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Old 12.20.2008, 03:36 PM   #1
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And as the year comes to a close, here's my Top 10. Please note, these choices (like my Top 10 every year) are based on nothing more than the actual and honest amount of time I spent returning to these records.


1. Lil Wayne - Tha Carter III
Mainstream? Sure. He blew the fuck up this year. But this record was in my opinion everything to everyone(who-is-a-fan-of-hip-hop). That is to say, there was the dirrrty souf tracks, the Golden Era flashbacks, the verbal acrobatics, the luv sawngs, tha Thug songs, the low rider bass, the radio hit, the club hit, the underground picks and everything else. Almost immediately there seemed to be a backlash against this record, but I praise it for it's ambition, and think it will be a part of the lineage that includes ILLMATIC, READY TO DIE, THE BLUEPRINT, ENTER THE WU-TANG, THE INFAMOUS and so on.

2. Deerhunter - Microcastle
I expected to hate this. I expected to listen to it once and say "okay, CRYPTOGRAMS was a fluke." Then I'd throw this record to the side, never listen to it again, never buy another Deerhunter release, etc. But I loved it. Immeditately. This is a fantastic record of MBV-fuzz meets David Lynch soundtracks. And these dudes are still (career-wise) young!

3. Jim Jones - Harlem's American Gangster
A record that simply Should Not Work! Jim Jones is not the most incredible lyricist. And yet here he has the balls to (basically) make an entire diss record that goes after Jay-z recent return to form? And he did so without the other two strong Dipset-ers. Is it as good as a Jay-Z record? That's serious apples vs. oranges. But the beats are pleasing 80's-ish synth romps, the hooks are hummable and Jones brings some excellent personality that's not always present in his work. Maybe I just love an underdog, but this record is great.

4. Atlas Sound - Let The Blind Lead Those That Can See But Can Not Feel
Rivaling only Fiona Apple in album title length, this shit is fantastic. A perfect record for the (any) changing of the seasons. It's dreamy and ethereal and pretty and mostly has words I can't understand. But like listening to a band that sings in another language, the words are less important than their sounds. This and the above-mentioned Deerhunter album make two solid efforts for 2008 that really have me interested in whatever else Cox will cook up in the future.

5. T.I. - Papertrail
I actually loved T.I. Vs. T.I.P. from last year, and doubted this would be as good, as he was ditching his usual way of writing (or not writing) lyrics, and dropping the concept... but in effect T.I. dropped here a staggeringly honest (by far most of honest of his career) record full of beats that couldn't suit him more. This is the party-record of the year.

6. Portishead - Third
"Oh, hi. We made two records that almost defined a genre, and then we disappeared for a decade. Then we made a new record that sounded almost nothing like those other two. Oh and also, it's fucking awesome."

7. The Game - LAX
I've spouted this off so many times, but here goes the short version: The Game is the closest thing we have to 2Pac. He's human: which means sometimes he's sincere, and vulnerable, but he's also angry and mean. It depends on the day that he happened to hit 'record.' ...to go along with my analogy, LAX is his ME AGAINST THE WORLD.

8. Re-Up Gang - We Got It 4 Cheap Vol. 3
Usually free mixtapes are made to be promos for albums that you should go out and buy. But in this case, the free mixtape was incredible, and the album (Re-Up Gang: The Album) was horrible. (Apparently so bad that Re-Up Gang is no more). But at the heart of it, this is a fantastic collection of great beats (that you probably already know) with Clipse spitting ridiculous metaphors like they do best.

9. Cat Power - Jukebox
A subtle record of re-imaginations that is now my 2nd favorite album by Cat Power. The first being this one's thematic sequal. In a way this album is less than perfect, but it was one I never got sick of.

