OpenAir Best of 2014: Staff picks

December 15, 2014

To wrap up the year, the OpenAir staff members have selected their favorite albums and live shows of 2014. 

Check out the individual lists below, and stay tuned for the results of the OpenAir Best Albums of 2014 Listener Poll results on Jan. 1.

photo: Jack White

Mike Flanagan, program director and host

  1. Jack White - "Lazaretto"
  2. St. Vincent – "St. Vincent"
  3. Benjamin Booker – "Benjamin Booker"
  4. Angel Olsen –  "Burn Your Fire for No Witness" 
  5. Future Islands – "Singles" 
  6. Alt-J – "This is All Yours" 
  7. Broken Bells – "After the Disco" 
  8. Beck – "Morning Phase" 
  9. Damon Albarn – "Everyday Robots" 
  10. Hurray for the Riff Raff – "Small Town Heroes" 
  11. Spoon – "They Want My Soul" 
  12. Strand of Oaks – "HEAL" 
  13. The War on Drugs – "Lost in the Dream" 
  14. Esme Patterson – "Woman to Woman" 
  15. Interpol – "El Pintor" 
  16. Ty Segall – "Manipulator"  
  17. Jeremy Messersmith – "Heart Murmurs"  
  18. Young Fathers – "Dead" 
  19. TV on the Radio – "Seeds"  
  20. The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger – "Midnight Sun" 
photo: Perfume Genius

Jessi Whitten, music director and afternoon host

  1. Perfume Genius - "Too Bright" (Matador)
  2. Angel Olsen - "Burn Your Fire for No Witness" (Jagjaguwar)
  3. Chet Faker - "Built On Glass" (Future Classic)
  4. Jenny Lewis - "The Voyager" (Warner Bros.)
  5. Damien Jurado - "Brothers and Sisters of the Eternal Son" (Secretly Canadian)
  6. Jungle - "Jungle" (XL Recordings)
  7. St. Vincent - "St. Vincent" (Loma Vista)
  8. Sylvan Esso - "Sylvan Esso" (Partisan)
  9. Saintseneca - "Dark Arc" (Anti-)
  10. Snake Rattle Rattle Snake - "Totem" (Glow and Arrow)
  11. Wye Oak - "Shriek" (Merge)
  12. Future Islands - "Singles" (4AD)
  13. Phantogram - "Voices" (Universal)
  14. Lykke Li - "I Never Learn" (Atlantic)
  15. Mac Demarco - "Salad Days" (Captured Tracks)
RIYL: Spoon

Keefer Fulgham, morning host

  • Spoon - "They Want My Soul"
  • Beck - "Morning Phase"
  • Angel Olsen - "Burn Your Fire for No Witness"
  • Temples - "Sun Structures"
  • tUnE-yArDs - "Nikki Nack"
  • St. Vincent - "St. Vincent"
  • Tinariwen - "Emmaar"
  • Sturgill Simpson - "Meta Sounds in Country Music"
  • Ryan Adams - "Ryan Adams"
photo: Esme Patterson

Alisha Sweeney, mid-day/Mile High Noon host

  • Esme Patterson- "Woman To Woman"
  • St. Vincent- "St. Vincent"
  • Chet Faker- "Built on Glass"
  • Angel Olsen- "Burn Your Fire for No Witness"
  • Sean Rowe- "Madman"
  • FKA Twigs- "LP1"
  • Warpaint- "Warpaint"
  • Damien Jurado- "Brothers and Sisters of the Eternal Son"
  • Shakey Graves- "And The War Came"
  • Sylvan Esso- "Sylvan Esso"

Scott Carney, weekend host

Top 10 Favorite Concerts of 2014 (in chronological order)

  • St. Vincent (March 29 - Ogden Theatre)
  • Black Lips (April 2 - Bluebird Theater)
  • Guided By Voices (June 4 - Gothic Theatre)
  • Devo (June 23 - Summit Music Hall)
  • Ought (July 21 - Lost Lake Lounge)
  • Jenny Lewis (Aug. 14 - Bluebird Theater)
  • Sylvan Esso (Aug. 30 - Hi-Dive)
  • Eric Copeland (Sept. 14 - Larimer Lounge)
  • DJ Shadow / Cut Chemist (Sept. 26 - Ogden Theatre)
  • Death From Above 1979 (Nov. 22 - Fox Theatre)
photo: Hundred Waters

Daniel Mescher, digital producer

  1. Hundred Waters- “The Moon Rang Like a Bell”
  2. Bombay Bicycle Club- “So Long See You Tomorrow”
  3. The War on Drugs- “Lost in the Dream”
  4. St. Vincent- “St. Vincent”
  5. Swans- “To Be Kind”
  6. De Lux- “De Lux”
  7. Sharon Van Etten- “Are We There”
  8. Parquet Courts- “Sunbathing Animal" / "Content Nausea”
  9. Snake Rattle Rattle Snake- “Totem”
  10. Caribou - "Our Love"
  11. Grouper- “Ruins”
  12. FKA Twigs- “LP1”
  13. Warpaint- “Warpaint”
  14. Strand of Oaks- “HEAL”
  15. Ariel Pink- “pom pom”

Honorable mention: Alvvays - "Alvvays"

Aaron 'Loki' Johnson, weekend host

Symbiotic earworms of 2014

  1. Tweedy - "Low Key" ("Sukierae"): With his son Spencer on drums, Jeff Tweedy sings a hooky chorus about the dilemma of playing it cool.