My Top Ten Picks for 2007

It’s that time of year for everyone’s, “best of” picks and I want to jump on that bandwagon too. As always, my picks are based on my purchases because let’s face it, who has time to listen to every freakin’ thing out there? Of course my music addiction had to take a back seat to other financial priorities this year but I think all of you would understand that since we are living under a Republican administration but even with that, I was able to put together quite a list this year.

As with every year, we have our share of interesting stories – everything from solo acts, come backs, family members, divorce, and getting the living crap beat out of you by a significant other. This list has it all so without any further delay, here is my top 10 music selections for the year.

10. Paul McCartney – Memory Almost Full
I have to admit that I have never been a big fan of Paul McCartney since his parting with the Beatles and Wings, two great bands, but this is a really good album. It has a great sound to it and really seems that Paul made an excellent attempt to get back to his roots and recreate that sound that once was The Beatles. There are some songs that are real duds, but as a whole it is an album that doesn’t disappoint.

9. Smashing Pumpkins – Zeitgeist
A comeback album from a band that was all the rage in the 90’s. During the time that they were apart, Billy Corgan formed the band Zwan with one other former Smashing Pumpkin and he also released a solo album. As far as Zeitgeist, it’s not as good as their previous albums or even Zwan’s release, Mary Star of the Sea, but it is a good CD and therefore makes my list.

8. Thurston Moore – Trees Outside The Academy
Sonic Youth’s frontman Thurston Moore put together a good quality CD which is very eclectic. There are some tracks on this CD that bring back the Sonic Youth sound from days gone by, some that have the current Sonic Youth sound (mellow and mesmerizing), and just some random tracks of banging things around just for fun.

7. Stephen Marley – Mind Control
It wouldn’t be one of my top 10 lists unless I mention a CD that I picked up during my travels. Well, during a trip to Jamaica I grabbed this CD at the airport and I have no regrets in doing so. Stephen Robert Nesta “Raggamuffin” Marley (that’s one hell of a name), son of Bob Marley has one good CD on his hands and out of all of the Marley family, I think that he has a sound the resembles his father more than any of the other family members. You don’t have to go to Jamaica to pick up this one, but it would be one lame excuse to relax on the beach if you do.

6. Moon Maan – Moon Maan
And here again, it wouldn’t be one of my top 10 lists if at least one former member of the Afghan Whigs didn’t make it. This is former Whigs’ guitarist Rick McCollum’s new band and it is an excellent CD. If you’re a fan of the Afghan Whigs or the Twilight Singers, you must buy this CD. The guitar riffs are what you would expect from Rick. The voice will take you back to the Whig’s and their albums, Gentlemen and Black Love.

5. The Cult – Born Into This
And if you weren’t aware, The Cult is still around. Though it may be only two of the original members – Ian Astbury and Billy Duffy, those are the two that matter most since they are the ones who write, sing, and play guitar on the songs that made The Cult who they are. I have to say that this album took some time to get into and it is definitely does not rank up there with, Electric, but then again maybe it made my list because I saw them perform at Bogart’s last month. Anyone who was there can tell you that it was one hell of a show.

4. Amy Winehouse – Back To Black
Some people may not agree with me and yea, sure she has had her share of problems but I found her album to be soulful and reminiscent of Billie Holiday. Maybe it has something to do with sharing the same addictions but never the less, it’s a good album.

3. Feist – The Reminder
Upbeat at times and too “coffee house music” at other times, this album is a must listen. I dare anyone to try and maintain a bad mood while listening to 1234. Feist is right up there with Neko Case, Catpower, and Beth Orten.

2. Travis – The Boy With No Name
I have yet to find a Travis album that I did not like. My favorite is still, The Invisible Band but this album is another great piece of work by the band. My regret? While in Vegas they played at the Hard Rock and I ended up going to see Cirque du Soleil. A great band putting on what I assume was a great show versus French men jumping around in tights? You make the call.

1. Interpol – Our Love To Admire
Once again Interpol has released an amazing album. They have a unique sound that many an artist is trying to recreate but listening to those knock off bands is like buying a Rolex from a guy on the street. Sure, they may look alike, but you are going to get the same quality. Like their previous albums, this one has the echoing vocals and hard edged guitar. The lyrics, oh the lyrics – take a listen.

I do have to give out some honorable mentions again this year. These are albums that did not quite make my list, but were had to overlook. These albums were The Beastie Boys – The Mix Up (all instrumental and not what you would expect from the Beasties), Calla – Strength In Numbers, and LCD Soundsystem – Sound Of Silver (if you are having a party anytime in the future you must buy some LCD Soundsystem).

That’s it for this year. I hope this gives you some holiday shopping ideas and a list of things not to get me this year since I know that I am on everyone’s list.

No comments: