By Liam Menzies (@blinkclyro)
Oh boy. Seeing as I got a tiny bit of flack for the worst songs list last week which, to me anyway, seemed rather inoffensive, I’m even more anxious about providing this list on what I believe are the worst records of the year. If you’re able to enjoy these albums then I respect the fact you can find something in them that I can’t but this is MY list. I will justify myself though if I get killed by any angry fans of any acts included then I won’t be the first to die for what I believe in. (“Are you comparing yourself to Christ?” “No…I’m just pointing out comparisons”.)
As always, if there are any albums that you think are missing or don’t deserve to be here then don’t forget to drop a comment in the section below. With that being said, let us get on with it….
10. DIIV – Is The Is Are
I really wanted to like this album despite my previous grievances with DIIV, an act who are consistently praised critically. To this day their debut Oshin has one or two gems but is overall a bit bland and it saddens me to say the same about Is The Is Are. There seems to be an awfully samey vibe and while it would be a total lie to say that every song is a repeat of the other, there were a few moments where I found myself questioning whether or not I had a track on loop. I’ve heard many people say that this sticking to the one sound is half the point but to me it just seems over-indulgent rather than being anything particular artsy or foundation shaking. (Sorry Sophie)
9. James Blake – The Colour In Anything
Considering the fact that James Blake had shown what he was capable of, The Colour In Anything was sadly the first shortcoming for the talented artist. Spread out too thin and consisting of some of the worst songs Blake has ever crafted, Points is more a test of endurance than entertaining, not even a beautiful collab with Bon Iver in the form of We Need A Forest Fire, the album’s one saving grace, is enough to make TCIA anything better than sub par.
8. Bloc Party – Hymns
“You either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain” is a line that has been used to death but is the only thing that can come close to describing the sort of anguish that Bloc Party’s latest LP brought me. Being one of my favourite acts and introducing me to the indie rock genre with their beautiful debut album Silent Alarm as well as their follow-up Weekend In The City, the group continued to evolve and seemingly improve in different ways over each new record.
With Hymns though, Bloc Party lost much of what made them so interesting to listen to in the first place, swapping out their amalgamated blaring club and garage influences, which resulted in some of the most anthemic tunes crafted this century, for undercooked gospel-influenced mediocrity. Bloc Party’s sin isn’t trying to change their sound, something that’s a given this far into your career, rather the attempt to craft a mould for something the band just don’t seem to fit.
7. Blossoms – Blossoms
Generic white indie boy band present underwhelming, pound shop psych/indie-rock that is more likely to provoke a yawn out of you than any reaction that could be interpreted as joy or genuine enjoyment. Maybe their sophomore record will present something a bit more interesting but at this point, Blossoms are off my radar for the time being.
6. Green Day – Revolution Radio
Green Day have been on the decline for years now with their Uno, Dos, Tres trilogy really testing veterans fans of the band. Revolution Radio may be the straw that breaks the camel’s back as little evolution and boring commentary makes it a challenge to get through. The equivalent to yer da getting his auld band together, watching a five-minute youtube video on Donald Trump and complaining about the same auld shite he’s been going on about for decades.
5. Bastille – Wild World
I could hark on about vanilla and inoffensive the work of Bastille is but I would really just be repeating what a large amount of people have pointed out already. That being said, even their debut had a few decent tracks that made them at least worth checking out, something that is evidently absent on Wild World. Somehow just as relentlessly boring and unenjoyable than modern day Coldplay: an achievement in itself.
4. Charlie Pluth – Nine Track Mind
I’d be willing to bet that this album is the reason why 2016 has been such a mess. All over reactions out of the way however, Nine Track Mind features some of the most uninspired pop drivel that pretty much adds to this whole “chart music is awful” rhetoric that many naive listeners will spit out. Marvin Gaye, one of the biggest tracks on here, is the audio embodiment of excrement and everything else is just as hard to stomach: listen to for punishment, not pleasure.
3. Courteeners – Mapping The Rendevous
Just like many records on this list, Courteeners latest album’s biggest sin is just how samey and boring it is. Kitchen, one of the worst things I’ve heard all year that I totally overlooked in my worst songs lists, is one of the few attempts to innovate the band’s sound and it’s, to put it lightly, abysmal. My disliking of their music isn’t going to change anything as they title themselves “the biggest underground band” (hahahahaha) but after listening to Mapping The Rendevous, I may or may not be glad that someone at a gig chucked a smoke bomb at Liam Fray.
2.Catfish & The Bottlemen – The Ride
Yes, blinkclyro.com is now officially a “We Hate Catfish And The Bottlemen” site. In all seriousness though, there’s nothing I can really say about this band that I haven’t already slated them for on my twitter but their sophomore effort is even more dull and unoriginal than I had anticipated. The Ride represents everything wrong with indie rock music at the moment: bland instrumentals with even worse vocals and no sense of any real attempt to be inventive that people will happily lap up due to how accessible it is.
1.Biffy Clyro -Ellipsis
GOT YE YA BASTARD
1 (FOR REAL). Corey Feldman – Angelic 2 The Core
Somehow Catfish didn’t come out with the worst album of 2016 though. No, that award goes to Corey Feldman of Lost Boys, Gremlins and Stand By Me fame. His album Angelic 2 The Core has been ripped to shreds for being structurally unsound, much like a DC movie in 2016. While I’ve said repeatedly on this list that the music in question is hard to listen to, this record really takes the cake: you’d have an easier time finding enjoyment out of a Japanoise track than whatever this thing is. 2016, you brought us some of the best albums I’ve ever heard but thanks to this album, our relationship is very complicated.