Monday, December 15, 2008

We Get Letters - Zak C.'s Top Albums of 2008

Soooooo. We got a phone call Saturday afternoon. It was from our man in Jacksonville, Zak C.

He says he's having trouble picking out his No 1. He's got a four way tie. I tell him to give them all No 1 and move to No. 5.

He's against that. He says he will send me something later that night.

And he does.

And I sat on it.

I sat on it, cos I was busy working on my Top 10. But also because I wanted to pimp my man's Shelby's awesome end of the year podcast (and I'm all about the tie-ins).

But here it is. It's good. It bends a little bit towards the edge of the rockin indie spectrum (as you allmight have guessed, I like the poppier, dancier side of things).

1. Fleet Foxes—Fleet Foxes. So I fought and fought with myself about number one this year. Easily any one of the top five on my list could have been number one at a given point during the year. But I think what it boils down to is that the Fleet Foxes record is the one that has resonated with me the most and it’s the one that I think will hold the test of time. I mean the songs on this record are simply some of the best songs I’ve heard in quite some time. And I should remind you all that it is their DEBUT record. I mean I’m not sure how to comprehend that statement. It’s the record that My Morning Jacket should have made.

2. Tokyo Police Club—Elephant Shell. The record that I played the most this year and it was the one I anticipated the most. Before I heard it, I knew it would be huge. I can’t help but smile every time I listen to this. Such a sold record. And again, a DEBUT people.

3. Okkervil River—The Stand Ins. They were number one last year (and number 8 on my list, but who’s counting) and there were days where I was sure this would be number one. I really was. The truth of the matter is…they are quickly becoming one of my favorite bands of all time. Enough said.

4. Conor Oberst—Conor Oberst. Dear Conor, It’s not really a solo project if you have a band….and can you please explain why this wasn’t released on Saddle Creek or Team Love (your own label!). But in spite of those picky details, nice work….really.

5. Blitzen Trapper—Furr. I can’t believe to put this at number five. Such an amazing record from start to finish. I could listen to this cd over and over again. Plus they are some of the nicest guys in indie rock. The DP and I saw them perform at the Middle East in Boston…and Fleet Foxes were set to open but caught the flu…so Blitzen Trapper rocked the house.

6. Dodos—Visiter. What a great DEBUT! These guys make nice stripped down indie rock that is just easy on the ears.

7. Foals—Antidotes. This is to me what the Battles record from last year should have sounded like. The Foals DEBUT record is sorta math rock with good vocals…a rare find.

8. Wild Sweet Orange—We Have Cause to Be Uneasy. I so anticipated this album. If you would have asked me last year what this year’s list would look like I would have mentioned Tokyo Police Club and this band. I was so excited about this record. Partially because of the obvious Bright Eyes comparisons….and partially because of the quality of the music these guys were releasing prior to this DEBUT.

9. TV on the Radio—Dear Science. What can I say about this record that hasn’t already been said. It’s really good…and I did NOT like Cookie Mountain at all. In fact I said it was overhyped. But this is a sold record from start to finish.

10. Titus Andronicus—The Airing of Grievances. These guys have such songwriting talent. It’s not an easy listen by any means…but it’s really raw and gritty indie rock. I love this DEBUT.

And for those of you out there who care…I capitalized DEBUT because six of the ten records on my list (a little less than two thirds for you mathematicians out there) were debuts and I think that means there are going to be some amazing years to come…

Damn we were close…

Port O’Brien, All We Could Do Was Sing

Rosebuds, Life LIke

Cool Kids, The Bake Sale

The Knux, Remind Me in Three Days…

Kanye West, 808 and Heartbreak

And damn it…this Bon Iver record is going to be freakin amazing….I just know it. But I don’t own it yet. So who knows that Wild Sweet Orange could be replaced before the end of the year…

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