2016 has been a weird one, that’s for sure. I’m not sure if it’s because we’re all getting older that everyone’s dying and we’re seeing the world fall apart, or whether it’s the beginning of the end all together, but one thing I do know is that there’s been some outstanding music produced in a year where putting on your headphones and zoning out for a bit has become all the more necessary.
Boston Manor – Be Nothing.
The next step in world domination for #BozzyMandem, after their mature-sounding EP ‘Saudade’ got them on a lot of people’s radar, ‘Be Nothing.’ threw Boston Manor up to another level. Lyrics, songwriting, choruses – this album is not pop-punk because it’s too good for that label.
Apologies, I Have None – Pharmacie
One of the hardest albums to listen to this year. So emotionally charged and brutally honest, two things often lacking in a lot of new music. Josh’s is my favourite lyricist by a long distance and he’s done nothing but solidify that on this heartbreaking record.
Martha – Blisters In The Pit Of My Heart
Possibly THE album of the year. Their debut ‘Courting Strong’ was brilliant but as soon as the first track ‘Christine’ off the latest record kicked in I knew I was listening to something special. If you like serious socio-economic issues being addressed through incredible pop music and great riffs, then this is the album for you. And even if you don’t, it’s still for you.
The Bennies – Wisdom Machine
This album started as a slow burner for me, but once you get into (or past) the obvious party vibes that makes The Bennies unashamedly one of the most fun bands around, the songs do go a lot deeper and nothing shows that better than a 10-minute long final track “O Brother, Where Art Thou”. I can listen to this album front-to-back, back-to-front and it’s still getting better every day.
Pinegrove – Cardinal
I’d tried this album a couple of times to no avail, then went and saw them live and it was one of the best gigs I’d been to in ages. Bought the LP, came home and
it’s still on the record player now. Like a young Cory Branan fronting a New Jersey 6-piece. Or something like that.
Blink 182 – California
Don’t try and deny it. This was one of the albums of the year for sure. The ridiculous amount of money they must have spent on the production of this means it’s almost hit after hit and the addition of Matt Skiba has made modern-day Blink bearable again. ‘San Diego’ is the absolute hit for me.
Clean Shirts – Marginal
I found this EP looking through other bands on the Kids of the Lughole label and I’m very glad I did. 7 short, sharp tracks in the vein of The Shitty Limits,
garage/punk vibes from North Yorkshire. Playing the next Moving North show on 27th Jan too!
Shit Present – Misery + Disaster
An amazing follow up to their self-titled debut, Misery + Disaster is pretty much what it says on the tin in terms of the lyrics but the happy-go-lucky songs and
vocal hooks made this an EP almost impossible to switch off in 2016.
2016 was also the year that we saw performances from Calvinball, The Arteries, Above Them and Bangers for the last time. We had the pleasure of hosting all of these bands numerous times and they played a pivotal part in everything Moving North was for a few years.
2017 will be the year of Throwing Stuff as they release their first album in 6 years of being a band, and that’s the only thing you’ll need to concentrate on for the next year. Actually, Trump will be president so expect a new Anti-Flag album too.