2008 Galore! pt. 5: TOP 50 (50-41)
So, the big moment has arrived. During the next week (or two weeks, depending on the time i have to present yo this list), i’ll tell you what my 50 favourite records were from 2008. I must admit I haven’t listened to every album that got released this year, but maybe i’ll make a few corrections at the end of the year. Maybe not.
Comment as much as you want, cause i really enjoy that. Oh, by the way. You don’t have to read everything. Just check out the mp3-links, look for them on myspace or the illegal circuit.. or Better buy their albums and surprise yourself! (and if you don’t like it, give the record away, to a homeless person or a starving kid in africa)
Sounds like: The garage version of Lee Hazlewood & Nancy Sinatra
One of the important questions in life is whether garage music must be made in a garage or not. I’ve been wondering about that for ages. No idea whether Thee oh sees recorded stuff in a garage once ,or just pretended to be in one. It surely rocks and has a lot of energy, and the harmonic singing between the woman and the guy give a sort of Lo-fi White Stripes feel (lo-fi!). May i remind you that the White Stripes-comparison isn’t accurate at all?
Sounds like: Math rock with a rough edge
No, 31 knots, what have you done? Inviting Children’s choirs to sing along? Thou wilt no longer be a appreciated rock band! I’ve read some stupid things about this new album, but for me, it’s just one of the best rock albums this year. I don’t listen to heavy music (well, heavy, let’s not exaggerate here tom) that often, but 31 Knots is enjoyable at most times. It’s math rock (which is a stupid name for difficult dissonant riffs i think).
Sounds like: Smog on Ukelele, although you don’t really hear the ukelele
Ok, i must admit: The Burning Hell isn’t as catchy or cool as Bill Callahan, but his voice is as deep, and some of his songs are the same. He is told to be a ukelele virtuoso, but unfortunately the ukelele doesn’t get a central part in his songs. He’s got something of a vaudeville, and he has made one of the best songs of this year (which i will share not now, but later on in the year). But this one is really nice too.
Sounds Like: Riding the Sixties indie carroussel
Retro is the theme word of the year. There are really a lot of bands in my list that actually seemed to have born in the wrong day and age. No, no medieval bands though. Department of Eagles is a sideproject from the guys of Grizzly Bear (and i wasn’t that fond of their Yellow House-album), and is a real trip into nostalgia. This music reminds me of carroussels and i have no idea why. it’s like music that you swing around too, with your hands in the air while riding a plastic horse.
46. Noah & The Whale – Peaceful, The World Lays Me Down (Vertig)
Sounds like: Every singalong, whistle, hand-clap record.
So, Summer is over officially. There is snow all over the place, and people crashing their cars into freshly built snowmen. But that doesn’t stop Noah & The Whale from singing about their happiness. Last year, i had a pretty similar album in my list (although this isn’t as catchy as that one): Bishop Allen. Strangely, i wanted to put this band into my talents for the future list of 2007, but eventually didn’t. And at first their album disappointed me, but… you know what. I’ll take the text i wrote from last year’s Bishop Allen album:
” While I was making this list, i wanted this band out. I liked them, but not that much, right? And I listened to the Broken string. And Again. And Again. And everytime i thought: “nooo, this definitely must stay in”… and then after a week i wanted them out again. But it’s impossible. This is catchy. So damn catchy.”
Just replace the Broken string by ‘Peacefully, the world lays me down’.
Because their album is released by a Vertigo, which is part of Universal, and i don’t want to post mp3’s that could piss RIAA-people off, i’ll just add the well-known YouTube-Clip:
Sounds Like: What’s with the accent, dude? British poprock
The most fun about this band? The English Wit, combined with the amazingly thick London Cockney accent (as far as I know, it could be Liverpudlian too..i’m nto British). Their songs are quite catchy too, but in a different way than Noah & The Whale. This is more rock-related, perhaps even close to Britpop (although they remind me of the Clash, but then again, i don’t know that much about the Clash..but there’s a bit of a reggae-mood in here). I do admit that after a whole album, his voice can get a bit tedious, but that doesn’t take away the fact that this is a really feel-good album, and probably a really good live band.
Sounds like: Bossa Nova Loner
I’m getting Flashbacks. Last year Adrian Orange & her Band made this rather excentric bossa nova album that ended up high in my list, and this year there is another artist that makes a strange album that sounds very south-america. So, you all know Stanley Brinks from his past as André Herman Düne (about which he made the amazing song called Stanley Brinks) , and i seem to miss him in the band Herman Düne. They also make this southern catchy songs, but when they were still ocmplete, their songs sounded less shallow (so sorry guys, you’re not in the list this year). This is a melancholic southern album, with trumpets and all of it. Amazing. Dank u, Stanley Brinks (for the non-dutch speaking community. Dank u is Dutch for Thank You)
43. Ray Lamontagne – Gossip In The Grain (RCA Records)
Sounds Like: Otis Redding stepping away from the soul, but sometimes returning to it.
There aren’t many people with Ray Lamontagnes goosebump-voice. That being said, this album is actually a bit too clean for my standards. I know, that’s just wanker talk (My collegue and big Lamontagne-fan will probably curse me right now), but i’m really looking forward to hear Ray Lamontagne’s Pink Moon-album. Just him with a guitar, his voice, and okay a bit of the very intense production that is exemplary of his albums. But just not too much. Because of his voice, he’s in the list. Again a major label issue, so no mp3 but a video:
Sounds like: Woohoo, get out the Kazoo’s, Bottlenecks, Blow Bottles and Banjo’s, cause we’re having an old time rag folk swing party here
The Two Man Gentleman Band is the most retro band in my list. They sound like two guys having lived on their farm for 80 years. The use of kazoos is just so over the top, but so funny. It’s probably an album that will get boring after a while, but right now, i’m still enjoying every inch of it.
not only a song, but also a video, because it’s so funny
Sounds Like: classic singersongwriter-stuff
When making my list, i started with over 200 Bands, and very quickly erased dozens of them. I relistened to stuff and got rid of them. I listened to it again, and they got out of there. And Mr. David Viner remained. I don’t know why. I really don’t. He’s the Strange bug in the dog’s skin, and maybe next year, he’ll be totally out of this list. Everytime i watch over my list (i do that at least ten times a day, to see if there are any last minute changes), I see him standing there and thinking “Mr. David Viner, who the hell is that?” and then i listen to one or two songs, thinking: “well, this is quite good.” It’s nothing special, just songs that sound timeless. (he’s maybe this year’s Kid Harpoon). He used to do shows with The White Stripes, by the way. (but expect something completely different). Funny how I started with White stripes and ended with them!
in Dutch, we have an expression, translated it is “The Head is Off”. Which means, we’ve started. Expect more bands in the following days/weeks (depending on the time and the mood i’m in).
Tags: 31 knots, 4AD, Adrien Orange & Her Band, B.Y Records, Bishop Allen, Bossa Nova Indie, Britpop, Department of Eagles, garage, Grizzly Bear, Handclaps, herman Düne, Kazoo, kid harpoon, Lee Hazlewood & Nancy Sinatra, Loose Music, math rock, Moshi Moshi, Mr. David Viner, noah & the whale, Otis redding, polyvinyl, Ragtime, Ray Lamontagne, Serious Business Records, smog, Stanley Brinks, swing, the burning hell, The Clash, The Two Man Gentleman Band, The Wave Pictures, The white Stripes, Thee oh sees, Tomlab, ukelele, weewerkYou can comment below, or link to this permanent URL from your own site.