Top Ten Albums of 2008

Well, I lost my whole Pete Yorn song recording over the weekend cleaning up my computer, but the good news is that the new recording will be better than the first. In the meantime, I thought I’d share some reflections.

As we’ve all received our tax information, it’s time to close the books on 2008. Well, I am also closing the books on my favorite albums of 2008:

10) Mates of State, Re-Arrange Us. Husband and wife duo create catchy pop music that is highly gratifying. Amidst the hooky melodies are personal lyrics that make you feel like you’ve been invited into something special.

9) School of Language, Sea From Shore. Field Music side project is innovative, unpredictable and strangely soulful. It’ll bring out your Indie spirit.

8) Annuals, Such Fun. One of my favorite bands screams less than normal, harmonizes more civilly, and creates a record that is engaging from beginning to end. It feels like it should be a soundtrack to a significant movie.

7) Vampire Weekend, Vampire Weekend. What I initially thought was a collection of catchy singles became one of my favorite albums of 2008. Apparently an album can have a uniform vibe and still be diverse musically.

6) Fleet Foxes, Fleet Foxes. Not only do I think that my facial hair qualifies me to be a member of this band, but bearded funny looking people are singing harmony all over the country after listening to this perfectly nuanced album over and over again. 

5) Coldplay, Viva la Vida or Death and All of His Friends. How do you resurrect a band after they have begun to sound like themselves? Hire Brian Eno and make a truly unique sound with really well balanced tunes. A hard album to not like. 

4) Sigur RosMed sud i eyrum vid spilum endalaust. Beyond beautiful all the way through. Definitely my favorite track one of the year. 

3) Brendan Canning, Something for all of Us. Broken Social Scene side project rocks and moves listeners, sometimes in the same moment. A gratifying record, especially for a bass player. 

2) Dr. Dog, Fate. Like a step back into albums of the 70s where musical style is practically a locale. I love this album in every sense, as a instrumentalist, lyricist, songwriter, it’s a statement maker. 

1) MGMT, Oracular Spectacular. It’s hard to not love this album. The DJ spirit channeled into Hi-Fi synths, screaming guitars, piercing vocals, and production perfection – that’s enough to make me roll my windows down every time. 

Honorable mention:

Plants and Animals, Parc Avenue

Mock Orange, Captain Love

Bon Iver, For Emma…

Friendly Fires, Self Titled

Frightened Rabbit, The Midnight Organ Fight

The Stills, Oceans will rise

Sunfold, Toy Tugboats

Teitur, The Singer

The Welcome Wagon, Welcome to the Welcome Wagon

Anathallo, Canopy Glow

Who am I missing here? Any other albums you loved?

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