December 23, 2007

Unworthy Albums

An album came out this year, "Some Loud Thunder." Sound unfamiliar? That's because it was the new release by Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, and for some reason, nobody listened to it, my friends and myself included. We enjoyed their self-titled debut, but this year, we just didn't get around to the new release.

So come December, my Top 10 List would be, in short, an incomplete sham.

But professional critics get bins of music and still manage to enshrine mediocrity. Largheartedboy has the comprehensive list of this year's lists (which at least reveals the parity of listing). The listener-generated NPR Top 10 is here (and it's got a tinge of indie!).

Note to varying degrees of praise, the presence of the following albums, annotated here with my opinion:

+ Modest Mouse, "We Were Dead..." (pale)
+ Radiohead, "In Rainbows" (drowsy)
+ The White Stripes, "Icky Thump" (confusing, tasteless; icky)
+ Beirut, "Flying Club Cup" (stompless)
+ Of Montreal, "Hissing Fauna..." (self-parody; fallen)
+ Wilco, "Sky Blue Sky" (underachieving)

In a year of unworthy releases, even efforts from Jens Lekman, Andrew Bird, and Deerhoof produced "not their best album, but it's still pretty good," to quote Beta Band. Spoon too, but that's not an insult.

Perhaps Feist made progress, but she really should consider wielding her guitar in a video instead of dancing in that awkward and honest way of hers.

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Blogger Chase said...

Definitely agree with this post. I do think that Bishop Allen deserves mention for The Broken String. While it wasn't amazing, it was just as good as some of the albums mentioned in this post (in my opinion).

Also, The Avett Brothers' "Die Die Die" was good on Emotionalism, but the rest of the album is just O.K.

Maybe next year.

December 23, 2007 at 9:18 PM 
Blogger Nick said...

Let's add Okkervil River's The Stage Names to that list of disappointing releases by established artists. And talk about enshrining mediocrity--it received rave reviews all over the place.

Next year is looking more promising. We have new Mountain Goats and Destroyer albums to look forward to before the end of March, plus Malkmus and Cat Power and the Magnetic Fields.

December 23, 2007 at 10:16 PM 
Blogger Chase said...

Oh yeah, I'd forgotten about Okkervil River.

December 23, 2007 at 10:26 PM 
Blogger Nick said...

It's very forgettable.

December 24, 2007 at 1:02 AM 

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