Friday, December 07, 2018

My Year in Music According to Spotify (2018)

"You listen to non-mainstream artists 123% more than the average Spotify listener--so here's to being different."

That quote made me smile.

It's that time of year once again:  the year end lists, the last minute releases (though why anyone would release a record in December is beyond me), the endless holiday spending, and Spotify's annual end of the year celebration--2018 Wrapped!  After nerding out over last year's 2017 Wrapped, I made a conscious decision to make Spotify my primary avenue/application for listening to music.  I still buy music (both physically and digitally) but I decided to primarily use Spotify out of convenience, in hopes to get some royalties to the bands that I listen to (though I do understand that the payout for artists isn't that great, I figured every little bit, and stream, helps), and because I wanted to make sure that my 2018 Wrapped was as accurate reflection of my listening habits as possible.  And while I think my 2017 Wrapped was pretty darned accurate, I know that Sincere Engineer's Rhombithian spent a LOT of time in my car CD player.  Now unless I want to listen to something that isn't on Spotify (BYO Records, I'm looking at you), I do all of my music consumption with the service.

According to my 2018 Wrapped my Top Artist was Frank Turner followed by The Replacements, Sincere Engineer, Harker, and U2.  I'm honestly not at all surprised by this list.  At some point over the summer, I even remarked that if the Spotify list for the year came out then that Frank Turner and Sincere Engineer would probably be on top.  I wasn't wrong.  Frank Turner released a brilliant record in 2018 (plus put on a spectacular show down in Dallas) and Sincere Engineer released my favorite record of 2017 (and possibly the best record of the decade), so it is a no-brainer that they are in my top 5 artists on the year.  Harker released the first great album of 2018 in February so that makes perfect sense for them to be on the list.  Which leaves The Replacements and U2, two of my all-time favorite bands (that top 5, for those who might be curious -- U2, The Replacements, Frank Turner, Beach Slang, and ALL).  All the songs listed in the Top Songs come from Frank Turner's Be More Kind, but despite the 79 hours I spent listening to Mr. Turner, my Your Top Songs 2018 playlist is actually fairly diverse.

One thing that really struck me about my Your Top Songs 2017 playlist was how much of the music was older.  Case in point, of the first 10 songs on that playlist only two of them were released in this decade and only one in 2017.  When you look at the first 10 songs on my Your Top Songs 2018 playlist five of the songs were released in 2018, three were released in 2017, and two in 2016.  The other thing that this playlist reveals is that when I love something, I'm all-in.  Many of the artists on the playlist appear more than once (a few appear several times).  There's still plenty of older and classic artists and songs on this playlist including New Order's "Love Vigilantes," Billy Bragg's "A New England," Minor Threat's "Salad Days."  There's also The Loved Ones, Chainsaw Kittens, Don't Make Ghosts, Dead To Me, 7 Seconds, R.E.M., and The Cure plus 2018 releases from Brand New Friend, Tiny Stills, Aree & the Pure Heart, Muncie Girls, Swingin' Utters, and Restorations...and that's just a sampling.  It's a pretty freaking great playlist, if I do say so myself, and I've been listening to it non-stop since it came out.  For those interested, you can check it out below.

 

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