Don’t call me, because there’s no maybe. Carly Rae Jepsen didn’t make the third best album of 2015. I don’t care what other critics say.
Indignant dismissal is one of the things I enjoy most about perusing the annual Village Voice Pazz and Jop Critics’ Poll, which was released this week. Each year, this consensus ranking from more than 500 music fanatics forces me to applaud, fume, discover and rediscover. Whenever I fear that media oversaturation has dragged my love of music deep into the abyss of audio apathy, Pazz and Jop fires me all up again.
Check it out yourself at VillageVoice.com/pazznjop. Jepsen’s No. 3 ranking nothwithstanding, some of the poll’s results are predictable (and fair). But once you move past the top dozen or so albums, sheep mentality fades. Poptimism dissipates. True gems begin to emerge. And you notice that the dude dissing on Carly Rae also is the only writer who voted for Fall Out Boy. Oops.
Try to wade through at least the top 40 albums. With music so easily sampled via the Internet, you really have no excuse not to take an hour, explore and savor 2015 before diving headfirst into 2016 — and another zillion bands.
One of my favorite things to do is to click on an album that I love, then click the names of critics who voted for that album. You’ll see what other albums they liked. It’s human Pandora.
Below are Pazz and Jop’s top 10, followed by a brief description to save you time if you, say, loathe Canadian pop singers.
1. Kendrick Lamar, “To Pimp a Butterfly” (not a hip-hop classic, but really good)
2. Courtney Barnett, “Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit” (smart, rambling indie singer-songwriter)
3. Carly Rae Jepsen, “Emotion” (her so-called “indie” album)
4. Grimes, “Art Angels” (creative indie singer-songwriter)
5. Sleater-Kinney, “No Cities to Love” (Northwest indie royalty)
6. Sufjan Stevens, “Carrie & Lowell” (indie-folk from veteran singer-songwriter)
7. Vince Staples, “Summertime ’06” (dark hip-hop; I totally underrated this one until now)
8. Kamasi Washington, “The Epic” (jazz saxophonist)
9. Jamie xx, “In Colour” (British DJ-remixer-producer)
10. Father John Misty, “I Love You, Honeybear” (indie singer-songwriter, ex-Fleet Foxes).
Sasquatch goes on sale
After the usual months-long build up of rumored acts, the annual Sasquatch! Festival announced its lineup this week.
The Cure, Disclosure, Florence + The Machine, Alabama Shakes and Major Lazer are among the big names confirmed for this year’s party May 27-30 at the Gorge Amphitheatre.
If that’s not enough to convince you to make the seven-hour drive to George, Wash., on Memorial Day weekend, dozens of other acts will span a vast variety of genres. More than 120 are planned. Other major highlights include A$AP Rocky, Grimes, M83, Sufjan Stevens, Leon Bridges, Kurt Vile and lots more.
The talent pool is so strong that notable bands such as Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats and Yo La Tengo have been relegated to fine print on the Sasquatch! poster.
Radio ratings, gossip
Every six months, Nielsen Audio data measures listener share among commercial radio stations.
The ratings for fall 2015 just hit the streets.
Hello, 107.9 Lite FM. The adult contemporary station came out on top among all listeners 12 and older — the overall bragging rights category.
Hot AC station Mix 106 topped the 25- to 54-year-old category, which is the demographic chased by advertisers. Rumors are swirling that change is in the air for Mix’s “Mike & Kate in the Morning” show. If that is true, it will be interesting to see if Mix keeps rolling strong in the next ratings book.
Here are the aforementioned quarter-hour share ratings for Treasure Valley stations among listeners 12 and older between 6 a.m. and midnight:
▪ KXLT-FM 107.9 (Lite FM): 5.6
▪ KBOI-AM 670 (news/talk): 5.4
▪ KCIX-FM 105.9 (Mix 106): 5.0
▪ KZMG-FM 102.7 (My 102.7): 4.0
▪ KWYD-FM 101.1 (Wild 101.1): 3.8
▪ KSAS-FM 103.5 (Kiss FM): 3.4
▪ KTHI-FM 107.1 (K-Hits): 3.4
▪ KSRV-FM 96.1 (Bob): 3.2
▪ KRVB-FM 94.9 (The River): 3.2
▪ KQBL-FM 100.7 (The Bull): 3.2
▪ KKGL-FM 96.9 (The Eagle): 3.2
▪ KKOO-FM 99.5 (Kool Oldies): 3.0
▪ KAWO-FM 104.3 (Wow): 2.8
▪ KIDO-AM 580 (news/talk): 2.6
▪ KIZN-FM 92.3 (Kissin’ 92.3): 2.6
▪ KQXR-FM 100.3 (The X): 2.4
▪ KQFC-FM 97.9 (Nash): 2.4
▪ KJOT-FM 105.1 (Rock 105.1): 2.2
▪ KTIK-FM 93.1 (The Ticket): 1.8
▪ KNFL-AM 730 (ESPN/sports): 0.8
▪ KBGN-AM 1060 (Christian): 0.8
‘Family Ties’ in Boise
My voice mail can be random.
This week’s example: “It’s Marc Price calling. Some people know me as the guy who played Skippy on ‘Family Ties.’ That’s right! My family even still calls me Skippy.”
Um, congrats? Condolences?
Is Mallory around?
Price called to say he’ll be in Boise on Tuesday, Feb. 16, performing stand-up at Liquid Laughs one night only. It’s the “Fresh Jar of Skippy Tour.”
Avett Bros., Treefort
Summer concert! Folk-rockers The Avett Brothers will perform July 25 at the Ford Idaho Center Amphitheater. Tickets go on sale Jan. 22.
And Treefort Music Fest just announced its second round of acts. The coolest news? Bassist Thundercat will perform.