2018: Pete's Best Of

by Pete Crigler

This year was interesting. Not only did I undergo many personal challenges, I found a lack of great and amazing music that really blew my mind. Maybe it’s the lack of anything new and exciting and because rock and roll is no longer what it used to be. Whatever the reason, what follows is an unranked list of the best of what’s around from this year.


Mudhoney – Digital Garbage

This was the best album of the year regardless of what others say. The grunge stalwarts came back after five years off the racks and went political, and guess what? They made one of the best records of their career. It’s heavy, it’s pissed off, and I’ts full of attitude and songs that really make a person think about their environment.


Burn The Priest (Lamb Of God) – Legion XX

Lamb Of God, in the midst of seemingly never-ending touring, went and made a quick collection of punk and hardcore covers under their original name that really set my ears afire. Bands like Bad Brains, The Accused, and others get the LOG treatment, which made for quite some good tracks this year.


Alkaline Trio – Is This Thing Cursed?

Another band that’s been missing for five years, came back and made one of the best records of their career. Doomy and sunny at the same time, this release shows that the band has staying power and can stake their claim as one of the more consistently great punk bands of the last 20 years.


Paul Simon – In The Blue Light

Definitely one of the more eye-opening records I’ve heard all year. Supposedly the last studio recording of his career, Simon decided to go ahead and re-record several songs from his back catalogue that weren’t hits and redo them in a different style. And you know what? It oddly works and several songs were very endearing and really hit me where I live, so to say. I wasn’t expecting this sort of emotion but was very pleasantly surprised.


Pennywise – Never Gonna Die

I’m happy to see these guys back, and they made their strongest record since the early 2000s. It’s nice to have great old school punk coming around again. We always need something like Pennywise to erase the emo stain of Panic At The Disco from our music consciousness. This is some of the best and most furious punk I’ve heard in a few years.


Snow Patrol – Wildness

Their first since 2011, and they’ve ditched the electronic elements that marked their last couple of discs to make a really good release. The record was a complete flop and gave the band no radio hits, but it was great to have a good pop record out in the midst of whatever the hell currently passes for pop music on the radio.


Jeff Tweedy – Warm

Literally a record I discovered while I was writing this. A more laidback solo recording featuring his son on drums, Tweedy cut some of the more electric edges and made a more folksy kind of record that really worked with how I’ve been feeling about music and life lately. A great way to wrap up the year: with a really downbeat lowkey record.

Best Songs Of The Year

Alkaline Trio – “Blackbird”
Beanpole – “Cousins"
Blues Traveler – “Ode From The Aspect”
Cake – “Sinking Ship”
Childish Gambino – “Feels Like Summer”
The Damned – “Standing On The Edge Of Tomorrow”
Death Cab for Cutie – “Northern Lights”
Burn The Priest (Lamb Of God) – “Inherit The Earth”
Mudhoney – “Kill Yourself Live/21st Century Pharisees/Messiah’s Lament”
Mumford & Sons – “Guiding Light”
Paul Simon – “Love”
Pennywise – “Live While You Can”
Slipknot – “All Out Life”
Snow Patrol – “What If This is All The Love You Ever Get?”
Young The Giant – “Superposition”

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