In case you missed it: five great underrated albums of 2014

Life & Arts Editor

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Tons of great music is being constantly released, so it is easy to miss out on some albums that you might actually love. Here are five great albums that came out in 2014 that you should pay attention to.

1) “You’re Gonna Miss It All” – Modern Baseball

This sophomore effort from Modern Baseball kicks off with a lyric that encapsulates the idea at the heart of the album: “I hate worrying about the future, ’cause all my current problems are based around the past.” The band’s music definitely seems geared toward the college crowd, with plenty of songs about failed relationships and brief references to social media. The vocals may come off as weird (and reminiscent of The Weakerthans) at first, but they will grow on you quickly with the band’s catchy melodies and relatable lyrics.

2) “Pilot” – GameBrand

This debut independent release from an up-and-coming hip-hop duo is a surprisingly great album that is worth way more than it costs (which is nothing, a free download from their website). Rapper Brandon Canada swiftly slips back and forth between rapping and singing, so if you are a fan of Drake or Childish Gambino but want something with a little more funk and reggae tendencies, “Pilot” is perfect for you. Derek Gamlan, the other half of the group, produced all of the beats and does a fantastic job of making sure none of the songs really sound alike, which is usually a problem that plagues hip-hop albums produced entirely by one person.

3) “Oh, Common Life” – Fireworks

Summer just feels like pop-punk to me, so even though this album was released in March, I can see it getting a lot of replay from me in the coming months. A lot of the lyrics deal with the death of lead singer David Mackinder’s father, but the music never gets bogged down in depressing slow jams at all. It is packed full of energy and catchy choruses that are perfect for singing along to with the windows down on a warm day. This album also contains one of the best songs the band has ever written in “Run, Brother, Run,” with Mackinder crooning, “I’m getting used to my skin, but it doesn’t fit right / I share my name with a stranger all my life.”

4) “My Krazy Life” – YG

Gangster rap is having a pretty awesome year, with great releases from Schoolboy Q and Rick Ross, and YG’s debut studio album continues the trend. It follows a day in the life of YG in his hometown of Compton, a concept that sounds almost identical to Kendrick Lamar’s “good kid, m.A.A.d city,” which YG admitted he modeled his structure off of. But this album sounds nothing like Kendrick’s and is filled with YG and producer DJ Mustard’s unique flavor of west coast hip-hop. If you crave something fun and upbeat to bump regularly, “My Krazy Life” will undoubtedly fill that void.

5) “Young & Sick” – Young & Sick

You probably recognize Young & Sick’s work from the cover of both Foster the People albums as well as Robin Thicke’s latest outing. But now the artist has released his own self-titled album, and it is glorious. His debut is filled with 10 perfectly groovy R&B jams fit for any Frank Ocean fan, or someone who just loves infectious melodies. Every song on here is great, but the album opens with an amazing track titled “Mangrove,” with singer Nick Van Hofwegen asking himself, “When life is smiling at me, why do I frown?”