Sunday, November 21, 2010

Wow. This is exactly how I feel

Check out this great article about year end lists and sharing music in general.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Besty Coasty - Crazy For You

Yeah, that's their blogspot name, It's also a clever way for me to disguise the post. Seeing as how I posted a few of the 7" a while back, I figured I might as well finish it off and post their first full length. There are a lot of mixed feelings floating around out there for this album. Sure, you could accuse Bethany of writing unsophisticated hackneyed lyrics... and you'd probably have a good point. OR you could also say that Best Coast are writing some of the most HONEST music around. And that's what I get out of this record. Crazy For You does a good job of brightening up your day while raining on your parade. It's kind of a sad love song record (in a way that you never get the person you want), only it's set to music that you would throw on while your playing Ultimate Frisbee (or whatever people do) on the beach. There is a fine line there that most artists couldn't tightrope their way across, but Best Coast handle the dueling dichotomy beautifully. All the lyrics snobs need to get off their high horses and come down to play in the sand with the rest of us. I can't think of any more beach metaphors so that means this post is over. Chiggity check it.

Crazy For You

Best. Cover. Ever.

Monday, July 26, 2010

This time on "Take a Leak"

Here we have Les Savy Fav and their new album Root For Ruin. First thing's first. I wanna talk for a second about my miscalculation the other day. Okay... so after a few more listens the new Arcade Fire is starting to grow on me quite a bit. It gave me a similar feeling that their first album did, only for completely different reasons. Funeral was challenging to listen to and kind of off putting at first, but after repeated listens you found yourself more and more engrossed in the sound. The Suburbs was TOO easy to listen to and made you feel like it was too straight forward for a band that took many risks in the past. Once again, with repeated listens, I'm finding more and more to be impressed by than just the production and song structure. So... it just goes to show you that you should give music a fair chance before writing it off because you might actually be missing out. Annnnnnyway. With this leak, Les Savy Fav's, Root For Ruin, I had no such problem. This was immediately appealing, and I'm actually fairly happy about that. RFR reminds me of how they sound live which is a very good thing. I mean... they needed an album to just kind of kick your ass in the face (it's possible), and this is it. So yeah... I've been talking for far too long. It's awesome. Download and get your assface kicked. The end.

P.S. There is no album artwork yet. So ...uh... deal with this instead.

Root For Ruin

Take a Leak!

On this edition of "take a leak (with me)", we have possibly the most anticipated album of 2010: Arcade Fire's, The Suburbs. I'm sure this won't last long, so get it while it's hot. I have only listened to it a few times, but I have to say that I'm a little bit disappointed. It almost sounds too clean for arcade fire. The drums are boring and so is the production. They don't seem to be pushing their creative limits, more so they are just writing standard pop songs. It's also a bit LONG of an album for them. They could have easily trimmed the fat a little bit and cut out some of the lesser songs, especially towards the 2nd half which is where I think the album starts to falter. You get the feeling there is an amazing album in here somewhere. But like I said, I've only listened to it a few times, and who knows how much it could grow on me. Also, a mediocre Arcade Fire album will still probably end up as one of the best albums of the year. Maybe I just had the bar set too high. Either way... I was super excited to get this shit as early as I did... so don't let me ruin the excitement for you. You could very well love it. So check it quickly before the post gets pulled.

Plus... check out the 8 different covers of the album. Think they were making a statement about the general similarities of the omnipresent suburbs? Naw.

The Suburbs

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Broken Social Scene - Meet Me in the Basement (video)

Check out this pretty cool fan made video for Meet Me in the Basement. Kevin Drew told pitchfork that he thought the world was doomed and that we are constantly trying to distract ourselves from our own self destruction... which is essentially what this video tries to convey. Good job, buddy... whoever you are.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Dimlite - Prismic Tops EP

Dimlite is the SHIT. Don't believe me? Watch this.

