yup, it's that time of the year again. i can't fucking believe 2009 is already over, what the fuck happened? where did the time go? where am i?
you know, i'll be honest, i'm sure there were plenty of great albums put out by all kinds of lovely bands this last year, but i never heard them. well, i heard a few. anyway, these are the records that ruled my world over the last 12 months in no particular order.
the undertones- s/t
there is nothing wrong with this album, absolute perfection from start to finish. irish catholic pop punk with an adolescent billy goat singer and songs about girls and chocolate.
fleetwood mac- tango in the night/mirage
fleetwood mac is perhaps the only band from the 60's to not just survive the 80's, but to actually evolve and release some of their very best (and most commercially successful) material. don't get me wrong, i LOVE the peter green era and i practically worship the album tusk, but these days nothing does it for me like side 1 of tango in the night. lindsey buckingham's genius is on full blast, not just on his own songs, but on all the little touches he adds to christine and stevie's. mirage is more of a grower, but full of amazing songs and well worth checking out.
alex chilton- like flies on sherbert
this album is a total abortion. being a big star fan (who isn't?), the first time i heard alex chilton's first solo album (if you don't count big star's 3rd) i was admittedly a bit confused and bummed out. is it SUPPOSED to sound like shit? ya, i guess it is. after my initial shock, i became completely OBSESSED with this little hot mess. i dare anyone to listen to "hook or crook" twice and not think it's the best fucking song ever recorded. period.
bob dylan- saved/shot of love
christianity is stupid. i feel like i have a right to say that because it was a big part of my life for a long time. i'm not sure what it is, did i force myself to listen to and like these albums because i'm such a huge dylan fan and i feel like i have to accept anything and everything he puts out (including his recent christmas album. barf.), or is it just that these albums are actually deeply awesome? even if you don't believe or agree with the message behind a lot of these songs, it's hard not to see the passion and intensity (and strange anger and bitterness) he's putting out here. i get the impression bob's been full of shit and kind of hiding behind himself on a lot of his earlier albums, but on these there's a real openness and honesty that's hard to deny. praise the lord!
wire- chairs missing
sure it's not as front to back amazing as pink flag and it's definitely more experimental and "difficult", but it's got "outdoor miner" and i could listen to that song all day.
felt- gold mine trash
chorus guitar + funny tom verlaine-esque vocals + 80's british college rock artiness + good lyrics = awesome. apparently lawrence hayward was straight-edge, but he prefered to be known as "new puritan". that's funny to me.
various artists- hipsville 29 b.c.
i LOVE old garage comps and this is one of the best i've heard. the best part about old garage bands is that sometimes the more generic and obscure they are the better. the title track by the sparkles and the song "morning" by some other band whose name i forget rule.
anyway, gotta run, i'll post more tomorrow...