2014: off the charts

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2014 was a fantastic year for music, with a bunch of new artists popping up and some veterans holding their ground with the artistry we’ve come to expect. The end of the year was particularly prolific for the electronic scene with a few great records coming out in the last quarter.

I was really happy to witness the revival of italo-disco, a new wave of electro-funk, and the fresh explorations around EDM in general. So, without further ado, here’s my top 10 list of selected albums/EPs of 2014.

#10: Diplo – F10RIDA

Diplo has been doing truly amazing stuff with Major Lazer, and I feel like it was time to go back to his roots. F10RIDA is a 10th year anniversary re-release of his 2004 album Florida, so it’s not new but still completely relevant and surprisingly fresh after a decade.

#9: Mr. Oizo – The Church

Mr Oizo‘s work is sure to be featured in any electro-head top list. Sure, he’s moved quite a bit away from his earlier sound with more melodic riffs such as m-Seq or even Analog Worms Attack, but the fact that he keeps churning out new albums and movies every other year alone is admirable. It’s not an album to keep on looping, but nobody else is doing what Quentin does.

#8: Flying Lotus – You’re Dead!

You’re Dead is a bit of a departure from Flying Lotus‘ previous work, specifically the widely acclaimed Cosmogramma, but amazing nonetheless. It’s Flying Lotus, ’nuff said.

#7: Hudson Mohawke – Chimes

Chimes is a short EP by Hudson Mohawke, but incredible all the way. It’s so unique, mixing 8-bit patterns with dirty south bounciness and cadency. Fascinating stuff coming from a very young guy in Scotland.

#6: Röyksopp – The Inevitable End

I remember Röyksopp‘s Remind Me gorgeous video, which was years ahead of its time when it came out back in 2002, and I have Melody A.M. lying around somewhere in my parent’s house. After that golden period though, I kinda forgot about them… Enter The Inevitable End and their collaboration EP with Robyn entitled Do It Again — I’m so glad they’re back in the picture, exploring new ambiances and venues at full force. Do It Again‘s version of Monument is terrific.

#5: Tensnake – Glow

One of the amazing surprises of the year. Reminds me of Disclosure‘s work, but with its own twist. It’s funky, soulful, and smart, moving seamlessly from genre to genre. But most of all, it’s fun.

#4: Caribou – Our Love

Often mystic and dark at times, Caribou‘s Our Love is delicious throughout with a deep emotional narrative. It’s Caribou evolved without ever departing from its roots. A beautiful album I have on loop constantly.

#3: Clark – Clark

I discovered Clark in 2014 on the radio and I was instantly hooked. It’s full of depth, ambiance, and textures. And it’s quite noire as well, evoking some aural resemblance to ModeratWinter Linn and There’s a Distance in You are true gems.

#2: Slow Magic – How to Run Away

I heard Slow Magic‘s previous album (almost) to exhaustion, so I was anxious to get my hands on this new one. How to Run Away does not disappoint: it’s a much more cohesive, mature listening experience, and it even resembles Tycho at times. It’s soothing, evoking,  and — dare I say it — magical.

#1: Todd Terje – It’s Album Time

Todd Terje has been around for a while so it comes with little surprise that It’s Album Time is a fully-matured, condensed showcase of an already considerable career. It’s a risk to create an album with such unique aural characteristics, but he elevates the sound production, the storytelling and experimentation to such high levels that the result could only be brilliant. There are a few near perfect tunes such as Strandbar and Oh Joy, while Delorean Dynamite is the best tune of the year by a few miles.

Bonus tune: Boys Noize – Conchord feat. Siriusmo (Oliver remix)

Because this one music means so much to me. Bump up that bass and have a great 2015!

Edit: props to Mário, who created a Rdio playlist with this top 10!
Edit 2: Rdio is dead (long live Rdio!), so I’ve created a Spotify playlist.
Moi

The final shot

Hi there, welcome to my blog! I'm Filipe Varela, a designer at Automattic, and am passionate about photography and video. In this site I post photos from my journeys and daily ramblings — in sum, a slice of life. Browse through the archive or check the homepage for the latest posts.