Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Give me enough rope: albums of the noughties

I'm now going to really expose my shortcomings as a high brow, by listing 10 of my favourite albums of the decade. And show my age by using the word album probably...

No classical, no jazz, no hip-hop or r'n'b, nothing too ou-there, I'm afraid. I could have done a Mercury and put Bill Frisell and Medeski, Martin and Wood on here, for instance, or Kanye West - I like them a lot, but when I go with my gut they've not made real favourites this decade. Here goes...

Time (The Revelator) - Gillian Welch (includes possibly the best 14 minute long song in the history of folk-rock)
Not The Trembling Kind - Laura Cantrell (a favourite of the late John Peel, classic debut, though check the song 'Bees' on her 3rd album for my favourite Cantrell song)
Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not - Arctic Monkeys (Sillitoe crossed with Cooper-Clarke with great tunes and well-thumped guitars - yes it's obvious, but for good reason)
Is This It? - The Strokes (as fake as the Monkeys are real, maybe, but in a great way, even now)
The Futureheads - The Futureheads (Early Gang of Four crossed with Pink Flag-era Wire crossed with 'Born to Run' - how could I not love it?)
More Adventurous - Rilo Kiley (history of pop alluded to on one record, with great girl group attitude)
Dig Lazarus Dig - Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds (a long way from The Birthday Party but still with fire in his belly, an unlikely advert for growing older)
Yankee Hotel Foxtrot - Wilco (wonderful record from my band of the decade, from when they were the American Radiohead - except good. In fact, I like Wilco so much I could have named all four studio albums from a productive decade, but will limit myself to two...)
Sky Blue Sky - Wilco (highspot so far of the Nels Cline era)
Aman Iman - Water is Life - Tiniwaren (not a token world choice, saw them live twice and they were astonishing - the Velvets with gourds. Saw them give the Mayor of Gateshead an amulet once, but that's another story.)

Ok, going to press publish before I add in Lightspeed Champion or Fleet Foxes or...

1 comment:

Leslie Simpson said...

Some interesting choices on here Mark. In my opinion Wilco have never made a noughties album to match Summerteeth from the 90s, and I always felt bands such a Califone were much better examples of americana. I also felt that, while Dig was certainly an extraordinary album, Cave's high point from this decade was Abattoir Blues/Lyre of Orpheus.

Some of my own personal faves include Godspeed You Black Emperor - Lift Your Skinny Fists, Flaming Lips - Yoshimi, Sufjan Stevens - Michigan, and this years Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavillion or Fever Ray - Fever Ray... among a mountain of other goodies. I'll probably kick myself tomorrow for leaving some crackers like Nik Bartsch out.