20 Best Avant Albums of 2014

The year's best in noise, out-jazz, contemporary classical, ambient, drone and more

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Golden Retriever, 'Seer'
20
12/20

12. Golden Retriever, 'Seer'

Portland duo Golden Retriever team the blinking and shimmering modular synths of Matt Carlson with the dark-hued bass clarinet of Jonathan Sielaff. Where previous releases like Emergent Layer and Occupied With the Unspoken combined them in a reverby electronic slurry, fifth record Seer really lets the the instrumentalists stand on their own: The synths gently bubble while Sielaff can goes full "Baker Street." A great synth record with the energy of experimental rock and the interplay of jazz; a mix of dissonance and resolution, the Earthly and the cosmic.

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