10. M83 - Saturdays=Youth
80's drum machines, over the top epic pianos/synths, vocodered vocals. M83's best album ever.
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Old 12.22.2008, 01:50 PM   #2
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albums 1 to 6 i havent heard... atlas sound.. i am curious about..

porishead without a doubt a great album...... cant stand cat power and i wasnt impressed with m83 compared to their previous releases.....

nice list tho!
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Old 12.22.2008, 02:24 PM   #3
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Thanks. I'm surprised yr not feeling SATURDAYS. I've been a big M83 fan since the "Run Into Flowers" single, and I feel like this one was incredible.
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Old 12.22.2008, 02:56 PM   #4
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yeah/.... i loved the first album.. dead cities...... i thoght the second one was ok... but everything after just hasnt grabbed my attention. saturdays i thought was well poor.. again its only my opinion.......
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Old 12.22.2008, 03:07 PM   #5
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DEAD CITIES was great. I thought SATURDAYS was the best since then. Something about it just really grabbed me.
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Old 12.22.2008, 06:16 PM   #6
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david lynch?
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Old 12.22.2008, 06:48 PM   #7
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Yeah. I mean, I could've said Angelo Badalamenti, but that's not quite right. Meaning, a lot of the guitar parts remind me of music from Twin Peaks or Wild At Heart, or Straight Story, etc. So reminds me of music I'd associate with Lynch.
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Old 12.22.2008, 06:53 PM   #8
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Oh, no, I know what you meant, I just never thought of that. But yeah specifically talking about their guitars, they actually do have a similiar tone as, like, the one in Angelo's "falling" (theme from Twin Peaks) and so on. Interesting observation.
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Old 12.22.2008, 06:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atsonicpark
like, the one in Angelo's "falling"


EXACTLY. Even some of the cut-up Chris Isaak guitar stuff that ended up as incidental music on Wild At Heart has similar tones. Or the song that 'James' sings on Peaks Season 2.
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Old 12.22.2008, 07:06 PM   #10
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1, 2, 5, 6, & 9 (sort of) are all in my top 50. Nice!
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Old 12.22.2008, 07:14 PM   #11
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I found the m83 disc extremely disappointing, as I really liked his other ones a lot. But eh. I dunno. It's pleasant.

A comment I never made about Microcastle elsewhere but damn "Nothing Ever Happened" really is a fucking great song. Most of the album bores me, and there's a bit too much filler all in all, but with that song in particular (and the great production on the whole album, except some of the weird annoying production tricks in "saved by the old times"), I can see why people are into it.

Anyway, Lil Wayne is hilarious.

...Even if I don't agree with you, I'm glad to see a list that's a lot different than what most people's lists would probably be.
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Old 12.22.2008, 07:52 PM   #12
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Thanks, Adam. Like I said, this is literally the stuff I listened to the most this year.
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Old 12.24.2008, 03:03 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atsonicpark
david lynch?
ha
http://mashedinplastic.co.uk/
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Old 12.24.2008, 03:21 PM   #14
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the fuck
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Old 12.24.2008, 03:41 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atsonicpark

A comment I never made about Microcastle elsewhere but damn "Nothing Ever Happened" really is a fucking great song. Most of the album bores me, and there's a bit too much filler all in all, but with that song in particular (and the great production on the whole album, except some of the weird annoying production tricks in "saved by the old times"), I can see why people are into it.
Hah wow I have the exact same opinion.

The first three tracks and "Nothing Ever Happened" are amazing songs... but the rest feel disappointing compared to them. I've now upped my opinion from 'bad album' to 'slightly decent album'.
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Old 12.24.2008, 06:41 PM   #16
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I love every song. Seriously.

Also, thanks for that mashup Atari! Never seen/heard of that. Crazy.
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Old 12.24.2008, 06:44 PM   #17
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How is Weird Era Cont?

The only Deerhunter I really liked was Fluorescent Grey so far.
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Old 12.24.2008, 07:11 PM   #18
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I've not heard Weird Era Cont. I really like Atlas Sound actually.
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Old 12.26.2008, 09:05 AM   #19
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I didnt get into WEIRD ERA as much. I mean, it's a cool companion piece to the album, but I dont find it holds together as solidly.
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Old 09.23.2011, 03:46 PM   #20
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bumped for louder.
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