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Top local releases in 2018: #40–31

By Greggory Clark on December 28, 2018





Apt613 has a unique take on the “best” albums of 2018. We look to the charts published by CHUO 89.1FM to see which records made the most/highest weekly appearances. Campus and community radio stations send play logs to !earshot, a website where you’ll find the national Top 50 reported weekly.

Not every album was released during the 2018 calendar year. In several instances, you’ll see a 2017 release which stayed in the charts. There are one or two much older releases.

All of the Top 50 records are streaming for free—enjoy listening! A great deal are available online and at local record shops. Paying for a download or dropping $ on vinyl and concert tickets is still the number one way to support local music today. ✌️


Title: Wall (Single)Weeks: 2
Artist: GalapagosPeak: #4
Label: IndependentAvg: 16.00

The indie rock band found their way back into our Top 50. “Wall” is the lead single off Even This Glow, the followup release to Potential Space which was #33 in 2017.


Title: Ghosts and Flowers (Single)Weeks: 2
Artist: Expanda FuzzPeak: #11
Label: IndependentAvg: 15.50

An Expanda Fuzz full-length Cotton Candy Jet Engine charted for two weeks in 2018 and so did this single, “Ghosts and Flowers”. The lo-fi garage rock tune has a trippy video I first saw on Ottawa Showbox.


Title: 5xx (Single)Weeks: 3
Artist: Scattered CloudsPeak: #12
Label: Boiled RecordsAvg: 20.33

Experimental post-rock band Scattered Clouds has a video by Hard Science which I recommend at full-screen.


Title: Mejor SolaWeeks: 5
Artist: Aiona SantanaPeak: #13
Label: IndependentAvg: 23.20

The Belgian-Venezuelan singer who calls Ottawa home saw her first single in the charts this year. “Mejor Sola” appeared in CHUO’s Top 30 for a grand total of five weeks in 2018.


Title: Drunk and Lost EPWeeks: 3
Artist: The HikePeak: #12
Label: IndependentAvg: 16.67

The Hike are an indie folk-pop band who weren’t known by Apt613 contributors. The farther we go with this Top 50 countdown, it’s always nice to stumble upon new names in Ottawa music. Drunk and Lost is the group’s debut EP.


Title: Wasted InnocenceWeeks: 3
Artist: TorporPeak: #10
Label: IndependentAvg: 16.67

Torpor is yet another band name which raised eyebrows around Apartment613. The hardcore punk band were an unknown quantity (before discovering Wasted Innocence in the charts) and remain an enigma. I could find little information about Torpor, except that Wasted Innocence was mixed by Yogi Granger, and the names or pseudonyms of four musicians: “Mike” [sic], Felix, Hut Doug (on bass), and Élo.


Title: Violet (Single)Weeks: 3
Artist: Plant LegsPeak: #7
Label: IndependentAvg: 16.00

“Violet” is a rainy day single if there ever was one. This charted for three consecutive weeks in January and February. CHUO deejays somehow got a hold of the track months before its official release on Bandcamp in April. “Violet” was the debut for Ottawa shoegaze act Plant Legs. Recommended if you like bedroom pop records and bands like SALES, Frankie Cosmos, or Florist.


Title: Seashells (Single)Weeks: 3
Artist: Alexis NeonPeak: #11
Label: IndependentAvg: 15.67

Laura Falco and Hayden McGowan are a songwriting duo who have been writing and releasing music as Alexis Neon for a little over a year now. Falco is the lyricist, and McGowan sits behind the console, engineering and mixing. “Seashells” is their followup to 2017’s “Dreaming”.


Title: Life Lessons PoeticallyWeeks: 3
Artist: King KimbitPeak: #7
Label: IndependentAvg: 15.67

Nguyễn Anh Thư aka King Kimbit is an Urban Legends Poetry Slam Champion—the first woman in Ottawa to be named the champion of a major slam series. She’s a poignant and super articulate spoken word artist, singer and multi-instrumentalist. There was a great King Kimbit piece in an early issue of Ottawa Beatwhich is still available to readers online.


Title: Hope HypnoticWeeks: 5
Artist: Plastic FarmPeak: #15
Label: IndependentAvg: 21.20

Hope Hypnotic was an EP released by Plastic Farm in 2017. The record resurfaced at CHUO and charted for five weeks in the winter and spring. Their single “My Head” also charted in summer 2018 and—spoiler alert—will appear at #14 in this countdown.

A total of 69 local albums made it into the CHUO 89.1FM charts this year. Watch this space while the Top 50 countdown continues daily until NYE.