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    • Eight Best Songs of the Week: Julien Baker, The War on Drugs, LCD Soundsystem, Wolf Alice, and More
      Charlottesville, Virginia is only just over an hour a way from Under the Radar's headquarters. It's the best local city to see shows in and it's a great little progressive college town that we visit often. So we watched in horror, disbelief, and disgust last weekend as the violent and tragic events in Charlottesville surrounding the white supr […]
    • Join Under the Radar on Patreon to Enter to Win a Vinyl Copy of UNKLE’s New Album
      If you support Under the Radar's Patreon page at the minimum contribution of at least $1.00 a month you get access to our Patreon-only feed featuring exclusive content only available to Patreon supporters. UNKLE have also donated a vinyl copy of their new album, The Road: Part 1, to give away to one lucky Under the Radar Patreon supporter.
    • Soundtracking the Resistance - Fascists in America
      With the President outdoing himself in a bid to appear like a terrible human being, there's only really one thing to talk about this week. Still, read on and you might find a few positive developments outside his Charlottesville debacle.
    • Soundtracking the Resistance - Fascists in America
      With the President outdoing himself in a bid to appear like a terrible human being, there's only really one thing to talk about this week. Still, read on and you might find a few positive developments outside his Charlottesville debacle.
    • UNKLE on “The Road: Part 1”
      Some 25 years ago, James Lavelle, then 18 years old, was running around London, earnest and passionate, his already magnified eyes covered by horn-rimmed glasses seeming like they would pop right out of his head. That head, filled with so many original ideas, including his visionary musical venture, UNKLE released on his legendary independent label, Mo' […]
    • Premiere: The Duke Spirit – “Houses” Video
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    • Watch Grizzly Bear Perform “Mourning Sound” on “Colbert” and Stream Their New Album
      Grizzly Bear have released a new album, Painted Ruins, today via RCA. It is our Album of the Week and the band is on the cover of our current print issue. Last night the band stopped by The Late Show with Stephen Colbert to perform "Mourning Sound" and they didn't disappoint, with one of the stronger late night TV performances of recent memory […]
    • The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (50th Anniversary Edition)
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    • Album of the Week: Grizzly Bear
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    • A Fever Dream
      U.K. art-pop quartet Everything Everything rightfully gained plenty of attention in 2015 for their bombastic third album Get to Heaven. It easily highlighted everything great about the band: propulsive dance grooves, quirky and creative instrumentation and chord progression, cleverly cutting lyrics, and frontman Jonathan Higgs' powerful, unique vocals.  […]
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    • Elderbrook's 'Woman' Is A Chopped Up Gem August 18, 2017
      New 'Talking' EP incoming...Elderbrook wants to push his music as far as it will go. Continually creative, the electronic music is eager to embrace new ideas, to tackle new projects. New seven track EP 'Talking' is incoming, and it presents a series of diverse songs, a broad cross section of where his head is at. Clash is able to premiere […]
    • Sian Anderson Picks Out Some Summertime Jams August 18, 2017
      Radio personality reveals the tracks that have excited her...Sian Anderson continually stands at the forefront of new music, helping to seek out and break underground sounds. Her 1Xtra shows are required listening in the Clash office, a place to catch music that might not otherwise gain a platform of that nature. We're making plans for the end of the su […]
    • Kaleida's Guide To Hidden Berlin August 18, 2017
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    • Clash DJ Mix - Low Steppa August 18, 2017
      Serious house vibes from the Simma Black selector...Low Steppa has always flown the flag for UK house music. Through his DJ sets and regular Rinse FM appearance, the producer has continually offered a platform for new artists working in the house sphere. Launching the Simma Black label, Low Steppa has taken this support to the next level. Now approaching its […]
    • Premiere: BLESS. - 'Easy Lover' August 18, 2017
      Completing an eventful summer...BLESS. have enjoyed an epic summer. Debut EP 'Music Comes First' arrived late last year, and since then it's been full throttle for the newcomers. Festivals and headline shows have been delivered with feverish passion, connecting BLESS. with more and more new fans. New single 'Easy Lover' is out now, a […]
