ALBUMS of the DECADE | 2010-2019


The end of another decade is upon us, and it was a goddamn weird one. At least in America. Though PHW has been dormant for most of the decade, I poke my head out every once in a while to shout into the void.  Here are my favorite records of the past 520 weeks:


1. WAXAHATCHEE / Out In The Storm (2017)

Not Katie Crutchfield's most critically revered album, but the one that resonated most with me. She blasted her music into high definition on this one and blew me away.


2. FRANK OCEAN / Blond (2016)

A staggering work of genius from Frank, whose subtle melodies and raw emotion gradually revealed themselves to me to the point where I can hardly go a week without listening.

3. GINNELS / Plumes (2013)

This is cheating because it's a compilation compiled from a handful of releases but whatever - this is the greatest collection of buzzing, ramshackle indie-pop of the decade by a city mile.


4. TITUS ANDRONICUS / The Monitor (2010)

Though shrouded in Civil War imagery and blood & guts bravado, The Monitor is simply another rock record about a girl who's gone. Patrick Stickles makes us rally around his monumental gloom; shout along with his despondency. After 10,000 years, it's still us against them. 



5. KENDRICK LAMAR / To Pimp A Butterfly (2015)

Kendrick Lamar tapped into the heart of a tumultuous American decade more vividly than any other artist, and nowhere is his presence more vital than this magnum opus. As if Bringing It All Back Home and It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back got together and birthed a savior.


6. DESTROYER / Kaputt (2011)

Dan Bejar's sound + vision was never greater these past 10 years than on Kaputt - an unstoppable album overflowing with enigmatic lyrics and an 80s sheen.


7. THE WAR ON DRUGS / A Deeper Understanding (2017)

Few mine the history of rock & roll as gorgeously or in such a forward-thinking manner as Adam Granduciel. This is his masterstroke - 10 towering songs that throw off electric sparks.

8. VAMPIRE WEEKEND - Modern Vampires of the City (2013)

This is a great band at the height of their powers - young enough to resonate but wiser than their first two records. I played "Step" for a few of my 8th graders once and they were floored, played "Ya Hey" for my own children when they were toddlers and it became a sing-along.  This record has something for everyone, and still manages to be everything all at once. 


9. PROTOMARTYR / Under Color of Official Right (2014)

Welcome to the brutal world of Protomartyr, the decade's most underrated rock band. These songs seethe, bristle, and snarl. Loud guitars and a singer who means it.


10. TIM HECKER / Ravedeath, 1972 (2011)

There were countless late nights over the past 9 years where the lights went off, the headphones went on, and for 50+ transportive minutes time and space didn't exist. 



11. BEACH HOUSE / Bloom (2012)


12. DEERHUNTER / Halcyon Digest (2010)


13. THE MEN / Leave Home (2011)


14. TY SEGALL BAND / Slaughterhouse (2012)


15. BEACH HOUSE / Teen Dream (2010)


16. PINEGROVE / Cardinal (2016)


17. BED WETTIN' BAD BOYS / Rot (2017)


18. BIG THIEF / Capacity (2017)


19. BON IVER / Bon Iver, Bon Iver (2011)


20. YOUNG FATHERS / Cocoa Sugar (2018)


21.  DEAFHEAVEN / Sunbather  
22.  KENDRICK LAMAR / good kid, m.A.A.d city
23.  ANGEL OLSEN / My Woman
24.  BON IVER / 22, A Million
25.  THE NATIONAL / Trouble Will Find Me
26.  PHOSPHORESCENT / Muchacho
26.  SPOON / They Want My Soul
27.  KANYE WEST / My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
28.  THE MEN / Open Your Heart
29.  HALLELUJAH THE HILLS / Have You Ever Done Something Evil?
30.  ICEAGE / Beyondless

