Favorite Discoveries of 2014

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The Derevolutions / Goldbloc / Misun – The old adage that “the best things in life are free” isn’t always true, but it does feel extra good when you find cool stuff for free. The DerevolutionsMisun, and Goldbloc put out some of my favorite releases of 2014, and they were all free!

Finding the occasional diamond in the rough like the above mentioned bands makes spending hours trawling through the congested waters of Soundcloud all worth it.

Cherry Chia Lime Naked Juice – Someone told me Naked Juice didn’t have any nutritional value. That may or may not be true, but Cherry Chia Lime Naked Juice is my shit. It tastes a lot like a cherry Icee. For some reason, it costs a little more than other Naked Juice varieties, but it’s totally worth it. If I could afford it, I’d drink nothing else.

The Jungle Giants – Learn To Exist – This album came out in 2013, but I just discovered it in 2014. They’re an Australian group that plays poppy uptempo surf rock, a la The Drums.

I played “Skin To Bone” a ton on my show this year. Really good stuff.

William Onyeabor – I’m pretty well-versed in music, but I don’t think I knew anything about William Onyeabor prior to Luaka Bop reissuing all of his work this year. It’s out of nowhere discoveries of incredible catalogs like that of Onyeabor’s that drives me to keep digging until I’ve exposed myself to every great song/artist EVER.

I know all the words to a lot of Oasis songs – How did this happen? I never purchased an Oasis album growing up. Ever. They were never really my thing, but a couple months ago I found myself listening to (What’s The Story) Morning Glory? and I somehow could sing all the words to more than half of the songs. I felt like one of those people who mysteriously wake up with an Irish brogue  — somehow Oasis invaded my brain!

8 hours of sleep every night – I used to be a sleep camel; I could sleep for 3 or 4 hours for a few days straight, then gorge on sleep on the weekends and feel fine at the end. Nowadays, maybe because I’m getting older, I need 8 hours of sleep every day or else I can’t function properly. The microphone is unforgiving if you don’t come at peak form.

Shamir – Shamir was probably my favorite musical discovery of 2014.

His “NorthtownEP was everything you could want for debut release – showcasing a young artist with a unique voice, wide musical range, and incredible ear for melody.

It’s pop music that is dark and sexy.

And just when you thought you had him pegged, Shamir released “On The Regular” and zags into an unadulterated candy-coated electro disco pop zone.

I have no idea what 2015 has in store for Shamir, but I can only hope a full length album is in the works because the 6 songs he’s released so far are just not enough!