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Hey! It’s me! CJ! Your old pal who writes for that Merry-Go-Round Music thing’y. You probably haven’t seen a lot from me on this site in a while — I’m still alive, promise. But for the past six(ish) months I’ve mostly been writing (very consistently, might I add) for Crossfader, first as a contributor, then as their music editor. It’s been a blast and we’re cranking out some really solid writing over there (give us a like on Facebook!) but that has meant that I’ve written less for MGRM. Its a good thing, ultimately, but it has meant that I’ve neglected this site. I’m hoping to fix that in 2018.

It was a great year for music. It always is, but it felt so much more essential this year than it had in years past. I got to write about most of my favorite albums over on Crossfader’s list of our Top 50 albums of 2017, but I figured I’d still try and document a songs and albums list somewhere, and where better to do it than this end of year listicle roundup. I hope you had an amazing 2017 and will have an even better ’18. Cheers!

– CJ

Top 25 Albums of 2017:

25. Infinite Worlds by Vagabon
24. Forced Witness by Alex Cameron
23. The World’s Best American Band by White Reaper
22. Capture by Thunder Dreamer
21. Slowdive by Slowdive
20. A Crow Looked At Me by Mount Eerie
19. Young Jesus by Young Jesus
18. Apocalypstick by Cherry Glazerr
17. Always Foreign by The World Is A Beautiful Place & I Am No Longer Afraid To Die
16. American Dream by LCD Soundsystem
15. Near To The Wild Heart Of Life by Japandroids
14. A Hairshirt of Purpose by Pile
13. Life After Youth by Land of Talk
12. Big Fish Theory by Vince Staples
11. Turn Out The Lights by Julien Baker
10. A Deeper Understanding by The War on Drugs
9. Guppy by Charly Bliss
8. Heartless by Pallbearer
7. Highway Queen by Nikki Lane
6. DAMN. by Kendrick Lamar
5. The Underside of Power by Algiers
4. Aromanticism by Moses Sumney
3. You’re Not As _________ As You Think by Sorority Noise
2. The Yunahon Mixtape by oso oso
1. CTRL by SZA

Top 150 Songs of 2017:

150. “Bleeding in the Blur” by Code Orange
149. “Show You the Way (feat. Michael McDonald & Kenny Loggins)” by Thundercat
148. “Finish What We Started” by Jessie Ware
147. “A Memory Misread” by Counterparts
146. “Cpr” by cupcakKe
145. “50/50 20/20” Pllush
144. “No Cap” by Future & Young Thug
143. “Searching for a New Day” by Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings
142. “Sea of Clouds” by Deer Tick
141. “If What You Say Is True” by Wu-Tang Clan
140. “Tour” by The Courtneys
139. “Exhumed” by Zola Jesus
138. “Can’t Go Back” by Ted Leo
137. “Don’t Take The Money” by BLeachers
136. “I’m My Own Doctor” by Remo Drive
135. “Trees on Fire” by DJDS
134. “Paper Cowboy” by Margo Price
133. “how do you sleep?” by LCD Soundsystem
132. “Tell Me A Story” by Grouplove
131. “Hotwire the Ferris Wheel” by Jens Lekman
130. “Undercover” by Kehlani
129. “Ontario” by Bonobo
128. “Chopsticks on Pots and Pans” by Allison Crutchfield
127. “Crystal Night” by Black Lips
126. “Tummy Ache” by Diet Cig
125. “Heartstrings” by VIntage Wednesday
124. “Better” by Maggie Rogers
123. “Baybee” by Jay Som
122. “The Plane 2” by Los Angeles Police Department
121. “Girls on T.V.” by Takashi Miyaki
120. “Can You Ever Really Know Somebody” by The Juan Maclean
119. “She Taught Me How To Fly” by Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds
118. “Overboard” by Lo Tom
117. “Thirteen Silver Dollars” by Colter Wall
116. “Crying About the Planets” by Ratboys
115. “Death to the Lads” by The Smith Street Band
114. “This Year” by Beach Fossils
113. “OMG (feat. Pusha-T)” by Vic Mensa
112. “What’s That Perfume You Wear?” by Jens Lekman
111. “Fields of Blue” by Tennis
110. “Standing in the Middle of the Field” by Cut Copy
109. “Sweet F’ing Love (feat. Kaytranada)” by Alicia Keys
108. “Telegraph Avenue” by Rancid
107. “Marksmen (feat. Ka)” by Roc Marciano
106. “For the First Time” by Mac DeMarco
105. “Green” by Young Jesus
104. “Say Something Loving” by The xx
103. “Pastoral Radio Hit” by Radiator Hospital
102. “Sun’s Out” by Hoops
101. “Trap And A Dream (feat. Meek Mill)” by A$AP Ferg
100. “After the Party” by The Menzingers

