Tuesday, December 14, 2010

my favorite music of the last year

these are my thoughts on some of my favorite albums of the last year. some great music was relased this year. Here's what I liked.

The Agreement by Lakes
Soaring dream like tunes of love, loss, and life. This seams to be Seth Roberts forte and with his band, Lakes first full length, the independent release, The Agreement he has continued to write some of the best songs about these topics. The album, which moves like one big 14 song love story transitions from one song to the next seamlessly but with out feeling like one never ending song. Instrumentally the album is beautiful and perhaps one of the best indie releases of the year. With lines like “run away, run where you can, Ill get back in your head.” You feel the fight. Feel the pain. But life is like a song and lakes make sure you know that. Seth makes you fall back in love with life, even through the trials and pains of it all. Key Tracks: The Feeling, Oh lovely, The Agreement Song

Wake Up! by John Legend and The Roots
Modern music has become a very shiny thing. Auto tune and computers have made it hard to not sound perfect. What has been missing from music as of late has been thrown back in the mix with the release of "Wake Up!". Something The Roots and John Legend have both been known for in both of their respective careers is the timeless nature of the song writing. glimpsing back to the great soul singers of yesteryear, this album takes these classic songs to a new place, making them sounding modern but still as soulful and timless as ever. it would be a great thing if more bands made albums this important and interesting like this in the coming years. Real and uninhibited. Key traks: Wake Up Everybody, I Can't Write Left Handed, Compared to What

White Crosses by Against Me!
When we're young, so often we think that we know whats up. With White crosses, Tom Gabel, lead singer and founder of the band seems to have discovered his place in the story that is, American music. Following in the
foot steps of Bruce Springsteen and Mike Ness, he has found a way to
balance between punk attitude and rock n roll sensibility. With "I Was A Teenage anarchist", the first single from the album, he acknowledges that he has grown up and changes. The Story here is that once you stop caring about knowing whats up, the songs start to speak volumes. a truly great American rock n roll album. Key Tracks: Because of the Shame, Bamboo Bones, Because of the Shame

Sea of Cowards by The Dead Weather
Much like the rest of the Jack White catalog, Sea of Cowards is a wonderful example of what music can be. Like The Rolling Stones or Led Zeppelin, The Dead Weather traverse a line that straddles the rootsy and timeless nature of the blues and the heavy, dark, and deep sounding rock n roll of the late 60's and early 70's. The album, which was recorded in Nashville at White's third man studio, is exactly what independent music should be. Honest and Brutal. Hitting you in the face with every hit of the kick drum. Its a beating that the modern music could use a little more of. Key Tracks: Blue Blood Blues, Die by the Drop, Old Mary

Flamingo by Brandon Flowers
"You woke up in the rusted frame of a Burned out old Deville, Your legs are shot and they're flushed with pain, But you can't keep them still", and just like that "Welcome to Fabulous Los Vegas" and for the next 40 minutes Flowers takes you through a great tour of the city that gave us the killers. Going through subjects as vast as those of religion, America and rock n roll. Flowers has shown that he can not only be a great pop performer but a great songwriter as well. Key tracks: Only the Young, Hard Enough, Swallow it, Jilted Lovers and Broken Hearts

Plastic Beach by the Gorillaz
The Gorillaz have always had great cameos on their albums but with the release of Plastic Beach they have taken it to a new level, Snoop Dog, Lou Reed, Half of the Clash(Mic Jones and Paul Simonon), Mos def and a slew of others stopped by to help Damian Albarn in creating his newest album of cartoon hip hop. The album, which sort of reads like a story, is the most straight up pop oriented albums to be released by the band but should nto be taken lightly. The Eco conscientious album boasts some of Albarn's best writing in a very well written career. Key Tracks: Melancholy Hill, Some Kind Of Nature, Stylo,

Distant Relatives by Nas and Damian Marley
Nas and Damian Marley, two of the most politically charged musicians have teamed up to talk about war, poverty, and Africa. the title is a reference to the two's shared African ancestry and it is that Ancestry that becomes the foundation of all other topics ont he album. with some great guest spots from Lil' Wayne, K'naan, and Joss Stone the album has nearly no slow points and every song speaks on so many levels. And while the album seeks to do good by getting people thinking the proceeds of the album have been doing equally as much good going to fund a school program in the Congo hat the two have created. This is an album of 13 heavy songs of education and great music.
Key tracks: As We Enter, Nah Mean, My Generation

Brothers by Black Keys
The black Keys may be the biggest blues band since the Jimmy Hendrix Experience. What the black keys do is make music that is so hard to not listen to that you forget that you hearing one of the greatest guitarist around today and some of the most innovative music of the last 20 years. with equal parts soul and rock n roll, the black keys take music seriously and Brothers shows that off. Great song writing and great chemistry, this is an album for the ages, an album people should keep listening to for years to come.
Key tracks: Tighten Up, Everlasting Light, Howlin For You, Black Mud

The Suburbs by Arcade Fire
The Arcade Fire have done something with this album that they have been threatening to do since Funeral, they've taken over everything and have shown that they can play what ever kind of music they want better than any one else. whether they are pounding out punky sounding songs like Month of May or the smooth and somber balled Wasted Hours or just playing good pop tunes such as Ready to Start or The Modern Man this album is solid. 16 songs of modern brilliance and great song writing. Key Tracks: Modern Man, City With No Children in it, Month of May

American Slang by Gaslight Anthem
Brian Fallon has for a few years now been stuck with the "next Bruce Springsteen" title due to the two's common stomping ground in New Jersey, But with American Slang Fallon and his band have stepped out side of what was expected of them and have succeed in creating an album that reeks of a great American band. what separates The Gaslight Anthem from the rest of the modern punk scene is their outspoken love of the rhythm and blues, not shying away from wearing these influences on their sleeves they ahve crafted a group of songs that are at once clean and simple yet still sound as gritty as any band playing music today. Key Tracks: American Slang, Bring It On, The Queen of Lower Chelsea


  1. Dude,

    Black Keys "Brothers" is an AMAZING album! I love it. I need to check through my inventory, but it may be the best that came out this year in my opinion.

  2. BTW I really like the way you did this post man.