Scrolling Headlines:

Student Activism Special Issue Preview Video -

March 27, 2017

Anthropology professor holds lecture on violence and policymaking -

March 27, 2017

Student Activism Special Issue 2017 -

March 27, 2017

Congressmen McGovern and Ellison discuss progressive politics under Trump administration on Saturday -

March 27, 2017

SGA President Anthony Vitale and Vice President Lily Wallace promise to improve assistance to student activists next year -

March 27, 2017

Editor’s note: UMass works because they do -

March 27, 2017

The UMass club that is un-beelievable -

March 27, 2017

Interview with Ghazah Abbasi, Sanctuary Campus Movement organizer -

March 27, 2017

Association of Diversity in Sport draws competition in FIFA Tournament -

March 27, 2017

UMass men’s lacrosse falls to Brown University in OT thriller -

March 27, 2017

Real Estate finds tranquility, but breaks little new ground on ‘In Mind’ -

March 27, 2017

UMass baseball takes series behind two straight wins over George Washington -

March 27, 2017

Letter to the Editor: Amherst should vote no on education referendum -

March 27, 2017

Make small-scale activism sexy again -

March 27, 2017

Defense holds strong for UMass men’s lacrosse in loss to Brown -

March 27, 2017

Strong second half lifts UMass women’s lacrosse past Marist, 10-7 -

March 27, 2017

Letter to the Editor: UMass alum reflects on his time at the Collegian -

March 27, 2017

Environmental journalists face challenges under Trump administration -

March 25, 2017

An open letter to the students of UMass -

March 24, 2017

Pat Kelsey informs UMass AD Ryan Bamford of change of heart just 35 minutes before scheduled press conference -

March 23, 2017

The 10 most overlooked albums of 2016

It has been an eventful year for music in ways both good and bad. While the year has offered us a seemingly constant string of exciting material in the underground and the mainstream, an unbelievable amount of legendary artists have also been taken from us in a single year.

It is near-impossible for one person to stay on top of everything as it is, and the extra amount of positive and negative events that transpired in music this year made it even more difficult. That being said, this list is a look back on albums of a variety of different genres from this past year that sadly did not end up receiving enough attention, despite their quality.

 

LOK 03+1: “Signals”

“Signals,” a collaboration between Aki Takase, Alexander von Schlippenbach, DJ Illvibe and Paul Lovens, is one of the most interesting sounding free jazz albums in years. DJ Illvibe contributes prominent elements of turntable music, introducing a musical element entirely alien to free jazz. A truly innovative fusion.

Listen here:

 

 

The Kill Devil Hills: “In on Under Near Water”

One of the world’s most underrated alt-country bands for over a decade, The Kill Devil Hills released this year’s best country album in general. “In On Under Near Water” has a dark and moody southern atmosphere that reinforces the group’s status as one of the best acts in the gothic country scene.

Listen here:

 

Mara Balls: “Vuorten Taa”

On “Vuorten Taa,” Finnish artist Mara Balls tried her hand at a solo release and came out with a noisy and psychedelic head-trip of a debut album. “Vuorten Taa” is a caustic cocktail of every drugged-out rock genre there is, including garage rock, heavy psych and acid-rock.

Listen here:

 

Elliott Power: “Once Smitten”

UK-based singer Elliott Power made his entrance into the young singer-songwriter arena with his debut album, “Once Smitten.” The album exhibits a fascinating marriage between downtempo music and synthpop, two genres that are usually complete opposites. Power’s hushed and salacious Massive Attack-inspired rap flow also brings trip-hop to mind.

Listen here:

 

Pierrot Lunaire: Dog Chakra

It seems that tape music has thankfully found a home on, well, cassette tapes in recent years. Pierrot Lunaire’s new tape, “Dog Chakra,” is one of the finest examples to come out of this new resurgence. Lunaire’s emphasis is on drone, free improvisation, musique concrète and noise, rather than repetition.

Listen here:

 

blank body: “EASY PREY”

blank body is one of trap’s better artists, but his sophomore record, “Easy Prey,” was criminally overlooked. These are straight-up hard trap beats, and it is one of the most well-produced albums to come out in the genre all year, and he’s not even from the U.K.

Listen here:

 

Western Skies Motel: Settlers

Folk music is all about sounding organic and intimate, but instrumentalist Western Skies Motel has attempted something completely new by melding atmospheric ambient music with contemporary folk music. The two genres are bridged through the incorporation of chamber folk and more avant-garde American primitivism, and the result is astoundingly beautiful.

Listen here:

 

Phobocosm: “Bringer of Drought”

This past year has been packed with great metal releases of the most extreme caliber, and rising band Phobocosm emerged to put out one of the heaviest displays of doom metal that the genre has to offer. “Bringer of Drought” embraces both slow and fast riffs to gargantuan effect.

Listen here:

 

Moor Mother: “Fetish Bones”

The sheer amount of styles that Philadelphia rapper Moor Mother tackles on this album is mind-boggling. His entirely unique brand of hip-hop is abstract but intensely political, saturated in the aesthetic of industrial music, noise and power electronics. He even abandons his rap flow at times to recite beautiful poetry on the record.

Listen here:

 

Poison Headache: “Poison Headache”

The amount of effort that went into the production on this hardcore punk band’s self-titled debut album is quite impressive. Punk generally sounds best when it’s raw, so most underground bands do not fine-tune the production on their albums to this extent, but Poison Headache should be recognized for going above and beyond the norms of the genre.

Listen here:

 

Alexander Beebe can be reached at asbeebe@umass.edu.

Leave A Comment