Apparently some interviewer asked him how he made a certain beat and what sample he used (which he finds out is a big no-no). So sighed heavily, got up, showed him how it was done, then kicked him out. Aweseome. I can't wait until this dude drops his much anticipated new LP. He keeps on pushing it back. At least this time he released something to hold us fans over. I'll take it! Also...hurry up and get on that shit. I want MOARRRRRR!

Prismic Tops

Tobacco - Maniac Meat

Man. I think this one is a little underrated. Sure, it's not the most genius record ever, but god damn, is it so much fun. I think this has got to be one of the best records to play very fucking loudly in your car. Bump this shit like crazy. I really dig the Beck tracks, just because it reminds me of old school Beck (I miss that guy). It's abrasive, loud, and crunchy but it has this amazingly playful quality to it. You get the feeling Tobacco is just trying to make music that HE thinks is good. It's music for musicians and production junkies. Trust me when I say, that attribute is defintely felt... loud and clear.

Maniac Meat

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Caddywhompus - Remainder

For some odd reason, lately I've been getting a ton of bands requesting to post their music on my blog. The problem is that virtually all of them range from horribly awful to obliviously derivative. It's gotten so bad that I've started opening every email thinking, "Oh god, not another one". Most of the bands only want me to link a single or whatever, but that's not going to happen. I'm not an MP3 blog. But a few have asked me to post their albums, which was way cooler of them... but even then most were just not very good.

The latest email was from these guys ----> Caddywhompus. I read the name, heard the idea (experimental noise pop duo) and said to myself, "This can't be good". I cynically put on their album and prepared myself for disappointment. Instead, I was surprized by how tight the sound was. It took me a little while to get out of my funk. I started at... "hmmmm, not bad" and ended up somewhere around "hmmmm... pretty damn good!". There are elements of Battles and Animal Collective in here, but they never seem to imitate, just to emulate. It's smart, catchy, mathy and occasionally rocks the fuck out... LOUDLY. I couldn't expect much more out of a duo, let alone a full fledged band. If I were in a noise duo, I would hope to sound as tight as these two. I mean, as far as noise duos go, these guys are one of the best groups I've heard in a while. I really like saying "noise duo". NOISE DUO!!! As far as people who submit music for review on my blog go, these guys, along with the superbly good The Sleeping Sea, are the only ones to stand out from the crowd.

If you think your band has what it takes, or if you are willing to give out your album for free preview (which will put you ahead of the pack) then give me a at and I promise I will check it out. If it's any good, I'll post it! It would be even cooler if you also wanted to do a follow-up interview *hint hint*. Honestly... I would prefer it if my blog ran this way. I'm sick of getting flagged for posting mainstream albums, so the further I can get away from that culture, the better. Either way, check these guys out and let me know what you think.

Watch their Youtube music video for their song GUILT.

Interested? Then go download their album below. It's good. I promise.

Caddywhompus - Remainder

Now....get supportive of good indie music and go BUY their album HERE.
Also... go check out their other songs (which are also really great) on their myspace page.
These guys seem like they would kill it live, so go check them out when they come to a city near you. Tour dates are below.

May 20 Thousand Palms, CA The Oasis Bar
May 22 Santa Barbara, CA Biko Co-Op Garage Performance Space
May 27 Corvallis, OR Cloud 9
May 28 Portland, OR In Other Words (early show)
June 2 Boulder, CO Astroland
June 4 Austin, TX Mohawk
June 5 Houston, TX Free Press Summer Fest

And the confirmed shows in the East (more to come):
June 19 Lafayette, LA Artmosphere
June 23 Birmingham, AL Magic City Wholesale
June 24 Nashville, TN Little Hamilton
June 25 Carbondale, IL The Swamp
June 30 Madison, WI Project Lodge
July 1 Chicago, IL Ronny's
July 11 New York, NY Piano's
July 12 New York, NY Bruar Falls
July 19 DC Girl Cave
July 23 Atlanta, GA Wonder Root

