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Your Top Ten 2009 Albums

post #1 of 43
Thread Starter 
Ok, another thread for discovering anything new I may have missed,

Forget magazines lists, just make your own, list as much as you want, whatever genre, possible in order, maybe I'll collect them and list the most popular albums on Head Fi,

Here's my list:

10- Sunn 0)))- Monoliths and Dimensions
9- Devendra Banhart- What will Be
8- Placebo- Battle for The Sun
7- Flaming Lips- Embryonic
6- Starsailor- All the Plans
5- Depeche Mode- Sounds Of The Universe
4- Dinosaur Jr.- Farm
3-Porcupine Tree- The Incident
2-Grizly Bear- Veckatimest
1-Alice in Chains- Black Gives Way To Blue
post #2 of 43
Do we really need this? See this thread:

2009 - Your Favorite Releases So Far

A far more comprehensive one, and has been up for ages.
post #3 of 43
(10) "Up From Below" - Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros
(9) "Embryonic" - The Flaming Lips
(8) "Veckatimest" - Grizzly Bear
(7) "Wilco (The Album)" - Wilco
(6) "Noble Beast | Useless Creatures" - Andrew Bird
(5) "Get Lucky" - Mark Knopfler
(4) "We Used To Think The Freeway Sounded Like A River" - Richmond Fontaine
(3) "Dark Is The Night" - Various Artists [Arcade Fire/Beirut/Cat Power/Andrew Bird/David Byrne/Yeasayer/Spoon/Iron & Wine]
(2) "Bitte Orca" - Dirty Projectors
(1) "All My Friends Are Funeral Singers" - Califone

Honorable Mentions:
"No One's First And You're Next" - Modest Mouse
"Logos" - Atlas Sound
"Hospice" - The Antlers
"Reservoir" - Fanfarlo
"Popular Songs" - Yo La Tengo
"Keep It Hid" - Dan Auerbach
"No Line On The Horizon" - U2
"Blood From Stars" - Joe Henry
post #4 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by DLeeWebb View Post
(1) "All My Friends Are Funeral Singers" - Califone
There ya go. Nice list. My top 5 came out a little different, probably because I didn't hear that much new stuff, stayed mostly with the artists I've known, so kind of predictable if you know me very well .. but not too much different from yours ...

Circulatory System - Signal Morning
If you have any history with Olivia Tremor Control and some of the other psychedelic Elephant 6 bands, you know what I mean when I say that this has a much denser production than most records, though some great songs at heart. It usually takes a few listens before the songs get a chance to work their magic. There's a lot going on, and there's often a dark undercurrent, but the music is so colorful, it never stays in one place for very long before morphing into something else, usually unexpected, even after many listens. I've been a big fan for many years, so this one just fits me, and it is the one I've listened to most this year. Some very magical moments, and this is the one that puts the images in my head the best. Some pretty cool effects come out when listening in the car, almost like multi-channel surround sound. Note that the actual CD sounds quite a bit better than the earlier leak.

Califone - All My Friends Are Funeral Singers
Califone has always been unique and special to me, adventurous and fun, filled with a passion for the music, the words, the sounds. Seems like this is one of their best yet, easily one of their most diverse records so far. It's got some great inventive pop music, some of that fractured old timeless folk music, some of the Tom Waits-like junkyard percussion driven aural sound collages, the usual visit to the Stone's Main Street for a song or two, which I think they pull off well, especially on the fantastic "Buñuel". If you get a chance, give that one a listen, a real guitar rockin' dirty country blues thing about the influential Spanish filmmaker.

All in all, this record really ties together all of their past explorations, both the Red Red Meat records like Bunny Gets Paid, and the Califone records like Roomsound, into one very cohesive, interesting, and most importantly, enjoyable package. As usual, Brian Deck does a great job on the recording. Some of it explores a more atmospheric sound than they've done before, after all it is supposedly a soundtrack, but Deck provides a nice atmospheric shimmer throughout most of the songs, even when it goes almost unnoticed. Cool cover artwork too. After living this one for a couple months, think I may still like Roots and Crowns better, along with the classic Roomsound that is one of my favorites of the decade, but this is still very good, just not as transcendent as those favorites. Maybe too diverse sounding, or maybe it just doesn't take enough risks? A couple of the songs maybe aren't that memorable, but kinda cool that they have chosen to open their last two records with a couple of the least accessible tunes in "Giving Away the Bride" and "Pink & Sour". Actually, who am I kidding, I do really love this record, cover to cover.

