Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Janet's Favorite Albums of 2009

Subject to editing and the addition of 10 more albums.

30. The Gossip - Music For Men
29. Phantogram - Eyelid Movies
28. Dragonette - Fixin to Thrill
27. The Raveonettes - In and Out of Control
26. The Oh Sees - Help
25. Jenny Wilson - Hardships!
24. Bear in Heaven - Beast Rest Forth Mouth
23. Thao with the Get Down Stay Down - Know Better Learn Faster
22. The Antlers - Hospice
21. the xx - xx

20. Royksopp - Junior

19. Wild Beasts - Two Dancers

18. tUnE-yArDs - Bird-Brains

a.k.a. Merrill Garber with a ukelele and a laptop.

17. Micachu and the Shapes- Jewellery

Young experimentalists to keep an ear on.

16. Telepathe - Dance Mother
Experimental female electronica duo. Very Brooklyn. Looking forward to their future.

So Fine video
I liked the pink dead rat they had as the cover when it leaked. Ah well.

15. St. Vincent - Actor Out Of Work

Like the other Bush-descendant, a giant leap on the sophomore album. Actor Out Of Work, Marrow.

14. Passion Pit - Manners

All-male dance pop with falsettos and beards. To Kingdom Come! is not the song we thought it was

13. La Roux

Sharp retro-synthpop. If their videos keep improving does that mean their budget's increasing? Of course. In For The Kill, Bulletproof, I'm Not Your Toy.

12. Fiery Furnaces - I'm Going Away

They've taken their own premise in yet another weird direction - less produced, more accessible, and resembling live blues-pop, it's not their strongest, but there's something perfectly deadpan about it. Even in the Rain.

11. Yacht - See Mystery Lights

Listen to these fucking hipsters. Summer Song.

10. Little Boots - Hands

Victoria Heskel is a vulnerably pretty, slightly awkward music nerd who makes energetic catchy spacey electro-dance-pop. She also has a good buzz management system and shares my aesthetic. The album kind of drifts overly cheesy toward the end. New In Town video hobo, gangbanger and whore minstrelry for the times. Other videos try to avoid boots herself dancing. What is a laser harp? It's a harp, made of laser.

9. Vivian Girls - Everything Goes Wrong

I like almost every song. Maybe I'm naive and just like songs about boys by girls and nice simple chords. Maybe I wouldn't like it if it didn't roar with distortion. Maybe I'll be deaf enough to like Times New Viking soon.
Moped Girls I had not seen before. When I'm Gone.

8. The Dirty Projectors - Bitte Orca

Yeah, but who didn't list them this year? Stillness is the Move: llama wanker, wanker llama

7. Sunset Rubdown - Dragonslayer

This band is better than Spencer Krug's other band[s]. Proggy. Ambitious. Fantastical. Fun. And this is the album that makes it better. They don't make videos, but the do play Nightingale/December Song live (with an obscene number of drummers).

6. Bat for Lashes - Two Suns

Huge conceptual and technical leap forward from her debut. She is a worthy Pakistani-British successor to Kate Bush. Daniel, Pearl's Dream (Lynchy!), Sleep Alone.

5. Neko Case - Middle Cyclone

The impression I get of this is that it's one great and one okay EP with a lot of filler, scrambled together. It could lose the covers and the crickets. Then I realized that's still half an hour of better music than anything else ever.
People Got A Lotta Nerve video based on Julie Morstad's drawings. If I listen to this too much I cry. Onward.

4. Fever Ray s/t

(probably the 3rd best album cover, isn't this an odd pattern?)
Truly a grower, and a profoundly lonely album, by Karin Dreijer-Andersson, a.k.a. the female sibling of The Knife. Her increasing influence on that band's sound is evident in the similarity between Fever Ray and Silent Shout. Her and her cohorts are as weird as they want to be, coldly maintaining their performance of electronic shamanism in natural virtuality. When I Grow Up, Seven.

3. Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion
Natch. Also, second best cover. Shut up, I like crawly op-art.

2. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - It's Blitz!
Also wins "best album cover". Decade-defining art-rock trio does electropop. So some of them might be dicks.

Video for "heads will roll" featuring two of 2009's other memes, a werewolf Michael Jackson.

1. Metric - Fantasies

If you're gonna self-release an album, it's good if it's your best, and there's still plenty of budget, and a whole series of Buenos Aires street art by Hollwood Cambodia for each song. Here's the video for"Gimme Sympathy" in which members of the band switch within, seemingly, the same shot.
Emily Haines is also in this excellent video for "Games For Days" with Julian Plenti / Paul Banks of Interpol.

1 comment:

Kittysneezes.com/Rev. Syung Myung Me said...

I saw a reference to the Animal Collective being a terrible, terrible cover and I thought they were high. I think it was in reference to Strawberry Jam having an awful cover (which I agree with) and then they were saying they hadn't gotten better with Merriweather Post Pavilion.

I like that she did a Sparks cover and a Nilsson cover, but yeah, those are probably the weakest tracks on Middle Cyclone (that aren't Crickets, anyway).