Skip to main content

Best Albums of 2009

Because I didn't have a full-time job for most of the year, I didn't buy nearly as much music as I usually do. I did, however, manage to get my hands on a few wonderful albums. The following is my picks for the ten best albums of 2009.

(ALSO: I only count albums I actually own so I know for a fact I'm missing some great music. Please let me know what caught your attention this year!)

10) Wilco- Wilco

Yes, the cover is probably better than the album. But Wilco is Wilco. They are one of the best bands in the world. Period. If you get a chance, see them live.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sifqGTzLGck


9) Mirah (A)spera

"Shells" is one of the most beautiful songs I can think of.

http://www.dustedmagazine.com/reviews/4825


8) The Dead Weather- Horehound

Indie supergroup cuts a solid modern rock record that sounds like a solid classic rock record. Ironically, both classic rock and modern rock radio stations don't play it. Reason number 2,546 why radio sucks. (Check out the video, it's bad ass.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M7QSkI6My1g


7) Neko Case- Middle Cyclone

Neko Case is a hit away from being a superstar. She is hot, has one hell of a voice, and is a brilliant songwriter. I thought "People Got A Lotta Nerve" (below) might get some mainstream radio play, but it didn't really happen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zXl870NoF4E


6) Raekwon- Only Built 4 Cuban Linx... Pt. II

Recreating yourself can be good. But sometimes the old saying "if it isn't broke, don't fix it" applies as well. The skits are back, the dirty beats weaved in and out of tales recounting cooking and selling dope are too (as is the guest appearance of Ghostface Killah). Thank God.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzS2dN99KxM


5) (MF) Doom- Born Like This

MF Doom, or Doom, or whatever he calls himself today, is probably the most innovative rapper this decade. With a knack for catchy beats and clever rhymes; it is pretty much a guarantee any release of his makes my list.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VWdqBZdk2yc


4) Bat For Lashes- Siren Sounds

I enjoyed this album much more than I anticipated I would. Both "Siren Song" and "Daniel" were played frequently in my car. Singer-songwriter electronica? I don't know, you'll have to take a listen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=00ZHah-c0hQ


3) Grizzly Bear- Veckatimest

Grizzly Bear likes to play this game where they pack as many catchy melodies as they can into one album. They're good at it. I've seen them live twice and was impressed each time.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQ4jZeGUFzI


2) Antony and the Johnsons- Crying Light

Antony Hegarty's wavering, gentle but defiant voice will cause you to listen. One could draw all sorts of analogies on how his voice is like life, or whatever, but it would be hard to do that without sounding like a melodramatic douchebag. Somehow, Antony is capable of singing stuff like that. I mean, who else could sing "I'm gonna miss the bees" and not sound ridiculous?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qp23w0v-GB8


1) Animal Collective- Merriweather Post Pavilion

I know, hipster darlings Animal Collective have already gained album of the year honors from the likes of "Spin" magazine and indie Bible "Pitchfork.com" to name just a couple. But this album is that good. I've been a fan for years now and am amazed at how I am never disappointed by each subsequent release. Rather than try to compare or describe, I'd recommend you check them out for yourself. (Hint: You have to listen several times before it clicks. At least I did.)

"Summertime Clothes"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GxhaRgJUMl8


"In The Flowers"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fYEAflCO4Eo

"My Girls"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zol2MJf6XNE

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Against Empire

It seems like no one outside of the “American Conservative” is thinking about the US as a declining empire. Contrary to what some thought, Trump has no interest in scaling back the US to a “normal” country. That wasn’t what MAGA meant. Quite the opposite, Trump and his goons think the post war international order isn’t US-centric enough. This is where Trump and the neoconservatives find common ground. 

What’s more interesting to me is the Democratic Party, and the liberal/left in general. The Dems are historically the war party, and they have renewed that patriotic passion in the Trump era. The shameful treatment of Ilhan Omar is a good example. This charge of her being “anti-Semitic” for questioning Israel’s influence in US foreign policy is disingenuous and disgraceful. (People are acting like we didn’t already go through this silly “debate” when Walt and Mearsheimer’s book came out over a decade ago. It’s infuriating. These are also the same people who can’t go a half an hour witho…
I’m listening to Christopher Hitchens’ fine collection of essays, “arguably.” I’d read many of these years ago, but had forgotten how good of a writer he was. Listening to him take down JFK is pure poetry. However his post 9/11 theme, that fundamentalist Islam is the threat most comparable to 20th century fascism for the enlightenment influenced democracies, stands on even shakier ground today. His realpolitik version of Trotsky’s “permanent revolution” had our enlightenment influenced democracy with Puritan characteristics as some sort of revolutionary regime spreading the best we can do to some despotic areas. It’s quite a twist that Iraq ended up being a boon to Iran, which caused the gulf monarchies to freak out. Of course Trump and his goons are now trying to make amends by demonizing Iran to an absurd degree. I wonder if America allying itself with al-Qaeda in Syria would be enough to cause Hitchens to rethink some things? Maybe his weird hatred for the Baathists extended to the…

Austerity Ecology and The Collapse-Porn Addicts

I just finished Leigh Phillip’s left defense of humanity, “Austerity Ecology And The Collapse-Porn Addicts.” I think it’s important to frame it that way, as one of the main point he makes (and I fully agree) is that the earth doesn’t need us to survive. What we should focus on is our species. And not just surviving, but prospering, even conquering (I know people don’t like that word, but we ought not be scared of power). Phillips goes through every argument that I grew up with, from green austerity to that overpopulation nonsense, and convincingly does away with them. (I read Derrick Jensen was I was younger and had completely spaced out how truly terrible his arguments are. Embarrassingly bad. When I tried John Bellamy Foster I luckily found him too dense to get through. Just like George Ciccariello-Maher is a caricature of your “edgy” left wing professor, Foster is a caricature of what a Marxist is, tough to understand but you should know what he’s saying is super important!) 

Phill…