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Wednesday, January 02, 2008

My Top 49 albums of 2007

About a dozen albums on this list were late additions as I spent the last few weeks of 2007 year going through my favorite national albums and listening to ones I might not have heard to come up with a list of 50 that I thought were some of the best. (2007's offerings from Rickie Lee Jones, Joe Henry and Richard Thompson albums were three late favorites.)

Somehow, I could only come up with 49. In the comments, let me know my most glaring oversight (even if it's Mirrored by Battles, or Mark Olson's Salvation Blues.)

  1. The National - Boxer (This album is simply amazing, start to finish.)
  2. Wilco - Sky Blue Sky (Impossible Germany is part of my soundtrack to 2007)
  3. Jason Isbell - Sirens of The Ditch (Incredible songwriting. A keeper.)
  4. Band of Horses -Cease to Begin (A creeper. Hearing one song from this album leads you to explore more, then you get sucked in.)
  5. Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago (Beautiful, ethereal, almost spookily so.)
  6. Andrew Bird - Armchair Apocrypha (Gorgeous, a bit of a masterpiece.)
  7. Mishka Shubaly - How To Make A Bad Situation Worse (Hilarious and tragic. Best drinking album ever!)
  8. Jens Lekman - Night Falls Over Kortedala (Is Jens Lekman the new Jonathan Richman?)
  9. AM - Soul Variations (Did anyone see him at the Varsity 12/2? I missed it.)
  10. Okerville River - The Stage Names
  11. Joe Henry - Civilians
  12. Stars - In Our Bedroom After The War
  13. Richard Hawley - Lady's Bridge (Is Hawley is the new Sinatra.)
  14. White Rabbits - Fort Nightly (Rock tight, wind it up.)
  15. Arctic Monkeys - Favorite Worst Nightmare
  16. Elvis Perkins - Ash Wednesday
  17. Nick Lowe - At My Age
  18. Spoon - Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga (Much the same as the last Spoon album, but that doesn't make it not great.)
  19. The Frames - The Cost (Not my favorite Frames album, but comparatively, it's still magic)
  20. The Fratellis - Costello Music
  21. Arcade Fire - Neon Bible
  22. Rickie Lee Jones - The Sermon on Exposition Boulevard (sounds like Rickie Lee Jones fronting the Velvet Underground)
  23. Bjork - Volta (Grows on you)
  24. Elliott Smith - New Moon (Gorgeous in its roughness. Only 3 of the tracks on this disc were previously released. "New Moon gives him the triumphant comeback he never had in life.")
  25. Beruit - The Flying Cup Club
  26. Eleni Mandell - Miracle of Five (If you haven't heard her, you must - her voice will catch you off guard and slay you)
  27. Bloc Party - A Weekend In The City
  28. Radiohead - In Rainbows (Weird Fishes is pretty.)
  29. Bright Eyes - Cassadaga (Anyone else think Bright Eyes sounds better when you don't realize what you're listening to?)
  30. LCD Soundsystem - Sound of Silver (You can tell from the first song how good the album's going to be. I hear elements of Kraftwerk, Tom Tom Club, Bowie, more - great. "North American Scum" grooves.)
  31. The Shins - Wincing the Night Away (Not as intense an album as Chutes Too Narrow, but maybe there's a transition of sound going on here?)
  32. Klaxons - Myths of the Near Future
  33. Blonde Redhead - Got into it late in the year, but can't stop replaying it.
  34. She Wants Revenge - This is Forever (A little rough in spots, but probably as good as their previous disc. It has elements of what I loved about the early to mid 80s. She Will Always Be A Broken Girl caught my attention because of the synth riff. Kind of reminded me of the Killers or Interpol in a way too. Last song, "Rachael" is a killer. Though about Bladerunner, it might also serve as an anthem for inherited cultural grief.)
  35. Crowded House - Time On Earth (Don't forget about this album!)
  36. Against Me! - New Wave (Title is ironic for a somewhat old school punk record. Americans Abroad is hilariously accurate.)
  37. M.I.A. -Kala (A rhythmic fiesta - the Pixies quotes in 20 Dollar are hilarious)
  38. Richard Thompson - Sweet Warrior (at 58, Richard Thompson seems to still be getting better - this is a bouncy, energetic rock and roll album)
  39. Menomena - Friend and Foe (Another one you need to hear more than once)
  40. Of Montreal - Hissing Fauna, Are You The Destroyer? (Intense, clever, and somehow fun despite the dark content of the songs.)
  41. White Stripes - Icky Thump
  42. Prefab Sprout - Steve McQueen: Legacy Edition (One of my favorite albums ever, 1985's Steve McQueen (known as "Two Wheels Good" in the States), re-mastered by original producer Thomas Dolby, and with an extra disc's worth of tracks.)
  43. Dean & Britta - Back Numbers (Not a guilty pleasure, I hope. One of my early favorites of 07.)
  44. Les Savy Fav - Let's Stay Friends
  45. Burial - Untrue (I like this a lot, but it kind of makes me want to listen to Radiohead.)
  46. Patty Griffin - Children Run Through
  47. The Good The Bad and The Queen - self titled
  48. Animal Collective - Strawberry Jam
  49. Stars of The Lid - And Their Refinement of The Decline (File under New Age? Chill, but not fluffy.)