p1k no 1: Kendrick Lamar To Pimp a Butterfly

Had I ever heard of them before: very hard not to’ve.

Reductive First Impression: Not at all a first impression as I’ve been listening to this for over a year. It’s a good album. The first few songs are great. Lamar is a passionate, dextrous rapper and listening to him is fun. It’s eclectic.

It’s way too long. Which is my complaint about most albums and every hip hop album ever.

I also think he sounds abit like Quasimoto. I googled it. I’m not the only one who thinks so.

Will I listen to it again: yeah, I’m a  fan.

p2k no 2: Jamie xx – In Colour

Had I ever heard of them before: yes, Jamie XX seems to have been mentioned in every thing I’ve read since, ummm 2010. Which was 6 years ago. holy crap.

Reductive First Impression: hmmm, this is is very much a “producers” album – as are most of the things on this list. This makes me wonder, is the band dead? Honestly? Is cut and paste, mix and match the future of music? Not a bad thing at all, but it’s not what I do or can do. Maybe the world’s just leaving us all behind.

Or are things cyclical and we’ll have (probably crappy) bands back in 2020? or will there be more of a melding of the live and the “producer” (and not just in a “live band plays studio productions”) in future.

It’s not 10% my cup of tea but better than 50% of this list, easily. I’ve enjoyed it enough to listen to 5 times. on the other hand some bits are “errrggg”. Mind you i never like the XX.
Will I listen to it again: probably not, but, you know, not it’s fault, i’m just a lazy guy.


p4k no 3: Grimes – Art Angels

Had I ever heard of them before: yes, but ummm had no idea what she sounded like.

Reductive First Impression: I like this. It’s really good. Not sure about some of the production (loud synthetic drums, kinda cheesy guitar n stuff) but I may grow to like it.

I dunno, the melodies are good. This is good.

Will I listen to it again: yep


p4k no 4: Vince Staples – Summertime ’06

Had I ever heard of them before: no.

Reductive First Impression: I listened to this a few times. It’s ok. I don’t hate it. The hooks it has don’t make me go “yeaaaaaaaaah” but I also don’t hate them. I’m guessing this is a lyrics album – in fact more than that a “narrative” album and therefore needs way closer a listen than I’m willing to give it.

His bitch looks like Madonna.

Will I listen to it again: nope. Although as I type this I am still listening to it and becoming a tiny bit more intrigued. but na…

p4k no 5: Tame Impala – Currents

Had I ever heard of them before: yes, they did that song you’d hear on the radio and, I’m also assuming, adverts.

Reductive First Impression: Oh, I don’t know. Do I even have an opinion about music anymore? My head was so clogged by what I’d read about Tame Impala before that all I thought was: “oooh he’s a loner”, “ooh this a bit moody”, “ooh he’s a studio perfectionist”, “ooh this is kinda like, I dunno, dancey kinda something but not?”.

Some of it made me tap my feet. Some of it’s a bit woozy but just a bit and made me want to listen to Conan Mocassin. I like Conan Mocassin.


Will I listen to it again: na.

p4k no 6: Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell

Had I ever heard of them before: yes, saw him in a  sit down folk club in Nottingham back in ’04… blah blah blah

Reductive First Impression: When this first came out I was unimpressed. I didn’t know why. It ticked all my boxes.

Sparse (tickerdee)

Deeply personal (tix)

Relatively lofi (tickets)

Sufjan Stevens (tickles)

but left me a bit “meh”. Better than Age of Adz, I thought, “but why’s everyone going crazy over it?”. I gave it 6 months. Fuck me it’s good. Heartbreaking, beautiful, full of killer lines. Best album of 15.

Will I listen to it again: sure.