Makeup For The Silence

The digital home of music writer Jesse Richman

Makeup For The Silence

Tag: modern baseball

My Top Twelve Albums of 2015

(feat. track – Twenty One Pilots – “heavydirtysoul” [spotify] from Blurryface)

[posted 1/03/18] I never got around to posting my Top Ten for 2015 here on the main blog, so I’m traveling back from the future to edit it in. I also never posted a Best Of The Rest from 2015, but I did find my list I had prepared at the time in an old iPhone note. I have neither the time nor the desire to do any retroactive write-ups, but for the sake of historical accuracy, here we go!

MY TOP TEN TWELVE ALBUMS OF 2015

12. The Maine – American Candy [spotify] / Covers (Side A) [spotify] / Covers (Side B) [spotify]

11. Pet Symmetry – Pets Hounds [spotify]

10. Foxing – Dealer [spotify]

9. Donnie Trumpet & the Social Experiment – Surf [spotify]

8. Better Off – Milk [spotify]

7. Metric – Pagans In Vegas [spotify]

6. Chris Stamey – Euphoria [spotify]

5. Mayday Parade – Black Lines [spotify]

4. Veruca Salt – Ghost Notes [spotify]

3. Florence & the Machine – How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful [spotify]

2. Turnover – Peripheral Vision [spotify]

1. Twenty One Pilots – Blurryface [spotify]

 

THE BEST OF THE REST

Baggage – Cheaper Than Therapy [spotify]

Beach Slang – The Things We Do To Find People Who Feel Like Us [spotify]

Brandon Flowers – The Desired Effect [spotify]

Brian Marquis – I Miss The 90s [spotify]

Coliseum – Anxiety’s Kiss [spotify]

Dariia – Petals [spotify]

Diamond Youth – Nothing Matters [spotify]

The Early November – Imbue [spotify]

Fetty Wap – Fetty Wap [spotify]

Grimes – Art Angels [spotify]

Kendrick Lamar – To Pimp A Butterfly [spotify]

Modern Baseball – The Perfect Cast [spotify]

Natalie Prass – Natalie Prass [spotify]

No Devotion – Permanence [spotify]

Pentimento – I, No Longer [spotify]

Petal – Shame [spotify]

SayWeCanFly – Between The Roses [spotify]

The Sidekicks – Runners In The Nerved World [spotify]

Sundressed – The Same Condition [spotify]

Twin Shadow – Eclipse [spotify]

#11 Album of 2014 – Modern Baseball – You’re Gonna Miss It All

#11 – MODERN BASEBALL – YOU’RE GONNA MISS IT ALL [spotify]

(feat. track – “Rock Bottom" [spotify])

Modern Baseball are kind of a funny case. I’ve been familiar with the band from their very earliest days – they’re friends and classmates of Zack’s, and we’ve been covering them at PropertyOfZack from the jump.  They seem like good people, the kind of kids that make you want to root for them. And yet, I have to confess that I was never fully on board with them musically. Their 2012 debut album Sports made some waves in the Philly basement punk scene, but I never got much out of it – it was too rough, too amateur, too hookless for me to latch onto. To be frank, I didn’t even really see much promise in them.

I think that’s why You’re Gonna Miss It All was a grower, not a show-er, for me, even as the band began landing steadily-larger tour slots and commanding media attention from outlets beyond those that consider them personal friends. It took me a while to give the album a real chance, to listen to it with truly open ears; it was only on the fourth or fifth play through, in as many months, when it finally clicked with me. 

I think part of the issue is that I was listening with an ear tuned toward either Philly pop-punk or the #emorevival, and while Modern Baseball have the relationships that tie them to both movements, their sound is something outside of both, and altogether much harder to pin down. It’s vaguely reminiscent of what might happen if the Front Bottoms had decided that it’s been too damn long since the last Weakerthans record and just went ahead and made it themselves. There are elements of indie-pop, and folk-punk, and half-twangy Americana. Hyper-thesaurused term paper dissemblances and plainspoken dormroom chatter intermix in a way that seems logical, and natural, like a dialogue between two halves of a whole college student. And, throughout, sweet melodies, often (smartly) soured, and shout-along lines aplenty.

You’re Gonna Miss It All isn’t an all-the-time listen for me; there are some bits that, even now, feel a bit too obtuse to be cracked open – and I fear that if I did there might be noting but dust inside. Still, there’s no longer any denying that these guys are on to something really, really singular and special. I don’t know when the next MoBo album is coming; but I do know that this time around I’ll be waiting for it with anticipation.  

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