Viet Cong by Viet Cong
The album that ushers us into the Top 20 came out way back in January, so it feels almost like it’s been around too long to be on this year’s countdown. It could also be that this album, the self-titled debut from Calgary, Alberta, Canada’s Viet Cong, sounds a bit like a couple other albums I’ve loved over the past few years — namely, the psych-rock sounds of Cloud Control and Foxygen that featured on the 2013 Bacon Top 31.
But there are other sounds, too: Animal Collective. Dungen. Jangly, dissonant guitar. Excellent use of both left and right channels (this is perfect for the headphone generation we’re currently living through), It’s a short album, only 37 minutes long. I mentioned when I linked to their NSFW video for the song “Continental Shelf” back in February that Matt Flegel’s vocals reminded me of Spencer Krug (from Moonface, Wolf Parade, Sunset Rubdown, and others), but listening lately, I’ve been hearing more Peter Murphy. Listen to “Silhouettes” in the video above, and you’ll hear echoes of Joy Division, Interpol, and Editors.
The references for this album are plenty (clearly), and that’s a good thing. You will recognize and love this sound when you put it on. Then let it wash over you, and realize just how good it really is.
21. The Magic Whip by Blur
22. Savage Hills Ballroom by Youth Lagoon
23. Not Real by Stealing Sheep
24. Beat the Champ by The Mountain Goats
25. Gliss Riffer by Dan Deacon
26. Dark Bird is Home by The Tallest Man on Earth
27. Gunnera by Pfarmers
28. Swimmer to a Liquid Armchair by Ricked Wickey
29. To Pimp a Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar
30. Live in Seattle by Moufang / Czamanski
31. High by Royal Headache