Archive for January, 2007

Top albums of the year

1.         Glenn Kotche – Mobile

Best drummer today, by a clear mile. Someday he’ll be mentioned in the same breath as Buddy Rich, Keith Moon, and Jack DeJohnette. But for now he’s just that guy who plays for a little band called Wilco. Peerless technique combined with a fearless will to experiment makes for a most amazing album.

2.         Xiu Xiu – The Air Force

Simply beautiful.

3.         The Hold Steady – Boys and Girls

If they were a regular bar band, I’d have already packed my bags and moved to Brooklyn.

4.         Joanna Newsom – Ys

With Van Dyke Parks arrangements and Jim O’Rourke production, you knew it was going to be a stellar album. It more than lives up to it’s pedigree.

5.         Phoenix – It’s never been like that

An album that just gets better with each spin.

6.         Asobi Seksu – Citrus

After seeing them live, I stopped by the merch booth and picked up a CD. While there I took a picture for a fan of her with the lead singer. My handling of the all too brief session made the singer laugh. Ms. Yuki Chikudate, feel free to holla back.

7.         Band of Horses – Everything all the Time

8.         Mastodon – Blood Mountain

9.         J Dilla – Donuts

Highly personal, a rarity in hip hop.

10.     Willie Nelson – You Don’t Know me: the Songs of Cyndy Walker

11.     Camera Obscura – Let’s Get Out Of This Country

I’m also ready to be heartbroken.

12.     Final Fantasy – He Poos Clouds

13.     Mono – You are There

14.     E40 – My Ghetto Report Card

Brings hyphy to the rest of America, and gets no respect at the end of year on top album lists? E40 is the Rodney Dangerfield of hip hop.

15.     I Love You But I’ve Chosen Darkness – Fear Is On Our Side

ILYBICD not emo like the name would suggest, but no less dramatic.  

16.     Beirut – Gulag Orkestar

Cant’ wait to hear what’s next.

17.     Belle and Sebastian – The Life Pursuit

18.     Girl Talk – Night Ripper

19.     I’m From Barcelona – We’re from Barcelona

Yay Indie Pop collectives!

20.     The Thermals – The Body, The Blood, The Machine

Best straight ahead rock album of the year. Great guitar based songs and hooks. Along the same lines as The Kinks, Cheap Trick, Ted Leo.

21.     Mates of State – Bring it Back

Adding some guitar and bass have really rounded out their sound, their best album to date.

22.     Justin Timberlake – FutureSex/ LoveSounds

Timberland and Timberlake – so good I want to put my dick in a box.

23.     Boris – Pink

24.     Cat Power – The Greatest

25.     Peter, Bjorn, and John – Writer’s Block

26.     Johnny Cash – A Hundred Highways

27.     Gotan Project – Lunatico

Being from the southern hemisphere, they do things backwards. These two Argentinian DJ’s stepped away from the turntables. A sexy Nuevo Tango album that’ll have you grabbing for a rose instantly.

28.     Drive By Truckers – A Blessing And A Curse

29.     Islands – Return to the Sea

30.     The Appleseed Cast – Pergerine

Post-Emo? I’m pulling a Colbert and trademarking that term.

31.     Ghostface Killah – Fishscale

32.     Destroyer – Destroyer’s Rubies

Forget Neko, Bejar is the best Pornographer.

33.     Built to Spill – You in Reverse

34.     Yo la Tengo – I am not afraid, and I will kick your ass

35.     Regina Spektor – Begin to Hope

36.     Califone – Roots and Crowns

37.     M. Ward – Post-War

38.     The Mountain Goats – Get Lonely

Old sad bastard music, like chicken soup for the aging hipster soul, but really really good.

39.     The Decemberists –  The Crane Wife

Chris Funk can’t shred, yet they’re still considered prog? What gives?

40.     Tortoise and Bonnie Prince Billy – The Brave and the Bold

41.     The Flaming Lips – At War With the Mystics

42.     John Legend – Once Again

43.     AFX – Chosen Lords

44.     +/- – Let’s Build a Fire

It’ll have to do until the next Postal Service album.

45.     Jack & Jeffrey Lewis – City & Eastern Songs

46.     Thom Yorke – The Eraser

47.     Yeah Yeah Yeah’s – Show Your Bones

48.     The Walkmen – Hundred Miles Off

49.     Jenny Lewis with the Watson Twins – Rabbit Fur Coat

50.     Prince – 3121

51.     Clipse – Hell Hath No Fury

52.     Isis – In the Absence of Truth

53.     Murs & 9th Wonder – Murray‘s Revenge

54.     Calexico – Garden Ruin

55.    Sonic Youth – Rather Ripped

56.     Annuals – Be He Me

57.     Mogwai – Mr. Beast

58.     Tapes’n Tapes – The Loon

59.     Aloe Blacc – Shine Through

60.     Bob Dylan – Modern Times

61.     Lady Sovereign – Public Warning

62.     Sean Lennon – Friendly Fire

63.     Rhymefest – Blue Collar


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Top 20 songs of 2006

  1. Gnarls Barkley – Crazy
  2. Phoenix – One Time Too Many – but never played enough
  3. Asobi Seksu – Thursday
  4. Willie Nelson – You Don’t Know Me
  5. Xiu Xiu – Boy Soprano / Eau de Claire
  6. Camera Obscura – if looks could kill
  7. Band of Horses – Monsters / The Funeral
  8. Beck – New Round
  9. Final Fantasy – This Lamb Sells Condos
  10. I’m From Barcelona – Treehouse
  11. Aloe Blacc – I’m Beautiful
  12. Beirut – prenzlauberg
  13. Belle and Sebastian – funny little frog – There’s something about that hook that kills me.
  14. Drive By Truckers – goodbye
  15. Peter, Bjorn, and John – Young Folks
  16. J Dilla – One for Ghost / Ghostface Killah – Whip You With a Strap – Listed twice since it’s the same beat
  17. E40 – Tell Me When To Go
  18. Justin Timberlake – My Love – Sexy might be the hit, but My Love is the jam.
  19. Yo La Tengo – Mr. Tough – The Falsetto vocals juxtaposed with the lyrics are sinfully delicious
  20. The Thermals – st rosa and the swallows
  21. Glenn Kotche – Monkey Chant – Takes a traditional Indian Chant that is usually performed by a chorus of up to 200 men and then performs it on drums, solo.

And I just had to mention one more, like a baker’s dozen. Watch the video: click http://www.nonesuch.com/Hi_Band/index_frameset2_alpha.cfm

then scroll down to Glenn Kotche > Discography > Mobile > Listen to this album > Watch Monkey Chant for solo drum kit live. For your reference, they have a clip of what the Monkey Chant sounds like when performed by a choir of about 100 men.

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