It’s that time once again, as the countdown to the end of 2018 rapidly approaches we take a personal look back on familiar names, features and musicians’ best releases of the past 12 months. In what has been another crazy year of highs and lows- it’s the releases that have pulled a lot of people through the year. Now in it’s 8th year, Circuit Sweet will be hosting takeovers from the featured artists/musicians/labels and promoters of the site with their personal top releases of the year.
Continuing our annual end of year tradition; we let our favourites take over the site to tell us the records that have made their end of year lists. Telling us their favourite events/gigs and what we can look forward to from them next year.
Our next Rad Releases comes from a label and record store working tirelessly to introduce us to must hear music. We speak to Kay of Bristol-based label and shop Specialist Subject Records to discover more about Kay and SSR’s year in music…
- Top 5 releases of the year
I haven’t chosen any Specialist Subject releases because the list would be too long!
The Beths – Future Me Hates Me
Our friend who runs Deadpunk Promotions was absolutely raving about this band when he booked them earlier this year. The gig was brilliant and less than six months later they toured the UK again and played at Exchange (the venue our shop is in). It’s such infectious, catchy indie pop, with incredible vocal harmonies, backing vocals and surfy guitars. Everyone I’ve come across who hears the band falls head-over-heels in love with them.
Screaming Females – All At Once
Another band I’ve been lucky enough to see twice in Bristol this year. Their new album is a lot more poppy / catchy than Rose Mountain was, plus Marissa Paternoster is an absolute shredder on guitar and her voice is something else!
Camp Cope – How To Socialise & Make Friends
We were lucky enough to help them book their first UK & European tour over the summer with our friends Caves, I absolutely adored their s/t first album, but The Opener is their best song for me. Being at a sold out gig with mostly women in that audience screaming back the words was really special.
Superchunk – What A Time To Be Alive
We went to see them tour this album in London and were the youngest people in the crowd by a good ten years! When they announced the album it was a bit worrying- can a band in their fifties make relatable music? The new album is full of hits and is so politically charged it’s brilliant.
Gouge Away – Burnt Sugar
Gouge Away were a new band to me, but Deathwish are such a great label for creating excitement around their releases, I was really looking forward to it coming out. It’s hardcore but pretty accessible and catchy- I guess in the same way Drug Church are, which I like. They played at Exchange a couple of months ago with Culture Abuse and were really surprised and excited to see their album on the wall in our shop!
- The best gig you have attended
Oh wow, since moving to Bristol and into Exchange we’re so lucky to get to go to some great gigs on an almost weekly basis. The stand out ones have been Jeff Rosenstock on the Post- tour, it was great seeing them all since we helped put out the album as a surprise release New Years Day. Camp Cope were brilliant for all the strong feminist feels! Seeing Cayetana back in January- a band I’ve wanted to see for years! Seeing Propaghandi was amazing for the atmosphere. Too many!
- Label Highlights of your year
This year we managed to do our biggest release (Jeff Rosenstock), continue our long-standing relationship with Muncie Girls by releasing their second full length album (our fifth release with them!). We worked with a brand new band Dogeyed, and made new friends in Don’t Worry, so it’s been a real fun mixed-bag.
- Artist/Band to watch for 2019
I’m really looking forward to seeing what comes out of Eat Up For Starters. It’s a program of workshops & events by Bristol-based collected Eat Up, who have been putting on queer & women-led events for the past year. They’re currently encouraging people to start brand-new bands, with all the bands playing their first gig at an event on 9th March 2019. I can’t wait to see what the bands are like! https://www.facebook.com/EatUpforStarters/
- Plans for the New Year
We’re excited about working on loads of new releases next year- our 2019 Season Ticket is currently for sale- a subscription which gets you every vinyl release we do, plus loads of perks like a year-long 10% discount off everything we sell in the shop/online (http://shop.specialistsubjectrecords.co.uk/products/629869-2019-season-ticket-vinyl-subscription).
From 1st January Exchange will become Bristol’s first community-owned live music venue. They raised over £300,000 in investment this year, and they have absolutely loads of plans for
We are very excited