Wow, so for weeks now I have talked about this year in music in a lot of broken entries. Well I am kicking it at home today, ill with Kidney Stones and after finishing all my work for the day early I thought I would rap about 2008 in finality. You can see my list, some of my other writings and opinions this year on some stuff.
First, this new blog has been nice. Though I haven’t kept up on it as much as I wanted to, I think it’s been a pretty good start. Hopefully next year I can focus more attention on it. But I did manage to review a few albums, a movie, talk about some stuff I was into and write a bunch of best of lists. So to anyone that is actually reading this fucking thing, stick with me and I promise it will get better.
As for my top ten, pretty much El-P’s album scared the living fuck out of me. A record that was 5 years in the making I’ll Sleep When You’re Dead I think redefines underground hip hop. Dude got on the mic and brought in crazy collaborators this time around. And it all worked out well. This album is what music is supposed to be about and fuck if El-P didn’t deliver. Def Jux is in good hands so long as this dude is at the helm.
Modest Mouse really surprised me with this double EP as I like to call it. We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank is really really good. I never really got into this band (I even heckled Issac Brock years ago at a D-Plan show) but it seems the missing piece was Johnny Marr. Either way, while long winded there isn’t a group of songs I enjoyed more then the one’s on this album.
Baroness fucking rock the hell out. I wrote a review of this record on this blog, so you can check that shit out if you want. Basically Baroness got me really stoked on metal again and showed me that it still has artists that are innovative.
And yes Kelly Clarkson’s new album is indeed in my top 5 this year. Fucking SERIOUSLY. Besides being a great pop diva album (I love me some pop diva’s) Kelly Clarkson, as part of the dying record conglomerate stood up to the suits and said this is the album I want to put out. She wrote the songs with her backing band and the producer she picked out, sung about the things that were going on in her life and how she felt and didn’t take no for an answer. While Sony may have snow balled her in their promotion (they claim they spent millions on it) Kelly gets the artistic and moral victory on this one. The work far surpasses her previous sugar pop as the Texas Darling comes to rock the shit out of your face.
How the hell people can even consider Radiohead’s new album as even good not only with in the context of the band’s own cannon but next to everything else that came out this year is fucking silly. In Rainbows is essentially Radiohead’s answer to Bad Religion’s New Maps Of Hell. Both albums establish that the bands are still out there making music, but you have to wonder if they will ever find the inspiration that sparked their brilliance or continue to rehash old themes and concepts. The rest of Pitchfork’s top 50 just proves that they are more into being scenesters or tastemakers then actually listening to music. Jay Z puts out another Jay Z record that isn’t any different then anything he’s done in 10 years and he makes the list, EL-P puts out a horrifying album and doesn’t make the list. An overbearing WuTang album makes the list but they can’t even find room for anything from the punk rock genre that remotely excites them? Hell they should be ashamed that their #1 album of the year was Spin’s #3. I thought you were the alternative guys? I thought you were covering culture and art, you sure prop yourselves up that way. Stupid fucks. If it weren’t for the news feed your site would be worthless.
As for SPIN putting Against Me up as the best album for 2008 I think they are just trying to support the dieing dinosaur called major labels. Against Me didn’t sell out so much as just put out a really boring record. Tom Gabel’s insane attacks on punk rock aside (dude get some self confidence, so what if a bunch of fucking kids on the internet said you sold out) New Wave just isn’t that well executed or exciting. It meanders down the most sterile roads that Searching for (a former) Clarity introduced us to. It’s better to rock out then fade away into mid-tempo, uninspiring pop crap. Really, guys, I love you, I had such high hopes for you. When you went to Fat I thought it was the beginning of something awesome. When you signed to Sire and got Butch Vig I really thought I was gonna get a balls out record that would destroy me. Instead I got a bunch of light rock music that didn’t move me at all. I don’t want another Reinventing Axel Rose, but the reinvention of Against Me just isn’t compelling.
So that’s it for me now. I am gonna sit on my butt for a while, ride out the year with my various illnesses (kidney stones) and maladies (no teefs). I will be comming at you in January with reviews of Bomb The Music Industry! and Defiance Ohio, a look ahead into 2008 and hopefully some other writings. Thanks for checking shit out and being awesome.