    • IDER Share New Track 'Learn To Let Go' August 18, 2017
      Duo sign to Glassnote Records...IDER have toasted their union to Glassnote Records with new song 'Learn To Let Go'. The duo released sterling EP 'Gut Me Like An Animal' earlier in the year, a wonderfully distinct piece of bedroom pop. Freshly signed to Glassnote, the North London pairing have shared a divine new track. 'Learn To Let […]
    • Premiere: The New Faith - 'Fritter Away' August 18, 2017
      Imbued with a stylish melancholy...The New Faith have completed work on debut album 'Me On You', a record due for release on October 6th. The project follows a series of one off singles, each imbued with a stylish melancholy, reminiscent of Morrissey or even Bryan Ferry. New single 'Fritter' Away' is drawn from the upcoming record, a […]
    • Premiere: Kidnap Kid - 'Where The Sea Swings In Like An Iron Gate' August 18, 2017
      A subtle, expansive return from the Yorkshire talent...There's much more to Kidnap Kid than meets the eye. The electronic talent actually has a degree in politics, and he's continually side-stepped the hype to seek out his own path. Working with Anjunadeep on a new release, Kidnap Kid has completed work on subtle new cut 'Where The Sea Swings […]
    • Listen: Tom Tripp - 'Pamela' August 18, 2017
      Ludicrously infectious funk pop...Tom Tripp has shared funky new cut 'Pamela' - tune in now. The buoyant artist came from nowhere to hit the stage at Coachella earlier this year, with debut cut 'Aurelia' scorching its path across the web. New single 'Pamela' is bound to hit the same heights, with its gloriously infectious funk p […]
    • Robert Plant Announces New Album 'Carry Fire' August 18, 2017
      Plus, 15 date tour confirmed...Robert Plant will release new album 'Carry Fire' on October 13th. The rock icon released studio album ‘lullaby and...The Ceaseless Roar’ in 2014, a phenomenally creative effort that fused elements of celtic and Arabic culture alongside a dose of Americana. New record 'Carry Fire' finds Robert Plant continuin […]
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    • Sawdust City Music Festival July 27, 2017
      The inaugural Sawdust City Music Festival takes over Gravenhurst, Ontario this August long weekend. Running from August 4th – 6th the festival features performances from a plethora of talented artists from the area and all over Canada. Whether you want to check out the Muskoka music scene or experience the Jim Cuddy Family Band perform [...] Sawdust City Mus […]
    • Interview: Danko Jones July 21, 2017
      We sat down with John Calabrese, bassist of Danko Jones to talk about the band's impressive 20+ year career, most memorable moments and their newest album Wild Cat.  Interview: Danko Jones by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Interview: Kid Koala July 20, 2017
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    • The Lemon Bucket Orkestra July 19, 2017
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    • Interview: Mix Master Mike July 17, 2017
      Mix Master Mike put on an epic show in Quebec City on Friday and again in Toronto last night. We chatted with him about his tour with Metallica and his new Virtual Reality work. Interview: Mix Master Mike by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Interview: The Dirty Nil July 14, 2017
      The Dirty Nil played one of their biggest shows in Canada yesterday. We caught up with the band just before the show to talk about opening for The Who, touring and Minimum R&B. Interview: The Dirty Nil by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Interview: A Tribe Called Red July 13, 2017
      A Tribe Called Red played their biggest show in Quebec yesterday at Festival d'été de Québec. We caught up with Bear Witness just prior to the festival to talk about We are the Halluci Nation. Interview: A Tribe Called Red by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • FEQ in 2 Days! July 4, 2017
      Celebrating their 50th year this summer,  Festival d'été de Québec is throwing an epic bash from July 6th to July 16th. FEQ in 2 Days! by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Album Review: Prairie Cat’s Is Cary Pratt June 30, 2017
      The unconventional songwriter has been making waves with the release of his fourth album. Album Review: Prairie Cat’s Is Cary Pratt by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • REVIEW: !!! (ChkChkChk) June 17, 2017
      Wednesday, June 14th at the Horseshoe Tavern: dance-punk at its finest REVIEW: !!! (ChkChkChk) by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.

