Saturday, January 30, 2010

Looking Back at Ten

Here is my list of the best of the years 00-09. You 'aught' to like it!

Lame jokes aside...I dont get exposed to a lot of new music - mostly in my house I get to hear High School Musical and Hannah Montana. But I try to keep up by listening to NPRs All Songs Considered, and online at stations like Philly's WXPN and Seattle's KEXP. A few times a year, I am moved to buy (yes, buy) a CD. iTunes makes it so easy to scan the last 10 years and see what held up over the decade. Let me know what you think!

By the way, for those of you new to this blog, I've been going through my top 50 CDs of all is taking my quite a while. See below to see the list through #6. This list below might not be totally consistent with the other list - that's because my tastes might have changed in the year and a half it has taken me to get through the top 50!

1 The Crane Wife - The Decemberists
2 Elephant - White Stripes
3Guero - Beck
4 In Rainbows - Radiohead
5 Yankee Hotel Foxtrot - Wilco
6 American Idiot - Green Day
7 Get Away From Me - Nellie McKay
8 Acid Tongue - Jenny Lewis
9 Fever To Tell - Yeah Yeah Yeahs
10 Narrow Stairs - Death Cab For Cutie
11 Garden State Soundtrack
12 Last Broadcast - Doves
13 GaGaGaGaGa - Spoon
14 In Between Dreams - Jack Johnson
15 Is This It - Strokes
16 Corinne Bailey Rae
17 Shine - Trey Anastasio
18 Keep It Together - Guster
19 Veni Vidi Vicious - Hives
20 Franz Ferdinand
21 The Meadowlands - Wrens
22 Drastic Fantastic - KT Tunstall
23 The Rising - Springsteen
24 Electric Version - New Pornographers
25 We Started Nothing - Ting Tings

A Picasso or a Garfunkel

#6 Gordon: Barenaked Ladies. I know what Trevor's thinking....I waited 100 days for this? But this is my list, not his. And Gordon transports me back to a place and time. This was released in the Summer of '92, and I was on my way driving X-country to Seattle -- after living my whole life in NY, I was breaking out and driving solo to a far away place, and this album was my companion. BNL were from Toronto, where they were cult heroes -- their popularity extended across to Buffalo, from where I had just graduated college. I had never heard a CD that was such a complete mixture of fine musicianship and side-splitting humor. This CD is just so much fun. The snarky humor of Be My Yoko Ono and $1,000,000, the absolute goofiness of Grade 9 and King of Bedside Manor, and brilliant, brooding songs like Hello City and especially the beautiful Brian Wilson. It was the soundtrack for that cross-country trip - full of hope and fear and laughs.
Another gem on that album is Box Set, where they chronicle the life cycle of a pop band that hits heights and crashes down. The story of Box Set almost came true last year, as BNLs lead singer Steven Page became a cliche with a bizarre drug bust in NY and then getting booted from the band. They are not the same without his soaring vocals and biting satire. But they are still one of the most fun bands live you will ever see - just dont forget to bring the macaroni and cheese!