The 7 inch. Cruelly absused for so long, it has finally been risen to it’s former glory with at least 15+ blogs dedicated to the format and too many bands to count releasing one faster than you can blink. Reducing my entire year’s collection to ten was hard, but these 10 make the list not only for using the format right, but for just putting some great songs to wax.
10. Andrew Cedermark/Family Portrait Split (Underwater People) I think that this is currently the most under appreciated UPS release to date, which is a real shame. Emotional post-shoegaze on Cedermark’s side, and Real Estate style jams on Family Portrait’s. Rainy afternoon bliss.
9. Sonic Youth/Beck Split (sold out) Yes, a Records Store Day exclusive, but worth tracking down. It’s equal parts hilarious and spooky to hear Sonic Youth preform frap for their cover of Beck’s “Pay No Mind”, and Beck actually manages to do “Green Light” justice.
8. The Evaporators/Andrew W.K. split (Mint) A new Evaporators track, 3 stellar covers, liner notes that explaining every song, art work by Mitch Clem, all on white vinyl. What more do you want?
7. Best Coast- Self Titled 7 inch (Art Fag, sold out) The immortal “Sun Was High (So Was I)” captured on vinyl, along withe equally as good “So Gone” and an uncheesy version of the cheesy “that’s the Way Boys Are”. Best Coast hit the perfect spot between lo-fi and 60's music with this release.
6. Mission of Burma-Innermost (Matador) I said in my review for this that Mission of Burma were dumb for leaving these tracks off their album, and I stand by it. These represent everything great about Mission of Burma, and are as anthemic and addictive as the band gets.
5. Superchunk-Crossed Wires (Merge) The kings (and queen) of singles return with another two more classics of power chord heavy 90's style indie rock. God, how I missed them. Fingers crossed they make due on that new album.
4. Times New Viking-Stay Awake (Matador) 5 tracks of Times New Viking at their catchiest and no-fi . . .est. But just listen to “Call & Response” or “Sick & Tyred” and I dare you try to put this single down.
3. Carrie Nations-Self Titled 7 Inch (Stankhouse) A late contender for sure, but one not to be ignored. A testament not only to an almost forgotten band that should have been more popular, but to how great real pop-punk can be.
2. Boris-Japanese Heavy Rock Hits vol1 (Southern Lord) All three volumes were great, but 1 stands out for how dark “Hey Everyone” is and how great “8" is. Boris doesn’t release a lot of singles, so here’s hoping this is the start of a loving relationship with the format.
1. Best Coast-Make You Mine (Group Tightener, sold out) Ok, you could see this coming a mile away, but that doesn’t make it any less of the right choice. 4 tracks of absolutely perfect California style lo-fi and “In My Room” cover ten times better than the original. This is why 7 inches were invented.