Articles

Liner Notes (March 29th, 2019)

I can’t believe it’s the end of March already.

In this week’s newsletter, I share some early thoughts on the new Bad Religion album and go through some of the albums and songs out this week that I enjoyed. I also go through my usual media diet and share a playlist of ten songs I loved this week. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (March 22nd, 2019)

It’s a lot harder to write when basketball games are going on.

In this week’s roundup, I look at the music I listened to and enjoyed last week, go through my usual thoughts on entertainment, and share a playlist of ten songs I loved. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (March 16th, 2019)

It’s with a heavy heart that I write this week’s newsletter. The news out of New Zealand is absolutely heartbreaking, and I can’t stop thinking about the direction our world is going in. So much hate and anger cheered on by the worst people. My thoughts are with everyone affected by this tragedy.

My birthday is on Monday (gah, I’m getting older) so I’ve decided to make this edition free for everyone to read this week. A little celebratory gift, from me to you. If you like it, please think about becoming a supporting member of the website, the support from readers makes up the lion’s share of my income, and it’s how I get to keep running this website, and writing things like this, each week.

This week’s newsletter contains first impressions on upcoming albums from The Maine and Charly Bliss, as well as thoughts on other music I listened to this week. It has my usual media diet rundown from the past week, ten songs I loved, and a list of music I sent my sister when she asked about stuff to check out after not paying attention to new music for a few years. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

Liner Notes (March 8th, 2019)

Another week down.

In this week’s roundup I share my thoughts on new music out this week, and what I’ve been listening to (Maren Morris, Sigrid, The Get Up Kids), and go through the various movies and TV shows I watched this week (Aquaman, If Beale Street Could Talk, Shoplifters). There’s also a playlist of ten songs I loved this week and a recap of various website improvements I made this week. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (March 1st, 2019)

Oh, hi March.

This week’s roundup looks at what I worked on around the website this week, goes through my thoughts on music (including Marianas Trench, Japanese House, and the new Carly Rae Jepsen songs), and has my usual media diet from the last week. There’s also a playlist of ten songs I loved this week, and the supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (February 22nd, 2019)

In this week’s roundup I talk about tackling tweet embedding in the forums, share my thoughts on Into the Spider-Verse during my weekly media diet rundown, and it was a pretty music heavy week this week, so there’s a lot of singles and new albums to discuss. I also share a playlist of ten songs I loved this week and rant about the NCAA. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (February 15th, 2019)

This week sure went by fast.

In this week’s roundup I talk about launching our new Giphy feature and what’s next on my forum to-do list, give some thoughts that have been swirling around in my head about the entire Ryan Adams situation, and then go through quite a bit new music. I tackle how surprised I was by the new Set It Off album, and offer brief thoughts on new records from Betty Who, One Ok Rock, Tyler Hilton, Stand Atlantic, Millencolin, SWMRS, and more. Then I go through my usual weekly media diet (basically two documentaries I loved this week), share ten songs I loved this week, and share my sadness at a brewery I love closing down. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Most Anticipated of 2019

Most Anticipated 2019

Last month we shared our favorite albums of 2018, now we’re back and looking at what we are most anticipating through 2019. What records do we think we’re going to fall in love with over the next few months? What albums can we just not wait to hear? A bunch of contributors have written up blurbs about the albums and artists we’re most excited about, and we’d love to hear what’s on your most anticipated list as well.

Liner Notes (February 8th, 2019)

For some reason something is messed up with the login system on the main website right now, so, I’m going to make this version of Liner Notes available for everyone while I try and sort out what’s going on. This week’s roundup includes updates on what I’ve been working on around the website, some thoughts on albums and singles released this week, my usual media diet recap, and a playlist of ten songs I loved this week.

I hope everyone has a great weekend. I’ll be bundled up by the fire trying to avoid the predicted snow storm. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

Liner Notes (February 1st, 2019)

The first day of February is here.

In this week’s roundup, I talk about the process of starting to think about a Chorus.fm homepage redesign and the tools I’ve been using to brainstorm. I share another AppleScript service I use a lot and rant about Instagram ads that feel especially exploitative. Then I go through some music I listened to this week and share my thoughts after a very Star Trek heavy media diet. There’s also a playlist of ten songs I loved this week, and the supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (January 25th, 2019)

All of the news today made it much harder to focus and write this.

In this week’s edition, I talk about switching finance apps, share a little “link to” service I use on the Mac, offer thoughts on the new Mark Hoppus/Alex Gaskarth song, revisit So Long, Astoria, and give some first impressions of the new Better Oblivion Community Center album. Then I go through my usual media diet from the past week and share ten songs I loved. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (January 18th, 2019)

I cut the tip of my finger while cooking dinner the night before I sit down and type the most I do all week. That was some brilliant work on my part. In this week’s roundup, I offer brief early thoughts on the new PUP record, pontificate about Blink-182 working with The Chainsmokers, re-listen to The Ataris and Zebrahead, and go through the rest of my musical diet from the past week. The entertainment roundup is mostly thoughts on more Batman comic books and needing a little break from overly dramatic movies after last week. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (January 11th, 2019)

In this week’s newsletter I write about my search for the best Mac Last.fm scrobbling app, Linea Sketch, two Shortcuts I really loved this week, being known as “that AbsolutePunk.net guy,” the new album from FIDLAR, Tarakany!, and listening to stuff from our staff “best of 2018” list. I also run through my usual media diet from the past week, including a lot of depressing (but good!) movies (like Minding the Gap), and give my thoughts on the final two trades in Scott Snyder’s Batman run. There’s also a playlist of ten songs I loved this week and my usual sarcasm.

