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Brendan Kelly lists his favorite albums (and stuff) of 2018, on tour now

Riot Fest 2017 - Saturday
Brendan Kelly at Riot Fest 2017 (more by James Richards IV)

Having recently released the new Brendan Kelly and the Wandering Birds album, Keep Walkin’ Pal, Brendan Kelly (who also sings in The Lawrence Arms and The Falcon) is set to resume touring in Philly tonight (12/6). He’s doing a short Northeast run with Sincere Engineer this week, which also includes a Boston-area show on Friday (12/7) and Brooklyn’s Goldsounds on Saturday (12/8) (tickets). Updated dates are listed below.

As the year is coming to a close, we asked Brendan what his favorite albums of 2018 were, and he sent a list with very personalized (and often funny) commentary that includes likeminded punks like Brian Fallon, Alkaline Trio, and Red City Radio, rapper CupcakKe, country singer Kacey Musgraves (whose new album Brendan admits he “didn’t listen to yet”), his own album, a book, a music journalist, Nomeansno’s 1989 album, and… this very year-end list. Check out his list and read what he had to say below…

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BRENDAN KELLY’S TOP ALBUMS (AND STUFF) OF 2018

Brian Fallon – Sleepwalkers: maaaaaaan, brother, this record makes me wanna dust off these faded work boots, throw down this dishwasher’s apron, walk out of this here diner, grab my girl from the old gospel church next door and catch the first big old Chevy out of this sleepy, dead-eyed town usin’ nothin’ but my thumb and a little dumb luck, and never look back again. Also, whoever recorded this knows what the fuck they’re doing. There’s a snapping part that even sounds awesome.

Alkaline Trio – Is This Thing Cursed?: Never in the history of music has there been an album title that so obviously refers to Dan’s dick.

Red City Radio – SkyTigers: This shit’s good. Before this year i had a real fucked up idea of what I thought RCR sounded like. Turns out I was all wrong. This is a pretty bombastic, weird, explorative album that is not shy about owing just as much to…like, Queensryche as to anything else. If you’re not yet on board, I promise you, these dudes are better than you think they are. By a lot.

Brendan Kelly and the Wandering Birds – Keep Walkin’ Pal: Hey! This is MY record? What a shitty cheesedick thing to do, right? Well, did you even KNOW I put out a record this year? Didn’t think so. Besides, as Gary Dellabate says, if I’m not for me, then who is gonna be for me?” He’s got a point. A happy Baba Booey to all of you.

CupcakKe – Ephorize: Yo. This girl is from Chicago and she’s no bullshit insanely talented and fun and smart and sexy and awesome in every way. She spends more time talking about dicks than I do. In fact, if she wasn’t really talented, she and I would have a lot in common. As it stands, Cupcakke rules. Check the song Duck Duck Goose but for fuckssakes, don’t watch the video at work.

Miguel Chen – I Wanna Be Well: Yes, this is a book. It’s like an album that you read instead of steal and then never listen to. But this is a great book, Miguel is a lovely dude and a new dad and a smart as shit guy, and this is a terrific read. Fun fact, Miguel asked me for a blurb for the book jacket and I’m such a lazy jagoff that I didn’t do it. And I consider him to be practically family. The irony is, if I’d already read the book, it would have motivated me to not be such a lazy jagoff. Eh, Namaste or whatever.

Kacey Musgraves – Golden Hour: Gonna be honest, didn’t listen to this yet. But Kacey is not only someone who has NEVER made a song I don’t like but also I really really like her (more than a friend) and so here I am, shamelessly pandering. Hi Kacey! (kicks dust)…you’re really good…

Brendan Kelly – This List: Jesus Fucking Christ. I just went out there to see what else came out this year and it’s like everyone’s got a fucking chemex pour-over thing stuffed up their asses. These lists are fucking terrible, no? I mean, does everything have to be SUCH an exercise in “getting it?” Mercy. For that reason, this list has made my list as Best List of 2018.

Luke O’Neil – Hell World: I mean, this is a great addition to this list because the LAST thing Luke wants is me hyping his writing, which is already quite popular. Hell World is a great subscription newsletter that’s really devastatingly well written and very much worth the small subscription fee. Luke is a treasure. But the thing is, Luke also has some band that’s not nearly as popular as his writing, and more to the point, I haven’t ever heard a note by his band, and I even think they put music out this year but i’m not gonna even say the name of the band here in the spirit of being a total dick. Just kidding. They’re called No Hope No Harm, but like I said, I got no idea if they’re good or not. I DO know that Hell World is amazing. Also, it’s not lost on me that I just decried other lists and now I’m completely fucking around. Yo, this is where my muse takes me. I’m being carried through the sand right now. Jesus is at the wheel. And so forth.

And the number one album of the year, for 29 consecutive years in a row is Nomeansno’s Wrong. Listen to the song “Rags and Bones” and realize it was created by two brothers in their 30’s living in their mom’s basement and um…yeah. That’s actually exactly what it sounds like and man, it’s so fucking awesome. Congrats on another year of being the best album of the year, Wrong.

Thanks for reading. Xoxoxo

Brendan Kelly — 2018 Tour Dates
12/6 – Philadelphia, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie (with Sincere Engineer)
12/7 – Somerville, MA @ ONCE (with Sincere Engineer)
12/8 – Brooklyn, NY @ Gold Sounds (with Sincere Engineer
12/28 – Denver, CO @ Streets of London
12/31 – Fort Collins, CO @ Surfside 7 (with Garrett Dale)
1/11 – Milwaukee, WI @ Cactus Club (with Sincere Engineer)
1/18 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Resident
1/19 – San Diego, CA @ Tower Bar
2/22 – Albany, CA @ Ivy Room
2/23 – San Francisco, CA @ Thee Parkside (with Joey Cape)

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