Best National & Minnesota Music of 2021.5 (Jon)
As live music slowly comes back and we inch back to a pre-COVID world, Reviler writers are taking stock of the new music we’ve liked in the first half of 2021. We’re highlight both national and Minnesota music that has piqued our interest. We’re excited for our year-end lists where we will be able to add back in “favorite live shows” to the mix, but until then, let’s find out what we’ve liked in the first half of this year. Without further ado, check out Jon’s 2021.5 best of lists below.
L’Rain – Fatigue
Jane Weaver – Flock
Taqbir – ST EP
Sons Of Kemet – Black To The Future
Spellling – The Turning Wheel
Chad VanGaalen – Worlds Most Stressed Out Gardener
Altin Gun – Yol
Arooj Aftab – Vulture Prince
Madlib – Sound Ancestors
The Weather Station – Ignorance
Mdou Moctar – Afrique Victim
Armand HammerThe Alchemist – Haram
1. American Cream – Plastic Flame
Nathan Nelson’s long running experimental/improvisational group delivers again. THis is probably my favorite of their work and they have delivered some great work in the past
2. Dizzy Fae – Antenna
It’s easy to forget that local superstar-in-the-works Dizzy Fae hadn’t released an album yet up to this point. The raw talent here is palpable. Still eagerly awaiting the debut full length.
3. Magic Castles – Sun Reign
Still one of the TC’s better kept secrets, the extent of psychedelic rockers Magic Castles fandom across the globe would probably surprise many locals. Much like American Cream (above) they just keep getting better and better.
4. Products – Pink Puma
It kind of feels like the flow of post punk albums over the last few years has really gone from a gush to a trickle. Really grateful to still have some great ones to choose from locally, especiallyPink Puma from art rockers Products.
5. Greta Ruth – The Fawn
It’s a testament to a really terrific crop of local records this year that this one isn’t ranking higher. After many excellent single/EPs experimental folk artist Greta Ruth really outdid herself on her full length debut.
6. Under Violet – Threes
Local quartet Under Violet took the “if it aint broke, don’t fix it” approach to their sophomore record and have another terrific crop of hazy Mazzy Star-esque tunes to show for it.
7. Tannins – EP
All l I know about this local duo is what Adam posted so I essentially have nothing new to add to the discussion other than you should check this out, it’s real good.
8. Warcake – Puce
This is doom rock done well. This one is still germinating – I got my first listen just a few weeks ago. My initial take is impressed.
9. Fletcher Coulee – Escape From Nice Island
An excellent debut record of “rode hard, put away wet” hard luck country/folk tunes.
10. Nur-D – 38th
This one felt super timely given all that has gone on in Minneapolis this year (and last). Nur-D released one album named after each street that intersects the George Floyd Memorial (Chicago and 38th) and while both are good I prefer this one by a nose.
Notable Singles (not on any of the above albums)
Dua Saleh – Signs
I Self Divine – Disrupter Suite
26 Bats! – Helicopter
The Controversial New Skinny Pill – Welcome to your show
Sweetblood – Sink In
Green/Blue – Waiting
Dog and Tony Show- Rust
Brianna Kočka – Seasons