2017: Tom's Top 10

by Tom Haugen


10. Bill Scorzari - Through These Waves

Rugged, soulful Americana with distinct gravelly vocals that make you want to build a cabin in the mountains and learn how to play the banjo.


9. The Jerry Cans - Inuusiq/Life

Featuring throat singing mixed with indie rock and country, this is one of the most unusual and interesting albums of the year from a band who live somewhere most people have never heard of (Nunavut).


8. Baby In Vain - More Nothing

Baby In Vain is a t trio of females from Denmark with a penchant for noisy alt-rock. On this album, they align themselves with the greatness achieved by Babes In Toyland and L7.


7. Justin Townes Earle - Kids In The Street

The younger Earle does his father Steve and his namesake Townes Van Zandt proud on this warm, breezy, and brilliant album of folk, country, and blues.


6. A Giant Dog - Toy

This is one of the best albums on Merge Records in recent history. The garage rock, power pop, and anthemic tunes here are full of fuzzy power and self-deprecating lyrics that are contagious.


5. Jon Langford - Four Lost Souls

The Mekons frontman returns with a post-election Americana affair that brings in R&B and backing female vocals. This release is a highlight in an already incredible and lengthy career.


4. Elliott Smith - Either/Or (Expanded Edition)

One of Smith's finest albums remastered with essential bonus material. Though this was originally released 20 years ago, it remains some of the finest singer-songwriter albums to date.


3. Kissing Is A Crime - Kissing Is A Crime

The Brooklyn sensations bring their post-punk influences to a New Wave and alt-rock party with stunning results. Dual gender vocals and fuzzed out guitars help make this a splendid debut album.


2. Cock Sparrer - Forever

After 45 years as a band and having influenced countless other outfits, Cock Sparrer has become an institution of Oi! influenced punk. This first album in a decade brings all their hallmarks to the table: gang vocals, melodic guitar work, and sharp lyricism.


1. Fire In The Radio - New Air

Charming '90s influenced melodic punk with shards of New Wave, shoegaze, and grunge, this one's vital for both aging punks and the younger Hot Topic crowd.


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