Best of the 2010s

Seattle Musicians Pick Their Favorite Local Albums of the Decade

Members of Lisa Prank, Tacocat, and Tres Leches each dish on which Washington records excited them the most.

By Nicole Pasia December 26, 2019

End of the decade lists are decently narcotic—you almost have to click. But quantifying art is, of course, deeply fraught. And silly. So instead of trying to rank local albums from the last 10 years we reached out to local musicians we like—who have themselves released exceptional work in the last couple years—and asked a simple question: "What’s your favorite album—or the one you’d most implore others to listen to—released by a Washington State artist this past decade? And why (in a sentence or three)?" Here are their answers. 

Black Girl Unbothered, LIV (2019)
Sensual and demanding. Black Girl Unbothered is unapologetically black. From singing to rapping Liv proves she's really in her bag with no plan of slowing down. SHE'S BAD! Perry Porter 

Cool Choices, S (2014)
This is the breakup album of the decade—an intimate pop masterpiece full of tiny beautiful details and giant truths. Jenn Champion is a genius at breaking my heart. – Robin Edwards (aka Lisa Prank)

Fantasmogoía (2019) and Black Trash, White House (2016), Guayaba
The mix of genres, poetry, and arrangements on these albums are timeless and will probably be relevant 10 or 20 years from now. – Ulises Mariscal of Tres Leches

Go Find Your Own, Pony Time (2013)
Pony Time Go Find Your Own from 2013 is probably one of my favorite Seattle records ever. The PNW bass/drum party band has a bunch of great albums that are hard to choose from, but this one has some of my favorite hot Pony Time hits such as “Kathleen Hanna” and “What If You Caught Me.” – Bree McKenna of Tacocat

Mirror Reaper, Bell Witch (2017)
It is a record that is a meditation on loss that masterfully executes a beautiful, terrible glimpse into a world where the permanence of death is etched into the earth, and a seemingly endless spiral into the misery of a farewell that was left unsaid. It is lonely, cold, and unforgiving; it invokes a feeling in your gut that seeps out of you like tiny threads, eventually weaving together as your own grief amasses and, for a brief moment, opens its eyes. – Guayaba 

Neo, So Pitted (2016)
So Pitted are great performers and great people, and their music is simultaneously challenging and familiar. It's not very often that you hear something that sounds "new" or "fresh" in today's hyper-saturated music market, and maybe it's by playing into that overcrowded feeling that Neo stands out as exciting. – Naked Giants

No Shape, Perfume Genius (2017)
Picking a Washington album of the last decade made me realize I grew up on music made outside of Seattle and grew into an incredible music scene through our band and my work at KEXP. “No Shape” has this sound that evokes an anywhereness and makes me feel like I’m heading somewhere of importance without having a specific destination. But I tend to like things that are amorfo. – Alaia D’Alessandro of Tres Leches

SLUFF, The Naked Giants (2018)
At its core the record is simply fun to experience, and we share the opinion that it goes underappreciated for the amount of energy and musicianship that comes out of that album. They've not only been a great inspiration to us sonically, but they were early supporters of ours when many of us were new to the Seattle music scene and we will always be grateful for them. i///u

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