The music supervision team at PlayNetwork saw over 6700+ albums, EPs and compilations added to our extensive music library in 2017. With so much amazing music to pick from, our Music Supervision team finally narrowed down their top 10 albums of the year.
Continuing our theme of top album write ups, we’ve enlisted Music Supervisor, Blake Kirpes, who has over 12 years in the music industry. Blake can also say that he helped shape the sound of bands such as Death Cab For Cutie and The Shins where he worked as an audio engineer in studio. When he’s not curating music for his many brands, you can find him collecting cassettes and vinyl while also designing abstract art. Blake writes on why the new Alvvays album, Antisocialites was one of his favorite albums of 2017.
Track: Dreams Tonight
In 2014, the Indie music scene was flush with bands, that on the surface, sounded like Alvvays; bands with a sunny day reverb sound that anyone would enjoy, it was easy for a casual listener to hear an Alvvays single in passing, enjoy what they heard and then move on. But as with many of the best albums, what set Alvvays apart were the things that took repeated listens to sink in; like the lyrical prowess of lead singer Molly Ranken, surely one of the best lyric writers in Indie music, and the deeply melancholy tracks that lived between the albums seemingly sunnier singles.
Despite many first impressions, the band’s debut album spent more time lingering in disillusionment, longing, and divorce than it did in courting love and marriage. And upon closer inspection, even the poppiest tracks were a tangled mixture of emotions hidden behind a bright musical backdrop. For those that spent time with the album, it almost assuredly landed on their 2014 year-end lists.
Now more than three years later, the band is back with their sophomore album Anitsoicalites. For their deeply invested fans it was a long wait, but one in which the resulting album undeniably exceeded the expectations and excitement. With the release of Antisocialites, I’d argue that we’ve officially entered Godfather territory, where the debut is amazing, but the sequel is even better.
It’s clear that during the last three years, Alvvays was able to take everything that made their debut album a cult classic and turn it up just a little more, to create something rare in music today, a seamless album from beginning to end; it’s a perfect sequel to the original. Three years between albums is nothing when the result is Antisocialites.