HAPPY NEW YEAR!
So I thought I'd give a list of my top favourite albums of 2008. In no particular order:
BAT FOR LASHES: Fur & Gold
Beautiful, haunting and melodic tunes. The singer's voice sounds kinda like Bjork at times (but not as goofy, experimental or ridiculous) and the music has a sophistication which reminds me of Kate Bush both in quality of writing and in production. The music video for What's A Girl To Do? is pretty cool too...
THE BRIAN JONESTOWN MASSACRE: Bravery Repetition and Noise
Neo-psychedelic 60's/classic rock at its finest. If you want to watch a good music documentary be sure to check out Dig! The documentary follows the rise and rivalry of BJM and/vs. The Dandy Warhols. Prior to watching the documentary a few years ago, I only had a "Best Of" compilation of their music, but after seeing the documentary I went and bought everything else they recorded. They are perhaps my favourite band.
TAPES 'N TAPES: Walk It Off
Definitely not as impressive as their debut album The Loon, but after wearing that album down to dust it was nice to have a new batch of tunes from this incredible band.
JAY REATARD: Blood Visions/Singles '06-'07/Matador Singles '08
Where the hell was I when these albums came out?! I must have been under some fuggin' big rock because I never heard of Jay Reatard until about 2 months ago. He's/they're awesome! Kinda Ramones, kinda Buzzcocks, kinda Vapors, kinda Devo. It's every genre of punk from garage to 80's new wave and his music rocks! Blood Visions is pretty much solid gold. Every track on it will get stuck kickin' about your brain for days. Do a Jay Reatard search on Youtube and look at the first two entries' titles...
THE FALL: Imperial Wax Solvent
The Fall have always been "hit & miss" in my books but Imperial Wax Solvent (the 27th studio release) is a definite HIT! It's pretty raw and rough around the edges with flubs and gaffs throughout and you can tell that Mark E. Smith and his new band just doesn't care. It really sounds like they had a blast in the studio.
DAVID BOWIE: The Man Who Sold The World
First off, nice dress David. This '71 album definitely strayed from his hippy folk tunes. Still lots of science-fiction throughout and his lyrics just as puzzling as ever but this album is a darker and heavier album. In fact, it has been said that it was one of the first heavier hard-rock metalesque album ever released by a well-known established artist. I don't know about that myself but that's what "they" say.
4 DESTROYER: Trouble In Dreams
Vancouver's Destroyer's (basically Dan Bejar) are amazing. Streethawk: A Seduction is one of my all-time favourite albums ever. I can fully understand why people wouldn't like Destroyer as Dan's voice is a bit...hmmm...theatrical and grandiose and somewhat like a chariacture. I know a number of people who have said "I hate Destroyer because of his voice." Dan is an extremely talented song-writer in the vein of Bowie and Leonard Cohen, and his songs have so many hooks, twists and turns and catchy choruses. Whenever a new Destroyer album is released is is always a treat to hear what treats this genius has in store for us. His music is always unpredictable though unmistakably Destroyer. Whenever any Destroyer song comes on my ipod during shuffle, it's always a reward and brings a smile to my fucking face.
THE KINKS: Something Else
The Kinks are amazing. 'Nuff said.
THE JESUS & MARY CHAIN: The Power of Negative Thinking
60 years ago, when I was a teenager, a buddy gave me his Pyschocandy record and I was hooked. To this day, it is still one of my favourite albums of all times. I remember "Stinkin" Lincoln Burgess-Webb shaking his head in disbelief saying "It's just noise! It sucks!" Well guess what Lincoln, you're honestly fucked in the head! TPONT is a collection of some of their best stuff.
MOGWAI: The Hawk Is Howling
Scottish instrumentalists whose shows are supposedly louder than any other band have released their third solid album in a row. They've actually released a whole shit-load of recordings but for me their albums were always hit-and-miss so eventually I just gave up on them. I remember being in Zulu Records and seeing Happy Songs For Happy People on the shelf and saying "Nope. I've had it up to here with this band!" Then after seeing the music video for Hunted By A Freak I thought, "Alright, I'd better check the rest of that album out. It was by far one of the best albums of the year and I still listen to it. Their follow-up Mr. Beast and this one The Hawk Is Howling is in the same vein as HMFHP and for me, it's working.