Top 20 of 2004 - Hein's Picks (Cover Artwork)

Top 20 of 2004

Hein's Picks (2004)

staff picks


I hope I'm not sounding as if I'm entering my penopause, but I reached the age of 36 in 2004. Damn... 36!...that's nearly 40. And although I have always considered myself very "in touch" with teenagers, today I have to acknowledge that the generation gap is clearly appearing. I never really felt home to the 70's or 80's old-school anarcho-punks or anything (although I definitely witnessed and experienced that period and it got me into this music in the first place), but my haydays definitely were in the melodic skate/hardcore punk period when labels like Epitaph, Lookout! and Fat Wreck emerged. And that's the music I'll still be in love with, probably and hopefully for the rest of my life. It's not something that happened all of a sudden in 2004 of course, but reading through the reviews and comments on this very newssite, it struck me more than ever how few people still like these bands and music from the mid 90's, and it somehow saddens me to hear all the shouts and insults that kids are outing towards the older bands about how they should considering quitting and how preposterous they look. It also shows in the music, with more and more bands that sound more and more the same claiming to have invented a new sound, while actually playing simple indie-rock, emo-boringness or genuine streetpunk. I'm the first person on earth to admit that good recording quality should be a priority for a release, but sometimes I have the feeling that there's no real "soul" or "heart" in some of this music because of the neat recordings.

This feeling I'm describing above here, luckily was tempered while going over all the releases that came out in 2004, as in between all the lesser stuff that was sent my way, I came to the pleasant conclusion that it was hard to narrow this list down to only 20 releases.


Top 20 Of 2004  
#20. J Church - Society Is A Carnivorous Flower
No Idea Records
#19. The Ghoulies - Reclaim The World
#18. Despistado - The Emergency Response
Jade Tree  
#17. Jimmy Eat World - Futures
#16. Red Lights Flash - Free...
A-F Records  
#15. Shuriken - Evacuate / Disintegrate
You And Whose Army?    
#14. My Awesome Compilation - The View Is Amazing
#13. The Break - Handbook For The Hopeless
#12. This Providence - Our Worlds Divorce
#11. Pulley - Matters
#10. Tsunami Bomb - The Definitive Act
Kung Fu  
#9. Zolof The Rock 'n Roll Destroyer - Popsicle
#8. Rehasher - Off Key Melodies
No Idea
#7. The Fight - Nothing New Since Rock 'n Roll
#6. The Gamits - Antidote
Suburban Home  
#5. Audio Karate - Lady Melody
Kung Fu  
#4. 7 Seconds - Take It Back, Take It On, Take It Over
#3. Social Distortion - Sex, Love and Rock 'n Roll
Time Bomb  
#2. Rise Against - Siren Song Of The Counter Culture
#1. Descendents - Cool To Be You
Fat Wreck Chords

Looks like the oldies did a good job this year, with 3 out of the top 5 that were around in the 80's as well. A few letdowns for me this year as well though. Not that these were the worst albums of the year, but I surely expected a lot more of the new Bad Religion, Ten Foot Pole and Flogging Molly albums, and I only really liked the first couple songs on that highly praised Green Day album, which to me didn't bring that much of a change as some people were writing.

  Anticipated For 2005

Which brings me to 2005, and since my job here at is primarily to keep you all informed on upcoming releases through the release calendar I thought I was obliged to make this quite extensive. These are in chronological order (although still very tentative):

  1. Street Dogs (Side One Dummy)
  2. Gatsbys American Dream (Fearless)
  3. Bigwig (Fearless)
  4. Bottom Line (Nice Guy)
  5. Over It (Lobster)
  6. Paint It Black (Jade Tree)
  7. A Change Of Pace (Immortal)
  8. Transplants (La Salle)
  9. Millencolin (Burning Heart + Epitaph)
  10. Near Miss (Takeover)
  11. Rock Kills Kid (Fearless)
  12. A Static Lullaby (Columbia)
  13. Chixdiggit (Fat)
  14. Propagandhi (Fat)
  15. Reel Big Fish (Jive?)
  16. Lorene Drive (Lobster)
  17. Horace Pinker (label tba)
  18. Alkaline Trio (Vagrant)
  19. The Soviettes (Fat)
  20. MxPx (Side One Dummy)
  21. Useless ID (Kung Fu)
  22. Ataris (Columbia)
  23. 5 Days Off (Funtime)
  24. A.F.I. (Geffen)
  25. Rufio (Nitro)
  26. No Use For A Name (CD + EP on Fat)
  27. Bracket (Fat)
  28. Epoxies (Fat)
  29. Fall Out Boy (Island/Fueled By Ramen)
  30. Thrice (Island)