When I listen to Champagne Colored Cars, I’m reminded of one of 2016’s biggest surprises for me, Tiny Moving Parts’ Celebrate. Both Celebrate and Champagne Colored Cars’ debut self-titled EP are mathy emo albums with more than just a little post-hardcore influence – but both manage to be so much damn fun. Now, to be sure, Champagne Colored Cars is significantly less technical than anything Tiny Moving Parts has ever released, and to me, that’s a bit of a bonus; it gets tiring sometimes when every band wants to be “American Football But Heavy.”
Gleemer’s Anymore would be a great album to listen to even if they just had straight guitar, bass, and drums playing. However, the music is so much deeper than that. There’s an atmospheric sound in the background that sweeps through the entire record. “Basketball Casino” sets the tone for what to expect musically.
The band itself grew from a solo project that guitarist and vocalist Corey Coffman was working on. From there, he made a strong connection with Charlie O’Neil and that’s when Anymore really came into formation. The duo did everything out of a home studio, and this album sounds far from being just some DIY project someone recorded at home. These guys know what they’re doing when it comes to making a record sound good. The band’s lineup includes Nick and Joey, as well.
The top two bestselling albums in country music this year are both by the same guy. Chris Stapleton’s From A Room: Volume 1 (released back in May) and Traveller (released all the way back in May 2015) are unstoppable juggernauts despite the fact that neither ever notched a major radio hit. Depending on just how strong the Stapleton support is throughout the holiday season, there’s an outside chance he could own the entire top three for 2017, thanks to the fact that he just released his second album of the year: From A Room: Volume 2.
A cynical person would see Stapleton’s decision to release two albums in the same year as a shameless ploy to sell more records. There probably is something of a calculated approach there, given that Stapleton 1) still sells albums at all, and 2) thrives on full-length statements rather than singles. What’s probably truer, though, is that Stapleton just cut a lot of quality material while in the studio with producer extraordinaire Dave Cobb, and wanted to put it all out there for his fans to enjoy.
While he’s been coy about the exact details, Bono apparently almost died in 2017.
In general, it’s been a rough few years for the frontman of the world’s biggest rock band. The backlash against U2’s last record, 2014’s Songs of Innocence, was perhaps fiercer than for any other album released this decade (though the hate was more for the gung-ho iTunes release strategy than for the actual music). Then, a few months later, Bono crashed his bike, fractured his face, and shattered his arm. The injury, he later said, may have put a permanent end to his guitar playing days.
Still, neither Bono nor U2 have slowed down much. If anything, they sped up. This year, the band zipped around the globe playing The Joshua Tree for its 30th anniversary. Even at a relatively brief (by U2 standards) 51 dates, the tour grossed $316 million—enough to be the year’s highest grossing concert tour. Meanwhile, U2 have spent months tinkering with Songs of Experience, the sequel to their maligned 2014 album, which was supposed to come out a year ago. Even with the 12-month delay, Songs of Experience still arrives just three years and two months after its predecessor—the band’s briefest album-to-album gap since the early 1990s.