Top 50 albums of 2014

It’s far too early to tell whether 2014 will turn out to be a vintage year for music. The 50 albums below were not chosen because they were likely to be future classics. They’re here because they helped cut out the noise of daily tedium. They made me shiver and they made me smile.

There’s a great listing website, yearendlists.com, with the motto: “End-of-year lists are fingerprints; aggregate statistics are smudges. Therefore, no tallies.”

So, the real reason why these albums (listed: artist, title and broad genre) are here is because they have my fingerprints all over them. – Charles Leonard

50. Shabazz Palaces ­– Lese Majesty (hip-hop)

49. Addis Pablo ­– In My Father’s House (roots reggae)


48. Pink Mountaintops – Get Back (alt-rock)

47. Tinariwen – Emmaar (desert blues)

46. Laetitia Sadier – Something Shines (alt-rock)

45. Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings – Give the People What They Want (soul)

44. Sharon van Etten – Are We There (alt-folk)

43. Hieroglyphic Being & The Configurative Or Modular Me Trio

– The Seer of Cosmic Visions (noise)

42. St Vincent – St Vincent (alt-rock)

41. Yarn Wire – David Brynjar Franzson: The Negotiation of Context (modern classical)

40. oh! dark arrow – Godspeed Thundercat (electro)

39. Toumani Diabaté & Sidiki Diabaté – Toumani & Sidiki (desert blues)

38. The Bug – Angels & Devils (dub/bass)

37. FKA twigs – LP1 (alt-R&B)

36. Carla Bozulich – Boy (alt-rock)

35. Oren Ambarchi – Quixotism (electro)

34. Goat – Commune (alt-rock)

33. Ben Frost – A U R O R A (noise)

32. Dean Blunt – Black Metal (alt-rock)

31. Nat Birchall – Live in Larissa (jazz)

30. Aphex Twin – Syro (electro)

29. Hookworms – The Hum (alt-rock)

28. Fatima Al Qadiri – Asiatisch (alt-R&B)

27. Flying Lotus – You’re Dead! (jazz)

26. Temples – Sun Structures (alt-rock)

25. Kyle Shepherd – Dream State (jazz)

24. The War on Drugs – Lost in the Dream (alt-rock)

23. Cooly G – Wait ’Til Night (alt-R&B)

22. Natural Numbers – Natural Numbers in Dub (dub)

21. Noura Mint Seymali – Tzenni (desert blues)

20. Nduduzo Makhathini – Mother Tongue (jazz)

19. Andy Stott – Faith in Strangers (electro)

18. Gappy Ranks – Gappy Ranks Meets Dub Club (dub/reggae)

17. Steve Gunn – Way Out Weather (alt-folk)

16. Sleaford Mods – Divide and Exit (post-punk)

15. Kasai Allstars – Beware the Fetish (African drone)

14. Tuff Scout All Stars – Inna London Dub (dub)

13. Moodymann – Moodymann (electro-funk)

12. Franklin Kiermyer – Further (jazz)

11. Bitchin Bajas – Bitchin Bajas (drone)

10. Fatima – Yellow Memories (alt-R&B)

9. Richard Dawson – Nothing Important (alt-folk)

8. Scott Walker + Sunn O))) – Soused (experimental rock)

7. Taylor McFerrin – Early Riser (alt-R&B)

6. Congo Ashanti Roy & Pura Vida – Step By Step (roots reggae)

5. Zammuto – Anchor (alt-rock)

4. Leonard Cohen – Popular Problems (rock)

3. D’Angelo & The Vanguard – Black Messiah (funk)

2. Run the Jewels – Run the Jewels2 (hip-hop)

1. Tumi Mogorosi – Project ELO (jazz)

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Related stories

Advertising

Subscribers only

How smuggled gold destined for Dubai or Singapore has links...

Three Malagasy citizens were apprehended at OR Tambo International airport, but now the trail is found to connect to France and Mali

How lottery execs received dubious payments through a private company

The National Lottery Commission is being investigated by the SIU for alleged corruption and maladministration, including suspicious payments made to senior NLC employees between 2016 and 2017

More top stories

Mpumalanga premier fined for attending Mthembu funeral without a mask

Refilwe Mtsweni-Tsipane goes into isolation and pledges to buy 1000 masks to show her ‘remorse’

Searching for Chippo: How experts have been tracking the elusive...

There have long been sightings of hippos in the city’s leafy northern suburbs, says a specialist team

BMW X7: Is this the peak of our greed?

Even next to its luxury peers, the seven-seat behemoth is a little too much

Africa and the US under the Biden administration: A response...

A democratic administration is likely to revert to the US’s default position on global affairs, which doesn’t leave much for Africa to celebrate
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…