OK, here’s my number one:
Liars – Sisterworld
I’ve been listening to New York-by-way-of-Australia indie-weirdos Liars nearly as long as their downstairs neighbours have! I bought a copy of their first album (“They Threw Us All In A Trench And Put A Monument On Top”) on import vinyl before it had a UK release, mainly because it was on Gern Blandsten records and had a nice cover and I got to see them on an early tour at the Freebutt in Brighton shortly after. Since then i’ve followed each subsequent move with eagerness, reverence and not a little bewilderment as they swung unevenly between the NY punk-funk of the first album to the weirdy-witchiness of the second “They Were Wrong, So We Drowned”), to the fragile beauty of “Drums Not Dead”, to last years more conventional “Liars”.
“Sisterworld” brings together pretty much every element of each of their previous albums and yet manages to sound complete and organised rather than the schizophrenic mess you might expect. It’s got upbeat-and-punky-but-weird-with-a-ridiculous-title; “Scarecrows On A Killer Slant” (in the player below), it’s got introspective dirges; “Proud Evolution” and it’s got conventional indie-rock top tunes; “The Overachievers”. In short, it’s the perfect amalgam of their innovative and eclectic career to date and it tops my end of year list easily.