2008 was the year where music made even the cynics dance; your hips don’t lie and the music this time round brought about enough revelations from one high waisted pant to another. Most charlatans would proffer their top 10 choices of the year, but this charlatan will try to sell you 11 of hers, complete with floaty “Honorary Mentions”. You know, just out of spite.
11. MGMT – Oracular Spectacular: Fans hail the band as saviours of indie dance in 2008, while critics argued that they’re nothing but music made popular by marketing. If you asked me, I reckon its more of a management thing. Their really good looks and astonishing dress sense may have won over many fans, but I do see where the beef comes from. It’s hard to get pass the voice alone, I mean, would it kill you to sing with less air in the head? Fans think that they are smoking some hot shit when they revealed that “Time to pretend” was in fact intended for their pet lizards, but the truth is, they’re just two kids with too much time and nothing to do.
10. Rachael Yamagata – Don’t, Elephants: Human wrenchedness exhausted in butter-rich, guttural moaning. This song could kick the hell out of any grown man in the produce section.
Link to Elephants: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QAQzeMQrOOU
9. Foals – Mathletics : Witches of twitchy dance rock. A risk well calculated.
Link to Mathletics : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WjNNWvz3JT4
Link to Olympic Airways : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DMuD3DBskpg
(Fact check, Neon Bible was released in 2007 actually, but it was still one of the evergreen favourites of mine in 2008, plus i just spent about 15 minutes writing the paragraph, so I’m not editing it.)
(Honorary Mention I) Arcade Fire – Ocean of Noise, No Cars Go: The Arcade Fire went from an incredibly talented collective rich in human resources to a tad too many fancy pants ever since their showing on Saturday Night Live. That’s just cruel public opinion for you, but Neon Bible sells the hell out of the advantages of having so many members in a band, the music is rich, multi-textured, and just as fashionably multilayered as Mary Kate Olsen. Whether its a moody premonition or a gushing escape to Uthiopia, these guys deliver with their multiple personalities.
Link (Ocean of Lies): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1qf2lnp9sco
8. Blood Red Shoes – It’s getting boring by the sea:
Angsty, violent arrangements for that ultimate teenage cartharsis. It’s coming-of-age quality makes you wanna go fight the kids and punch your neighbour’s pet in the face. I heart.
7. Brazillian Girls – Good Time: Oh that whistling! Almost criminal, the crazy chirpiness of that song.
Link to Good Time : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f9FZeEJT-xk&hl
6. The Dodos – Visiter: These guys invented a whole new way of writing and playing music while effortlessly exciting a completely new level of enthusiasm for indie music. The stark arrangements are in itself a piece of literature, a story of fisted drums, strained guitars and racing young hearts. Makes you wonder if you ran fast enough, maybe you could run back into your youth where everything was wonderful and terrible at the same time. And despite having one of the worst cover designs of the year and boring song titles (“Public transportation”, which was once the pinnacle of boring indie song writing, is no longer, considering the fact that these guys sing about the seasons and public amenities), listening to the music of the Dodos is like having read a good book, you’ll probably not read it again, but only because you’ve commited it in memory.
Link to Fools : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YhLRxui7vXU&hl
Link to Winter : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tbnVaSi9pdI&hl
more to come: Ladyhawke, Friendly Fires……….