So, the big one, The S4L Album of the Year 2014. What on earth could it be? Well, be surprised because it is an album that has largely been ignored by Uncut, Q and Mojo and I cannot understand why.
This years Album of the Year goes to:
Beauty and Ruin - Bob Mould
Released 3rd June 2014 on Merge Records
Or Click on the links for the individual tracks.
The album has not been off my playlist since its release back in June and it garnered heaps of great reviews (but obviously was not loved enough to be included amongst the best of the year for much of the music press!).
Many reviews seemed to harp on about Bob Mould coming to terms with his musical legacy - as if being in Hüsker Dü and fronting Sugar are to be considered as some kind of musical leprosy! Nothing could be further from the truth though, Mould manages to capture the spirit of both of his legendary former bands and seems unashamed about them (and rightly so in my opinion!).
Beauty and Ruin is Bob Mould's 11th studio album as a Solo artist and it's interesting seeing as his first solo album, 'Workbook' got a 25th Anniversary release this year just how far he has progressed musically.
"I look at the record and there’s an arc, a narrative to it — at least I hope there is because I spent a lot of time putting it together that way. I started writing this record in October of 2012, right in the middle of touring for Silver Age. My dad passed away, not unexpectedly, but still, never a fun thing. And that triggered ideas about loss, about health and loss. That’s sort of where the record starts, and it moves through pretty clear ideas, from loss to reflection to acceptance to future. If you go back and look at the record in three-song packets with that in mind, you’ll see the cold, gray, slow beginning heading towards this warm, fast, sunny finish. It’s a very simple story. As far as Beauty and Ruin specifically, I think the two are oftentimes the same. I think one can always lead to the other, and that’s just the nature of things. I hope that short version of this all can get us to a place to talk about specific things." (Bob Mould interview with Stereogum)
Tracks are not necessarily the actual version that appears on the album, some are live versions.
01. Low Season
02. Little Glass Pill
03. I Don’t Know You Anymore
04. Kid With Crooked Face
05. Nemeses Are Laughing
06. The War
08. Hey Mr. Grey
09. Fire in the City
10. Tomorrow Morning
11. Let the Beauty Be
12. Fix It
More Bob Mould 2014