Strider Posted December 31, 2008 Share Posted December 31, 2008 My Top 10 of 2008 So another year comes to a close and for once I have time to compile a top 10 list; my entries have been missing the last few years. But instead of spending the holidays in the usual hustle and bustle of Los Angeles, I find myself this year writing from the frigid climes of Boise, Idaho, having come up to see family I have not seen in years. Which also means that instead of galavanting nightly in LA, I am staying warm indoors, which allows me plenty of time to spend on the computer. So, here it is, my ten favourite pop/rock records of 2008: 1. Radiohead "In Rainbows" 2. Portishead "Third" 3. Bon Iver "For Emma, Forever Ago" 4. No Age "Nouns" 5. TV on the Radio "Dear Science" 6. Erykah Badu "New Amerykah: Part One(Fourth World War) 7. Stereolab "Chemical Chords" 8. Fuck Buttons "Street Horrrsing" 9. Aimee Mann "@#%&*! Smilers" 10. Marnie Stern "This is it and I am it and you are it and so is that and he is it and she is it and it is it and that is that" Honourable mention: Sigur Ros, Emmylou Harris, Mudcrutch, Beck, Deerhoof, Beach House, Gnarls Barkley. Best of the old fogie reissies: Bob Dylan "Tell Tale Signs:Bootleg Series Vol. 8"; Neil Young "Live at Canterbury House 1968" CD/DVD; and the Creedence Clearwater Revival catalogue reissues. Radiohead and Portishead were both neck and neck for the number one slot; both were far and away the new records I played most in the past year. And before you go off about how Radiohead's "In Rainbows" was released in 2007, the actual physical cd release did not come out until 2008. I've written before about my distaste for downloads and digital mp3's etc; you can shove them where the sun don't shine as far as I am concerned. So I was not one of those people downloading "In Rainbows" in 2007, actually preferring to wait for when the cd would be released(as I figured it would) in higher quality sound. "In Rainbows" did not disappoint; and I wasn't expecting it to, having heard most, if not all of the "In Rainbows" tunes on the band's 2-night stand at the Greek Theatre in 2006. But, my lord, how the hairs on the back of my neck stood up when I first heard "Reckoner"...goddam does that Thom Yorke have an unearthly falsetto! No surprise that Gnarls Barkley was covering the song on their summer tour, clips of which you can find on Youtube. Then, there was Portishead's "Third"...I know I was not alone in wondering/worrying if the band would still have it, or if their's would just be another flaccid comeback reunion. Quite frankly, the whole trip-hop sound they practically invented has run its course, its impact diluted from too many inferior copy-cats and overuse in hotel lounges and car commercials. Needless to say, blown away is how you could describe the 1-2 punch impact of Portishead's Coachella performance and release of "Third" three days later in April. I think I posted about this album earlier this year, so I won't rehash over the details; I'll only say that whatever Beth Gibbons has seen and/or lived through that gives her voice THAT haunting, frail quality is something I don't think I want to know. And "Magic Door" has one of the, if not THE, drumbeats of the year! And "Plastic" isn't so bad, either. As for the rest of the albums on my list, some have been written about extensively in the music press, others maybe not so much, but if you were a regular reader of Mojo, Uncut, Paste, The Word, and a few other magazines, you should know about most of them...hell, I found out about Bon Iver's "For Emma..." because of the May 2008 issue of Mojo's review which they gave the designation "Album of the Month"; that was good enough for me to check the album out. Marnie Stern I had to get just for the sheer lunacy of the title, which reminded me of Fiona's lengthy "When the pawn hits the...". Damn, this girl can plain rip on guitar...and she's got the insane Zach Hill bashing away on drums, too! I'm doing this mainly off the top of my head, so I might be forgetting someone, and it is entirely possible that my list would be somewhat different if I did it another day or in another frame of mind. What I am positive of is that no matter what, the top 4 of my list is set in stone. Radiohead, Portishead, Bon Iver and No Age are rock solid locks...some of the rest of the list I could see being supplanted by someone from my honourable mention list, depending on how I felt that day. Happy New Year everyone! Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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