31.  LOW / Double Negative
32.  THE TALLEST MAN ON EARTH / The Wild Hunt
33.  SHABAZZ PALACES / Black Up
34.  AMEN DUNES / Freedom
35.  THE WALKMEN / Heaven
36.  BIG THIEF / Two Hands
37.  FRANK OCEAN / Channel Orange
38.  THE WAR ON DRUGS /Lost In A Dream
39.  DEAFHEAVEN / Ordinary Corrupt Human Love
40.  WAXAHATCHEE / Ivy Tripp

41.  DAMIEN JURADO / Maroqopa
42.  FROG EYES / Paul’s Tomb; A Triumph
43.  WILCO / Ode to Joy
44.  KING KRULE / The OOZ
45.  ANGEL OLSEN / Burn Your Fire For No Witness
46.  EARL SWEATSHIRT / Some Rap Songs
47.  JAPANDROIDS / Celebration Rock
47.  FUTURE ISLANDS / In Evening Air
48.  ROYAL HEADACHE / Royal Headache
49.  FLYING LOTUS / Cosmagramma
50.  RADIOHEAD / A Moon Shaped Pool

51.  GIRLS / Father, Son, And Holy Ghost
52.  BURIAL / Rival Dealer EP
53.  BIG THIEF / Masterpiece
54.  PURPLE MOUNTAINS / Purple Mountains
55.  THE HOTELIER / Home, Like NoPlace Is There
56.  THE NATIONAL / Sleep Well Beast
57.  THEE OH SEES / Putrifiers II
58.  SNAIL MAIL / Lush
59.  VINCE STAPLES – Summertime ‘06
60.  ARCADE FIRE / The Suburbs

61.  TIRZAH / Devotion
62.  WILCO / Star Wars
63.  WOMEN / Public Strain
64.  PUSHA T / Daytona
65.  THE RADIO DEPT. / Clinging to a Scheme
66.  ALVVAYS / Antisocialites
67.  KELLY LEE OWENS
68.  EARL SWEATSHIRT / I Don’t Like Shit, I Don’t Go Outside
69.  PROTOMARTYR / The Agent Intellect
70.  MOGWAI / Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will

71.  CAR SEAT HEADREST / Teens of Denial
72.  ICEAGE / You’re Nothing
73.  BON IVER / i,i
74.  BEYONCE / Lemonade
75.  FLYING LOTUS / Until the Quiet Comes
76.  PARQUET COURTS / Sunbathing Animal
77.  WOODS / Bend Beyond
78.  FLEET FOXES / Crack-Up
79.  GROUPER / Ruins
80.  LCD SOUNDSYSTEM / This Is Happening

81.  BEACH HOUSE / Depression Cherry
82.  NO AGE / Everything In Between
83.  JOANNA NEWSOM / Have One On Me
84.  KENDRICK LAMAR / DAMN.
85.  SOLANGE / A Seat At the Table
86.  FATHER JOHN MISTY / I Love You, Honeybear
87.  HAMILTON LEITHAUSER + ROSTAM / I Had A Dream That You Were Mine
88.  DINOSAUR JR / Give a Glimpse Of What Yer Not
89.  FKA TWIGS / Magdalene
90.  WAXAHATCHEE / Cerulean Salt

91. IRON & WINE / Beast Epic
92. ALISON CRUTCHFIELD / Tourist In This Town
93. BIG THIEF / UFOF
94. BEYONCE \ Beyonce
95. THE HOTELIER / Goodness
96. COURTNEY BARNETT / Sometimes I Sit and Think, Sometimes I Just Sit
97. JEFF TWEEDY / Warmer
98. MOSES SUMNEY / Aromanticism
99. SPIDER BAGS / Shake My Head
100. WAXAHATCHEE / American Weekend

101. GREAT ELK / Star Stuff
102. SHABAZZ PALACES / Lese Majesty
103. SLOW COUNTRY / The Late, Great Slow Country
104. BOOMGATES / Double Natural
105. THE TOUGH SHITS / The Tough Shit
106. FLASHER / Constant Image

Albums // 2019































Here are my favorites as of 12/11/19:

