Sophie’s Choice

This one is aptly named because it was a tough choice. Analysts and statisticians predicted that it would be The Ooz, but Cut Worms’ debut EP Alien Sunset came out victorious.

Best Gizz Album

There were so many Gizz albums released this year that it got overwhelming, so it seemed like there should be a separate category. Flying Microtonal Banana is the winner amongst 900 other heavy hitters.

Best Zine

Zines are a ton of work and they don’t get enough recognition. We’re giving this one to She Shreds Magazine. This impeccably designed and wonderfully written zine is killing it by changing the game for women guitarists.

Biggest Bop Album

For some reason, no one seems to know what a bop is. A bop is not a concept that needs to be explained. You hear it and you say to yourself, “Damn that’s a bop.” This year, Chicago’s own wavy i.d. is the undisputed king of bop with Bummerpop vol. 2.

Best Band Twitter Account

It’s a plus if you can scroll through a band’s Twitter account while you’re pooping and end up sitting on the toilet for 10 extra minutes because you’re comically exhaling through your nose at their tweets. This one is going to the silly nonsense of Beach Fossils.

Best Photographer

Music photographers risk getting their cameras trashed so that we can look back on our favorite shows. That alone deserves an award. If you go to any show that actually matters in Chicago, Rachel Zyzda of ANCHR Magazine is shooting it and gracing us with awesome shots.

Hayley’s Broken Ankle Award

This goes to Post Animal. I broke my ankle seeing them at a house show because I have the hand-eye coordination of someone who has no hands or eyes. It was a great show and I had a great time. I was bound to break a bone in the pit sooner or later, so I’m glad it was at a Post Animal show and not some shitty band.

Best Crying Album

The crying experience is greatly enhanced when you have a good album playing in the background. The soundtrack to our tears this year is Collection by Soccer Mommy.

Best DIY Space (Chicago, IL)

Some DIY spaces are just basements with strings of Christmas lights and maybe a chair, but others go above and beyond. It seems like the best spaces are short lived, so the ones that stay alive deserve an award and ample support. The crowd favorite this year is DZ Records in Hickory Hills.

Best Ringo Starr Tweet

All of his tweets are top notch, but the cream always rises to the top.

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Album of the Year

We’re saving the best for last. If you’ve been keeping an eye on our album reviews, then you might have been able to predict this one. Yours Conditionally by Tennis receives the crown on this one.


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