99. “Transpose (feat. Adine Kjaedegaard Fliid)” by Tomas Barfod
98. “Feathered Indians” by Tyler Childers
97. “reindeer games” by oso oso
96. “I’m Perfect” by Passion Pit
95. “Distant Shore” by Porcelain Raft
94. “Anoche” by Arca
93. “Something to Remember Me By” by The Horrors
92. “Indulge Me” by Moses Sumney
91. “Drawing Room” by Katie Ellen
90. “Losing All Sense” by Grizzly Bear
89. “What the Hell” by Chastity Belt
88. “Don’t Mind the Lion” by Ron Gallo
87. “Exalted” by Thurston Moore
86. “Come to Me Now” by Kevin Morby
85. “Warm Hands” by Ty Segall
84. “The Fear” by The Shins
83. “Daylight” by Shadow Band
82. “Sidelong” by Sarah Shook & the Disarmers
81. “call the police” by LCD Soundsystem
80. “Telefono” by Phoenix
79. “Static Somewhere” by Girlpool
78. “Keep On (feat. B Ryan)” by Payroll Giovanni
77. “DUCKWORTH. by Kendrick Lamar
76. “Mallwalkers” by Fred Thomas
75. “Doomsday” by Ryan Adams
74. “Los Angeles” by St. Vincent
73. “Hold on You” by Valley Queen
72. “Hall Beach” by Retirement Party
71. “Every Day’s The Weekend” by Alex Lahey
70. “Over Everything” by Courtney Barnett & Kurt Vile
69. “Angst In My Pants” by A Giant Dog
68. “Yeah Right (feat. Kendrick Lamar)”” by Vince Staples
67. “Jackpot” by Nikki Lane
66. “Beauty of the Road” by Future Islands
65. “Slippery (feat. Gucci Mane)” by Migos
64. “Warm Honey” by Willow
63. “Breathing Room” by Bash & Pop
62. “Agony” by Yung Lean
61. “Round and Round We Go” by Kitty Kat Fan Club
60. “Saggy Denim (feat. Wiki)” by Princess Nokia
59. “Fear and Trembling” by Gang of Youths
58. “The Underside of Power” by Algiers
57. “Grudges” by Paramore
56. “Bad Liar” by Selena Gomez
55. “Dope Bitch” by Kamaiyah
54. “Can I Sit Next To You” by Spoon
53. “Mesa” by Cayetana
52. “Panther Like a Panther (Miracle Mix)” by Run the Jewels
51. “Special” by Angel Olsen

