Del Rey - Ultraviolence

June 17, 2014
Critic Score
72
32 reviews

Del Rey’s voice flourishes. Inside the album’s big, vintage swing, she sings herself into places that Born to Die, with its pop veneer, couldn’t touch.

12. Owen Pallett - In Conflict

May 27, 2014
Critic Score
79
24 reviews

In Conflict is ominous, gloomy, and marked with some of the most playful arrangements Pallett’s laid to date. 

11. Sun Kil Moon - Benji

February 11, 2014
Critic Score
84
24 reviews

By keeping things simple and letting it all hang out, the singer manages to add another solid batch of darkly confessional indie folk tracks to his already hefty CV.

10. Freddie Gibbs & Madlib - Piñata

March 18, 2014
Critic Score
80
17 reviews

Madlib’s tricky blaxploitation production doesn’t only force Gibbs to push his abilities, but also gives him a space to explore a new perspective.

9. Spoon - They Want My Soul

August 5, 2014
Critic Score
78
33 reviews

There’s a broader range of music here than perhaps any prior album of theirs, which makes for an adventurous listen … but not exactly a cohesive one.

8. St. Vincent - St. Vincent

February 25, 2014
Critic Score
87
36 reviews

Her biggest fans may prefer less direct writing, but it makes St. Vincent her most widely appealing album to date, an infectious work that doesn’t ever feel like a compromise.

7. FKA twigs - LP1

August 12, 2014
Critic Score
86
40 reviews

LP1 isn’t anything revolutionary; it’s a frankly expressed project focused on the dualism between love and lust, reality and fantasy.

6. Against Me! - Transgender Dysphoria Blues

January 21, 2014
Critic Score
80
19 reviews

Transgender Dysphoria Blues will be remembered as a milestone not because it’s the first widely known punk record performed by a trans woman, but because it brandishes a genre saturated by empty, male-centered politics to broadcast the most punk statements possible: Fuck the haters, be who you are, hold fast to those who love you.

5. Caribou - Our Love

October 7, 2014
Critic Score
80
32 reviews

It’s rich in slow-burning ambiguity, and it may be vibrant and clean, but it doesn’t entice dialogue quite the same way his past albums have.

4. Cloud Nothings - Here and Nowhere Else

April 1, 2014
Critic Score
81
27 reviews

At 22, Baldi’s words aren’t tinted with irony, experience, or self-understanding. They are in the moment, full of emotional complexities that sometimes are more noticeable by the ferocity of his yelps, and less with his poetry.

3. Angel Olsen - Burn Your Fire for No Witness

February 18, 2014
Critic Score
81
31 reviews

Billed as “a collection of songs grown in a year of heartbreak, travel, and transformation,” Olsen’s sophomore LP is an astonishingly graceful, open, and engaging offering filled with intimate and unflinching songs.

2. Run the Jewels - Run the Jewels 2

October 28, 2014
Critic Score
86
28 reviews

An album like RTJ2 is rare. Decades from now, this album may just be revered as one of the best hip-hop records of our era, the total synchronicity of two talented artists reaching the apex of their prime.

1. The War on Drugs - Lost in the Dream

March 18, 2014
Critic Score
85
33 reviews

The more you spin it, the more you wear out that thin needle of your record player, you realize that Granduciel is discovering the problems of his life, not figuring them out or even reflecting on them. This all makes for an album that truly sounds like it’s coming to life.

Original Source: http://consequenceofsound.net/2014/12/albums-of-the-year-2014/
Comments
Sign in to comment
No one has said anything yet.
Connect with AOTY
Like Us
Follow Us
2014 YEAR END AGGREGATE

2018 Playlist
AOTY Discord
Forums
Vinyl Me, Please