Monday, May 3, 2010

The National - Terrible Love (live in some castle)

This song is killer live. I recomend checking out the Jimmy Fallon version too cause it's amazing as well, but this one takes place in a castle... which automatically makes everything better.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Sleigh Bells - Tell 'Em

Pretty cool new tune from upcoming Sleigh Bells album out on may 11. Think it's gonna be a pretty damn decent album based on what I've heard so far. Check it

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

oOoOO - No Summr4U

I've been holding onto this one for awhile. These guys share a similar penchant for mystery as their darker counterparts, Salem. I have no clue if these two bands are friends with each other... but they should be. If Salem is the dark, haunting, gothic side of the moon, then oOoOO are the light side... bombarded with glitter, sheen and little bit of crack. Another band that doesn't tell people who they are, print enough albums or play enough shows. *Sigh* I wonder if these guys will ever release a full length? Probably not.

No Summr4U

Take a Leak!

Awwww snap... when will the leaks end? NEVER! Speaking of... how good is LCD's new jam? SO, SO GOOD. Here is probably my most anticipated album of 2010, The National's "High Violet". I think I just peed a little. Let's hope it lives up to my secretions. Gross. Check it.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Take a Leak (with me)!

HOLY SHIT... This time on "Taking a Leak" I've got 2, count em, 2 fucking amazing leaks. First one is Broken Social Scene's new album, "Forgiveness Rock Record". Yikes... been waiting for this one for YEARS. Super psyched!!! (Can you tell?) And the other leak is LCD Soundsystem's new LP "This is Happening". OOOO EMMM GEE. I think I just had an indiegasm. I also think I just coined the term "indiegasm". I haven't listened to either yet, but I have high expectations for both. Like with all leaks, I wanna get it out there as soon as possible. Buy both when they come out though, cause I love both these bands.

P.S. Indiegasm™

This is Happening

Forgiveness Rock Record

Friday, March 12, 2010

Japanther x 2 (old and new)

Wazza in the hizzie? Japanther, your favorite skuzz/noise pop punk band, are BACK! I thought it would be weird and wild to see how older Japanther would compare with newer Japanther. One of my favorite older records (okay so not OLDER, but 5 years old) is Master of Pigeons. It's interesting to see how all over the place the production and songwriting is on their earlier releases compared to their more composed and focused newer releases. Arguably what makes them charming is their "who gives a shit" attitude which is most pronounced on their earlier releases. However, in their new releases, we at least see them trying to give a little cohesion to their album's sound. Their new album, Rock 'n Roll Ice Cream, is much better than most of the stuff they've done in the past 3-4 years. But honestly, every Japanther album has it's ups and downs. But that's their charm for me. If they made an album that "blew me away" they wouldn't be Japanther. Take a look at the company they keep.... fellow Brooklyn indie rappers Ninjasonik. They have this self referential, just fucking around quality to their sound as well... it wouldn't work otherwise. They aren't trying to be Jay-z and Japanther aren't trying to be Radiohead. They are just having fun, writing catchy fast paced songs with quirky/silly lyrics. Sometimes, you need to take a break from heady arty indie rock and Japanther are a nice escape. Check em both out, because... well ... both are good, stupid.

Master Of Pigeons

Rock 'N' Roll Ice Cream

Monday, March 8, 2010

R.I.P. Mark Linkous aka Sparklehorse

Sad day, man... one of my favorite artists of all time took his own life. Look on this blog here for his full catalogue of LPs. Also here is a link for his collab with Fennesz here. Sadly the last thing he will probably release isn't of his own work but another collab with Dangermouse called Dark Night of the Soul here (I also wrote about it here but the link is broken). Who knows though, he was supposedly working on a new album, so maybe we'll eventually hear a posthumous album just like we got with Elliot Smith. Either way, I hope his family and friends are doing well and that they know his genius will be greatly missed. His music changed my life, that is for sure.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Take a Leak! (with me)

