The first step, they say, is admitting you have a problem. Mine is albums and books—as in purchasing too damn many of both.
About halfway through this year I decided to exercise a little more control. I’ve got books on my shelves that I haven’t read yet, after all, and albums that I don’t even remember buying.
I know what you’re thinking: “But Aaron, how will I know what to think (and buy for all my music-loving friends this Christmas) without your annual review of the year’s best music?” Fear not. I didn’t say I quit cold turkey, did I?
So here are ten noteworthy albums from 2016:
Animals as Leaders—The Madness of Many
Brian Eno—The Ship
Old Fire—Songs from the Haunted South
Red Fang—Only Ghosts
Toska—Ode to the Author
Vijay Iyer and Wadada Leo Smith—A Cosmic Rhythm with Each Stroke
various artists—Day of the Dead
Oddly enough, there’s not a whole lot of diversity in this year’s list. Four are metal (two of which are instrumental), three are prog-ish pop/rock, one is ambient/pop, one is jazz, and one is a box set of Grateful Dead covers. But as Miles Davis once said, there are only two kinds of music: good and bad. And these, folks, are all good.