Playback: Top 100 Austin Albums of 2017

Top 10s? Feh! Multiply that by 10 – locally.


The Top 10 list is nonsense. That obligatory tally of artistic superiority that every critic, record store clerk, and devoted scenester issues at year's end remains the equivalent of judging an iceberg by the snow cone you shaved off the top.

There have been – at the very least – 400 albums released by Austin artists in 2017. I can confirm this as a repository for such things. My mailbox is chockablock with vinyl, cassette, and CD offerings; my calendar filled with album and EP release shows; and my inbox brimming with SoundCloud streams advancing releases that publicists promise to be masterpieces.

Consider that magnitude, which equates to over seven releases a week springing from the loins of our creative community, then tell me you can sum up the year in Austin music with 10 picks. The situation calls for us to dig deeper. Thus, "Playback" offers something unprecedented: 100 favorite local albums of 2017.

With shallow and reductive Top 10s, if an artist takes offense that they weren't included or the public expresses dismay that someone slept on an essential release, there's always, "Oh gosh, that was number 11." No such safety net exists with this Top 100 list, so we expect to provoke a sizable amount of hate, but let me say this: I truly enjoyed every entry herein. Not until the mid-140s did I begin encountering albums that suck, and that's a testament to the breadth of quality music coming out of our burg.

By the way, if your favorite record didn't make this list, don't feel bad. It came in at No. 101.

1) Molly Burch, Please Be Mine (Captured Tracks)

2) Impalers, Cellar Dweller (540 Records)

3) Hikes, Lilt EP (Community)

4) Malik, The Awakening II (Zion)

5) Walker Lukens, Tell It to the Judge (Modern Outsider)

6) USA/Mexico, Laredo (12XU)

7) Bill Converse, The Shape of Things to Come (Dark Entries)

8) A Giant Dog, Toy (Merge)

9) Whiskey Shivers, Some Part of Something (Clean Bill)

10) Summer Salt, So Polite (Austin Town Hall)

11) Krigblast, Dawn of the Apocalypse (Selfmadegod)

12) Black Angels, Death Song (Partisan)

13) Monk Parker, Crown of Sparrows (Grand Jury)

14) Dallas Acid, Spa Hunter (Flying Moonlight)

15) The Midnight Stroll, Western Static

16) VVV, Shadow World (Holodeck)

17) Protextor & Brother Bear, American Neon

18) Caroline Says, 50,000,000 Elvis Fans Can't Be Wrong (Western Vinyl)

19) Knife in the Water, Reproduction (Keeled Scales)

20) Xetas, The Tower (12XU)

21) Sweet Spirit, St. Mojo (Nine Mile)

22) Black Pistol Fire, Deadbeat Graffiti (Rifle Bird)

23) Street Sects, Rat Jacket (The Flenser)

24) Reputations, Begging for More (Resurrection)

25) Wild Bill Ogden, Fighting for the Title

26) David Ramirez, We're Not Going Anywhere

27) Porter & the Bluebonnet Rattlesnakes, Don't Go Baby It's Gonna Get Weird Without You (Cornelius Chapel Records)

28) Big Bill, Stand by Your Bill (First Humans)

29) Doom Side of the Moon

30) Lomelda, Thx (Double Double Whammy)

31) US Weekly (12XU)

32) Willie Nelson, God's Problem Child (Legacy Recordings)

33) Magna Carda, Somewhere Between

34) Michael C. Sharp, Never Enough Time (Holodeck)

35) Kalu & the Electric Joint, Time Undone (Spaceflight)

36) Think No Think, Silent City (Art Etc.)

37) Scott H. Biram, Bad Testament (Bloodshot)

38) Shinyribs, I Got Your Medicine (Mustard Lid)

39) Alex Napping, Mise en Place (Father/Daughter)

40) Golden Boys, Better Than Good Times (12XU)

41) Spoon, Hot Thoughts (Matador)

42) Pure Luck (Heavy Feather)

43) Growl, Won't You (Austin Town Hall)

44) Crooked Bangs, II (Nervous Intent)

45) Quin Galavis, The Battery Line (Super Secret)

46) Octopus Project, Memory Mirror (Robot High School)

47) Whit, Wait What?

48) Go Fever

49) Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears, Backlash (INgrooves)

50) Ingebrigt Håker Flaten's Time Machine, Hong Kong Cab (Self Sabotage)

51) Concrete Elite, Iron Rose (Longshot)

52) Survive, RR7387 Remix (Relapse)

53) Kay Odyssey, What's a Woman to Do (Little Bit)

54) Super Thief, Stuck

55) Tamarron, Let's Get Out

56) Little Mazarn (Super Secret)

57) Plax, Clean Feeling (Super Secret)

58) Ray Wylie Hubbard, Tell the Devil I'm Getting There as Fast as I Can (Bordello)

59) Matt the Electrician, The Doubles

60) John Wesley Coleman III, Microwave Dreams (Super Secret)

61) Sertified, See Ya Soon

62) Sour Notes, Darkest Sour (No Play Music)

63) Greenbeard, Lödarödböl (Sailor)

64) Sigil, Kingdom of the Grave (Horror Pain Gore Death)

65) The John-Pauls, Forget to Remember to Forget (Aagoo)

66) Capyac, Fis

67) Full Service, Welcome Home

68) Lung Letters, Passing Days (Super Secret)

69) Doug Strahan & the Good Neighbors, Twilight Drifter

70) Mazel Tov Kocktail Hour, Shoyn Avek Der Nekhtn

71) Leche, Inhalant Dangers (Digital Hotdogs)

72) Krypol Haze, Senseless

73) Sailor Poon, B-Sides and Rarities (Pecan Crazy)

74) Hard Proof, Stinger (Modern Outsider)

75) Ali Holder, Huntress Moon

76) Big Foot Chester & Gary Lindsey with Scott Biram, Graveyard Shift (Ghost Highway)

77) Tee-Double, Bless the Child (Kinetic Global)

78) Randy Reynolds, Positiveness

79) Hexist (Death Jam)

80) Thor & Friends, The Subversive Nature of Kindness (LM Dupli-cation)

81) Abram Shook, Love at Low Speed (Western Vinyl)

82) Glue, S/T MLP (La Vida Es Un Mus)

83) Soaked, Don't Wanna Wake Up Today (Yippee Ki Yay)

84) Ignitor, Haunted by Rock & Roll (EMP)

85) JD Pinkus, Keep on the Grass (Minner Bucket)

86) Brownout, Over the Covers (Fat Beats)

87) Jack Wilson, Kami Coming to Get Me

88) Fastball, Step Into Light

89) Blood Pumps, America & Burgers (Tough)

90) Army

91) Solid Goat, War on Terra

92) Sam Baker, Land of Doubt (Blue Limestone)

93) Otis the Destroyer, Keep Bashing

94) Gurf Morlix, The Soul & the Heal (Rootball)

95) Mayeux & Broussard, Hot in Tejas

96) Mindz of a Different Kind, Foursight

97) Transit Method, We Won't Get out of Here Alive (Brutal Panda)

98) The Butts

99) Horti, Corpus Callosum (Illustrious Hippopoticorn)

100) The Boleys

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