I'm gonna start this new thang on here that's gonna be called "Take a Leak". Every once in a while when an album leaks and I'm interested in it enough... I'll post it! Also, it's a double entendre... like I'm taking a piss, but really I'm talking about music. Why can't I write for magazines again? Anyhow... This time, on "Take a Leak", we have Frightened Rabbit, with their new LP The Winter of Mixed Drinks. I discovered Frightened Rabbit's last album, Midnight Organ Flight, very close to the end of 08. What I didn't know was that it was actually one of my favorites of 08 even though it only made it into the "honorable mention" section. Just goes to show what a little time and a couple more listens can do to an album. Still the album suffered from a few insincere moments and corn ball lyrics. But unfortunately, the best parts of the last album take a back seat and the worst parts are more prominent on this release. Maybe it's because the singer is "happy" with his life (what a dick) and now he can't write his sardonic, rip the heart out of my chest, fuck the world lyrics that made his last release so much fun. That's not to say that the lyrics here are "happy", in fact quite the opposite. However, they DO feel more contrived this time around. All of that I could've lived with, but there is a lack of drive with the music. Sure it's not BAD, but it's a bit of a disappointment and a unfortunate departure from their last great effort. I guess we can only hope the singer gets his heart broken or has someone die that he really cares about or something. It's for the sake of your art, brah. (KIDDING). Who knows though... this is so new it could end up having the same effect on me as the last album. Check back with me in a month or two... I could be eating my words.

The Winter of Mixed Drinks

Just in case you don't have it yet

I was gonna post this like two weeks ago... but I was too busy listening to it. NON STOP. UNTIL RIGHT NOW. That's how long this thing is. Also, hyperbole is THE GREATEST THING IN THE WORLD. But yeah mang, this is GOOD. I mean, if you are into the idea of an epic of lyrical grandeur, this shit is right up your alley. Sometimes I feel like Newsom just uses music as a pedistal for her poetry. That's not saying that her music takes a backseat, like some spoken word jazz or something. But it's more about the build, the emotions that she transferes to the words to inflate their meaning to a greater realm. So, sit down. Grab the lyrics online. Put on some headphones. Clear out the rest of your day (seriously), and get ready to have your world rocked.

Have One on Me

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


I'm freaking excited! Can you tell? Let's get this out of the way. I am talking about Lali Puna, and their new album Our Inventions. If I mention this in the title, it would most surely be caught within an hour and deleted. Thankfully I'm more cunning than that... I think. I've been anticipating this album for awhile. Anything with a member of Notwist in it has my interest at the very least. But this is quite possible my favorite incarnation of Notwist members contributing with other people. *Go check out the rest of their catalogue on this blog if you haven't already, it's stupendous and in really high quality because I own all the CDs* I haven't really listened to this yet, besides a few tracks (I'm playing it right now). I wanted to get it out as soon as possible. So here you go, make up your own minds... but seriously, I can't help but love everything I hear so far. Maybe I'm blinded by the faith that they were gonna release another consistently good record again. There are some bands that I will always buy their album no matter what, because I trust in their talent. These guys are one of them... I just couldn't help myself with this though... I needed to hear it as soon as possible. It feels so good. Now if only LCD Soundsystem and Arcade Fire would leak... that would be TIIIIGHT.

Lali Puna - Our Inventions

Friday, February 12, 2010

Uh oh.

