2015 Mid-Year Best-Of: Slept On in 2014

Albums We Missed in 2014
An excerpt from Scene Point Blank's Favorites: The Year So Far (July 2015) 
by Nathan G. O'Brien for Scene Point Blank

In addition to listening to all the new stuff, a good chunk of the first half of the year is spent catching up on what I missed in the previous 12 months. Here's a look at some of the music I slept on last year...

Ghostface Killah - 36 Seasons (Salvation / Tommy Boy, 2014)Working alongside the instrumentation of funk and soul band The Revelations, and with fellow emcees AZ, Kool G Rap, and Pharoahe Monch in tow, Ghostface turned another one of his signature Tony Stark criminology tales.
Good Throb - Fuck Off (Sabermetric / Super-Fi / White Denim, 2014)
Post-punk really came into vogue last year, and as with any sub-genre popularity spike there’s some nonsense to weed through to get to the good stuff like this. Edgy and danceable (ala Gang of Four) meets clever and venomous (ala Crass) with a healthy farmer’s blow of Johnny Rotten’s snot all over it.

Kurraka - Self-Titled LP (Trabuc, 2014)
Energetic, thrashing, and rhythmic dark punk out of Austin, TX. All the grace and allure of La Fraction matched by the rawness of Tozibabe. The lyrics are sung in Spanish with an echo-y vocal effect that’s really captivating.

Ras G - Down to Earth, Vol. 2: That Standard Bap Edition (Leaving Records, 2014)
This prolific L.A.-based producer crafts rap beats the old-fashioned way: with an MPC, SP-404, Technics 1200, and endless supply of Phillies blunts. Spacey, Afrocentric boom-bap with a low end so heavy it’ll give you a baby heart attack.

Shaved Women - Just Death 12" EP (Ektro, 2014)
A couple years since their last release, these St. Louis, MO slime balls returned with a new 12” of noisy hardcore punk. Chainsaw guitars, hammering drums, dirty basslines, and creeper vocals drive home the anger and disgust that comes with being an inhabitant of this shit world.

Stoic Violence - Chained 12" EP (Video Disease, 2014)
The swan song for this short-lived Long Beach, CA crew. Hateful, abusive, and vile; this is nihilistic hardcore to the bone. It claws at your cerebral like mechanical walking harvester clear-cutting a forest of sequoias.

The Underachievers - Cellar Door: Terminus Ut Exordium (RPM MSC, 2014)
Beast Coast members AK and Issa Gold followed up two excellent mixtapes (as well as each one’s solo mixtape) with their official debut album. Eschewing conventional trappings, the record includes production by a number of relatively unknowns (aside from a lone contribution from Statik Selektah,) which adds to an overall tone of experimentation and cerebral elevation.

Ugly Frank - Bobby Hill (mixtape, 2014)
There’s something murky and weird, and a little bit scary going on Tacoma, WA. They’re called ILLFIGHTYOU and they don’t give a fuck about your pre-conceived notions of Northwestern rap music. Sporting malt liquor-soaked rhymes and G-funkified trap beats, emcee Ugly Frank stepped out with this banging solo EP.

Vallenfyre - Splinters (Century Media, 2014)
The sophomore release by this UK knuckle-dragger doom-death metal supergroup is steeped suffering and despair. The production value is superb, Gregor Mackintosh’s vocals continue to impress, and that guitar tone; my fucking god, it's incredible.

Maximum Rocknroll presents: Sound the Alarms!! (Maximum Rocknroll, 2014)
This is a double LP compilation that features the best present day punk and hardcore from around the world. 32 bands from 14 different countries, including Synthetic ID, No Statik, Vivisektio, Question, Kuudes Silma, Kvoteringen, Culo, Obediencia and a whole bunch more. If you want a snapshot of what’s going in punk/HC around the globe today, look no further.

Follow Nathan on Twitter: @OMG_NOB

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