Name & Position: Matt Lebens, contributing writer
Best Album: Museum Mouth – Sexy But Not Happy (self released)
This Southport, NC trio provided a record worthy of repeated listens. Songs are short, hooks and fuzz are plenty. This was a minimalist cross-pollination between post-punk and shoegazing pop. “Goodbye, Evan”, “Blood Mountain”, and “Blood Hammer” were the dinner’s dessert.
Best New Band: Survival Knife. Members of Unwound and Western Hymn. Enough said.
Best Live Band: Neil Diamond and Crew @ Key Arena. The rhinestone posse never disappoints.
Best Live Audience: Neil Diamond at Key Arena. This was my fourth time and I once again stood surrounded by unmatched enthusiasm.
Favorite Interview: White Lung
Best Movie/TV show: The Dark Knight Rises / The Walking Dead
Best Game: Truth or Dare.
Biggest Surprise (Good): Bikini Eyebolt – Channeling the Pulse (Tenzenmen)
Some great New Zealand noise here! You might recognize the label for having released some material by Scul Hazzards. Bikini Eyebolt distribute sound in a very similar manner. “Collecting” might be the best song I’ve heard all year.
Biggest Surprise (Bad): Missed Bitch Magnet at Neumo’s. Goo! Orestes!