Blogger crackin down again

It's pretty silly because blogger will delete any blog with multiple complaints regardless if they are legitimate. For instance, with my Los Campesinos! post, they notified me once, I removed all the links and put (just a review) in the title. Then they notified me not once, but TWICE more, about the same post, even though there was nothing but a review posted. Make sense? Not to me. But now I fear my blog being deleted like crazy. Mostly because if my site gets deleted it's 2 years of writing down the shitter. Not to mention I can't tell people where to go to see more of me and my musical ramblings. End of blog, end of story. Well FUCK THAT. So just as a precautionary measure I registered So if this site dies a horrible death, go there and I will continue my debauchery over there. Once again, it's Same name as here just on wordpress. Sweet.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Four Tet - There Is Love in You

Now, to say that I've been dying for a new LP from Kieran Hebden would be an understatement. After what was literally one of my favorite electronic albums of all time ('s here on this blog by the way, go search for it... you won't be sorry), I couldn't wait to see what else this dude had in store. Well... he had a half-decent LP (Everything Ecstatic), an album Remixes and a decently satisfying EP. But after all that fluff...let's just say that he did not disappoint. There is something about Hebden's style that is untouchable. Atmosphere and tone take such a front seat to poppiness and immediate appeal. While this can be damaging to some albums, it actually works in his favor here. Instead of each track standing on it's own, the album because this mass of sonic intricacy, dependent on each song for a deeper understanding. Don't get me wrong... there is enough going on here to bring the tunes from background music to heady, thought provoking, cerebral mind fucks. Sure, it won't appeal to everyone... but for someone who has the patience to sit down and REALLY listen, there are virtually no equals to Hebden.

There Is Love in You

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Final Fantasy guys' new album

I'm of course talking about Owen Pallett's new album, Heartland. I've never really been a huge Final Fantasy fan. Now that doesn't mean I'm not an Owen Pallett fan. He's done such great compositions for bands like Arcade Fire, Fucked Up, Grizzly Bear, The Mountain Goats, Beirut, and so on and so forth. I'm REALLY excited to see his work on the new Arcade Fire album... but until then my unquenchable music lust for Owen Pallett's contributing compositional work will have to be filled by Owen Pallets lesser heard (and for me, liked) solo work. Now for some reason (maybe it's the name change) I actually kind of dig his new stuff. Say what you want about Pallett, he knows how to arrange a song. My only complaint is that the album really doesn't fair as well in the first half as it does in the second half. The album ranges from moments that are challenging, monotonous and slow, to moments that are upbeat, poppy and intricate. Gee, I wonder which ones I prefer? While the tame sections aren't bad by any means, they certainly get bogged down when compared to the brighter moments on the record (like the amazing, catchy and incredibly intricate song structure of "Tryst With Mephistopheles"). Maybe if the album mixed up the songs a little more so that a more upbeat track separated two stripped down, tame tracks.. then I wouldn't find as much fault. But like most good (not great) albums, if you can weed your way through the few uninteresting tracks there is a lot to be loved here.


Surfer Blood - Astro Coast

I'm getting a LITTLE tired of all this beach friendly music coming out lately. I mean... i dig it and all. It's just kind of over saturating the market at the moment. It seems like everyone and their brother wants to be in a beach summer pop band. Even though Surfer Blood definitely fall into this category (I mean c'mon... their name is SURFER BLOOD), they definitely do it a little differently than the rest. They remind me of a modern take on a pixies post punk sound mixed with an oi punk mentality...with more focus on being catchy rather than being witty. It's definitely a "guitar" album... and that's where it succeeds the most in my opinion. My favorite aspect of their music has to be the transformation that each song seems to take. Instead of a favoring a verse/chorus/verse style of writing, they focus on transforming the track so that by the time you reach the end it sounds like a different song than what you started with. A lot of bands try this and fail miserably, but these guys make these transitions seamless and natural. With all the mellow music coming out lately, it's nice to be able to this on (track 2 "Swim" is a catchy favorite) and do some fist pumping for a change. And not the Jersey Shore, "Guido" fist pumping.

Astro Coast

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Best of 09!!!

