Saturday, December 19, 2009



#193: FIX THIS SHIT (Where Thom preps you for 2009's extra-vaganzzza by fixing his mistakes from last year)

So...yeah. I fucked up big time last year. Well, not big time, but upon revisiting my list I must say I'm very unhappy with some of the choices I made. For one, that She & Him album was average at best. I was just too smitten with my love for Zooey Deschanel to admit it, and now that I've moved on I can see the truth. Second, Dig!!! Lazarus Dig!!! was not a grower. God knows I love Nick Cave (everyone go watch The Proposition right NOW), but I'm not sure if I've listened to anything but the title track since I made this list. Not even sure it should be in the top 20. There are more, which I will elaborate on in brief descriptions. Also, it's in reverse order, so you get to SAVOR it and don't have #1 spoiled for you immediately. Enjoy! (Yes, I know this is a total cop-out of a post)

20. Skeletal Lamping - Of Montreal

Initial Spot: 15

In retrospect: Fun, scattershot, not much staying power. "Id Engager" and "Wicked Wisdom" are still great, but there's too much filler here for it to be as high as it was. Regardless, good enough to round out the top 20.

19. Tha Carter III - Lil Wayne

Initial Spot: Not Ranked

In Retrospect: Is there a worse oversight than "A Milli" not making my top songs of '08? Probably not. This album surprised the hell out of me (as I was WAY late to the party on Weezy, for whatever reason) and is very good, even if Lollipop is one of the most average songs I've ever heard. WHO DAT SAY THEY GONNA BEAT LIL WAYNE?!?

18. You & Me - The Walkmen

Initial Spot: 17

In Retrospect: Didn't move very far. No Bows + Arrows, but it's not like I thought it was when it came out. Just solid. And "In The New Year" is fucking great.

17. At Mount Zoomer - Wolf Parade

Initial Spot: Not Ranked

In Retrospect: Why didn't I rank this, again? Not sure how She & Him made it in over this. Maybe because I was unfairly trying to compare it to "Apologies to the Queen Mary," which is a ridiculous comparison to make. Anyway, "Soldier's Grin," and "Call it a Ritual" is one of the best one-two punches to start an album in awhile. Drops off a bit the second half, but certainly good enough to make this list

16. The Midnight Organ Fight - Frightened Rabbit

Initial Spot: 14

In Retrospect: OK, we're getting to the meat of this list -- the really, really good stuff. 2008 was a great year for music, otherwise this would be higher than I currently have it.

15. Santogold - Santigold

Initial Spot: 16

In Retrospect: Moves up one spot, based pretty much on the fact that I hadn't given "Shove It" a fair shake, which turned out to be my favorite on the album. Very, very good stuff.

14. Evil Urges - My Morning Jacket

Initial Spot: Honorable Mention

In Retrospect: This grew on me so much over the past year. I honestly saw it as an abject failure and a huge disappointment at first. Guess what? I like this album a lot. Yes, it's still probably their worst album, but considering MMJ's discography, that's hardly a pejorative title. "Touch ME I'm Going to Scream Pt. II," in the words of the great Christopher Walken, is, "Un-FUCKING-Believable!"

13. In Ghost Colours - Cut Copy

Initial Spot: 9

In Retrospect: Still good. Didn't so much move down as much as other stuff passed it. "Hearts on Fire" is super super super super special awesome.

12. Furr - Blitzen Trapper

Initial Spot: Not Ranked

In Retrospect: You have no idea how dumb I feel for this not even making the list. SO SO GOOD. "Black River Killer" is one of the best written songs that it has ever been my pleasure to listen to.

11. For Emma, Forever Ago - Bon Iver

Initial Spot: Hasn't moved, actually...

In Retrospect: It's right where it was! Still good. I like it a lot. "Skinny Love," bla bla bla.

10. Nouns - No Age

Initial Spot: 4

In Retrospect: Eraser is still great. The rest of the album is just good. Definitely deserved top 10, but it didn't deserve top 5 status.

9. Real Emotional Trash - Stephen Malkmus & Jicks

Initial Spot: 10

In Retrospect: Moved up a bit. Maybe because I appreciate "Hopscotch Willie" more.

8. Self-Titled - Fleet Foxes

Initial Spot: 3

In Retrospect: Another top 10 album that didn't deserve to be top 5. Still really, really good though. I mean, #8 in a strong year is an accomplishment. I think my rating might have been affected by Pitchfork making this #1 on their year-end list.

7. Fucked Up - The Chemistry of Common Life

Initial Spot: Hasn't moved

In Retrospect: Mmm... hardcore punk.

6. Self-Titled - Vampire Weekend

Initial Spot: 12

In Retrospect: I loved this album at the start of 2008, then backed off a bit for some reason. After warming up to it again, I definitely say it deserves to move up six spots. Great album.

5. Microcastle - Deerhunter

Initial Spot: Same

In Retrospect: Mmm...Shoegaze (alternately, "Mmm... Bradford Cox project")

4. Hold On Now, Youngster - Los Campesinos!

Initial Spot: 6

In Retrospect: Loved it then, but I like it even more now. Whole album works so well, and I can't pick a song I don't like.

3. Dear Science - TV on the Radio

Initial Spot: 1

In Retrospect: I think I put this #1 because I wanted it to be. Really badly. It's still a wonderful album, but it's not Return to Cookie Mountain. As an album, it doesn't flow as well. Some wonderful stuff on here, though.

2. Feed the Animals - Girl Talk

Initial Spot: Same

In Retrospect: Still finding new stuff to like on this one. I like Night Ripper a bit better, but Feed the Animals is still one of the most layered, interesting albums I've ever heard.

1. Oracular Spectacular - MGMT

Initial Spot: 13

In Retrospect: Holy crap, did this one shoot up the list. I like every song on this album. They do so many different things, and they do all of them extremely well. When "Time to Pretend" is only my 7th favorite song on the album, you know it's pretty fucking great. So, yeah. This is my new number one from 2008. They fucking nailed it, I was just too dumb to realize it last year. I blame Zooey's siren-like charms!!!

So that's the new list. Jake and I are going to wait until the year is ACTUALLY OVER before posting our Extra-vaganzzza winners. Hope you kind of enjoyed this, even if it was the posting equivalent of a clip show.

So. Uh... bye?

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