Being that our label is owned by fans of punk rock and the bands we work with are all lifers like ourselves, we thought we would do our own top 10 albums of 2015 culled from our growing roster of artists.

Next up we asked Vic Arevalo of EKEN IS DEAD.

I doubt anyone really cares what my top 10 albums of the year are, but they’re listed below anyway. What I got excited about was hijacking this opportunity to share with the friends of the Felony Records Family and anyone who happens to come across this. my list of standout artists that EID got to share the stage with this year.

Of course everyone knows that Snot, Unwritten Law, Authority Zero, Death By Stereo, Versus The World, Wraths, and the other big names are all monsters and we are honored to have gotten the invite to play, however…What I think a lot of people lose sight of is the local artists that support the big shows. Either way, the following bands stood out for any number of reasons to me.

Before anyone flames me for missing a band they really loved that we played with, I will say this: I truly enjoyed the time we shared with every band we played with this year, and even after eight years in this game, I am excited about what bands are doing. That, and I like to drink, so don’t hate me.

Common War-Fullerton, CA
Yotam Ben Horin-Haifa, Israel
Skipjack-San Diego, CA
No Talent-Tijuana, Mexico
Parade of Horribles-Oceanside, CA
Neckbreaker-South Bay, CA
The Resolutions-South Bay, CA
A Hero Within-San Diego, CA
Shockload-Vancouver, British Columbia
Build Them To Break-San Francisco, CA

Bonus: We haven’t played with them yet but they invaded my condo and I love their album…D-Cent Jerks-San Juan, Puerto Rico

If you’re still reading, here’s my top ten albums of 2015

1. Sic Waiting-Derailer
I got to listen to the evolution of this album from the pre-mastering stage and it was clear this was going to be a monster album even then. A short description doesn’t do this album justice, but know that Jared and company really put together an excellent album on this one.

2. Lowbrow-Insert Brain Here
Outstanding musicianship and catchy song writing from start to finish from some good friends who also put on a great live show. Hot damn those boys play good.

3. Yotam Ben Horin-California Sounds
I missed the Useless ID train but got to enjoy Yotam solo and with SIc Waiting. This album was written on and about that tour and it’s excellent. This is a great album when you need some acoustic tunes in your life. Thanks to Ken Seaton for sharing with us.

4. Templeton Pek-New Horizons
Another gift from Ken Seaton at Hardline, New Horizons was a fun change of pace I made the boys listen to for the entire final leg home from tour. Melodic, energetic and I was sold by the name of the band (A-Team fans will get it).

5. Refused-Freedom
Did everyone hate this album or forget about it? Either way, I am a fan. I got to see them at The Observatory with Turbonegro (thanks, Ralphie) and they killed it. Elektra is a highlight for me and I was surprised I hadn’t seen it on any other top 10’s so far. Freedom got me stoked on the back catalog and reminded me what an impact Refused have on music.

6. Good Riddance-Peace In Our Time
Another band I missed the train on way back when, GR has held a special place for me since a misadventure Felony Ron and I went on to film their secret return show up in Santa Cruz and having toured with Sean. Very stoked for their recent success and impressed with how hard the album hits up front and the energy throughout.

7. Strung Out-Transmission Alpha Delta
Hard hitting, classic Strung Out vocal work and melodies, insane guitar work, brutal drumming, and meaty production all courtesy of really down to earth guys who have been making magic for a very long time. I was also a big fan of the studio journals on youtube leading up to the release.

8. Millencollin-True Brew
I’ll thank Beer Punks Justin for getting me into Millencollin who happened to be playing for about a month straight through my work speakers. Fast, catchy, and a great intro to new fans. Boom.

9. Faith No More-Sol Invictus
I am pretty over the top fan boy of Mike Patton and FNM in general. I have loved them since I was a kid for their unorthodox style and blending of different genres. And boy, can they put on a show…

10. Puscifer-Money Shot
Chris Eken always asks, what’s the latest heroin music I am playing. This is definitely out there music that could qualify as that. Beyond unorthodox, heavy, yet playful, Pusicfer continues to create exquisite music with total disregard for what’s cool, what sells, what you might expect, and holy hell, do they do an amazing job of putting on a spectacle of a show…

PS-It’s pretty clear after writing this rant how important it is for a band to not only play well live, but put on a show for the fans. Thanks for your time and thanks to Felony.
Smoke up, Johnny,