Jamie here, as a relatively new writer on Dying Scene I feel a certain level of responsibility and excitement with giving my first top 10 albums article. Most of you know me as Goldfinger, and if you’ve had the opportunity to catch any of my articles you’ll notice I’ve got an unhealthy love for my home-grown punk rock. Fortunately 2017 was a banger year for Canadianity as we were spoiled with several home-grown Canuck classics. Anyway, enough with the filler. Check below to find out if we can be friends or not.
10. Family Meeting – “No One Cares ‘Til You’re Dead”
We start out with some home-grown Canadian melodic punk. Family Meeting gives us technical guitar riffs with amazingly clear and meaningful lyrics. Straight out of “the Big City” this is a genre of punk I usually don’t listen to very much but if more bands sounded like these guys I could see myself indulging a little more. Like most good punk albums this ones pretty hard and fast. Do yourself a favour and sit down and give this one a listen. But if your short of time check out “The Pursuit of Crapiness” below.
9. Raygun Cowboys – “Cowboy Code”
We head out to western Canada for this one, Edmonton, Alberta to be precise. Raygun Cowboys give us a perfect blend of 50’s inspired psychobilly mixed with a tinge of ska and dash of punk rock attitude. “The Cowboy Code” gives us a brassier version of the boys, but without a doubt one of my most listened to albums of 2017. I feel like if Elvis ate more poutine this is what he’d sound like. Anyway since everyone needs some psychobilly scoot on over and give the album a listen here. But if you’re diffusing a bomb and only have three minutes check out “Storms a Brewin'” below.
8. Booze & Glory – “Chapter IV”
We head across the pond for this choice. London’s own Oi punk legends Booze & Glory released a real banger this year. Admittedly I had never heard of Booze & Glory before I started writing for Dying Scene but instantly fell in love with these guys. “Chapter IV” is one of the most complete albums top to bottom, each song tells a story and really that’s what good music should do. I can’t stress enough how much I want to sit everyone down and force them to listen to this album, that’s how good it really is. But if you insist on making me choose one song I’d check out “Carry On” below.
7. No Use For A Name – “Rarities Vol. 1:The Covers”
OK, now I don’t know if this technically counts as “new” so to speak, but to hell with you this is my list. With the passing of the legendary Tony Sly in 2012 it was pretty much a forgone conclusion we wouldn’t get any new No Use For A Name. However, Fat Mike decided to spoil the world with Christmas in August, Fat Wreck Chords released “Rarities Vol.1:The Covers”. Sure it’s a cover album, sure we had heard some of the songs, but dammit I love me some No Use For A Name. So do yourself a favour and try not to move around while you listen to this cover lovers dream. Or just check out the awesome cover of the Sublime classic “Badfish” below.
6. Gogol Bordello – “Seekers and Finders”
Well maybe it’s the cold air up here, but I loved this album. It’s hard not to like Gogol Bordello but I feel like the chaos of each song on this album is a perfect summation of Gogol Bordello as a whole. For me this is a band I forget exists until they drop a new album and then I just get lost in it for weeks. This albums gives us a softer Gogol Bordello which might actually be a good thing. With slightly less mayhem it makes this a pleasant album for an easy listen. If I had to give you one song to hook you into this album it’d be the cleverly titled “Saboteur Blues”, which you can check out below.
5. Goldfinger – “The Knife”
Alright, before someone in the comments even has an oppurtunity to say it, I know it’s not really Goldfinger. I agree, but barring calling these guys John Feldman and the Punkies I see no other way around it. I’ll admit when I first got my hands on this album I was skeptical. As my pen name suggests I like Goldfinger, hell I loved Goldfinger but this isn’t really the Goldfinger that got me into punk. None the less this album grew on me, there is horns, catchy riffs, anthemic lyrics. Sure it’s like over polishing a turd, but Feldman can belt out a tune. If your skeptical at least take a few minutes and check out “Who’s Laughing Now?” below.
4. Dearly Divided – “So Much For New Beginnings”
Bay area punks Dearly Divided kind of came out of nowhere with this one, I covered their album release on Dying Scene and it instantly found its way into my daily rotation. The second release for the melodic punks is without a doubt top to bottom one of the tightest
albums I’ve heard from an up and coming band for some time. There’s not a weak spot in this album so without a doubt do yourself a favour and check out “So Much For New Beginnings” here. If you just want a sample of what the album has to offer check out “Run” below.
3. Propaghandi – “Victory Lap”
Were you getting a little worried? Not enough Canadianity? No problem. Propaghandi is back with the highly anticipated “Victory Lap”. Straight out of Winnipeg, the Canadian punks with a social concience are back with one of their best album to date. It’s not your older brothers Propaghandi but it’s pretty damn good. Heavy guitars mixed with some of the best vocals I can remember on a Propagandhi album. If you haven’t already grab a double double and give this bad boy a listen. Or just check out the killer track “Failed Imagineer” below.
2. The Riptides – “Canadian Graffiti”
Hey look at that eh? Another Canadian band cracks the top three, The Riptides with “Canadian Graffiti”. Without a doubt the punks from O-town’s best album to date. If you love some fun, bouncy, pop-punk this is the album for you. No one does it better than Canada when it comes to pop-punk and this album is no different. Top to bottom this album is tight, solid music, mixed with fun lyrics with a ton of punk rock attitude. If you want a solid full album listen, scoot on over here. If you’re full of obligations and being grown up check out the track “Someone Just Like You” below, it features fellow Canadian alternative songstress Bif Naked.
1. 88 Fingers Louie – “Thank You For Being A Friend”
Chicago punk legends 88 Fingers Louie were back this year with their first new album since the 1998 release of “Back On The Streets”, and man it did not disappoint. I’ve had this album on constant rotation since I got my hands on it. I was lucky enough to catch these guys live the last time they rolled through Ottawa and have to say it was by far my show of the year. Top to bottom, front to back, this album is a must hear, technical guitar riffs amazing lyrics. If you love the late 90’s 88 Fingers Louie, you have to give this album a good listen. If your busy wrapping presents and drinking egg nog with aunt June slip in her “Meds” below.