Introduction by Matt Ashworth; Article by Nada Mucho Staff
Music dorks get anxious when there isn’t a clear Number One. We pride ourselves on finding the next big thing and identifying the historical and cultural relevance of our obsession.
Given our current cultural climate, one would expect 2008 to be rife with critical fodder. After all, we’ve just overcome the oppression of an idiotic imperialistic leader just in time for the first black president to inherit a financial and political disaster. One would think such conditions would be tailor-made for passion and innovation in music.
Unfortunately, the recession didn’t influence music this year any more than it burdened middle class Northwest consumers.
As a result, this year’s list is kind of boring.
Sure, we’re brushing up on our hunting and gathering while preparing for the apocalypse, but we’re left with about 15 albums tied for third. They’re records you’ll defend over shots, because that’s what you do, but the kind you wouldn’t really miss if they were gone.
This year’s Hold Steady record, while great, is just more of the same. Ditto for TV on the Radio. MGMT is fun, but once you get past the guilt it still sounds disposable. Girl Talk is too populist, Portishead is still better in theory, and Bon Iver is better when manifested as Iron and Wine.
Oh, and all of our friends think I’m dumb, hypocritical, or both for liking the Black Mountain so much.
So, that leaves us with Flight of the Conchords and Santogold, neither or which garnered enough votes for the top spot. We’re not surprised though. Times are almost tough. And these records, like their peers, are merely almost great.
Here’s hoping that next year is more exciting. Or less, depending on how you look at it.
In a year of anticipated intensity, here are the things that almost made us excited.
- WHY? – Alopecia
- MGMT – Oracular Spectacular
- Girl Talk – Feed the Animals
- Black Mountain – In the Future
- The Hold Steady – Stay Positive
- Flight of the Conchords – Flight of the Conchords
- Santogold – Santogold
- The Delta Spirit – Ode to Sunshine
- Portishead – Third
- Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds – Dig, Lazarus Dig!!!
11. The Gutter Twins – Saturnalia
12. Kings of Leon – Only by the Night
13. David Byrne and Brian Eno – Everything that Happens Will Happen Today
14. The Whore Moans – Hello from the Radio Wasteland!
15. Bon Iver – For Emma Forever Ago
16. The Clash – Live at Shea Stadium
17. The Raconteurs – Consolers of the Lonely
18. Joan As Police Woman – To Survive
19. Fleet Foxes – Fleet Foxes/Sun Giant EP
20. What Made Milwaukee Famous – What Doesn’t Kill Us
21. The Globes – The Globes EP
22. Lil Wayne – Tha Carter III
23. Murry Hammond – I Don’t Know Where I’m Going, But I’m On My Way
24. The Helio Sequence – Keep Your Eyes Ahead
25. Stereolab – Chemical Chords
26. M83 – Saturdays=Youth
27. The Black Keys – Attack & Release
28. Derby – Posters Fade
29. The Moondoggies – Don’t Be A Stranger
30. The Gaslight Anthem – The ’59 Sound
31. The Night Marchers – See You in Magic
32. Erykah Badu – New Amerykah pt 1 (4th World War)
33. The Ruby Suns – Sea Lion
34. Datassette – Datassette
35. My Morning Jacket – Evil Urges
36. The Dodos – Visiter
37. Dethklok – Dethalbum
38. Magnetic Fields – Distortion
39. Starfucker – Starfucker
40. Boy Eats Drum Machine – Booomboxxx
41. Torche – Meanderthal
42. The Sword – Gods of the Earth
43. The Killers – Day & Age
44. Okkervil River – The Stand Ins
45. Cut Copy – In Ghost Colours
46. Walkmen – You and Me
47. Hungry Kids of Hungary – EP
48. Conor Oberst & The Mystic Valley Band – Conor Oberst
49. People Under The Stairs – FUN-DMC
50. Cradle of Filth – Godspeed on the Devil’s Thunder
- The Dark Knight
- Iron Man
- Slumdog Millionaire
- Burn After Reading
- The Visitor
- In Bruges
- Zack & Miri Make A Porno
- Gunnin’ For That #1 Spot
- The Colbert Report
- 30 Rock
- The Office
- The Wire
- The Daily Show
- Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations
- It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
- Mad Men
- The Mentalist
- How I Met Your Mother
- Summer Heights High