#10: Eerie Wanda – “Hum”

I’ve decided to start giving out a Trish Keenan Memorial Trophy for the artist each year who comes closest to emulating the Broadcast singer. This year’s goes to Eerie Wanda frontwoman Marina Tadic, who reminds me of Trish with her gentle psychedelic songs that strike a perfect balance between being charming and weird (or, I suppose, eerie).

Eerie Wanda’s actual sound isn’t much like Broadcast’s; there are no electronics, with songs always built off Tadic’s guitar and some light percussion and bass. The arrangements are simple, meant to showcase Tadic’s vocals while providing a tranquil, daydreamy vibe that evokes the 60s.

Tadic’s voice is the real defining instrument here: it has a warmth and dreaminess to it, but also somehow always sounds off-kilter and distant, which gives Hum its underlying strangeness that makes it stand out from other guitar pop albums this year.

#14: Lorelle Meets the Obsolete – “Balance”

Balance is a fitting name for a Lorelle Meets the Obsolete album, as the duo from Mexico is all about juggling various psychedelic influences, dropping them in a pot, and brewing up a sound that is both original and familiar. When I listened to this album, I felt like I was watching a beloved old movie that I barely remembered, and all of my favorite parts were coming back to me. “Oh yeah, the My Bloody Valentine part! I love this part!” Repeat for Stereolab, The United States of America, etc.

Lorelle Meets the Obsolete uses that nostalgia and familiarity to its advantage. The opening title track starts as a normal-sounding rock song, but then has a seemingly random synth part that initially sounds out of place, then a loud guitar part that comes out of nowhere. The band does that a lot, mixing in different styles of music to surprise any listener who is expecting them to paint by numbers.

Balance starts out with that style of noisy rock, but evolves partway through with some surprisingly affecting, almost ambient pieces. “Father’s Tears” is a minimalist folk-inspired tune that sounds like something from Tender Buttons era Broadcast.”The Sound of All Things” is a spacey song with a motorik beat that builds on itself for over five minutes before fading out with an emotional coda — it’s the best example of how this band assembles memorable songs from recycled parts.