Engineers - Three Fact Fader
Really nice, if you like that early 90s shimmering shoegaze, with a storm of guitars always swirling in the background, they are probably the best at it nowadays. Don't know if he's a fan or just on the same label, but there's a pretty cool remix around of the second song, "Sometimes I Realise", by Steven Wilson. Think it's a bonus track on the 2-disc version. Some of it does sound a bit like Porcupine Tree, though more guitar effects, of course. Maybe a bit front-loaded, but opens up and gets more cohesive with time, and has that intoxicating pull throughout that some of us get from this type of densely layered and intricately constructed music.

Richmond Fontaine - We Used to Think the Freeway Sounded Like a River
Nice record, these guys are something special, especially Willy Vlautin. Right now it feels like this one is their best yet. Has that same "lived in and seen too much" travelogue feel they've been exploring the last few records, except this broken down cast of characters is encountered while travelling throughout the Pacific Northwest. Mostly that downbeat alt-country sound, the life is in the lyrics, but they kick it on a couple times too. Give a listen to "43" if you get the chance... http://killrockmusic.com/wp-content/...ontaine-43.mp3

Grizzly Bear - Veckatimest
I do like this one a lot, though to be honest, over the course of the CD I sometimes get the feel it has started over on repeat. Some of the songs tend to run together in my mind. Maybe I just haven't spent enough time with it for them to all show their own personality. But this is very high quality music, no denying that. I like it the most when rhythmically complex, reminding me a little of what I like so much about that Dodos record from last year. And maybe too obscure in the US to mean much, but definitely a Augie March comparison to be made, though at this point in time, the Augie March debut Sunset Studies is one of my top ten favorites of the decade, even though it is overly long and a bit unkempt around the edges, while this one isn't quite in that region.
post #5 of 43
10. Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion
9. Sweet Trip - You Will Never Know Why
8. Daïtro - Y
7. All the Empires of the World - Blessings
6. toe - For Long Tomorrow
5. Shpongle - Ineffable Mysteries from Sphongleland
4. Mew - No More Stories...
3. P.O.S. - Never Better
2. maudlin of the Well - Part the Second
1. Magma - Ëmëhntëhtt-Ré
post #6 of 43
Here's what I ended up with-

1.) Sunset Rubdown- Dragonslayer
2.) Japandroids- Post-Nothing
3.) Dirty Projectors- Bitte Orca
4.) The Mountain Goats- The Life of the World to Come
5.) Bill Callahan- Sometimes I Wish We Were An Eagle
6.) David Bazan- Curse Your Branches
7.) Condo F*%ks- F*%kbook
8.) Yo La Tengo- Popular Songs
9.) Hayden- The Place Where We Lived
10.) Thomas Function- In the Valley of the Sickness

I guess I'm just a folkie at heart- a bunch of folk albums made the list and a bunch more just missed. Although last year my list was dominated by noise rock and power pop.
post #7 of 43
In not particular order:

Muse - The Resistance
fun. - Aim and Ignite
Grizzly Bear - Veckatimest
Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavillion
Mew - No More Stories
The Antlers - Hospice
Julian Casablancas - Phrazes For The Young
Arctic Monkeys - Humbug
Kasabian - West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum
Franz Ferdinand - Tonight: Franz Ferdinand

Silly tongue in cheek one:
The Beatles Box Set.
post #8 of 43
I've discovered many new Psy* albums the last few days, Top 10 ain't enough anymore, but there goes