1. BIG THIEF / Two Hands
2. WILCO / Ode to Joy
3. PURPLE MOUNTAINS / Purple Mountains
4. BON IVER /  i, i 
5. BIG THIEF / UFOF
   6. FKA twigs / MAGDALENE
   7. HELADO NEGRO / This Is How You Smile
   8. WEYES BLOOD / Titanic Rising
   9. HALLELUJAH THE HILLS - I'm You
  10. JEFF TWEEDY / Warmer

  11. ANGEL OLSEN / All Mirrors
  12. BLACK BELT EAGLE SCOUT / At the Party With My Brown Friends
  13. (SANDY) ALEX G / House of Sugar
  14. THE NATIONAL / I Am Easy To Find
  15. SOLANGE / When I Get Home
  16. NILUFER YANYA / Miss Universe
  17. VAMPIRE WEEKEND / Father of the Bride
  18. JULIA JACKLIN / Crushing
  19. JAMILA WOODS / LEGACY! LEGACY!
  20. FLORIST / Emily Alone

Albums // 2018




Here are my favorite records of the past 12 or so crazy, messed-up, not very good months here in the good ol' USA.  From the Top 10, Tirzah has been a slow-burner over the past few weeks and with more time might've found itself higher on this list. Parquet Courts is one of the best indie-rock bands of the decade and Wide Awake! is right there with their best albums. Daytona is just dizzying and has a few of my favorite songs of the year. Like Tirzah, Flasher was a grower as the year went along., and like Daytona, Snail Mail's Lush has some of the best singles of the year - nothing consistently moved me as much as the chorus of "Full Control".  

My first listen to Amen Dunes soundtracked a drunken 2-mile stumble from the train to my front door some time last spring and was one of the most transcendent first listens I've ever had. I love that Low, a band I've known and followed forever, completely inverted themselves after 25 years and dropped an album that somehow tops Things We Lost In The Fire. Ordinary Corrupt Human Love is a huge leap for Deafheaven - still devastatingly heavy as fuck but so, so beautiful.  And Iceage just keeps getting better as they draw from a larger and larger palette.  But for me the most surprising, interesting, and un-categorizable record of the year was Cocoa Sugar by Young Fathers.  Their disparate mix of hip-hop, soul, dub, experimental, club, and rock music somehow gels into a stunningly perfect pop album.       

1.  Young Fathers / Cocoa Sugar
2.  Iceage / Beyondless
3.  Deafheaven / Ordinary Corrupt Human Love
4.  Low / Double Negative
5.  Amen Dunes / Freedom
6.  Snail Mail / Lush
7.  Flasher / Constant Image
8.  Pusha T / Daytona
9.  Parquet Courts / Wide Awake!
10.  Tirzah / Devotion

11.  Beach House / 7
12.  Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever / Hope Downs
13.  Mitski / Be the Cowboy
14.  Spiritualized / … And Nothing Hurt
15.  Jeff Tweedy / WARM
16.  Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers, Lucy Dacus / boygenius EP
17.  Earl Sweatshirt / Some Rap Songs
18.  Big Red Machine
19.  Father John Misty / God’s Favourite Customer
20.  John Prine / The Tree of Forgiveness
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2017 // Albums




1.     WaxahatcheeOut in the Storm
2.     The War On DrugsA Deeper Understanding
3.     Bed Wettin’ Bad BoysRot
4.     Big ThiefCapacity
5.     The NationalSleep Well Beast
6.     King KruleThe OOZ
7.     Kendrick LamarDAMN.
8.     The New PornographersWhiteout Conditions
9.     Craig FinnWe All Want the Same Things
10.   Allison CrutchfieldTourist in this Town

11.    Fleet FoxesCrack-Up
12.    Iron & WineBeast Epic
13.    Alvvays - Antisocialites
14.    Kelly Lee Owens – s/t
15.    Destroyerken
16.    Sandy (Alex G) - Rocket
17.    ProtomartyrRelatives in Descent
18.    HaterYou Tried
19.    SpoonHot Thoughts
20.    The Rural Alberta AdvantageThe Wild