Uncut Editor's Diary

The Best Albums Of 2014: Halftime Report

The Best Albums Of 2014: Halftime Report
John Mulvey

Always a bit of a gamble doing this, to be honest but, since it’s June, I’ve tried to put together a list of my favourite albums of 2014 thus far. Many caveats forthcoming, not least that my slightly ad hoc way of trying to remember what I’ve liked means I’ve almost certainly missed a few things.

In theory, these are all records released between January and June of this year. I should also point out that this is a very personal selection, and in no way representative of what my 40-odd colleagues at Uncut might choose if we were running this as a proper poll. It’s also not exactly a Top 62, as I’ve organised them in alphabetical order rather than attempting any ranking at this early stage (ie don’t get too overexcited, Luke Abbott fans…).

Still, now that I’ve all my excuses out of the way, I hope you’ll find plenty to dig into here. I’ve included links to music and extended reviews about many of these albums, so please let me know what you think. Your own charts and thoughts are as welcome as ever: besides the comments boxes at the bottom, letters to the magazine can be sent to me at uncut_feedback@ipcmedia.com.

Click here to see the list in three easier-to-load chunks.

Follow me on Twitter: www.twitter.com/JohnRMulvey

1. Luke Abbott – Wysing Forest (Border Community)

2. Afghan Whigs – Do To The Beast (Sub Pop)

3. Damon Albarn – Everyday Robots (Parlophone)

4. Lee Bains III & The Glory Fires - Dereconstructed (Sub Pop)


Read my review here

5. Olga Bell – Krai (One Little Indian)

6. Black Bananas – Electric Brick Wall (Drag City)

7. Black Dirt Oak – Wawayanda Patient (MIE Music)

Read my review here

8. Bohren & Der Club Of Gore – Piano Nights (PIAS)

Read my review here

9. Bill Callahan – Have Fun With God (Drag City)

Read my review here

10. Hans Chew – Life And Love (At The Helm)

11. Morgan Delt – Morgan Delt (Trouble In Mind)

12. Toumani Diabaté & Sidiki Diabaté - Toumani & Sidiki (World Circuit)

13. Drive-By Truckers – English Oceans (ATO)

14. East India Youth – Total Strife Forever (Stolen)

15. Fennesz – Bécs (Editions Mego)

16. Grandma Sparrow - Grandma Sparrow & his Piddletractor Orchestra (Spacebomb)

17. Steve Gunn & Mike Cooper – FRKWYS VOL 11: Cantos De Lisboa (RVNG INTL)

18. The Hold Steady – Teeth Dreams (Washington Square)

19. Dylan Howe – Subterranean: New Designs On Bowie's Berlin (Motorik)

20. Howlin Rain – Live Rain (Agitated)

21. Hurray For The Riff-Raff – Small Town Heroes (ATO)

Read my review here

22. Kasai All Stars – Beware The Fetish (Crammed Discs)

23. Kelis – Food (Ninjatune)

24. Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks – Wig Out At Jagbags (Domino)

25. Mark McGuire – Along The Way (Dead Oceans)

26. The Men – Tomorrow’s Hits (Sacred Bones)

27. Metronomy – Love Letters (Because)

28. Mogwai – Rave Tapes (Rock Action)

29. New Bums – Voices In A Rented Room (Drag City)

30. Thee Oh Sees – Drop (Castleface)

31. Angel Olsen – Burn Your Fire For No Witness (Jagjaguwar)

32. Doug Paisley – Strong Feelings (No Quarter)

33. Linda Perhacs – The Soul Of All Natural Things (Asthmatic Kitty)

34. Plaid – Reachy Prints (Warp)

35. Pye Corner Audio – Black Mill Tapes 3&4 (Type)

Read my review here

36. Pye Corner Audio/Not Waving - Intercepts (Ecstatic)

37. Real Estate – Atlas (Domino)

Read my review here

38. Gruff Rhys – American Interior (Turnstile)

39. Chris Robinson Brotherhood – Phosphorescent Harvest (Silver Arrow)

40. Noura Mint Seymali – Tzenni (Glitterbeat)

41. Dylan Shearer – Garagearray (Castleface/Empty Cellar)

42. Jesse Sparhawk & Eric Carbonara – Tributes & Diatribes (VHF)

43. D Charles Speer & The Helix – Doubled Exposure (Thrill Jockey)

44. Håkon Stene - Lush Laments for Lazy Mammal (Hubro)

45. Suarasama – Timeline (Space)

46. Sun Kil Moon – Benji (Caldo Verde)

Read my review here

47. Todd Terje – It’s Album Time (Olsen)

48. Tinariwen – Emmaar (PIAS)

49. Alexander Turnquist – Wildflower (Western Vinyl)

50. Sharon Van Etten – Are We There (Jagjaguwar)

51. Wolfgang Voigt – Rückverzauberung 9/Musik für Kulturinstitutionen (Kompkakt)

52. Terry Waldo – The Soul Of Ragtime (Tompkins Square)

53. Ryley Walker – All Kinds Of You (Tompkins Square)

54. The War On Drugs – Lost In The Dream (Secretly Canadian)

55. Watter – This World (Temporary Residence)

56. Jack White – Lazaretto (Third Man/XL)

57. Woo – When The Past Arrives (Drag City)

58. Wooden Wand – Farmer's Corner (Fire)

59. Woods – With Light And With Love (Woodsist)

60. Girma Yifrashewa – Love And Peace (Unseen Worlds)

61. You Are Wolf – Hawk To The Hunting Gone (Stone Tape)

62. Neil Young – A Letter Home (Third Man/Reprise)

Read my review here

Uncut is now available as a digital edition! Download here on your iPad/iPhone and here on your Kindle Fire or Nook.


Editor's Letter

The Fourth Uncut Playlist Of 2015

This week's big distraction has been what appears to be a crazy number of early Aphex Twin tracks accumulating on Soundcloud (I've added the link below). Among the new stuff, though, please try Bop English; the new solo project of James Petralli from White Denim.