My 2018 Music

A playlist of my favourite albums of 2018:

And a playlist of my favourite songs:

Click on the title for the Spotify playlist. I’ve not put them in any particular order but suffice to say that Bowie’s comeback was my musical highlight of 2013. I thought nothing could beat the rush of waking up to his surprise single in January but watching him back in action in the The Stars (Are Out Tonight) video was awe-inspiring. Nothing else comes close, which is saying something as there are some astounding albums in this list.

They Die By Dawn & Other Short Stories.. – The Bullitts
Pale Green Ghosts – John Grant
Rewind The Film – Manic Street Preachers
Pure Heroine – Lorde
Electric – Pet Shop Boys
Upstream Color – Shane Carruth
Beyoncé – Beyoncé
Once I Was An Eagle – Laura Marling
Immunity – Jon Hopkins
The Electric Lady – 
Janelle Monáe
{Awayland} – Villagers
Pedestrian Verse – Frightened Rabbit
Reflektor – Arcade Fire
The Diving Board – Elton John
The Thieves Banquet – Akala
Mosquito – Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Tales of Us – Goldfrapp
Trouble Will Find Me – The National
The Next Day – David Bowie
The 1975 – The 1975

My Albums of 2013

The character of Mary pops up again in Sally Ride, a song named after the first American woman to go into space which draws parallels between her pioneering trip into space and the struggle for women’s rights (and possibly gay marriage) in America. Monáe implores Mary to “wake up”, telling her that she has the “right to choose” and dreaming of a journey to the moon “where there are no rules”. Dorothy Dandridge Eyes, referencing the first African-American to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress, is a sweet and breezy jazz-tinged number (with another feature, this time the jazz musician Esperanza Spalding) which finds Monáe rhapsodising about a girl who has “got Dorothy Dandridge eyes and you love her, you love that girl” (harking back to Electric Lady which observes that “once you see her face, her eyes you’ll remember and she’ll have you fallin’ harder than a Sunday in September”). The heavy hints of gay themes certainly lend weight to the otherwise confused and confusing sci-fi story and some of the songs here acquire real power when viewed through this prism. The gentle shuffling positivity of Victory, for example, takes on anthemic qualities with the promise that Monáe will “count your every kiss as a victory”.

This was quite an interesting review to write, as I sat down knowing what I was going to say and ended up writing something completely different. It was a pleasant surprise, though – I really enjoyed this one.

Janelle Monae – The Electric Lady