1. Röyksopp - Junior
2. The Prodigy - Invaders Must Die
3. The Crystal Method - Divided By Night
4. Freeland - Cope
5. Solar Fields - Movements
6. Cell - Hanging Masses
7. Infected Mushroom - Legend of the Black Shawarma
8. H.U.V.A. Network - Ephemeris
9. Yggdrasil - Prose Edda
10. Zero Cult - Dreams in Stereo

Honorable Mentions :

1. Rena Jones - Indra's Web
2. William Orbit - My Oracle Lives Uptown
3. Worm is Green - Glow
4. Shpongle - Ineffable Mysteries from Shpongleland
5. Moshic - Sapirinion/TubTa (technically 2 different CDs, but released at the same time)

... and then there's Múm, a few compilations, etc... GREAT year for music!
post #9 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Davey View Post
There ya go. Nice list. My top 5 came out a little different, probably because I didn't hear that much new stuff, stayed mostly with the artists I've known, so kind of predictable if you know me very well .. but not too much different from yours ...
Yeah, I think that it has been a much better than average year for music. I still have about ten 2009 CD's that I have yet to make time to listen to. "Signal Morning" is in that pile. If you rate it #1 then I'm definitely going to have to make time for it over the holidays...I just can't get away from Califone, Richmond Fontaine, and "Dark Is The Night!" Happy Holidays!
post #10 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by DLeeWebb View Post
...and "Dark Is The Night!" Happy Holidays!
Yea, I like a lot of that compilation.. but a lot I don't care much about too, so kind of a tough listen overall. Some of the collaborations are great, that's probably the best part for me. Maybe I should resequence it.

That Antlers has been getting a lot of good press and I was thinking of getting a copy, was there something that you didn't particularly like about it, or just not much listening time yet?
post #11 of 43
No, I like "Hospice" a lot. I just don't think that it is better than the other music on my list. You're also correct, I haven't really had time to give it repeated listenings...
post #12 of 43
10) Antony and the Johnsons -The Crying Light
9) Atlas Sound - Logos
8) Andrew Bird - Noble Beast
7) Animal Collective - Fall Be Kind EP
6) St. Vincent -Actor
5) Sunset Rubdown - Dragonslayer
4) Grizzly Bear - Veckatimest
3) Bat For Lashes - Two Suns
2) The Antlers - Hospice
1) ---

I am leaving 1 blank because I didn't feel like this year really had an album deserving of the no. 1 spot in my mind, or more likely I simply haven't found it yet. There were no albums that were simply magical for me, as there have been often this decade.

Animal Collective had a shot at it with MPP, but that somehow fell short for me. I listen to it and love every single song, but it just doesn't crystalize into a love for the album itself, and I haven't been obsessed with it at all.\

One album I really, really didn't get this year: Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. I bought it after the massive hype and didn't really enjoy it outside of the two singles, Lisztomania and 1901.
post #13 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Davey View Post
That Antlers has been getting a lot of good press and I was thinking of getting a copy, was there something that you didn't particularly like about it, or just not much listening time yet?
Be warned: it's a very depressing listen... Haven't listened to an album that made me feel so shattered in a while. It's brilliant though.
post #14 of 43
No particular order

-Grizzly Bear - "Veckatimest"
-The Dirty Projectors - "Bitte Orca"
-Wilco - "Wilco (The Album)"
-Animal Collective - "Merriweather Post Pavilion"
-The Flaming Lips - "Embryonic"
-Muse - "The Resistance"
-Yeah Yeah Yeahs - "It's Blitz!"
-The Prodigy - "Invaders Must Die"
-Phoenix - "Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix"
-Califone - "All My Friends Are Funeral Singers"
post #15 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by GTRacer View Post
Be warned: it's a very depressing listen... Haven't listened to an album that made me feel so shattered in a while. It's brilliant though.

Thanks! I spent the day listening to the also brilliant The Hill by Richard Buckner, and part of his Devotion + Doubt, one of my all time favorirtes, followed by the always amazing Folklore by Sixteen Horsepower, so I kinda know how to handle depression

The death today of Vic Chesnutt did bring me down, though. Sad ending. His The Salesman and Bernadette will live on with me as a favorite. Rest in peace.
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