As we celebrate the start of a brand new music year with Bruce Springsteen’s new album release ‘Working On A Dream’ containing the Obamarama-Run song ‘Working On A Dream’ and the Golden Globe awarded ‘The Wrestler’ from the the movie with the same title. Before
we start talking of the future I would like to sum up what the past year had to give as well as the new year hopefully will swipe us off out feet.The year 2008 and had a lot to give in the independent genres, the alternative genre that has grown more larger in the portions of the 21st century had fantastic releases during the year. With ‘Evil Urges’ by Morning Jacket and Death Cab For Cuties ‘Narrow Stairs’ we start the list of titles who were close but did not make it to the top ten. Swedish alternative singer Lykke Li had a terrific year with her ‘Youth N
ovel’ as well as the fantastic piano phenomenon Ron Sexsmith and a brilliant as well as magic
‘Exit Strategy Soul’. Josh Homme’s Eagles Of Death Metal released their ‘Heart On’ and our summer-got-to-enjoy-with sun Jack Johnson showed some spring emotions with the soft and beautiful ‘Sleep Through The Static’.
It is almost as possible as it is unfair to list musicians like they were priorities or athletics competing, but yet it give us chance to embrace those who deserve it, our idols and poets of modern time deserves their recognition among us. So to start of at the bottom we have one of my personal favourite artists and his [10. Cardinology by Ryan Adams & The Cardinals]. As a followup to the last years masterpiece ‘Easy Tiger’ Adams and his Cardinals seem to reach
almost the expectation on their audience with the same spirit as past year. The opening ‘Born Into A Light’ reminds of an Neil Young in his earlier years, his ‘Harvest’ years. From second track ‘Go Easy’ the album flows natural almost perfect with track five ‘Cobwebs’ as the peak. Last track ‘Stop’ is a beautiful, calm piano ballad like so many before yet fantastic.
As we move up we get to a debut singer who took entire Europe with storm, yet not,unfortunately as well appreciated in the US [9. Rockferry by Duffy] is a fantastic achievement. The young British soul singer is one in a row close to major artists such as Amy Winehouse and Lily Allen. Duffy has an modern originality that reminds of Dusty Springfield and Petula Clark. The album itself speaks much for itself with powerful soul vocals showing great emotions to her words and content. The songs ‘Rockferry’, ‘Warwick Avenue’ and ‘Syrup and Honey’ next to hit ‘Mercy’ are the aces of this terrific journey that marks the start of an interesting career.
After the 1999 masterpiece ‘Magnolia’ by director Paul Thomas Anderson one of the parts in the movie who caught my mind was the bittersweet ‘Wise Up’. [8. Smilers by Aimee Mann] is a beautiful little thing piece of a pop singer songwriter with some what of a country touch. With the album ‘Smilers’ she gives a peaceful happy journey from track one ‘Freeway’ to the final closure as my favorite of the album ‘Ballantines’ lose the album that is a even happy face, smiling album. Get the tacky description, smiling!?
As the list moves closer to half way we found a fantastic live album at [7. Where The Light is: John Mayer Live in Los Angeles by John Mayer]. The act which was released as a music DVD is opened by a acoustic act with The John Mayer Trio. Through past acoustic top songs of Mayor’s set list he gives out soft and great versions of ‘Neon’ and ‘Daughters’ and also focuses into a a brilliant cover of Tom Petty’s ‘Free Fallin’. As the acoustic act is over John Mayer and his band deliver somewhat a nostalgic rewind of my past three years. With ‘God Love is One The Way’,‘Why Georgia, Why’ and Jimi Hendrix’s ‘Bold as Love’ the concert brings out a more blues-sided point of view which the
fairly underrated guitarist clearly deserves to receive recognition for. The concert brings out a little more and prove that John Mayer (considered asshole and snob) is more than a spoiled pop rock artist for teenage girls but an artist of extremely high caliber.
