End of year lists get a lot of bad press. A lot of them (mine included) just validate each other, offering very few differences between each other (*cough*AnimalCollective*cough*), and some clearly suffer where the person involved has simply chosen an order they think will be cool without offering any reason why it should be that way. On the other hand, they can give you a reason to check out a band you’d never thought to explore before or simply just provide a bloody good read (check out the lists by Song, By Toad and Pop Headwound for this category). Or, as I’ve found out, they can reveal truly brilliant bands that you’ve never heard of before.
If I’d heard ‘Two’ by The Antlers before Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson, I might not have been so quick to declare ‘Buriedfed’ one of my favourite songs of the year. Both are dark, folk-based laments that crescendo in an unimaginably wonderful way. Both make me question why lyrics aren’t always be rooted in soul-crushing depression (well, this band answer that, I suppose, but let’s ignore that). Both give me faith that there’s a whole lot more to music than is sometimes apparent. The only difference is, I’m not sure I’d have heard The Antlers if it wasn’t for an end of year list (specifically, this one, thank you!), so I for one toast the weird human compulsion to turn everything into a hierarchy. Hoorah!