16 December 2007

Best of 2007, Part 1

I survived the AGU meeting in SF last week and I'm headed back to Boston on Wednesday, so I'll start my "Best of 2007" today as I'll have questionable internet connectivity from my folks house.
So, today I bring you my "with apologizes," "disappointing," "imports/not released in USA" and "guilty pleasures" of the year. Enjoy!

With Apologizes 
(albums that got good press but I never got a chance to hear ... so far. Hey, there are only so many albums I can buy/hear in a year. This year I found ~175 albums worth mentioning.)
Battles - Mirrors; Burial - Untrue; Gogol Bordello - Taranta; Jesu - Conqueror; Les Savy Fave - Let's Stay Friends; Liars - Liars; Lupe Fiasco - The Cool*; Menomena - Friend & Foe; The National - The Boxer; Spoon - Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga; Stars - In Our Bedroom After the War; The Field - From Here We Go Sublime
(* released 12/18)

Most Disappointing
(Some albums I really look forward to and then, well, they suck. They are not necessarily the worst albums, but the ones that made me feel the worst because I expected so much. Here are the cream of the rotten crop.)
1. Rilo Kiley: Under the Blacklight - I have no idea how Rilo Kiley became a bad soft rock band. The album baffles me because it gets worse with every listen.
2. The Shins: Wincing the Night Away - This album was just boring ... and that is a cardinal sin for indie rock.
3. Travis Morrisson Hellfighters: All Y'All - Ok, well, this album was just plain bad and after Travis' last album, I didn't expect much anyway. Sorry, the Dismemberment Plan was just better.
4. Dntel: Dumb Luck - Just not catchy enough to be worth the time. Maybe Jimmy really needs Ben to complete him.
5. Modest Mouse: We were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank - You'd think MM + Johnny Marr would equal awesomeness, but instead it just sort of equalled "yawn". Success might not be the best for Isaac and the bunch.

(Here are a bunch of bands that I liked this year but never got to enjoy their albums thanks to a lack of a US release. Bah!)
The Wombats; Kate Nash (Out in January 2008); Young Knives; Rumble Strips; Gallows; Basquiat Strings; Rakes; Cats on Fire*; Seabear*; Dizzee Rascal*; Die Fantastischen Vier*; K.I.Z.
(* I ended up getting these albums anyway).

Guilty Pleasure
(What I loved that I shouldn't have loved)
2007: German Hip-hop - My trip to Germany & Finland led me to a love of German hip-hop and even though many of my trips think I'm crazy, K.I.Z. and Die Fantastischen Vier made my day. I never did get to hear the full Hahnenkampf album by K.I.Z., but I loved their song "Geld Essen". I did get Die Fantastischen Vier's Fornika that featured one of my favorite songs of 2007, "Einfach Sein". 

Look for Best Songs and Best Albums coming soon ...

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