If you live in the Chicago area you are aware that autumn seems to be starting early this year. I remember two years ago that the Chicago Marathon was run in 90 degree temps. It felt like Summer, at one point having to have it cut short because of the dangerous temperatures. This year, you can smell the crisp cool air as a prelude to the winter months.
I love the cool 45 degree autumn months. For one, coffee tastes much better. Secondly, music is seasonal. As certain albums seem to be built around the summer months, others are darker and can only be appreciated with a light mist and wind chill hitting your skin. At some point I will have to provide a list of my favorite “Trick-Or-Treat” albums but until then I think you will have to settle for some of my favorite albums and songs of the past year.
This year has actually been a great year for music, both new and reissues alike which is why I have slightly combined my favorite music over this period of time.
I would venture to guess that as a music buyer we are not completely immune to the “Rerelease” bug that hits a lot of record companies. And while I am not a huge supporter of such an endeavor and am still curious why Radiohead would choose to rerelease all of their recent albums once again, I can still appreciate a band such as R.E.M. who put a nice live disc along with Reckoning, or a band like the Feelies whose first two albums have been re-released in their entirety for new music fans as well as old to appreciate.
Some have suggested the onslaught of re-released music is due to the end of the CD. And while I do not believe that CDs are going to be leaving our collective conscious anytime soon, I can only imagine that over the next few years the sales of CDs will drop and interenet downloads will only increase. But that is a completely different blog entry entirely.
This year is not just about old music but new music as well. Animal Collective began the year with ‘Merriweather Post Pavilion’ and Grizzly Bear soon followed with ‘Veckatimest’, an album that has given them plenty of accolade over the past year.
But it’s other ventures like ‘XX’, and ‘Phoenix’ which have made this list this time around.
I have provided a listing of some of my favorite albums as well as songs below. Outside of providing excruciating details of these albums I figure I will let you do a little investigation of your own and hold off on my explanations until closer to the new year.
Seeing that I am posting this list to my R.E.M. site, the list does feature a hefty amount of R.E.M. including the Reckoning Deluxe Edition, Live at the Olympia (EP), Robyn Hitchcock, and the Minus 5. Even in a year when things are quiet, there has been plenty to listen to and plenty to see.
Coming Soon: I can make the lofty prediction that 1 more R.E.M. album will probably make the list. 39 Songs can be expected to make the top 10 somewhere. I highly doubt any album with Carnival of Sorts could ever miss a top 10.
I can also make another prediction that the new Flaming Lips album will take several listens to provide a lasting impression, but I can safely state right now that this is not their “Pop” album but have reemerged to their experimental roots with Embryonic.
At any rate, it is late here and let’s get to the good stuff.
Band - Album
1 Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion
2 Grizzly Bear - Veckatimest
3 The XX - XX
4 The Feelies - Crazy Rhythms (Reissue)
5 Phoenix - Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
6 Various Artists - Dark Was The Night
7 The Feelies - The Good Earth (Reissue)
8 Deerhunter - Rainwater Cassette Exchange (EP)
9 Wavves - Wavvves
10 Yo La Tengo - Popular Songs
11 R.E.M. - Reckoning Deluxe Edition (Reissue)
12 St. Vincent - Actor
13 R.E.M. -Reckoning (Live at the Olympia) (EP)
14 Dan Deacon - Bromst
15 Japandroids - Post-Nothing
16 Girls - Album
17 Circulatory System - Signal Morning
18 Lotus Plaza - Floodlight Collective
19 Robyn Hitchcock - Goodnight Oslo
20 Woods - Songs of Shame
21 Yacht - See Mystery Lights
22 Sunset Rubdown - Dragonslayer
23 Dirty Projectors - Bitte Orca
24 Andrew Bird - Noble Beast
25 Beirut - March of the Zapotec & Realpeople
26 The Pains of Being Pure At Heart - The Pains of Being Pure At Heart
27 Cymbals Eat Guitars - Why There Are Mountains
28 Fiery Furnaces - I'm Going Away
29 Minus 5 - Killingsworth
30 Pisces - A Lovely Sight
Band - Song
1 Animal Collective - In the Flowers
2 Grizzly Bear - I Live With You
3 Animal Collective - My Girls
4 The XX - Crystalized
5 Sufjan Stevens - You Are the Blood
6 R.E.M.- Harborcoat (Live At The Olympia)
7 Radiohead -These Are My Twisted Words
8 Animal Collective - Summertime Clothes
9 The XX - Shelter
10 R.E.M.-Gardening at Night/9-9/Windout
11 Deerhunter - Disappearing Ink
12 Japandroids - The Boys Are Leaving Town
13 Wavves - Weed Demon
14 Grizzly Bear - Southern Point
15 Dan Deacon - Build Voice
16 Yo La Tengo - Nothing To Hide
17 The XX - Infinity
18 Phoenix - Rome
19 Yacht - It's Boring/You Can Live Anywhere You Want
20 Animal Collective - Bluish
21 Woods - September With Pete
22 Deerhunter - Rainwater Cassette Exchange
23 St. Vincent - Black Rainbow
24 Andrew Bird - Oh No
25 Lotus Plaza - Quicksand
26 Cymbals Eat Guitars - Wind Phoenix
27 Bibio - Jealous of Roses
28 The Books Ft. Jose Gonzalez - Cello Song
29 Wavves - Mickey Mouse
30 Robyn Hitchcock & Venus 3 - Goodnight Oslo
31 Yo La Tengo - If It's True
32 Girls - Summertime
33 Beirut- The Akara
34 R.E.M. - Letter Never Sent (Live at the Olympia)
35 Grizzly Bear - Deep Blue Sea
36 The National - So Far Around The Bend
37 Atlas Sound (w/Noah Lennox) - Walkabout
38 The XX - VCR
39 Animal Collective - Brothersport
40 Grizzly Bear - Ready, Able
41 Phoenix -Love Like a Sunset
42 Circulatory System - Woodpecker Greeting Worker Ant
43 Sunset Rubdown - Apollo and The Buffalo and Anna Anna Oh!
44 Ida Maria - I Like You So Much Better When You're Naked
45 Wavves - So Bored
46 Pisces - Dear One
47 Minus 5 - Vintage Violet
48 Silver Moons - Sunset Rubdown
49 U2 - FEZ-Being Born
50 Wilco - Deeper Down