To those that know me they know that my relationship with music goes simply beyond listening. It is a hobby that has taken over my life in the best ways possible. Beyond the listening I enjoy discussing music and diving into the stories behind the artists, albums, and songs. There isn’t a situation that exists in the world that can’t be sound tracked with the proper song. Whether in solidarity or amidst a crowd of thousands, a few simple chords or thoughtful lyrics can define a mood and help us through.
I am not entirely sure when this hobby started or how exactly it blossomed, all I know is that it has become a force in my every day. Ever since I have been allowed to go in I have been to dozens of concerts all throughout the world. Live music takes the songs and experiences to an entirely different level of enjoyment. Going to shows and discussing music with people you know and even those you don’t connects us on a level that knows no controversy or opposition. It is a beautiful bastion of art that needs to continue for all time.
In 2015 I decided to try and encapsulate my thoughts and feelings on my favorite albums of the current year by doing a little bit of writing on each. I had never really attempted something like this and certainly didn’t have much experience writing outside of engineering reports and “creative” writing in school that was nothing but as you sweated out the opinion of a TA being forced to put a letter on a paper. Since then I have fully enjoyed writing about each and every album and am ecstatic to have a vault of memories and experiences to carry with me for the rest of my life.
Last year I scratched another itch and took up the challenge of learning to code a website from scratch on my own and thus was born tkmaxwell.com. I combined these two interests to design a creative space for me to share my thoughts with the world (OK not the world, probably ten of you guys). And if you are checking the site out for the first time you will have 75 albums worth of material to dive into so get to work!
For 2016 specifically the world of music was a shape-shifting, dynamic atmosphere marked with tremendous loss, but also tremendous creativity and ambition. Never in my memory have I seen a period of music so closely reflect the world surrounding it. Music was a means to face the issues head on, escape them, or flip them on their side with journeys of celebration and diversity and I think this list of albums perfectly reflects that.
Personally 2016 was a year of great reflection and experience as I saw over 40 concerts and hopped on 22 planes navigating the world. Never could I have imagined the year playing out the way it did and I got to experience and learn things not only with those that I love, but with new friends and perfect strangers. Being that it was a year of stories and conversations I chose a different approach with the reviews this time around. Instead of focusing on details of specific songs I chose to muse on what the albums and artists mean to me or the themes/journeys I thought the artists were aiming for. With that background in mind I hope you enjoy and can’t wait to discuss:
Keep on keeping on and may all our favorite bands stay together.