Meet the Exec Board – Ethan Reilly (’18)
by Ethan Reilly on August 18, 2017
Posted in: Music
Hey!!! I’m Ethan (he/him), your WRMC Business Director for 2017-18. I hail from the mystical land of Just Outside of Boston and I’m spending the summer working in the mystical land of Just Outside of Boston (though slightly less Outside of Boston—a clarification that seems to matter to us JOBs for whatever reason). In my free time, you can catch me cooking up some good eggs, talking to my dog, or doing rhetorical pushups so I can be extra resilient for the coming year (shouts out Laurie Patton). I’ve DJ’d at WRMC for a bunch of semesters now, and I so appreciate the channel it’s given me to share new music and meet some fricking amazing people. I can’t wait to do more of it this year! Here are some my favorite albums and tracks of 2017 so far:
DAMN. – Kendrick Lamar
Obviously! The hottest hot streak in recent hip hop history (wow, so many H’s!) continues. I can’t wait to be and old disillusioned man making my grandkids listen to Kendrick and be like “Music today is garbage. This is what real music sounds like.”
Melodrama – Lorde
Oh, how sweet it feels to be young and in love, and Australian, and beautiful, and an international music superstar. Okay, maybe I’m not most of those things, but listening to the pop perfection that is Melodrama makes me feel like I could be.
No Shape – Perfume Genius
Mike Hadreas (aka Perfume Genius) always baffles me with how seamlessly his music interweaves grandiosity with intimacy and vulnerability, and No Shape serves as by far his best project in doing so yet. A beautiful, anthemic album about queer bodies, queer love, and their inherent contradictions.
Process – Sampha
That distinctive croon featured on so many hit songs finally takes the spotlight, and it doesn’t disappoint. This is a spectacular, unconventional r & b album that I highly recommend for rainy, late night drives in the Prius down Route 2 (or whatever your equivalent of that situation is).
Slowdive – Slowdive
These dream-pop chillers return after a 24-year hiatus and somehow sound modern while still maintaining the integrity of their original sound. If you like sleepy, hypnotic, synthy, reverby bliss then give this one a listen.
Ctrl – SZA
I’ve been smaaaashing the repeat button on this album. But don’t take it from me, take it from Brandi, our former WRMC General Manager writing for NPR Music.
Big Fish Theory – Vince Staples
When the climate change-induced apocalypse turns our world into a Mad Max-type wasteland, this is the album I’ll be blasting out of my rusty desert cruiser. It’s one of the most original hip hop projects I’ve heard in a long time, drawing much of its influence from Detroit house, and I really hope more artists follow suit in the near future.
Boys – Charlie XCX
“I was busy thinking ‘bout boys.” If you can’t relate to this line, you’re a liar. Also, major bonus points for the incorporation of the Super-Mario-coin-collecting sound in the production.
Wild Thoughts – DJ Khaled feat. Rihanna
Fuck you Despacito, this is the actual song of the summer.
Want You Back – HAIM
Three sisters with a very special bond making music that you and anyone at your Thanksgiving Dinner soiree would want to dance to. Their whole Something To Tell You album is wonderful, and this track is its crown gem.
Midnight – Jessie Ware
It opens with her soft falsetto over a quiet, reflective instrumental—and then suddenly it takes a 180, transforming into a loud, proud foot-stomping ballad, all brought together by her incredible, soulful belt. Jessie Ware has left me shook once again.
Truth – Kamasi Washington
Two years after his triumphant debut LP The Epic, Kamasi picks up where he left off with another 10+ minute starts-melodic-then-descends-into-chaos jazz masterpiece.
Doomed – Moses Sumney
Moses is one of my favorite up-and-coming artists, this track showcases some of his best assets—heart-wrenching, melancholic song-writing and a falsetto that leaves me looking like the surprised emoji every time. If you like this one, look out for his LP Aromanticism coming out later this year.
Blue Cheese – 2 Chainz feat. Migos
I had to include Migos somewhere in this post because they’ve consistently churned out so much high quality music this year. Also, I think blue cheese is an underrated cheese that faces far too much undeserved ridicule from American cheese-eating basics.