The Falcon’s Nest Best Albums of 2015 (So Far)

Posted by falconi5 on June 10, 2015


It is pretty much impossible to comprehend that 2015 is almost 1/2 way over. The year started a bit slow as we waited with bated breath for the release of the new Madonna album, and new releases from Brian Wilson, Willie Nelson, and Van Morrison, all mostly met with the sound of one hand clapping, and far from their best effort.

Songwriters turned solo artists have been prevalent so far with Chris Stapelton and Gretchen Peters coming out from behind their collective quills with two highly superlative records that should stand the test of time. Indie Icons My Morning Jacket released Waterfall, again not their best, but highly listenable, and just plain Icons The Waterboys are out with Modern Blues, one of the best records of the year so far.

The new Mumford and Sons is pretty much as expected, unlistenable, and the 2015 version of Whitesnake performing various selections from the David Coverdale era Deep Purple days is an unfortunate waste of vinyl.

So carry on my wayward sons and check out the top twenty below, according to the Falcon’s Nest that is, and make sure you scroll down to “and don’t sleep on” at the end of the list for a bunch more records that are worth your ear time that did not make our top twenty, but may be on yours.

Party on Garth!

20.)  Chris Spedding – Joyland

The veteran session player, who has played with Roxy Music, Elton John, and Roxy Music delivers a more than solid set of noir tunes all by himself. Ian McShane makes a surprise cameo appearance on the title track.

19.)  Alabama Shakes – Sound and Color

A little more textured than their debut, the second time around still has the back of the barroom blast we have come to know and love. A pairing of the first two albums from these upstarts makes for about as solid a one two punch as you will find.

18.) Low Cut Connie – Hi Honey

This one is like that girlfriend you could never take home to mother. Sexy, tattoos in places that rarely see the sun, a bit crazy, and a hell of a lot of fun.

17.)  Ray Wylie Hubbard – The Ruffian’s Misfortune

Nothing short of a Texas national treasure.  “Chick Singer, Badass Rockin'” is worth the price of admission alone.

16.)  Fools Gold – Flying Lessons

You wouldn’t be straying too far from the sun if you made this one your anthem album of the summer. Bright, sunny, psychedelic in the best possible way, and disco tinged in just the right places.  Look, listen, love.

15.)  Palma Violets – Danger in the Club

Not quite as reckless as their debut, yet no less dangerous.  This modern-day Garage Rock classic could have been a Pretty Things record circa 1968.

14.)  Ryley Walker – Primrose Green

Sometimes talent just carries the day. The opening title cut on this one hits you between the ears with about one full minute of guitar mastery even before Ryley Walker songs a note in his Donovan by way of Nick Drake vocal style. This is one epic of a folk song, if there is such a thing.  With influences ranging from British pastoral folk to Miles Davis and Cat Stevens, Primrose Green is about as refreshing an album as you will hear all year.

13.)  Whitehorse – Leave No Bridge Unburned

Luke Doucett and Melissa Mclelland channel their inner Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazelwood, new millennium style.

12.)  Black Star Riders – The Killer Instinct

Rising from the ashes of Thin Lizzy, this one might be the Rock album of the year.

11.)  Rhett Miller – The Traveler

A sterling example of why the head honcho of The Old 97’s is one of the best front men in the business.

10.) Calexico – Eye of the Sun

Any record with Sam Beam, Band of Horses, and Neko Case helping out has got to be good.  And this one is great.

09.) The Staves – If I Was

A sprinkling of Americana and Soft Rock seeps into the blue print here which is a little bit of a change from their maiden voyage, but fear not, the crystalline vocals of the sisters remain very much intact.

