Welcome to the new year! As many of you probably noticed, we did not post any ‘best of’ lists in December 2017. This was an intentional decision made by our entire contributing staff, and we made it for good reason. All too often the rush to be among the first to declare something the best makes us act irrationally. Sometimes we hop on the bandwagon for something we don’t fully believe in because it’s what is trending at the moment, or perhaps we forget something small we loved because so many bigger, more commercial projects took up our daily lives.

In an attempt to avoid these errors we allowed everyone the full month of December to consider their favorite records of the year. This week we are sharing their picks with you daily, one staffer at a time. Enjoy.

Molly Hudelson (Staff Writer)

ALBUM OF THE YEAR Walk The Moon – What If Nothing

I’ve spent a lot of time writing about Walk The Moon this fall- and I’ve also spent a lot of time listening to them, so it comes as no surprise that What If Nothing is my pick for the best of 2017. Released in November on RCA Records, it’s the band’s fourth album and third major label release. It’s their most honest effort to date, and this time around Walk The Moon have done their best job yet at showing who they really are to listeners by being strategic about their single choices: the introductory “One Foot” was a declaration of their decision to move on and move forward, and “Surrender”, released as the third single in October, showed that they weren’t afraid to make themselves vulnerable.

On What If Nothing, Walk The Moon are very much a rock and roll band, but they don’t find themselves confined to predictable song structures, and instead explore electronic landscapes and bring hints of funk to their brand of ecstatic, energetic indie rock. While the optimism and empowerment Walk The Moon are known for are indeed present on What If Nothing, the album is crafted as a tale of exploration through the wilderness. From “Press Restart”, where they decide to embark on a new path, to “Lost In The Wild”, where they embrace the lack of direction, the journey does feel uncomfortable at points, but things worth doing often are.

  1. Free Throw – Bear Your Mind
  2. NF – Perception
    4. Hodera – First Things First
  3. Enter Shikari – The Spark
  4. A Will Away – Here Again
  5. Dead Leaves – Vultures
  6. Missio – Loner
  7. Slushii – Out of Light
  8. Old Dominion – Happy Endings