So it's a New Year and with that comes a reflection of last year. At least where music is concerned. I've been thinking about my favourite stuff from last year and after weeks of reviewing my radio playlists, poking around my iPod and going through my CDs, I think this is finally it. So here it is. My top records of 2008.
Fleet Foxes - Fleet Foxes
This record is pretty, chanty, quiet and great. It's chock full of harmonies and "White Winter Hymnal" is easily one of my favourite songs of 2008.
Jenny Lewis - Acid Tongue
Duh. This record is so good it's beyond words. I was waiting for this record to come out for months. So much so that I got an iTunes gift card for my birthday in May and I saved part of it to use specifically on this record when it came out in the fall. I'll admit, I was wary of Jenny without the Watson Twins but in all honestly, she doesn't need them at all. In fact, I think Zooey Deschanel's voice blends so well with hers it's hard to believe they haven't been singing together forever. Kind of like Neko Case and Kelly Hogan. Anyway, I love me some Rilo Kiley but they seem to have been losing their touch since More Adventurous and maybe a move away from her ex's band is a good thing in the long run.
Hayden - In Field and Town
I haven't liked a Hayden record this much since Skyscraper National Park. And I like that record a lot. IFAT though, well it might have taken it's place as my favourite Hayden record to date.
Constantines - Kensington Heights
They never fail to impress. I'm always, always happy to see a new record from them and with tracks like "Time Can Be Overcome" of course I'm on board.
Teenage Head with Marky Ramone
I know the material on this record isn't new but the fact that I can't put this record on without wanting to bust some sweet, sweet party dance moves means I can't keep it off this list.
Nick Cave - Dig, Lazarus Dig!!!
I know 2007 had me on a solid Nick Cave high pretty much the whole year but I can't help it! His stuff is so good and it's just never, ever boring. Even when you've listened to a record 20 times you can still listen again and hear something new. And as I've said before, the packaging of a Nick Cave record never fails to make a record buyer feel appreciated.
She and Him - Volume One
Here's another obvious choice. This record is so refreshingly pure and great -- nobody else has their sound right now and even after all this time, I still can't get enough of this record. Seeing them live really clinched it for sure though. I anxiously await Volumes Two through One Hundred please. $20 says the next one has her new Death Cab fiance all over it though.
Cat Power - Jukebox
There's not much that needs to be said about this record except wait for it to snow, put it on, open a bottle of wine and try not to be alone. She kills me. Completely and totally.
Black Mountain - In The Future
Everytime I saw this record at the radio station I had to play it. Even if I'd played it every week for 6 weeks before that.
Jason Collett - Here's To Being Here
This record came out 2 seconds into 2008 and I proclaimed it would be on my favourites list for 2008 for sure. Yup, I was right. I don't like this record as much as I liked Idols of Exile but it's still head and shoulders above most of the stuff that's out there.
Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago
This record might very well be on this list solely because of the song "Re: Stacks." Thankfully the rest of the record can stand up to the 6 minutes and 41 seconds of perfection that is that song.
Honourable Mentions include:
- Amelia Curran - War Brides: I haven't heard this whole record which is probably the only reason it didn't make the full list. This is a voice that should only be listened to through headphones. It's gravely and rough and yet smooth like nothing else.
- Danny Michel - Feather, Fur and Fin: This record is really good but can't touch a couple of this other ones so it doesn't make the list. I do always love me some new Danny Michel though so it still gets a thumbs up.
- Jenny Omnichord - Charlotte or Otis: A sweeter title track I have never heard.
- Sebastien Granger & The Mountains: This record rocks the crap out of something. I'm not sure what yet but I'll figure it out. Death From Above who????