08.)  Della Mae – Della Mae

One of the only all female Bluegrass bands you will find around.  Don’t be afraid of a little banjo or Mandolin and immerse yourself in some refreshing new music.

07.)  Noel Gallagher – Chasing Yesterday

Going back to his Brit Rock Roots, he even has a song that sounds strikingly similar to “Rock On'” Gallagher is at the top of his game.

06.)  James McMurtry – Complicated Game

McMurtry is simply one of the best song writers in the game. His best effort since the stellar Just Us Kids, he continues to carry the torch for common people living complicated lives.

05.) Gretchen Peters – Blackbirds

She has written a ton of hit songs for others including Faith Hill’s “The Secret of Life” and “Independence Day” for Martina McBride.  Stepping out on her own she shows signs of stardom in her own right.  The song “Blackbirds” might be the Americana song of the year.

04.  David Corley – Available Light

A years in the making overnight success Available Light resonates like an ill-gotten evening spent over-served in your favorite watering lamenting over loves lost, fortunes squandered, and lives over lived, all in a voice that sounds like it comes from the gutteral crossroads of Lou Reed and Tom Waits.

03.  Chris Stapelton – Traveller

Riding on just the right side of the Country trail right there between Waylon Jennings and Dale Watson, the secret here is in the storytelling. This troubadour should be side by side with Sturgill Simpson and Jamey Johnson on your new school Outlaw Country Rolodex. Stepping out from behind his quill to strap on his guitar, just take one listen to “Tennessee Whiskey” and Chris Stapelton might just be become your new best friend.

02.  Father John Misty – I Love You, Honeybear

A bit more diverse than 2012’s Fear Fun this time out the good father combines Pop, Americana, and Singer Songwriter with his Laurel Canyon vibe to create what might eventually be one of the best records of 2015.

01.  Dawes – All Your Favorite Bands

Sailing on to exotic ports of call ranging from Jackson Browne, The Band, and 70’s vintage Beach Boys, four albums in Dawes has definitely hit their musical stride. Every tune is a study in song construction with the vocal mix from mostly Taylor Goldsmith front and center on a cloud of sublime guitar work that seems to come from the Dire Straits or J.J. Cale Songbook. The title cut “All Your Favorite Bands” could have been on the B side of “The Pretender,” and if there is any musical justice in this world, this one should be the song of the year for 2015.

And don’t sleep on:

21.) The Wateboys – Modern Blues

22.)  The Lone Bellow – Then Came the Morning

23.)  Catfish and the Bottlemen – The Balcony

24.)  Steve Earle – Terraplane

25.)  Banditos – Banditos

26.)  My Morning Jacket – Waterfall

27.)  Rodney Crowell and Emmylou Harris – The traveling kind.

28.)  Torres – Splinter

29.)  Rose Windows – Rose Windows

30.)  Paul Weller – Saturn Patterns

31.)  Hollis Brown – 3 Shots

32.)  Melody Gardot – Currency of Man

33.)  Boz Scaggs – A Fool to Care

34.)  Ryan Bingham – Fear & Saturday Night

35.)  The Dunwells – Lucky Ones

36.)  Blackberry Smoke – Holding All the Roses

37.)  Whitey Morgan – Sonic Ranch

38.)  John Moreland – High on Tulsa

39.)  Jesse Malin – New York Before the War

40.) Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell

41.)  Ron Sexsmith – Carousel Love

42.)  William Eliot Whitmore – Radium Death

43.)  The Minus 5 – Dungeon Golds

44.)  Gil Landes – Gil Landes

45.)  Jose Gonzales – Vestiges and Clawes

46.)  Blur – The Magic Whip

47.)  Matthew E White – Fresh Blood

48.)  Sonny Landreth – Bound by the Blues

49.)  A Thousand Horses – Southernality

50.)  Holly Miranda – Holly Miranda







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