It’s the end of the year (oh yes, it’s in all of the papers) and since we do a Random Ten every week, I though we would finish off the year with my favorite ten new CDs. Are these the best of the year? Well no, because I failed to get a listen to the new (warning: sound at the links) Blitzen Trapper, Santogold (this year’s M.I.A.), and the new Beck. Also because these are my favorites, not yours. Getcher own damn best ten.
Music this year is heavy on the well-crafted pop side as lush production made a comeback.
In no particular order:
The Helio Sequence – Keep Your Eyes Ahead This is simply a beautifully constructed CD and the single Lately reminded me of what I used to like about U2.
Duffy – Rockferry. Warwick Avenue was the best song of the year. If Van Morrison had written something for Dusty Springfield, it would have sounded something like this.
MGMT – Oracular Spectacular. There was much to hate about eighties music. None of that stuff is here. Time To Pretend just reeks of Marc Bolan.
Elbow – The Seldom Seen Kid . Frankly I’m surprised I hadn’t ever heard of these guys before.
Vampire Weekend – Vampire Weekend. Shut up. There’s noting wrong with catchy tongue-in-cheek singles, just ask Nick Lowe. VW is like Paul Simon’s Graceland taking a detour to Martha’s Vineyard.
Portishead – Third. Portishead is an acquired taste and I’ve given up trying to explain why I like them.
TV on the Radio – Dear Science. I wasn’t overwhelmed with Return To Cookie Mountain but with Dear Science I have finally seen the light. Extraordinarily original.
Fucked Up – The Chemistry of Life. Sometimes you have to get past the vocalist’s voice and just appreciate the music (see Pumpkins, Smashing). That’s the case here.
Ra Ra Riot – The Rhumb Line. There’s something so sincere about their music. That appeals to me.
Gnarls Barkley – The Odd Couple . I freaking hated St. Elsewhere and wished they would just go away (to say nothing of that fact that Danger Mouse ruined the Black Keys latest) but The Odd Couple redeemed them… somewhat.
Just missed the cut: Belle & Sebastian BBC Sessions, Aimee Mann @#%&*! Smilers, Foxboro Hot Tubs, The New Mastersounds Plug and Play, Shelby Lynne Just A Little Lovin’, and REM Accelerate.
Fleet Foxes? Did not like. Like Jessica Simpson; pretty but boring.
Argue amongst yourselves.