50. “Fuck Up” by Sarah Shook & the Disarmers
49. “Romantic” by Mannequin Pussy
48. “Babygirl (feat. Uffie)” by Charli XCX
47. “Sign of the Times” by Harry Styles
46. “Shoot the Sun Down” by The Drums
45. “Green Light” by Lorde
44. “DNA.” by Kendrick Lamar
43. “No Halo” by Sorority Noise
42. “In A Body Like A Grave” by Japandroids
41. “Bad and Boujee (feat. Lil Uzi Vert)” by Migos
40. “I Ain’t Got Time!” by Tyler, the Creator
39. “Silver” by Waxahatchee
38. “The Story of O.J.” by Jay-Z
37. “Foolish Heart” by Nikki Lane
36. “Praying” by Kesha
35. “What a Time To Be Alive” by Superchunk
34. “Stranger’s Kiss (feat. Angel Olsen)” by Alex Cameron
33. “Star Roving” by Slowdive
32. “Still Waking Up” by Tim Darcy
31. “Alexys” by Freddie Gibbs
30. “French Press” by Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever
29. “Dogs” by Pile
28. “Capture” by Thunder Dreamer
27. “Headlock” by Cousin Stizz
26. “Passionfruit” by Drake
25. “Getaway Car’ by Taylor Swift
24. “Holding On” by The War on Drugs
23. “Heartbreak Now” by Michelle Branch
22.“Judy French” by White Reaper
21. “Rattlesnake” by King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard

20. “Everything Now” by Arcade Fire
19. “Mask Off” / “Mask Off – Remix (feat. Kendrick Lamar)” by Future
18.“Supermodel” by SZA
17. “Petals” by TOPS
16. “Gram” by The World is a Beautiful Place & I Am No Longer Afraid To Die
15. “In Chains” by The War on Drugs
14. “Enter Entirely” by Cloud Nothings
13. “Love Is Only A Feeling” by Joey Bada$$
12. “Slide (feat. Frank Ocean & Migos)” by Calvin Harris
11. “Baby Girl” by Wiki
10. “Diving Woman” by Japanese Breakfast
9. “Supercut” by Lorde
8. “Hope the High Road” by Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit
7. “HUMBLE.” by Kendrick Lamar
6. “the secret spot” by oso oso
5. “american dream” by LCD Soundsystem
4. “Loving” by Land of Talk
3. “Perculator” by Charly Bliss
2. “Love Galore (feat. Travis Scott)” by SZA
1. “A Better Sun” by Sorority Noise

Top 5 Worst Albums of 2017

5. Quazarz: Born on a Gangster Star by Shabazz Palaces

4. Satan’s Graffiti or God’s Art? by The Black Lips

3. Heat by Poolside

2. Prophets of Rage by Prophets of Rage

1. I’m Brain by Brain/Lil Dicky

5 Underrated Albums of 2017

The Subversive Nature of Kindness by Thor & Friends

New Kind of Normal by Cayetana

Tenderness by Blue Hawaii

Hang by Foxygen

Love Theme by Love Theme

Artist of the Year:


Best Covers of the Year (In No Particular Order):

“Epic” (Faith No More Cover) by Shovels & Rope

“I Would Die 4 U” (Prince Cover) by Lydia Loveless

“Young Turks” (Rod Stewart Cover) by Priests

“The Concept” (Teenage Fanclub Cover) by Benjamin Gibbard

“Boys of Summer” (Don Henley Cover) by Daddy Issues

“Every 1’s A Winner” (Hot Chocolate Cover) by Ty Segall

“I Only Have Eyes For You” (The Flamingos Cover) by Kevin Morby

“Grease” (Frankie Valli Cover) by Flo Morrissey & Matthew E. White

Best Live Shows of 2017:

Future Islands/Car Seat Headrest (The Glass House)

Nikki Lane (Pappy & Harriets)

White Reaper (The Observatory, Santa Ana)

Jeff Rosenstock (The Troubadour)

Injury Reserve (Crescent Ballroom)

Roger Waters (Staples Center)

Powerful Moments I Had With Music in 2017:

Watching and emulating Sam Herring’s dance moves during a Future Islands show

Watching and emulating Jonny Pierce’s dance moves during a Drums show

Collectively freaking out with people whenever “HUMBLE.” or “DNA.”  came on anywhere

Rediscovering Tom Petty

Being wine drunk at Glenn Danzig’s Blackest of the Black festival

Winning free tickets to Grizzly Bear’s first show back in Portland, Maine.

Jamming with my friends at VIVA PHX

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