Swear I'm not Paul: Best Albums of 2008: Countdown 30-21

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Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Best Albums of 2008: Countdown 30-21

I'll be taking tomorrow off for some work-related commitments (read: nonsense), so expect the last two instalments on Thursday and Friday!

30. Cut Copy - In Ghost Colours
Cut Copy's In Ghost Colours was the album I was listening to when everyone else was raving about Hercules & Love Affair with Antony. Well, this and Neon Neon. And I think I got the better result. Because while that record was loved immediately, it's fallen off a lot of radars, while this one keeps getting better and better.

29. The Dexateens – Lost and Found
The Dexateens' Lost and Found kind of followed the Radiohead approach, but instead was a totally free download (still is). In one way a great idea, as it would have gained them loads of new followers. In another, a dreadful decision, because if I was to pay for any album this year, it'd definitely be this one. Priceless.

Get it in full here:

28. Punch Brothers – Punch
Everything Chris Thile does turns to gold. Whether it's his own solo records, his work with Edgar Meyer, or that old band he used to be in, it's always amazing. He's probably the most consistent artist in the music business. This, his new adventure, is no different.It's a great album, with the best bluegrass suite I have ever heard. (That said, it's probably the only bluegrass suite I've ever heard!)


27. She & Him – Volume One
Not bad for an actress. I doubt Joaquin Phoenix's album will be this good. Partly down to M. Ward's brilliance, and partly down to Zooey's soothing voice and beautiful lyrics, this is one of the most gloriously uplifting records of the year.

26. Vampire Weekend – Vampire Weekend
Everything I've written about them this year started with the line "Who gives a fuck about an Oxford comma?", until this. One of my favourite lyrics of the year, from an artist almost as educated as myself. Don't I sound like a snob now? Well, these guys are snobbish, and bookish, but it never for one second takes from their mass appeal.


25. John Hiatt – Same Old Man
<John Hiatt's Same Old Man is a great country-rock record. It's a great driving record. It's perfect for having the windows down on a breezy day, with nothing better to do than listen to an old man (the same old man) talk about his experiences. A highly overlooked record, which is a massive shame.

24. Taylor Swift – Fearless
The album that brings about the big girl in me. It's no Carrie Underwood, but it sure comes close. Forget about the nonsense about her in Us magazine and all that jazz. Who cares about her personal life with some chaste idiot? This music is wonderful, touching, sweet, and oh-so-feel-good, it's like watching Bosco all over again!

23. Shearwater – Rook
What a rock album. From the very first note of this album you know you're onto something special. Powerful yet understated, this is the album AC/DC or Metallica buyers should have been buying and sending straight to the top. One album I actually agree with Pitchfork on!

22. Jon Brion – Synecdoche, NY
This would have been the best instrumental album of the year, if there weren't two vocal tracks tacked on at the end. But even with them, Jon Brion has made yet another magnificent score. The film itself isn't quite so good, but this record more than makes up for it. If only he'd make a Meaningless 2!

21. Tift Merritt – Another Country
Yet another female singer-songwriter country artist on my list! I just can't get enough of them. Tift Merritt's fourth album was her best since 2002's Bramble Rose. It was her return to the sparkling form of yesteryear, and is an album that should be adored by Lisa Hannigan fans!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Glad to see Tift Merritt on your list. Great album. Interesting list here!