The Best of What I Heard in 2008 (A bit late)


31 Dic 2009, 23:40

Alright, so it's a bit late. I made the list a year ago, but never published it anywhere (not that many folks were waiting with bated breath or anything).

So, without further ado, and because I'm a little OCD and can't publish the 2009 list without first getting 2008 out of the way, here comes the best of what I heard in 2008:

Sigur Rós - Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust

Shamefully, this was my first Sigur Ros CD. It's shameful because they've been around for about a dozen years, and I'd never heard them before. They are now one of my favorite bands, and I own all of their CDs. Even one that I had to order from Iceland.

This is the most transcendent music I've heard in my life. There are moments that I would swear the heavens opened up and the music coming out is like the very voice of God.

My words can't do it justice. It must be heard to be believed, and not just in 30-second snippets. Buy this album, listen to it from beginning to end, and let it wash over you.

Kris Delmhorst - Shotgun singer

Kris Delmhorst is a singer/songwriter, and she makes some extraordinary music from sparse arrangements on this CD. Personal favorites are... well, it doesn't even matter, because it's all fantastic stuff.

Lettuce - Rage!

Lettuce is a bunch of world-class musicians who have a deep appreciation for old-school funk, and aren't afraid to pick up the mantle and carry funk music boldly into the 21st century. These cats are baaaad...

Dave Barnes - Me & You & The World
(Not sure why there isn't an album page on for this)

Dave Barnes could be the best singer/songwriter you’ve never heard of. A friend of mine dragged me to one of his shows in 2007, and I was hooked. If I'd heard him before, his first two releases (Brother, Bring The Sun & Chasing Mississippi) would have been at the top of my lists for 2004 and 2006. This one’s only a half-step behind the other two.

He deserves a huge audience. Hopefully, someday...

Avishai Cohen Trio - Gently Disturbed

I don't know a lot about Avishai Cohen, except that he's a great standup bass player, and he writes music that grooves in spite of the fact you can't always tap your foot to the beat. When Cohen's involved, Piano + Bass + Drums = A mind-blowing experience...

Al Green - Lay It Down

Al Green is one of the greatest soul singers of all time, but his recordings of late have sounded like a stale attempt to update his sound. That's not what the good Reverend needs.

Thankfully, this album sounds like an unreleased session that's been sitting in a vault, untouched for decades. Producer Ahmir “?uestlove” Thompson (from The Roots) is wise enough to let Green do what he does best: sing about sweet love.

Q-Tip - The Renaissance

The former member of A Tribe Called Quest finally releases his second solo CD (not counting Kamaal The Abstract, which sat on the shelf for 7 years before being released this year).

The Renaissance shows Q-Tip hasn't lost a step in the nine years since he released Amplified. It’s intelligent hip-hop that you can't help but bob your head to. It's good to finally have Q-Tip back.

Steve Winwood - Nine Lives

Nine Lives is a fantastic album. The instrumentation is sparse, made up of Winwood on organ and guitar, a drummer, and a percussionist. Occasionally, he's joined by a sax or flute player. The vocals are Steve solo, without a doubled lead vocal track or any background vocals. It's a minimalist arrangement, but the sparseness makes it that much more effective.

Flight of the Conchords - Flight of the Conchords

What kills me about Flight Of The Conchords is that while the lyrics are hilarious, each song is a spot-on sendup of whatever genre they've decided to tackle at the time. They're humorous, and actually good, to boot. You can't fight it, so don't even bother trying. Just get it and be highly amused...

Sia - Some People Have Real Problems

Sometimes I’ll see a CD and buy it solely because I like the look of it. My aesthetics very rarely let me down, and I’ve found quite a bit of good music that way. This was not one of those purchases.

One night at Starbucks, I liked what was playing and asked who it was. They pointed toward this CD. I had seen it previously and passed it by every time, so I asked, "Seriously? The girl with markers all over her face?" I was assured it was, so I bought it. I’m glad I did.

Don't let the markers on her face fool you. Her Australian-flavored soul music is worth a listen.

So there you have it. The best of what I heard in 2008 - one year late, but moving fast...


  • DJ_Anubis

    "Seriously? The girl with markers all over her face?" That had me LOL'ing. Great view of 2008, agree with some, others I still have to discover :) Thx for your view :)

    1 Ene 2010, 0:01
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