March 20, 2008

I'm such a slacker

I promised one of those non-exhaustive best of 2007 wank fests and I didn't deliver.

So here we go, without order, rhyme, or reason.

  • Of Montreal - Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?
    When you're riddled with depression, sometimes you have to put on a face and move on: stiff upper lip and all that. I don't usually dig when artists create an artificial artifice... a facade... to sell their songs to their audience (I'll halfway lump Bowie's Ziggy Stardust into this catagory and will toss the entire Coheed and Cambria catalog and the whole sci-fi story they've created into it). Tony Montana said, "I always tell the truth. Even when I lie." Kevin Barnes was probably more in Oscar Wilde territory than Scarface when he crafted Hissing Fauna, the first half of which includes some great tracks. It suffers a similar fate of many albums and is too front loaded, but none of the tracks would I consider skippable. Many of you have probably already heard this album.

  • LCD Soundsystem - Sounds of Silver
    "All My Friends" is possibly one of the best songs I've ever heard. That's not blogger hyperbole that totes Vampire Weekend, Tapes and Tapes, and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah as the second coming of the messiah: that's honesty. I'm still a young pup at 24, but when I go to shows, I feel like old man winter. Listening to LCD Soundsystem doesn't make me feel so bad.

  • Radiohead - In Rainbows
    I'm not going to pull our leg. I thought Hail to the Thief was a bland album by Radiohead standards and even though I had a prerelease of it, I chucked it. I feared more of the same on In Rainbows and sincerely hoped that it wouldn't follow in the footsteps of its predecessor. Especially with the added pressure of the "set your own price" gimmick that cost them money when I downloaded their album for free from their own webpage. Seriously, this is in OK Computer territory. It's a fantastic album that gets overshawdowed by the aforementioned pricing scheme. "House of Cards" is probably my favorite track. It's a headphone album, like many previous Radiohead albums have been.

  • M.I.A. - Kala
    There are parts of Kala when you want to yell at M.I.A. for being halfway between the western world and this unknown, unseen that most Americans will never know or see... and because it's absolutely ludicrous to be decrying some of this shit while living on the cusp of the world in which causes such atrocities to occur. Maybe it's that kind of bravado that makes Kala work. It's all over the map in a way that usually bugs the life out of me. "Paper Planes" is the hot track, but I've been digging "$20". It's got New Order's "Blue Monday" as the base (but not annoying like Orgy's cover) and informs that an AK-47 in Africa will only cost me Andrew Jackson... which is pretty sweet, if I wanted an AK.

  • Battles - Mirrored
    I saw Battles live in Denton, Texas on June 25, 2007. I saw four men play electronic rock to absolute, pitch perfect perfection. Having seen the monstrosity live, I saw their album in a different light. "These guys can play these tracks LIVE, without studio trickery." Mirrored has effected me in ways that most albums don't. I went and got a copy of Reason for my Mac, downloaded a keyboard emulator, and have tried to write my own music. It's like when the Sex Pistols played Manchester and almost everybody in attendance started a band; from the one show, you ended up with the Smiths, the Buzzcocks, Joy Division (later New Order), the Fall... and Tony Wilson was there, who started that Factory Records label. It was like that for me. So yeah.

    Narrowly missing the cut:
  • Band of Horses - Cease to Begin
  • Panda Bear - Person Pitch
  • The Shins - Wincing the Night Away
  • Les Savy Fav - Let's Stay Friends

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