Tuesday, January 6, 2009

merriweather post pavilion

once you've managed to stop looking at the artwork, 
the review is below...

Animal Collective's new album is spectacular. 

Album opener "In The Flowers" is like listening to your standard animal collective song on headphones but then someone drives past playing really annoyingly loud techno/fat beats and it's so loud that it interferes with what you're listening to - but in this case it works. the two clash horribly but meld at the same time. the second track "My Girls" is by far one of the catchiest songs on the album, with a nice beat and some fancy claps, and sweet lyrics.
Next highlight for me is "Summertime Clothes" - to me this song sounds like the perfect soundtrack for summer and sprinklers and squirting people with water guns in the face and water bombs and smashing letter boxes on bikes with baseball bats and all that shit. It has a really sweet little hook "i want walk around with you...just you just you just you just you" echoed through out the song.
"Lion in a Coma" features the best use of the Jew Harp i've heard in a long time, "No More Runnin' " brings the tone of the album down a little before finishing up with "Brothersport"; the almost zimbabwean tribal revival track that demands you to "Open up your throat" and to have a real good time. That's open for interpretation.

Although, in my opinion not as great as 2007's Strawberry Jam, it's still a fucking good album and a very good album to start 2009 with I say! 

Friday, January 2, 2009

Top 10 Albums of 2008

Honorable Mentions:

Ra Ra Riot - The Rhumb Line
Perhaps for their cover of Kate Bush's "Suspended in Gaffa" alone. No not true - there's a fair few songs on here, but at time's the singer sounds kinda emo. In the whiny sense.

Hercules & Love Affair - Hercules & Love Affair
A little too disco/gay anthemy to make it into the top ten. Antony's guest appearances on vocals is good but.

School of Seven Bells - Alpinisms
This seriously almost made it into the top 10, but there just wasn't enough variety to carry it through. I'm sure this will be the one I will listen to more and then regret not putting it in...Oh well.

Top 10 Albums of 2008.

10. Sigur Ros - Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust
If this album had more songs like Gobbledigook and Inní mér syngur vitleysingur it would've rated higher. But it's good to see Sigur Ros experimenting with upbeat sounds mixed in with what they do best. Also, Gobbledigook being the first song played after the new years countdown - amazing way to start 2009.

9. Goldfrapp - Seventh Tree

This album makes me think of Annie. It generally sums up 2008 pretty well.

8. Fleet Foxes - Fleet Foxes

I personally didn't get all the buzz around this album for a long time, after a few listens I started to appreciate it alot more - but if it wasn't for White Winter Hymnal, Ragged Wood and Your Protector being fucking amazing songs - this album probably wouldn't rate at all. I think what held me back from getting so into it was the fact that I heard Plants and Animals album Parc Avenue first and couldn't understand how Fleet Foxes were getting more credit...Whatever, it's number 8 so obviously I liked it enough (don't be mad Sunni)

7. Shearwater - Rook

Dark and Brooding and Powerful and Amazing. Piano and Good.
My use of adjectives is so amazing, No?
At first I thought that "The Snow Leopard" sounded like a blend of Coldplay's "Amsterdam" and Radiohead's "Pyramid Song". Despite the Coldplay reference - this album is amazing. I feel like I discredited it just then by referencing Coldplay. I didn't mean Shearwater sound like Coldplay...they're much better than that. Much MUCH better.

6. Noah and the Whale - Peaceful the World Lays Me Down

There's something so ridiculously twee about this album, but I can't help enjoy it. What can I say, I'm a sucker for the fiddle, and Charlie Fink's vocals/accent is endearing. This album has a good range of upbeat (Five Years Time) to morose and downtrodden (Second Lover & Do What You Do) and they manage to pull off what the Arcade Fire are so darn good at - tempo changes. It's all about the tempo change. Also their juxtaposition of male and female vocals on songs such as "Rocks and Daggers" get to me something shocking. If your going to listen to ANY song by these guys, let it be Rocks and Daggers and hold out for the end with the whole fiddle section and Laura Marlings guest vocals. "Thurr's no need to play-ay-ay with muh har-ar-urt" (i know it comes across gangsta when typed, but really, it's quite sweet!

5. The Duke Spirit - Neptune

An album consisting of "fuck you" songs. But not in a Dropkick Murphy kinda way, in a angry british girl kinda way...Not in a riot girl kinda way either.   

4. Gregory & the Hawk - Moenie and Kitchi

I can't explain why, I think I just have an attachment to G&TH ever since Boats and Birds, but this album really does show how diverse Meredith Godreau is. She is about to support Frightened Rabbit on their tour - that is something I would like to see. Highlights include Doubtful, Oats we Sow and Stone Wall, Stone Fence.

3. An Horse - Not Really Scared EP / Lykke Li - Youth Novels

Third place called for a tie. 

An Horse's EP I pretty much listened to non stop since I bought it from their gig at the East Brunswick Club - it only consists of 5 songs, so it doesn't technically count as an album which is why Lykke Li is allowed to tie for 3rd place with it. An Horse (although grammatically incorrect) wrote an amazing and well pieced together EP with smart and in-depth lyrics that hit home or hit your heart or hit your face into a thousand pieces.

Lykke Li is Sweden's little shy darling. Her songs are about liking someone but not knowing if you do, crying but not wanting anyone to know, dancing but not wanting anyone to see. Basically she's just really uncertain of herself, but she needs not be, cause this album features some brilliant pop gems and pretty ballads. The whole album is amazing apart for Complaint Department and Trumpet in My Head - those songs are complete balls.

2. Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago

Although this album was technically released in 2007 (self-released by Justin Vernon - he signed to Jagjaguwar and they released it early 2008) this album is highly significant of 2008 to me. It sums up alot of the year, February and March in particular. I've listened to it constantly since I got it, and I haven't got sick of it in the last 10 months. Every song on the album is amazing. I'm interested to see what he does next - the Blood Bank EP is due out on Jan 20th.

1. Frightened Rabbit - Midnight Organ Fight

These guys are amazing.
Again, it sums up a great portion of 2008 for me. There is something I can't quite put my finger on about them, they have the potential to go down the path of selling out and becoming stadium playing morons, but there is something so incredibly humble and honest about all their music and lyrics. And when Scott sings you believe ever syllable of what he mutters. Every song is majestic, epic, grandiose, powerful and incredibly well orchestrated. 

top 10 gigs of 2008

10. Broken Social Scene - Corner Hotel

9. Andrew Bird - Corner Hotel

8. Peaches - Palace

7. Múm - The Corner

6. An Horse & I Heart Hiroshima - East Brunswick Club

5. Goldfrapp - The Palais 

4. Coco Rosie - Corner Hotel

3. Sufjan Stevens - Festival Hall

2. Arcade Fire - Festival Hall

1. Bjork - Big Day Out 

(Hyperballad, Pluto and Declare Independence with the snow storm of confetti changed my life)

thank you for reading.
happy new year.