Published Nov 24, 2009One of the biggest monthly struggles Exclaim!'s No Future section faces is battling the definition of what punk is even supposed to be. Our talented and diverse set of contributors attests to the wide sonic spectrum that the genre covers, and come year's end, the pooling and ranking of those interests can be a tall order. And we're proud of our 2009 best-of list for that very reason: it culls the best from all the subgenres that punk shelters, offering a collection of records that you would be hard-pressed to find mentioned alongside each other in your typical rock mag pages.
Taking the top spot this year is Propagandhi's Supporting Caste, now streaming on Exclaim.ca all week. To listen to the record, simply click here.
Supporting Caste drew votes from pretty much all No Future contributors, and for good reason: it's packed with enough skate punk melodies to satisfy those of us raised on early Epitaph and Fat material, and rips enough Sacrifice-influenced shredding to inspire those who quest for heavier shit.
While this year's list doesn't boast too many other Canuck talents, the inclusion of Alexisonfire and Lullabye Arkestra makes for proud national contributions.
Alexisonfire drew votes from across the section, no small feat given how easy it is to hate on success in many independently minded circles. Their support amongst our writers speaks to the quality of Old Crows/Young Cardinals, and proves that we were smart and right to champion them with a cover story earlier in the year.
Lullabye switched gears with this year's Threats/Worship, moving away from socially inclusive psych metal and into a world of two-person pandemonium. Plus, it would appear that everyone is really into including backslashes in record titles this year.
From there, the list is an eclectic mix of Ramones-inspired pop punk (Teenage Bottlerocket) and Refused-style hardcore (Gallows). Titles were released on everything from major labels (Brand New, released on Interscope) to legendary indies (North Lincoln, released on No Idea), proving that we're a pretty undiscerning bunch.
Hopefully, that's the point: in 2009, punk is what you and your friends want it to be. And no matter if you're making ragey noise madness like Pissed Jeans or melodic post-hardcore like Polar Bear Club, there's someone out there who's stoked and ready to listen to what you have to say.
To see No Future's complete best of 2009, click here.
Propagandhi's Supporting Caste will be streaming on Exclaim.ca until November 30.