Meanest Man Contest has reminded me to not define an artist by genre or a record by year it was released. I missed the October 2013 release of Meanest Man Contest’s Everything Worth Mentioning, but I eventually heard the heartbreaking track “In the Dark”, the only entirely new song on the album. I was intrigued enough to learn more, and to my surprise, everything I read about MMC had the “hip-hop” label attached to the description. When I finally listened to the LP in full, I definitely heard some great rhymes from Eric Steuer and instrumental hip-hop roots, but that was only part of the story. I heard chopped-up synth rhythms, grainy guitar samples, the occasional jazzy organ, and haunting vocal harmonies from Noah Blumberg. No single element defines Everything Worth Mentioning, but they are all essential pieces of the puzzle that somehow mesh to create a cohesive album.
If I’d heard Everything Worth Mentioning in 2013, it would have been included on my list of 2013 highlights. To make up for my mistake, I’m going to declare this my FAVORITE ALBUM OF 2014 SO FAR and remember to talk about it again when I reflect on 2014 in about 12 months. Meanwhile, I’d encourage you to forget any genres I mentioned and listen to Meanest Man Contest’s Everything Worth Mentioning below with an open mind. After that, you can purchase it on vinyl from Gold Robot Records.