Archives for posts with tag: Wooden Wand

Tim Hecker's 2013 release, Virgins

Another year and it’s time for another snapshot of my music favorites. Lists seem such an evil to me at times – they feed into the hype cycles and can direct and redirect attention in a way that may be harmful to smaller artists. Awards are distributed in some bizarre frenzy of groupthink (look at the film industry), and who is to say that we shouldn’t frame our reference window seasonally, or monthly, or decennialy? But in the same breath, I think documenting personal preferences can be valuable to mark growth, guide future investigations, and reflect on what has been meaningful in my world.

There are never “final” lists or finalized versions of anything in life. We can spend hours in the studio perfecting music or years thinking that a marriage will finally work once it gets over a certain hump. Like photographs, life is a series of snapshots or moments. Making a list is like taking a polaroid picture of a specific year of music and what it meant to me as it was ending.

After that far too off-topic ramble, it’s time for the list where everything’s made up and the rankings don’t matter.

1 The Appleseed Cast Illumination Ritual Graveface Records
2 Wooden Wand Blood Oaths of the New Blues Fire Records
3 My Bloody Valentine M B V self
4 Tim Hecker Virgins Kranky
5 Lumerians The High Frontier Partisan Records
6 Disappears Era Kranky
7 Kurt Vile Wakin On A Pretty Daze Matador Records
8 Wooden Wand and the World War IV Wooden Wand and the World War IV Three Lobed Recordings
9 The National Trouble Will Find Me 4AD
10 Lucrecia Dalt Syzygy Human Ear Music
11 Jenks Miller Spirit Signal Northern-Spy Records
12 Esmerine Dalmak Constellation
13 Julianna Barwick Nepenthe Dead Oceans
14 Aidan Baker Already Drowning Gizeh Records
15 Mountains Centralia Thrill Jockey
16 Thee Oh Sees Floating Coffin Castle Face Records
17 Chelsea Light Moving Chelsea Light Moving Matador Records
18 Youth Lagoon Wondrous Bughouse Fat Possum Records
19 Gnod Chaudelande Rocket Recordings
Gabriel Saloman Soldier’s Requiem Miasmah Recordings

What a wonderful year of music it was. See you in the new year,



Hello all,

ghost trees is my often dormant music-related blog where I gush about my recent music obsessions, concerts attended, and dump a whole lot of “who cares” onto the world. I had considered completely abandoning it (several times), but out of the blue, I recently got a strangely genuine comment of appreciation. So I decided that I might as well continue slinging words about stuff people don’t care about into the ether.

Xi Hammer at SubMission in San Francisco June 8, 2013

Xi Hammer at SubMission in San Francisco June 8, 2013

What have I been up to? Well I actually have tested the waters of “being a musician” with some friends. We started Xi Hammer, a noisy, psychedelic, slowmo, heavy rock band and played a couple of shows this past spring. Many pieces of the loose collective have moved away from the Bay Area (myself included), so I’m not sure exactly what will happen, but we did spend some time in the studio. We intended to put out some music. Hopefully that’ll happen soon. Of course I’ll promote myself all over my blog, naturally, when that happens.

I also did some traveling, went to some shows, listened to some great music. My favorites from this year, surprisingly aren’t super obscure. I really like the new Appleseed Cast, The National, Wooden Wand, and Aidan Baker albums, and I was completely bowled over by Thurston Moore’s “cosmic glam-distorto psych” band, Chelsea Light Moving’s performance in Seattle in March.

Too much text is always bad news. So I’ll leave you virtual friends with a photo of the traditional/modern/world/improv group Agadetah, that I saw in June. Cool to see these instruments and it was a beautiful setting in Tzfat.Agadetah