Holy shit. I've been dreading this day for a while. This is like the finals of blogging. A lot of writing, a lot of thinking, and a shit load of work....but after you finish you feel relieved and, if you do well, proud of pulling it off. But like I did with real finals, I crammed, overslept, showed up late, and rushed through the whole thing in my PJs. Unlike real finals though I didn't have to perform sexual favors for good grades. Ahem...I didn't have to, but I will. Who wants to give me an A? No one? I do this shit for free you know. *sigh* Okay... It's ridiculous how much good music there was this year. Like 10 times what was good last year. But have no fear because I am here to sort it (mostly) out for you. For me 09 was a year dominated by pop music. Some soft, some loud. Some with guitars and fuzz. Some with synths and drum machines. Because a LOT of what I thought was "the best" this year already ended up in my past blog posts (Bibio, Washed Out, The Pains, etc.) I'm going to expand my list to pretty much everything and anything that I thought was good or interesting. For the sake of continuity and keeping with the system I had last year, I'm going to give the list a best of "order"... and I'm going to keep it to the top 15 so as not to convolute the list... but honestly everything on this list I think has faults and is equally genius in some way. Alright now for a little disclaimer about this list: Let's get one thing straight, Animal Collective released what most people think is a great album. Everyone has it who wants it, it's still up here on my blog if you want it... but I'm not posting it on this list because it would just be entirely pointless. They are probably the one band right now that does NOT need the attention. Capiche? Also, I did want to include some artists like Grizzly Bear and Bill Callahan, but I was afraid because I know blogs that went down because they posted their material. So I want to be safe. Alright... BUMMM BA DA BUM BUM BUMMMM BAAAAAAAAAA! Too man bums? Never! (I'm funny) Best of zero niner below. I'll try to keep descriptions brief. ENJOY BITCHES!

15. Real Estate - Real Estate

I was a fan of Ducktails, but honestly Real Estate is such a step in a better direction for Matthew Mondanile. He is an insanely good guitarist. Maybe I'm not on the drone train anymore, who knows... but either way this album is such a chill out record. The first song is definitely worth the download alone, but the more I listen to this, the more I like it.

14. Bear In Heaven - Beast Rest Forth Mouth

So apparently these guys were on the "New Moon" soundtrack? Uhhhhh.. okay. Why these good artists strangely decided to sell their music to that shit-show of a movie is beyond me. All I know is I really don't want Twi-hards liking the same music as me. That minor complaint aside the music is quite good. Like I said in the beginning paragraph, this year was the year (at least for me) of good pop music, and this is no exception. Most of the songs are mid-tempo but honestly they somehow end up pulling of this unique sound while still being incredibly appealing. Check it!

13. The Big Pink - A Brief History of Love

I really wanted to hate these guys at first. I just thought, "Wow, a bunch of guys who want to be MGMT". What I failed to realized is that these guys succeed at their sound more that MGMT do at theirs. Sure, there are a few sing along singles in the mix and there are a few tracks with some absurdly lame lyrics... but honestly, try not to enjoy "Dominos". It's this year's "Time to Pretend". lol. If you get past those few songs (trust me there are only like 3 songs on here I don't like) the rest of album is amazingly good. They also rarely stick to one style so if you don't like one song, wait a few minutes and you might like the next! I think someone described it as all of the best bits of 90's indie rock rolled into one album. Good description... and definitely one of my favs this year.

12. The Flaming Lips - Embryonic

Wow.... I MIIIIIIGHT get in the shit for this one...after all that posturing about being safe. *sigh*. It's okay. This is already done and gone, so maybe they won't care anymore (although I can't promise the link will stay up long). This album COMPLETELY took me by surprise. When I first heard the leak, I thought I got the wrong download. It took me a while to get used to the idea that The Flaming Lips left my favorite sound (via Soft Bulletin/Yoshimi) behind and reinvented themselves as a pych rock jam band. But once you realize that's what they have done with almost every (good) record recently, it makes the shock that much less and the awe that much greater. If only every band would experiment like these guys do. They took a huge risk with this album. You don't see that very often, especially these days. The fact that it's also really freakin good doesn't hurt either.

