Monday, December 28, 2009

'Cause everybody is doing it

It's been a long, long time. But I'm back and bloggin'.

Just about every publication (Rolling Stone to Time) has released their best of lists for the year and decade. Since I enjoy these lists: here are my picks for, first, the year and then the decade.

Best of 2009

*More than 10 could have made the last, but I chose to narrow it down

10.No Line On the Horizon-U2- I'm not Rolling Stone, so I don't hold U2 as automatic perfection. However, this was a reasonably good effort and an overall solid listen.

9.Horehound-The Dead Weather- Some things just feel wrong, Jack White on drums being one of them. Still, The Dead Weather crafted some great tunes on their debut. While at the same time offering up further proof that White is one of the most gifted modern day musicians.

8.Swoon-Silversun Pickups- If you haven't heard this band go pick up their first album Carnavas, then go grab Swoon. Both are excellent. Showcasing fuzzed out guitars this album harkens back to the glory days of The Smashing Pumpkins and other '90s standouts.

7.Humbug-The Arctic Monkeys- Although this disc is a little darker than previous material it may be their best. The Monkeys look to have a bright future ahead of them.

6.The Incident-Porcupine Tree-So I really got into prog last year, and Porcupine Tree is one of the best in the genre. This album doesn't disappoint, and follows 2007's thoroughly excellent Fear of a Blank Planet.

5.Picket Fence Cartel-Project 86- I love Project 86, and this album was very strong. The lyrics make you think, which is sometimes hard to come by in the 'hard rock/metal' genre.

4.Geneva-Russian Circles-If you check out one band, it should be Russian Circles. Instrumental metal at its finest.

3.Armistice-Mute Math- This one you can groove and sing to at the same time. Check it out if you haven't heard of them.

2.Hello Hurricane-Switchfoot- One of my favorite bands. EVER. Easily Switchfoot's best since The Beautiful Letdown, although personally I recommend New Way to Be Human. You get rock, ballads, and some fantastic lyrics all in the same package.

1.Crack the Skye-Mastodon-If you want your face blown off this one is for you. Crack the Skye sounds like thunder and shines like lightning. This album is heavy metal as it should be, HEAVY. The drumming is especially great throughout. Pick this up and be prepared to be blown away!

Best of the Decade (00-09)
*Chopped it down to 25

25.Hybrid Theory-Linkin Park (2000)- Go ahead and judge me for this one, but Linkin Park's debut still holds up 10 years later.
24.All That You Can't Leave Behind-U2 (2000)- I dare you to write a better song than Beautiful Day.
23.The Black Album-Jay-Z (2003)- Because I got 99 problems...
22.Lateralus-Tool (2001)- Dares to be beyond being 'genrefied.' Truly original.
21.Boxer-The National (2004)- Until someone writes something better than Mistaken for Strangers they belong on here.
20.Antics-Interpol (2004)- Do not play this to encourage, but please play it.
19.A Rush of Blood to the Head-Coldplay (2001)- Shut up! It'd be wrong not to have them on here.
18.Morning View-Incubus- (2001)- Give me a reason why not, and I'll give you ten why you're wrong.
17.Neon Bible-Arcade Fire (2007)- Yes, it's good. No, it doesn't deserve to be higher.
16.At War With the Mystics-The Flaming Lips (2006)- I like it better than Yoshimi. Deal with it!
15.By the Way-Red Hot Chili Peppers (2002)- Those I couldn't live without: start here.
14.We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank-Modest Mouse (2007)-Don't care that you like The Moon and Antarctica better.
13.In Rainbows-Radiohead (2008)- Probably should be higher, but I'm not going to do that just because it's Radiohead.
12.Sky Blue Sky-Wilco (2007)- Impossible Germany has one of the most amazing guitar solos. EVER.
11.The Beautiful Letdown-Switchfoot (2003)- Laugh all you want, but On Fire almost makes me cry every time.
10.Fever to Tell-Yeah Yeah Yeahs (2003)- Maps is an utterly beautiful song. How many songs are truly worthy of that honor?
9.Blood Mountain-Mastodon (2006)- The best drumming on any album in the 2000s. Hands down.
8.Hot Fuss-The Killers (2004)- Wanted to put it higher and it probably should be, but too many others in front of it.
7.Frances the Mute-The Mars Volta (2005)- If you like the electric guitar this is your album. I've never heard anything else like it.
6.Elephant-The White Stripes (2003)-In any other list this would easily be in the top 5. Jack White can do no wrong.
5.Yankee Hotel Foxtrot-Wilco (2002)- This is a cop-out by me, but it sounds as vibrant as it did when it first came out.
4.Change-The Dismemberment Plan (2001)- Time Bomb may be the best song written this decade. Do not let the name discourage you, they aren't a metal band, if you haven't heard them please go check them out. I can't recommend highly enough.
3.Kid A-Radiohead (2000)- Yes, this album is really depressing. No, it shouldn't be number 1. This was Radiohead's best this decade, but two album's beat it out for the top spot. Honestly, without Treefingers and Motion Picture Soundtrack, this was probably worthy of being numero uno.
2.Z-My Morning Jacket (2005)-It kills me not to make this number 1, and it was extremely, extremely close to grabbing the top spot. Z still is an excellent album. Pound for pound the first 5 songs probably beat anyone else on the list, except for the album ahead of it...
1.A Ghost is Born-Wilco (2004)-I don't understand why this doesn't get more praise. It SHOULD. Ghost beats out Z to grab the number 1 position. Don't get me wrong, there are mediocre songs on here. But the best on here beats the best the others have to offer. At Least That's What You Said is one of my favorite songs of all time, and is Jeff Tweedy's attempt to describe how a panic attack would sound. For that alone it should be 1.

Those who disagree voice your complaints. I'm all ears.

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