Tuesday, December 16, 2008

top 30 albums of 2008

30. Tokyo Police Club: Elephant Shell
Elephant Shell is full of sweet and captivating songs; each track has its own charm along with some clever and witty lyrics.

29. Johnny Flynn: A Larum
One of many wonderful folk records from 2008. The up tempo melodies and gorgeous fiddling are more than pleasing to the ears.

28. Port O'Brien: All We Could Do Was Sing
The folk-rock style in All We Could Do Was Sing sounds like the perfect combination of Great Lake Swimmers, The Decemberists, and The Dodos.

27. Frightened Rabbit: The Midnight Organ Fight
An emotionally charged and beautiful indie rock album.

26. Times New Viking: Rip It Off
So noisy... so much fun!

25. Old Man Luedecke: Proof of Love
A genuine and authentic reproduction of late 20s to 40s country-folk music.

24. Mystery Jets: Twenty One
An extremely catchy pop record full of carefree and cheesy relationship songs.

23. The Ruby Suns: Sea Lion
An incredible psychedelic pop album with Grizzly Bear-like lo-fi/mellow style and Akron/Family level of experimentation.

22. Sigur Rós: Með Suð í Eyrum Við Spilum Endalaust
Sigur Rós departs from the gloomy tone. Með Suð í Eyrum Við Spilum Endalaust is rather uplifting, triumphant and celebratory sounding. "Gobbledigook" puts a smile on my face every time I listen to it!

21. Portishead: Third
The majority of the album sounds like something out of a 1970s Italian horror flick!

20. The Streets: Everything Is Borrowed
Mike Skinner has developed from a musician to a true poet in Everything Is Borrowed.

19. Cocoanut Groove: Madeleine Street
A youthfully carefree/laid back album.

18. Kay Kay and his Weathered Underground: Kay Kay and his Weathered Underground
The rich mixture of styles and sounds give this album a wonderful carnivalesque sensation.

17. My Morning Jacket: Evil Urges
Evil Urges is the best My Morning Jacket album to date.

16. Noah And The Whale: Peaceful, The World Lays Me Down
Noah And The Whale shows that there is a place for charmingly cheesy pop songs.

15. Vampire Weekend: Vampire Weekend
So catchy!

14. Benoît Pioulard: Temper
From found sound to drone noises, Pioulard beautifully integrates countless elements with tradition folk music. The end product is adventurous, gorgeous and completely mesmerizing.

13. Nico Muhly: Mothertongue
The complexity of Mothertongue is undesirable; it is multi-dimensional, genre bending, and beyond brilliant.

12. Deerhunter: Microcastle/Weird Era Cont.
While Microcastle is more or less full of incredible old-school indie pop influenced songs, Weird Era Cont. is more like Cryptogrmas as it features a more drone-ambient approach. "Nothing Ever Happened" is one of the best songs of the year!

11. M83: Saturdays = Youth
I have always adored M83’s electronic nostalgic sound; Saturdays = Youth is yet another exceptional journey through time.

10. Late Of The Pier: Fantasy Black Channel
Late Of The Pier’s debut is 40 plus minutes of rhythmic basslines, 80s retro synth-pop melodies, and unforgettable abstract lyrics. This one will make you dance!

9. The Wave Pictures: Instant Coffee Baby
Laid back 50s rock n roll sound and entertainingly witty lyrics make Instant Coffee Baby an unique sounding album.

8. Foals: Antidotes
The complex melodies and rhythm driven songs make Antidotes the best math rock album of 2008.

7. The Dodos: Visiter
Almost an hour of up tempo acoustic guitars and rhythmic percussion... absolutely fantastic!

6. No Age: Nouns
I am loving this revival of 80s hardcore punk. Nouns is full of noise and raw vocals; Randy and Dean are always amazingly energetic live.

5. I Was a Cub Scout: I Want You To Know That There Is Always Hope
A delightfully straightforward indie rock album that is full of sincere passion and emotion.

4. Fleet Foxes: Fleet Foxes
Breathtaking harmonisation!

3. These New Puritans: Beat Pyramid
The youthful and punk-like attitudes make Beat Pyramid extremely entertaining; "Numerology aka Numbers", "Swords of Truth", and "Elvis" are some of the most memorable anthems of the year.

2. Sam Amidon: All Is Well
Sam Amidon celebrates classic American folk blues with songs of grief, loneliness, lost love, and tragedy. Amidon’s soft and fragile voice is meditative and graceful; All Is Well is most gorgeous release of 2008.

1. Atlas Sound: Let the Blind Lead Those Who Can See but Cannot Feel

This is an album that I have been listening to on a regular basis since last December. Let the Blind is quite a personal record and it is an absolute beauty! The ambient instrumentation and touching lyrics give the album this chilling tone; I get weird mixed emotions every time I listen to it. Let the Blind is by far my favourite album of 2008!

The Next Ten (honorable mention):
Mercy Arms: Mercy Arms
Plants and Animals: Parc Avenue
Fall Horsie: Devil(e)durge
The Sea and Cake: Car Alarm
Wildbirds & Peacedrums: Heartcore
Cadence Weapon: Afterparty Babies
TV On The Radio: Dear Science
Women: Women
Vivian Girls: Vivian Girls
Flight of the Conchords: Flight of the Conchord

Thursday, December 11, 2008

join the battle

Patrick Wolf posted a rather long blog post on MySpace yesterday. In it, he talked about parting ways with Universal and starting his new label Bloody Chamber Muisc. He also mentioned something called Bandstocks.

Basically, anyone can invest in a share of the album soon to be released. The more people that invest, the better the packaging, the better the mastering, the bigger the budget for videos and tours etc… the more fantastic the album is… the bigger the tribe… the bigger the battle, and bigger the victory in my language. If you need the finer details then go over to www.bandstocks.com, to hear some snippets of the album, and read all about it! All those that invest get the opportunity to come to secret rehearsals, and to get a limited edition amazing version of the album, get the album first, get first dibs on tickets for the tour. I'll invite you all over for a big homemade Wolf stew and a round of grog when I win my Grammy...

I have not tried it yet, but apparently only UK residents can invest to help Patrick finish mixing his new record, Battle.

You can download a mix featuring clips from Battle track below:
ps, Tilda Swinton is in one of the songs!

Battle Preview
***all files expire in 7 days or until bandwidth reaches its limit

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

no age & zach hill: flannel graduate

I am terribly sorry for the lack of posts lately, but I have been pretty busy with school and work… things should calm down soon and I can spend more time on thos blog.

I recently came across this from various blogs: Flannel Graduate by No Age & Zach Hill. Flannel Graduate was a Japan tour CD-R featuring “three” songs from No Age and Zach Hill. The first two "Murder Burger" and "Crummmy Doug" are just seconds of sound that lead to the finale, "California Bird Dudes". This last track is 20+ minutes of incredible jamming, rhythmic drumbeats, and awesome guitar distortion. You can check them out below, enjoy!

Murder Burger
Crummmy Doug
California Bird Dudes [wicked-cool song]
***all files expire in 7 days or until bandwidth reaches its limit

Friday, December 05, 2008

admission is a blanket

The 2nd annual BlankFest Canada will cover the city of Toronto with a blanket fundraiser on Saturday, Dec. 6th at El Mocambo. Blankfest Canada's goal is to collect as many blankets for the homeless as possible and is asking guests to bring new and used blankets or comforters in good condition (minimum one per person) as the price of admission to the event.

For more information about this event, go to http://www.blankfest.com/