11. Cold Cave - Love Comes Close

Defintely one the best break out acts of the year. The best songs on this are the most accessible, but honestly the whole thing is good if you dig his singing style, which obviously I do. All I can say is, I'm totally excited for their next LP... mostly because I have a feeling it will take the best parts of this album and multiply it. Hurry the fuck up, guys!

10. Memory Tapes - Seek Magic

This guy continues to make music that I can't help but love. Everything he releases has this, "I just got an idea and went with it... really far with it" mentality. It gives the album kind of an inconsistent feel, but that's also it's charm. Each song's off the cuff nature brings out something great about each idea that makes it to tape. Like a lot of my favorite stuff this year, there are some "instrumentals" and some pop-ish songs with singing. For just some guy humble guy sitting in his apartment making music he finds interesting, this sure is good.

9. The Antlers - Hospice

This album actually holds a special place in my heart. While it may not be my "favorite" or the "best" album of the year, it's the one that affected me the most, that's for sure. While my grandmother was sick in the hospital after he second stroke, I spent most of my time sitting by her side. This album had just came out and I was coincidentally listening to at the same time. Good idea or bad idea? I don't know, but it sure hit close to home. Definitely a few tears welled up while I was sitting by her bedside, listening to this on my Ipod. She passed away shortly after that and that incident will forever be tied to this music for me. If you've ever had to deal with sickness or know someone who does, or if you have suffered the loss of a loved one, or if you are just in a situation where you are contemplating your own/someone else's mortality... (that should be pretty much everyone)... this is the album for you.

8. Washed Out - High Times

I get really sick of all the new glo-fi, blog-core stuff coming out lately. I found myself like there wasn't ever going to be something of REAL value in all of it. Just when I was telling myself to give up on the whole genre, Washed Out comes along and completely reinstills my faith. If I were trying to be cooler than my actual taste in music, this might have made #1 just to impress the blogosphere. Unfortunately I actually listen to stuff other people know too. I'm not that cool I guess. SHIT. Sorry guys.

7. The Dirty Projectors - Bitte Orca

I'm gonna say something that's going to blow your feckin MIND. This is the first album I've heard from Dirty Projectors. Sey WHAAAAAA!? That's right. I am officially lame. I'm kind of glad this was my first DP experience (hehe...DP) because this one was just crazy enough, but also just melodic and appealing enough for me to get into with out being scared away. Honestly though, these guys take all sorts of odd genre's, like R & B, and turn them on their head. Just when you think the music is too jarring, in comes a gorgeous melody or hook... and then just when you are getting tired of the pop sounding nature of the music, in comes a crazy ass time signature with a cut and chop drum beat or an interesting production quality or some crazy off kilter singing. It balances the line between radio friendly and completely obscure better than anything I've ever heard before. It's that good.

6. Girls - Girls

Sometimes you hear a story about a band and then you can't separate the music from the people. That's pretty much what happened to me with this album. But even if you know nothing about these guys their music stands on it's own. This album contains some of my favorite songs of the year. It has it's low points here and there. Like with Big Pink they sometimes get a little cheesy on the lyrical front. But even those few songs work in their own right because they come across more as genre pieces then just missteps. It's sad, it's beautiful, it's fun and lighthearted and equally deep and heavy handed. If there ever was a perfect fuzzed out beachy pop record, this is it.

5. The XX - XX

The XX aren't doing anything insanely out of the ordinary. They are making simple minimal pop music. But they do it with such style and creativity that you can't help but love them. Sure most of their songs are about, well, doing it. But that's also why they work so well. It's so sparse and soft, yet warm and intimate, like a lover singing sweet nothings into your ear while in bed late at night. I relate these guys to Spoon whenever people complain that they are boring or too tame. Spoon have mastered the art of the minimal rock song. These guys have mastered the art of the minimal pop song. Every drum click, hum, bass drone, whisper and harmony is meticulously put in place not because they want it to be there, but because it HAS to be there. Trust me when I say it's much harder to leave things out and make a good song than it is to cover the song up with a string section, 5 guitars, a horn section and overdubs galore. In an age where everyone is layering the SHIT out of their music, these guys give a refresing look at what you can do if you focus on the essentials.

