Saturday, December 19, 2009

Best Albums of the Decade

Rather than be guided by the top-ten convention, I let the music be my muse for this list. Six albums stood out clearly from the pack, followed by nineteen albums that merited an honorable mention, for a total of twenty-five albums offered in two tiers and otherwise listed by release date. I believe the top six are, artistically, the highlights of the decade; the remainder of the list is made up of albums whose artistic merits I would gladly defend, but my connection to many of them is more personal. (Note: No artist could make the list more than once.)

Top Tier:
Kid A - Radiohead (2000)
Love and Theft - Bob Dylan (2001)
Yankee Hotel Foxtrot - Wilco (2002)
Funeral - Arcade Fire (2004)
Van Lear Rose - Loretta Lynn (2004)
Sound of Silver - LCD Soundsystem (2007)

Tier Two:
Gold - Ryan Adams (2001)
Vespertine - Bjork (2001)
A Rush of Blood to the Head - Coldplay (2002)
Turn on the Bright Lights - Interpol (2002)
Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots - Flaming Lips (2002)
Chutes Too Narrow - The Shins (2003)
Dear Catastrophe Waitress - Belle & Sebastian (2003)
Failer - Kathleen Edwards (2003)
Want One - Rufus Wainwright (2003)
Eveningland - Hem (2004)
Our Endless Numbered Days - Iron & Wine (2004)
Scissor Sisters - Scissor Sisters (2004)
Extraordinary Machine - Fiona Apple (2005)
I Am A Bird Now - Antony and the Johnsons (2005)
The Forgotten Arm - Aimee Mann (2005)
Black Cadillac - Rosanne Cash (2006)
Boxer - The National (2007)
The Con - Tegan and Sara (2007)
In Ghost Colours - Cut Copy (2008)

Friday, December 11, 2009

One Decade, One Disc--Sort Of

Looking for your best of 2009? Probably not, considering how infrequently I post and how little commentary I've made about music of late. Go get Grizzly Bear and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, that's my advice about 2009. Or just watch Bad Romance over and over until you know all the words and all the moves and all the outfits by heart. Not that I've done that...

Anyway, what I do have for you is a decade-spanning compilation. One song per year, though not necessarily from that year--the songs are all from this decade, and they're matched up to something that happened in a particular year. But of course, in recognition of the fact that blogging is really just navel-gazing, the things that happened, well, they happened to me. So if it doesn't all make sense, you can be forgiven for just listening to 10 pretty good songs and not trying to figure it all out. Enjoy!

Take Your Mama Out - Scissor Sisters (2000)
New York, New York - Ryan Adams (2001)
Minneapolis - Lucinda Williams (2002)
Optimistic - Radiohead (2003)
Fistful of Love - Antony and the Johnsons (2004)
In the Backseat - Arcade Fire (2005)
Someone Great - LCD Soundsystem (2006)
Even If It Kills Me - Motion City Soundtrack (2007)
Call It Off - Tegan and Sara (2008)
31 Today - Aimee Mann (2009)

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