There were 108 posts published on PopLib in 2019. These were the Top 12 ‘Most Viewed’ posts.

1 “Ah Bah D’Accord” by Juniore

“The pulsing bassline and buzzing farfisa organ topped with a coolly dismissive vocal updates that peculiarly French style of late 1960s pulp garage pop associated with Serge Gainsbourg particularly the colourful run of singles featuring Brigitte Bardot.”

2 “Voice” by Seafog

““Animal Lovers” is a perfect combination of raw and distressed Sonic Youth-styled wall-of-guitar noise frenzy (showcased on the relentless thundering 12-minute drone-jam “Feelings”) often set to pulsing motorik drumming, and the loose jangling lo-fi charm of bands like The Verlaines and The Clean in their earliest forms (as the more restrained and crisp “Voice” here demonstrates).”

3 “Dairy of a Rose” by Mega Bog

“On the surface it’s almost conventional and somewhat  hushed motorik guitar pop. But darting, buzzing and weaving among the rhythm guitar, synth, bass and drums is an unusual assemblage of delicately odd experimental musical noise, and the decidedly un-subdued and brilliant free-ranging lead guitar of Meg Duffy. The combination of that quietly bustling and burbling sonic mixture, the unexpected melodic twists, and Birgy’s vocal delivery brings to mind a variation on the kind of leftfield individualistic pop of Cate Le Bon.”

4 “Valse Tango” by Grand Veymont

“…multiple keyboard/ synth parts interwoven and ever-changing. At times reminiscent of exploratory psycehedelic rock, medieval music, and the kind of repetitive human-made machine music of the likes of Harmonia and Cluster. The vocals add an extra element of other-wordliness to this. Combined with the motorik keyboard music, sometimes evokes the kind of European grand pop of Stereolab, and at other times the wordless voice improvises flights of fantasy into the aether.”

5 “Datsun” by The S-Bends

““Datsun” shares a similar storytelling approach to post-punk guitar-pop as Don McGlashan in Blam Blam Blam and The Mutton Birds (eg: the similarly car-themed “White Valiant”). And there’s shades here of the kind of atmosphere (without the vocal melodrama) The Triffids regularly conjured – like the song is transporting the listener into scenes from a movie, or into the pages of a short story.”

6 “Cruise Control” by House Deposit

““Cruise Control” here seems less ‘dolewave’ and more like ‘droll-wave’ with its gloriously laconic sing-speak delivery, shared around the band members and somewhere betwixt the deadpan delivery of The Goon Sax and Courtney Barnett’s quotidian poetry. Simple stuff, doing the classic unfussy Australian strum&jangle guitar band thing very well indeed, and a very nice instrumental coda reminiscent of the Go-Betweens rhythm & lead guitar interplay at the end adding the perfect sprinkle of shredded dessicated coconut on their fluffy musical lamington bake.”

7 “Stardust” by Francisca Griffin

““Stardust” explodes like a supernova, solar flares of plasma manifesting in Forbes Williams’ structural guitar noise. That unexpected combination of prototypical Dunedin jangling folk-rock and equally prototypical Dunedin noise-rock forms propels the song into the “Stardust” of the title.  It all makes for something quite unusual and glorious.”

8 “Where Are You My Love?” By J.McFarlane’s Reality Guest

“The album is notionally ‘synth-pop’ but in a minimalist way. “Where Are You My Love?” stands out for its unusual simplicity, the song taking the form of an almost traditional folk lament sung over minimal instrumentation of synth, and flute.”

9th = “Hissing Waves” by The Leaf Library

““Hissing Waves”, with it’s twin-voiced lyrical meditation on “an endless looping cycle” of space and time, sits somewhere in the middle between the organic pastoral mood at one extreme and the mechanical hum at the other.  It serves as a perfect introduction to this enigmatic and individual album.”

9th = “Daylight Matters” by Cate Le Bon

“Once again there’s an Eno-esque quality to the sounds on “Daylight Matters” with its gorgeous descending chords and warm blanket of treated saxophone, with twisting guitar over a gentle bed of piano chords. It’s always the unexpected touches, like the parts the instruments are playing and the melodic diversions along the way, which help provide Le Bon’s songs with their distinctive appeal. That and her unmistakable voice.”

10th = “Breeding Feeling”“Breeding Feeling” by Current Affairs

“…the reverb-heavy chorus and flange guitar sound of “Breeding Feeling” draws on that classic post-punk sound, adding its own distinctive joyous earworm chorus.”

10th = “Tracks” by Russian Baths

“Russian Baths create a thrillingly brutal variation on shoegaze, their submerged dream-state melodic vocals bound together with layered rasps of metallic guitars that have more in common with Husker Du and Sonic Youth than Slowdive and My Bloody Valentine. The contrasts between extremes here on “Tracks” are compelling; noise with whispers, harshness with softness, turmoil with tranquility, menace with comfort, dystopia with utopia, darkness with light…”