At [6. Dig Out Your Soul by Oasis] and well deserved comeback if you can call it that. Their latest album actually brings out somewhat a little rougher and less organized Oasis which from my point of view works out perfectly fine. The somewhat stone rock kind of ish style brings works really well. ‘Bag It Up’ opens up this album that is one of their better albums as a whole. ‘To Be Where There’s Life’ is what I would like to call a real British styled song that reminds of the Beatles just as so many time before and even i the record contain tracks of great standard I have problem with finding a certain hit to my ears but the album works just as fine as long track where everything kind of belong to each other and as a whole piece the album reaches one of the best of this year.
I have never thought much of this artist, but [5. Amerykah Promise Part One (4th World War) by Erykah Badu] might change that. The queen of delta soul as I call it is brilliant and her album as well. I do not know how to put words on the album but when I thought through my list and thought about what albums caught me up the most Amerykah Promise came to my mind and reminded me of what a cool album it is. The song ‘American Promise’ is probably one of the most perfect opening songs an album can possibly have and ‘Solider’ as well as ‘Telephone’ are all favorites in this funky album that caught me up in Erykah Badu.
I do not really know what happened this y
ear but last year this album [4. Oracular Spectacular
by MGMT] would probably had topped my list, I just couldn’t find a position for it closer to the top than where it is placed. The four first tracks of MGMT’s masterpiece as I would like to call it is breathtaking. ‘Time To Pretend’ opens up a perfect album and followed by songs like ‘Electric Feel’ and ‘4th Dimensional Transition’ this album is pure joy. Of alternative music MGMT has given rebirth the pop that should gain more promises and audience than it ha
s as an artist has creates something untouchable that I can only dream upon hearing this upcoming year or the next.
I just noticed that it probably would be more fair to call this an essay than somewhat of a chronicle. Albums like ‘Mellow Gold’ and ‘Midnight Vultures’ are great albums of their kind and especially considering ‘Mellow Gold’s’ golden egg ‘Loser’. [3. Modern Guilt by Beck] shows that it’s kind of re-done. I just read what I have written about opening tracks on this years list and some people may think that I only listen to the first song but opening song ‘Orphans’ is... great. This is one of those albums who are really great from track one to last track and even though it’s a short album ‘Modern Guilt’ contain its golden eggs just like mentioned with ‘Orphans’ such as ‘Gamma Ray’ and ‘Soul Of A Man’ I was touched with a smile on my face. Short of words might be the explained by me being a man of English as a second language. But I suppose it’s a progress in the making to express more detailed. Anyway, Modern Guilt beat the top over both Oasis and especially MGMT with something very well organized and clearly terrific.
As we reach on to the second on the top ten albums of the year I find it strange that [2. Dear Science by TV on the Radio] came in in week 51 of 2008 and swiped me of of my feet. Talking about well produced 21st Century Alt. Rock. I keep on reminding myself how much it reminds me of hearing Joy Division play with somewhat an Ian Curtis darkness on the vocals. ‘Red Dress’, ‘Halfway Home’, ‘Shout me Out’ and ‘Golden Age’ represent TV on the Radio perfectly well as one of the must see bands on my list of possible masters to actually be able to go see. 'Dear Science' has all that, all we might be looking for but never find, all that is gained and certainly entertainment for yours as well as my ears.
Reaching the final album I would like to proudly present this one with great love as a clear number one album. [1. Viva La Vida: Or Death And All His Friends by Coldplay] did not make me go see them. Rejected by a move to Los Angeles I missed my shots but it has been just as wonderful to be able to watch and listen to how the world engage onto start enjoying Coldplay. Even though it seemed to be their worst yet brilliant ‘Viva La Vida’ that reached it’s recognition as a hit on the radio this album was the stunning achievement of master class class this past year. An instrumental journey towards peaks of the peaks Chris Martin with band takes us on a fantastic journey filled with inspiration and emotional breakdowns. At track number four I do not know what is going happen but as ’42’ plays on and reaches a climax of a stone rock session I am silenced in my criticism on predictable albums such as masterpiece yet-not-until ‘Fix You’ achieved it’s peak on ‘X&Y’. ‘Lover’s in Japan - Reign of Love’ carries the album onto its finale of ‘Strawberry Swing’, ‘Death and All His Friends’ and ‘The Escapist’ prove that Coldplay is one of the world’s greatest acts for inspiration, art and poetry in the world of music’s force to us human. A divine and heavenly beautiful masterpiece.