Friday, February 27, 2009

Top 8 in 08: Music

So, er, I've been slacking on my music listening this past year. This list is really a 'Top 3' plus a few more that I liked but haven't quite absorbed enough to say anything particularly relevant.

Which means: feel free to suggest bands or CDs I should listen to!
  1. Cloud Cult, The Meaning of 8 -- Jackie ripped this album for me over a year ago; I listened to it once and was like, meh. This last summer I listened again and it just clicked in my head how awesome it is - I had it on near-exclusive iPod rotation for weeks. Cloud Cult sounds a bit like the Flaming Lips (or maybe the Polyphonic Spree): raspy-voiced singer, colorful sonic palette, ecstatic worldview (compare Chemicals Collide with the Lips' Do you realize??). Here's a live-studio version of "Pretty Voice."

  2. R.E.M., Accelerate -- R.E.M. is one of those beloved bands from my teenage years who pretty much get a free pass from here on out; even their weaker stuff I find myself enjoying. That said, even I didn't buy their last two albums, so it is nice to have them back and rocking out again. The new album is really good: it feels like passionate early R.E.M. but also reminds you of the ways they've evolved.

  3. Ted Leo & the Pharmacists, Hearts of Oak -- I need to spend more time with Ted Leo, because I think I might have to become a huge fan. He's got that jittery-intense Fugazi/hardcore feel but he emotes like a soul singer. He brings the passion. The clip below is with his backing band, but he's pretty compelling solo too.

  4. Utah Phillips and Ani DiFranco, Fellow Workers
  5. Gogol Bordello, Gypsy Punks: Underdog World Strike!
  6. Spoon, Girls Can Tell
  7. Rhymefest, Blue Collar
  8. Andrew Bird and the Mysterious Production of Eggs


Jackie said...

Cloud Cult! Woo! Weird story: I was watching TV (in Boston) and saw an Esurance commercial/music video. The music: Cloud Cult. They do have a new tour and album (which I haven't gotten yet). I listened to a few Gogol Bordello songs after reading about them (in the NYTimes!), but I'm not sure about them. But based on Doug's recommendations, I just purchased Santogold. I'm optimistic about it. CAPTCHA: sublimen.

t said...

Hi Jackie,

Weird. Cloud Cult doesn't strike me as the type of music that would make me want to buy insurance, but what do I know.

And I'm not sure what I think of Gogol Bordello either. They're almost too much to listen to with headphones, although I can kind of see where they might kick ass live.

I may have to check out Santogold since they're always lumped in with M.I.A. Any other recommendations?