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The best music of the year so far as chosen by the writers of A Journal of Musical Things (Part 1)

Now that we’re well and good into the second half of 2018, it’s perhaps a good time to pause to check on what music has been able to float our boats so far. I’ve asked the main writers/contributors to this site to give me their picks for what they believe to be the best music of the year so far.

Alan Cross (Radio dude, editor-in-chief of all this)

Hey, it’s my site. I get to go first.

1. FIDLAR, “Alcohol”

These LA punks just keep getting better and better. This song rocks, rocks some more and continues rocking even after it ends.

2. Gaz Coombes, “Walk the Walk”

Damn, if you didn’t know better, you’d think this solo single from the former Supergrass man was either a lost Radiohead track for perhaps something from a Thom Yorke solo album.

3. Israel Nash, “Rolling One”

Cinematic, anthemic stuff from a dude who records everything in a Quonset hut in the backyard of his home in small-town Texas.

4. Bodega, “Jack in Titanic”

Quirky Brooklyn indie rock. I what James Cameron would make of this?

5. Gwenno, “Tir Har Mor”

She sings everything in the near-extinct Cornish language. Super-cool–and it serves a linguistic purpose, too.



Larry Lootsteen (Curator, New Music from the Inbox for Wednesday)

1. Shame, “Dust On Trial”

I haven’t heard something that got my musical blood going like this in a while! This London band should be huge!

2. USS, “Medicine”

A favourite since the first time I heard them years ago.  The pride of Toronto and much of Canada.

3. Ekat Bork – “Kontrol”

An intriguing mix of electronics and wonder.  Keep an eye on this Swiss brilliance.

4. MIEN, “(I’m Tired of) Western Shouting”

Bandmates Alex Maas, John Mark Lapham, Rishi Dhir and Tom Furse bring much joy with their unique sound.

5. Editors – “Darkness at the Door”

One of my longtime favourite UK bands who somehow always bring me joy.

Andrew Dick, Webmaster and the Person Who Controls My Tech-Related Panic Attacks and Nathalia Ribeiro, Who, Along with Andrew, Co-Founded our Music and Tech Meetup.

1. Beaches, “Back of My Heart”

What happens when you mix The White Stripes and Heart? You get the Toronto band The Beaches.

2. Snow Patrol, “Life On Earth”

Life on Earth’s cool Space themed video is a perfect match for the sparse instrumentation and haunting vocals.

3. Superorganism, “Everyone Wants to be Famous”

A funky and fun song for the summer with an amazingly wild video. It’s more than a little psychedelic — it even has an epilepsy warning at the beginning.

4. Rise Against, House on Fire

The Chicago punk rockers get mellow with this acoustic session from the upcoming album Ghost Note Symphonies.

5. Interpol, “The Rover”

If you like “classic” Interpol, you’ll enjoy their latest single, “The Rover.” No hype, no frills—just straight up post-punk rock and roll.

Read for part 2 of this list? Go here.


Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 37854 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

One thought on “The best music of the year so far as chosen by the writers of A Journal of Musical Things (Part 1)

  • The title of the Israel Nash track is “Rolling On” (not One).


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