So instead of compiling one long, unreadable and probably messy attempt at all the things of 2016 that I have been excited for, I’ve decided to break it down into a few manageable categories. This also allows me to fit more in!
2016 has been a total storm of inspiration from all different angles. As usual, I’ve been to a superb number of DIY shows and put on a few myself. This year my first band Viva Zapata! split after an almost two year run. My relationship with music has drastically changed from something of a novelty, playing in a punk band and taking up space in the scene to a quiet and creative place commanded by close friendships. Zoe and I have started our new acoustic project Violet Scott & Amelia Bones and we’re playing out first couple of shows this week. Check out our facebook page for more details.) I feel a lot more confident in my writing and playing abilities than I ever have which is a really nice place to be in after a very long year of ups and downs. I’m very excited about 2017, going on tour with Zoe and incorporating poetry, my other great love, more into my music.
A few weeks ago my buddy Henry Raby did a great 2016 round up of his favourite albums this year and I suspect that many more people will do the same. Here are mine, in no particular order, but with some context.
Honoured TFM guests, Faintest Idea’s ridiculously catchy and agitated ska punk has been a constant album for me this year. Thanks in part to Ivo, Fishlock and Rah who have also been playing it relentlessly, this album is the one. It reminds me of breakfast, Happy Bobble birthdays and my one true love, Sara Harrington.
This banger came out quite recently and was the soundtrack to moving house. Some serious cleaning action occurred whilst this album filled our emptying rooms with luscious dub punk and anti-facist anthems. Picket Fence is the stand out song for me but also worth noting is Every Boy and Every Girl because you know, it’s fucking refreshing to here an all-male punk band talk about gender politics the right way.
I don’t feel that this one needs much explanation, some many of these tracks have comforted me through some serious fucking rage. It can feel lonely out there, but it’s great when a band are shouting about the things you think inside every day. This album should be on everyone’s lists.
I only discovered Shit Present at the Deadpunk All-dayer in Bristol this year and basically cried my way through their first EP. I LOVE honesty – working through vulnerabilities though music and lyrics really inspires me and this six track EP is brilliant in all weathers, all moods, all day.
Solange – A Seat at the Table
Oh, Solange, what an album! . It’s hard, soft, angry, reflective and it is a testament to the richness of black social history, culture and womanhood. Her voice adds to so many great and defiant black voices speaking out in America right now. A truly brilliant album.
DREAM NAILS. DREAM NAILS. If you’ve not listened or seen them live, you should definitely stick that on your 2017 resolutions. This band are brand new and maybe what I’d call ‘nu-riot grrrl’ haha! They have a brilliant energy, something early-Bikini Kill about them that really appeals to me. Their politics and overall message gives a boost to the UK DIY scene that I think lacks sometimes. Dear all promoters everywhere, book this band.
I put Lilith Ai on last year at Hydra Bookshop (or maybe early this year?) with some other lovely musicians and she literally blew me away. I love the way that she incorporates spoken word into her bluesy-folk music. She’s also one of the coolest people I’ve ever met. This is her new song, have a listen, let it melt over you.
This one totally counts because it came out a year ago from this blog post! Anarcho-feminist-fucking-heroes. This is my favourite pack of raging banjos of all time. They’ve got an album out next year. Have a listen to their EP and I dare you not to charge around the place shouting ‘I’LL SHOW YOU HOW SWEET I CAN BE, WITH MY BOOT ON YOUR FACE.’
Shout outs to bands who also made my year better: Cistem Failure/ Ay Camerla!/ halsey/ Jesus and His Judgemental Father/ Mortgage/ BRAIDS/ Warpaint/ Revello/ Fight Rosa Fight/ Perkie/ Husbands n Knives/ Young Adventurers/ Grimes/ Nu,Pogodi!/ Absinthe Rose/ Good Throb and Cindi and Whitney, always.