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Staff Picks: Best albums of 2014

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[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Not only was 2014 the year of the “bae,” it was the year of fantastic music. Our very opinionated staff gave their thoughts on their favorite albums. From K-pop to indie folk, it’s all here.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_text_separator title=” Run River North: “Run River North“” title_align=”separator_align_left”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]This band, consisting of four Asian-Americans, gives a new definition to indie folk music. The upbeat tunes mixed with the unexpected classical instruments make this album perfect to listen to all year round. Their unique videos and raw talent makes them an interesting band overall.

Release date: Feb. 25, 2014[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_raw_html]JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI2NDAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzOTAlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjIlMkYlMkZ3d3cueW91dHViZS5jb20lMkZlbWJlZCUyRldRaVJOd0hNYnB3JTIyJTIwZnJhbWVib3JkZXIlM0QlMjIwJTIyJTIwYWxsb3dmdWxsc2NyZWVuJTNFJTNDJTJGaWZyYW1lJTNF[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_text_separator title=”X Ambassadors: “The Reason EP“ ” title_align=”separator_align_left”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Even though the album features only six songs, the X Ambassadors’ dark, passionate and groundbreaking style makes this album the phenomenal hit of the year. Their captivating lyrical style with both electronic and acoustic instrumentals had me lost in sound. “The Reason EP” pulled at my heartstrings while getting me pumped for the day ahead, making the X Ambassadors one to look out for.

Release date: April 22, 2014[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_raw_html]JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI2NDAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzOTAlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjIlMkYlMkZ3d3cueW91dHViZS5jb20lMkZlbWJlZCUyRkV6UDVLc1lTR0QwJTIyJTIwZnJhbWVib3JkZXIlM0QlMjIwJTIyJTIwYWxsb3dmdWxsc2NyZWVuJTNFJTNDJTJGaWZyYW1lJTNF[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_text_separator title=”Lindsey Stirling: “Shatter Me”” title_align=”separator_align_left”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Let’s just say it’s incredibly captivating and keeps me listening for hours on end. Yeah, there are flaws, but they aren’t too prominent or distracting. This isn’t the only successful album that she’s had. Even with the release of her most recent album, “Shatter Me,” the zeal and motivation behind her musical style is still clearly relevant, and her uplifting melody can’t be beat. Small bits of dubstep laced throughout the album only serves to enhance the appeal of the perpetuating pace and rhythm that improve what are already impressive songs.

Release date: April 29, 2014[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_raw_html]JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI2NDAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzOTAlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjIlMkYlMkZ3d3cueW91dHViZS5jb20lMkZlbWJlZCUyRjQ5dHBJTUR5OUJFJTIyJTIwZnJhbWVib3JkZXIlM0QlMjIwJTIyJTIwYWxsb3dmdWxsc2NyZWVuJTNFJTNDJTJGaWZyYW1lJTNF[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_text_separator title=”Mary Lambert: “Heart on my Sleeve”” title_align=”separator_align_left”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Mary Lambert’s “Heart on my Sleeve” is very personal and you get to hear things from her perspective on life and learn what all Lambert’s been through. She is a strong figure in the LGBT community, which is weaved in continually throughout the album. It’s much like other albums she’s done, yet with a more pop, edgy style.

Release date: Oct. 14, 2014[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_raw_html]JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI2NDAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzOTAlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjIlMkYlMkZ3d3cueW91dHViZS5jb20lMkZlbWJlZCUyRmNxcXFWNTB6YUFjJTIyJTIwZnJhbWVib3JkZXIlM0QlMjIwJTIyJTIwYWxsb3dmdWxsc2NyZWVuJTNFJTNDJTJGaWZyYW1lJTNF[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_text_separator title=”Epik High: “Shoebox”” title_align=”separator_align_left”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Epik High’s self-produced eighth album, “Shoebox” was one of my personal favorites of the year. Most of the songs are hip hop ballads, infused with angsty lyrics of pain and despair through love and life. In particular, “Happen Ending” is a bittersweet story about a man disheartened over a broken relationship. But true to rap culture, a few anthems like “Burj Khalifa” and the star-studded feature “Born Hater” keep parts of the album’s spirits high. Overall, it cements Epik High as a true face of South Korean hip hop and reigns as 2014’s strongest album.

Release date: Oct. 21, 2014[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_raw_html]JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI2NDAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzOTAlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjIlMkYlMkZ3d3cueW91dHViZS5jb20lMkZlbWJlZCUyRk04R1VsTk5YQlZnJTIyJTIwZnJhbWVib3JkZXIlM0QlMjIwJTIyJTIwYWxsb3dmdWxsc2NyZWVuJTNFJTNDJTJGaWZyYW1lJTNF[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_text_separator title=”Taylor Swift: “1989“” title_align=”separator_align_left”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Even with Taylor Swift’s transition from country to pop, she created powerful lyrics and catchy tunes in “1989.” Songs like “Shake it Off” and “Blank Space” were hits for a reason: her music is cleverly crafted and the album as a whole is something I look forward to listening to in the car or anywhere it happens to come on. All the songs bring a new style and theme, but each make the me and the listener fall more deeply in love with “1989”.

Release date: Oct. 27, 2014[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_raw_html]JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI2NDAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzOTAlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjIlMkYlMkZ3d3cueW91dHViZS5jb20lMkZlbWJlZCUyRm5mV2xvdDZoX0pNJTIyJTIwZnJhbWVib3JkZXIlM0QlMjIwJTIyJTIwYWxsb3dmdWxsc2NyZWVuJTNFJTNDJTJGaWZyYW1lJTNF[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_text_separator title=”Nickelback: “No Fixed Address” ” title_align=”separator_align_left”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]In Nickelback’s new album “No Fixed Address,” the group has put out 11 new rock empowered songs about love, power and destiny. The group has struggled, but has been able to keep that same rock and roll spirit alive through the changing pop culture. Their songs captivate the listener by putting out an energetic vibe matched by their powerful lyrics. Overall, Nickelback has been able to put out another great album.

Release date: Nov. 14. 2014[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_raw_html]JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI2NDAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzOTAlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjIlMkYlMkZ3d3cueW91dHViZS5jb20lMkZlbWJlZCUyRklZbnVTc003dFJ3JTIyJTIwZnJhbWVib3JkZXIlM0QlMjIwJTIyJTIwYWxsb3dmdWxsc2NyZWVuJTNFJTNDJTJGaWZyYW1lJTNF[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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Hebron High School News Online
Staff Picks: Best albums of 2014