4. The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - The Pains of Being Pure at Heart

I told you these guys would end up on the "best of" list. I said it before and I'll say it again: It was the year of good pop music. While there are weak moments on this album, the strong ones are so great that they completely blow away any faults I have with this album. Like The Strokes, these guys conjure images of great bands past, but just like The Strokes, they end up taking those influences and expand them to their own sound and end up making some timeless, ridiculously poppy, inventive indie rock. This is the album I put on when I want a brilliant mixture of twangy sparkling Jesus and Mary Chain-esque pop, with energy and spirit of an 80's punk rock band. How can you not like that?

3. Why? Eskimo Snow

Okay.... I know some people don't like this album as much as Why?'s other albums, but for me, this was exactly what I wanted out of Why? since their creation. Sure it's not nearly as wacky and zany or creatively out of bounds as their other releases, but I don't see that as a fault here. While this is a "tame" album for them, it also ends up being one of the most sincere in terms of it's delivery. Do I like their other albums? Sure! I definitely think their other albums have better songs, but they also lack a cohesive quality that this album possesses. The more serious lyrics mixed with the jazzy organic sound of this record just struck a chord with me more than anything else they've done. Say what you want, but this WHOLE (that is, virtually every single track) record was on repeat more than any other record for me this year. So suck it.

2. Bibio - Ambivalence Avenue

While I might have caught flack for my last choice, I know most people will agree with me on this one. This one completely came out of left field for me. I didn't ever imagine an album of music that ranges from Flying Lotus style electronic hip hop to fuzzed out acoustic folk music and everywhere in between. And the craziest part is, IT WORKS! It flows together perfectly and each track stands out on it's own. Creatively, probably my favorite work of the year. When I would put this away for a little while in order to listen to other new stuff coming out, I always ended up longing for just one more listen. I came back to this album more than any other this year. And each time I put it on I discovered something new I liked about it. It's both immediately appealing and grows in quality with each listen. Not an easy feat.

1. Phoenix - Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix

Okay... I know... I know... I'm supposed to be a cutting edge blog filled with music nobody knows about. Well guess what, I'm partially to well known bands too. Even bands with music in car commercials. That's right. Should I say it one more time? It was the year of good pop music. On first listen I just thought... wow... pretty cool, insanely catchy pop music. But then I REALLY listened. I read the lyrics (which I don't do very often)...listened a few more times... and that's when things really changed for me. These guys are writing pop music but with sweepingly huge and terribly sad themes. While they are hitting your ears with sonically pleasing aesthetics, they are depressing the shit out of you with their words and messages. There is so much more working here than meets the eye. This album transformed so much from the first time I heard it until now (like 100 listens later). What started off as something upbeat and catchy, turned into something powerful and with so much depth. Every once in a while you run into an album with a little magic in it and you can't explain why you like it so much. You just feel it. This is one of those records. I didn't really want to include this on here because they are a big band... but IT'S MY #1 RECORD. So I had to. I've listened to this constantly since it came out. When I run out of stuff to listen to, this one always goes back in the player. That's the reason why this is first. I can't stop listening to this album. Just when I think I'm done with it, I put it back on and it reminds me just how good it is all over again. This one is in 320 kbps too, so get it while it's hot!

Ahhhhh... thus ends another best of list! I know it's a little late. I've had this saved as a draft for like three weeks. It takes so much work to do one of these megaposts... I put it off like crazy. I hope everyone enjoys it. This year I really went with my heart on this list. I could have put up a bunch of albums that are "acceptably" cool that I liked. But for me I just picked what I couldn't put down. Even if it was pop music. Now that this daunting as fuck task is outta the way I can get back to doing more regular postings. Here's to hoping I can make it another year! Cheers and happy music poaching, you waskally wabbits.