the state

-of music in 2008; andrew by vastate
Sunday, 28 December 2008, 11:59
Filed under: -of localism, -of sound, -of the new year, -of townie-to-townie

our friend andrew, local musician (the wolf gang), author & journalist (rocktown weekly, virginia correspondent for lancaster farming, formerly of the page news and courier, as well as freelance work) sent us his list for the year.

as we at the state suggested, these lists need not be limited to the calendar year.  what someone is listening to & excited by this year says something about the year’s musical environment, but also gives a bit of autobiography-via-music.  so, here we go, andrew’s “list of my best of all time music, as conceived at the end of 2008”:

“In no particular order, other than alphabetic, b/c that’s how my iTunes is organized:

Aesop Rock – Labor Days.

The best description I ever heard of Aes Rock’s stuff was “musical dadaism” which seems to totally fit.  I completely love everything about this album, but especially the completely bizarre raps that come out of left field but somehow talk to me. Every time I listen, some new phrase jumps out of nowhere, e.g. “You won’t be laughing when your covered wagons crash,” and I think, “so true.”

Bloc Party – Silent Alarm.

So cool. Apart from Radiohead, who will appear later on this list, there’s quite a bit of British hipster rock that’s generally pretty cool, but this album stands head and shoulders above most of it, IMHO. I love how the song Helicopters sounds has some of the most helicopterish guitar work I’ve ever heard.

Bob Marley – All four glorious discs of the Songs of Freedom box set,

but if you absolutely forced me to pick one, I’d go with Disc 2, which includes Craven Choke Puppy, High Tide or Low Tide, Burnin’ and Lootin’, Concrete Jungle … OK, better stop before I just name every song. Bob is in the serious running for my favorite/most influential artist ever, and if your only exposure to him is Legend, shame on you. And if you belong to that huge group of morons who think that “liking Bob Marley” is code-talk for “I smoke weed” DOUBLE shame on you. He does the love songs, he does the fight songs, he does it all… Do I make my love for him clear?

Danny Schmidt – Parables and Primes.

This is a tough call, b/c I have to include Danny on this list (b/c he’s Bob M.’s biggest competition for the single most important musician ever) but I don’t think he has one album that stands out from all the others. Parables and Primes has the highest concentration of essential tracks, though, so I’ll go with that. It’s very sad that this means songs like “McCreary’s Pipes” from Enjoying the Fall don’t get on this best-of list.

Iron & Wine – Woman King EP.

Is this too trendy of a choice? Is Iron & Wine sooo 2005? Whatever. It’s a beautiful album and we had some friends play “My Lady’s House” at our wedding because it’s the prettiest song in the whole entire world.

The National – Alligator.

So this is a best-of-ever list, but I’m writing it Dec. 2008, and this is on heavy, heavy personal rotation because it just sounds so cool. Could get bumped next year.

Pedro the Lion – Control.

The first time I ever heard this I was with a college buddy, and we listened to it start to finish in his apartment, and we didn’t talk once. We just sat there listening, and then, when it all ended, we sort of looked at each other and went, “whoa.”

Radiohead – OK Computer.

I won’t get started on why this is, without doubt, without hesitation, without question, the NUMBER ONE ESSENTIAL ALBUM of all time (this designation slightly different from essential artist of all time). Just trust me, and by the end of Paranoid Android, track 2, you’ll agree unless you suck. One of the most memorable, exciting and important nights of my life ended with me listening to this album in its entirety just before I went to bed. Long story, but please trust me and listen to this album.

Ratatat – Classics.

This one snuck on b/c of the year 2008 currently-enjoyable thing going on here. Cool instrumental electronic rock, turned awesome with Garage Band and an iBook. I saw them live once; the mosh pit was more violent than at the Rammstein show I was at (they are cool too, but not going to make this list), if you can believe that, or if you have any appreciation for why that’s surprising, or if you care.

Red Hot Chili Peppers – Stadium Arcadium.

I had that same “which album to pick” conundrum here, but went with their latest, mainly because it has two whole discs of Chili goodness. Flea was the main reason I bought a bass guitar at age 18, and the album art from Blood Sugar Sex Magik is probably the reason why I have a few tattoos, and and and. John Frusciante has a few solo albums, all of which are honorable mentions on this list.

Third Eye Blind – Third Eye Blind.

It’s true. Third Eye Blind on my Best of List. This is one of those rare albums that I thought was great in high school, and I still think is great 10 years later. Plus, I went to a 3EB show right after I graduated, and it was one of those seminal moments in my life that I realize, in retrospect, had a big impact on me in all sorts of ways that I won’t get into, because I already feel sheepish about this pick. But certain.

Wolf Parade – Apologies To The Queen Mary.

I’m almost done typing now. This makes the list because I love this album, and I’m feeling a defiant backlash after my Third Eye Blind sheepishness, so I’m not going to justify or explain Wolf Parade at all. Listen to it.”

¡thanks andrew!


1 Comment so far
Leave a comment

[…] andrew jenner’s […]

Pingback by -of music in 2008 « the state

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: