Welcome to the 2014 Bacon Top 31! Now in its sixth year, the Top 311 is exactly what it says on the tin — my top 31 albums from 2014. I’ll be counting down those top 31 albums each day from now through the end of the year. Weekdays, weekends, and holidays — every day, count on a new album added to the list.
20142 was a good year for music, and there’s lots to cover. So without further adieu: to the list!
#31 on the 2014 Bacon Top 31
With Light & With Love by Woods
It always surprises me when a band has been around a long time (nearly ten years!), has released eight studio albums, and I’m only now hearing of them. Woods, from Brooklyn, is such a band. A little bit country, a little bit psychedelic, Woods is difficult to narrow down into a category smaller than the massive “indie folk.”
As I said, this was the first I’d heard of the band, even though they’ve been around since 2005 and With Light & With Love is their eighth album. It’s listenable, and keeps your attention throughout, with hints of 60s rock and folk thrown around the higher-register vocals from lead singer/guitarist Jeremy Earl. Hit play on the YouTube link above to hear the best song on the album, “Moving to the Left,” which has seen quite a bit of airplay on KEXP this year.
I’m not sure this album will have much staying power long-term, hence it’s bottom-of-the-list placement, but while listening to it again preparing for this review I was struck by how catchy it is. How did I ever put this album down?
And there we go. The 2014 Top 31 is underway!
1. You may have noticed, the Top 31 has gone through a name change this year. It started out as the Musical Advent Calendar. The “advent-ness” of the countdown was never really there, so a year later I changed the name to Musical Bacon Calendar, which stuck for the last four years. This year I’m changing it up because “Calendar” suddenly struck me as odd. This isn’t a calendar. It’s a list, revealed one day at a time. So I landed on a title that has ultimate SEO appeal (but I could care less about SEO): Top 31. I kept “Bacon” as part of the title because, damn it, this is the Bacon Review (and to give a big middle finger to the SEO gods).↩
2. If you want to get technical, the period of time I pull from actually begins on November 1 of the previous year, through October 31, 2014. I’m a firm believer that an album needs to soak a bit before it can be judged. Anything released after November 1, 2014 will be considered for the 2015 Bacon Top 31.↩