The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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The Chorus.fm Staff’s Top Albums of 2018

The Best of 2018

I don’t know how to sum up 2018. At the end of most years, it’s possible to look back and see certain themes or narratives or big ideas coming through in the music from the past 12 months. 2018 was not one of those years. Most of the industry’s biggest stars sat the year out, and music critics couldn’t agree on a consensus album of the year pick. Instead, 2018 as a music year was chaotic. It was a dozen jukeboxes playing in the same bar at the same time, one blasting a starry-eyed country album about love, the next broadcasting a rock ‘n’ roll anthem about how it would be great if the human race didn’t fuck up the chance we’ve been given to, you know, exist.

But music years like this are thrilling for their seeming lack of structure or narrative. They are chances for underdogs to fight their way to the top, or for new superstars to be born in place of the old ones. 2018 was that kind of year for music, and it was dazzling to behold. The only option was to dive headfirst into the chaos and embrace the many disparate triumphs that came along the way. This list, of our 30 favorite albums of the year, is symbolic of that leap of faith, a wildly dynamic set of records that includes callbacks to this community’s roots, monuments to how we have grown over the years, and signposts to where we are going. It’s been a pleasure to be a part of this site for another year, and to see the way we all share the music we love with one another. This list was made in that spirit, of discovery and shared passion, and I can’t think of a better way to sum up such a chaotic year.

Liner Notes (January 4th, 2019)

Well, here we have the first newsletter of 2019.

In this week’s roundup, I rank Thursday albums, share website plans for the coming week, talk about a few fonts and automation tools I like, and do my usual weekly media diet rundown. There are also links to ten songs I loved this week, and the supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (December 28th, 2018)

Damn, this is the final Liner Notes of 2018.

In this week’s roundup, I recap the holiday week and my favorite gifts, share some thoughts on Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, go through my usual weekly media diet (heavy on movies, light on music this week), and share ten songs to ring in 2019. I hope everyone has a lovely rest of the year. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (December 21st, 2018)

This is the second to last Liner Notes before the end of 2018. This year has been impossibly long while flying by at a record pace. It makes absolutely no sense. I hope everyone is gearing up for a nice weekend and preparing to spend the holidays in whatever way makes you happiest. I plan to spend some time offline, reading, and enjoying the company of family. As a little holiday gift, I’m making this version of Liner Notes, which are usually exclusive to supporters, free for all.

This week’s roundup includes my ranking of All Time Low albums. After discovering these “do teens know 2000’s pop-punk” videos on YouTube (and immediately feeling old as hell), I got on a pop-punk kick and ended up listening to their catalog all week. I also share my thoughts after spending a week with Apple Music on the Amazon Echo, ten songs I loved this week, and, of course, my weekly media diet. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

The Miracle of ‘Springsteen on Broadway’

10 years ago this week, I fell in love with the music of Bruce Springsteen. It happened almost by coincidence: a conversation at my uncle’s 50th birthday party that shifted toward The Boss and his legendary live shows. From there, it didn’t take much to transform me from a casual Springsteen fan to a die-hard: just a drive through the winter storm from hell, my iPod, and a little song called “Thunder Road.”

A lot has happened in my life in the 10 years since. I graduated from high school, and then college. I fell in love with a girl and married her. I became a part of her family, and she a part of mine. I moved away, and then moved back home. I bought a house, sold it, and bought another one. I chased my dreams and watched them die. I lost my grandpa. I lost my first dog, and then my second one. I had my heart stolen by a little, devious, trouble-making kitten. I started a career. I even got to see Springsteen (three times) and shook his hand (once).

Liner Notes (December 14th, 2018)

I’m ready for the weekend.

In this week’s roundup I talk about the massive process of cleaning out my iTunes/Apple Music library, including finally splitting up a bunch of live sessions I had ripped into individual tracks, getting back into some comic books, and then go through my usual weekly media diet from the past week, plus share ten songs I loved. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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Liner Notes (December 7th, 2018)

December marches on!

In this week’s roundup, I write a little about Smart Playlists in iTunes and how I use them for holiday music, talk about wanting to ramp up my comic book reading again, share thoughts on the music and entertainment I enjoyed this week, and post the weekly ten song playlist. It’s been a very Copeland, Japanese House, and The 1975 dominating week around my house. The supporter Q&A post can be found here.

This article is available exclusively to supporters of our website. Join now for as little as $3 per month and get access to exclusive content and a variety of perks. Plus, you'll be helping an independent publisher. Learn more here.