Album: Three Rounds and a Sound
Artist: Blind Pilot
Label: Expunged Records
We've reached #8 on our countdown, which happens to be Blind Pilot's 3 Rounds and a Sound. What makes this album worthy of such a high rating? I think in this case, it's less groundbreaking music, and more a sense of familiarity. The first time I heard this record, I was reminded of most of the good moments in my life. I have no idea why, or how, but I felt as if I'd heard these tracks a thousand times over. It's a warm familiarity which cannot be matched by any other collection of songs that came out this year, so for that alone, I'm putting it as high as I am. Listen to 3 Rounds once, and I can almost guarantee you'll sense something. It may not be the familiarity that I did, but it will be something good.
The album begins with the warm, folksy "Oviedo". The warmth is a result of the closeness you feel here, not necessarily the subject matter. That, actually, focuses on some regret, as well as a fair amount of advice for life. A common theme throughout this record is trying to draw a lesson from life experiences, be it yours' or someone else's. A lot of it seems to focus on what was once good, but now may not be. I guess that's how I'm transported back to my own positive moments. As far as continuity goes, the album's two best tracks, "The Story I Heard" and "One Red Thread" have a lot in common, from the up tempo folk sound, to the look-on-the-brightside demeanor. By the end, however, it's as if the album wants to go back to the start, which you almost assuredly will want to do as well, to listen again. Similar artists may include Iron & Wine, Blitzen Trapper and The Format (acoustic material only).
Best Track: "The Story I Heard"