Sunday, January 03, 2010

Music of the decade? Or (alternate title) not all music sucks

End of the decade gets me thinking about music. Heck, it doesn't take much for me to be thinking about music, but few things have set me off.

First, I'll start with this list by Rolling Stone, which lists the 100 best albums of the decade. Eliminating artists from genres that don't interest me, I've got the following:

1 | Radiohead: Kid A
2 | The Strokes: Is This It
3 | Wilco: Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
5 | The White Stripes: Elephant
6 | Arcade Fire: Funeral
7 | Eminem: The Marshal Mathers LP
9 | M.I.A.: Kala
12 | LCD Soundsystem: Sound of Silver
13 | U2: All That You Can't Leave Behind
15 | Bruce Springsteen: The Rising
17 | Beck: Sea Change
18 | MGMT: Oracular Spectacular
20 | The White Stripes: White Blood Cells
21 | Coldplay: A Rush of Blood to the Head
22 | Green Day: American Idiot
24 | Bruce Springsteen: Magic
25 | Radiohead: Amnesiac
26 | Cat Power: The Greatest
27 | The Flaming Lips: Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots
28 | Yeah Yeah Yeahs: Fever to Tell
29 | Sigur Rós: Ágaetis Byrjun
30 | Radiohead: In Rainbows
31 | My Morning Jacket: Z
33 | Daft Punk: Discovery
35 | PJ Harvey: Stories From the City, Stories From the Sea
36 | U2: No Line on the Horizon
38 | Ryan Adams: Heartbreaker
39 | Kings of Leon: Aha Shake Heartbreak
41 | Arctic Monkeys: Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not
42 | Elliott Smith: Figure 8
43 | The Killers: Hot Fuss
44 | System of a Down: Toxicity
47 | Fleet Foxes: Fleet Foxes
48 | TV on the Radio: Dear Science
49 | Fiona Apple: Extraordionary Machine
50 | Bright Eyes: I'm Wide Awake It's Morning
51 | Spoon: Kill the Moonlight
52 | M.I.A.: Arular
53 | Kings of Leon: Only By the Night
55 | Robert Plant and Alison Krauss: Raising Sand
56 | Vampire Weekend: Vampire Weekend
57 | Death Cab for Cutie: Transatlanticism
58 | Danger Mouse: The Grey Album
59 | Interpol: Turn on the Bright Lights
60 | Phoenix: Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
61 | The Shins: Oh, Inverted World
66 | Antony & the Johnsons: I Am a Bird Now
67 | Björk: Vespertine
68 | U2: How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb
70 | Sleater-Kinney: The Woods
71 | Bright Eyes: Lifted or the Story is in the Soil, Keep Your Eart to the Ground
72 | Franz Ferdinand: Franz Ferdinand
73 | Coldplay: Parachutes
74 | Red Hot Chili Peppers: Stadium Arcadium
75 | Arcade Fire: Neon Bible
76 | Sigur Rós: ()
77 | Yo La Tengo: And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside Out
78 | Sufjan Stevens: Illinois
79 | The New Pornographers: Electric Version
80 | Kings of Leon: Youth and Young Manhood
82 | Queens of the Stone Age: Rated R
83 | The Black Keys: Attack & Release
85 | Coldplay: Viva La Vida
86 | The Postal Service: Give Up
87 | Gnarls Barkley: St. Elsewhere
89 | Radiohead: Hail to the Thief
91 | The Hives: Veni Vidi Vicious
92 | Bon Iver: For Emma, Forever Ago
94 | The Libertines: Up the Brackett
98 | TV on the Radio: Return to Cookie Mountain
99 | The Hold Steady: Almost Killed Me

Next, we haveBob's charge that ... let's let him say it:

And, my most interesting charge, and the only one I'm actually in the least interested in your opinion on, is about the Zero Decade being one in which rock music was a giant FAIL with nothing remotely meaningful happening. You know, it's been almost 18 years since "Nevermind" broke the back of Michael Jackson and all the butt rockers. Sigh.

Let's be a tad more accurate. By the time Nevermind came out in 1991, we'd already experienced U2, the Smiths, the Cure, REM and all sorts of other music that didn't, in the least, resemble Michael Jackson. What we didn't have, perhaps, was these folks on the pop charts.

Until Nirvana. THAT was what they did. They weren't so revolutionary. Music has always existed that rocked. Nirvana merely became popular.

So, now back to that list up there.

Coldplay? Really? COLDPLAY? cripes. And, there were TWO Bob Dylan albums in the top 20 (eliminated by me because I couldn't even stand to see 'me there.) There are a few on the list that are so horrible I just am speechless. The U2 album "No Line on the Horizon" was so unremarkable, I think it's just best we pretend it never happened. The Allyson Krauss/ Robert Plant album sounded like a good idea, until I heard it. Oh my lord, just make them STOP.

So, here's a list of albums from the last decade that rocked my world, in no particular order.

Mark Knopfler & Allison Krause "All the Roadrunning": If those Rolling Stone's clowns knew what they were talking about, instead of the Plant/Krause album, they would have included this awesome album. Considered Country, but enjoyable to the rock fan.

Tool's "Lateralus." 2001. Fucking rocks. "10,000 days" is also pretty darn good.

Queens of the Stone Age "Songs for the Deaf". If I had to give up all my other QOTSA albums and have just one, it would be this one. My first love. *

Them Crooked Vultures - Awesome. Album of the decade.

Radiohead - "Hail to the Theif" Yes, this is on Rolling Stones list, but notice how I'm not including every fucking thing done by Radiohead in this decade. And "In Rainbows" was enough to make me decide I'm rather sick of them just at this moment.

Metallica "Death Magnetic." I don't care what anyone says, I liked this album. I'm gonna list what I like.

And going back a bit, U2 had a nice piece of work with both "All that You Can't Leave Behind" and "How to dismantle an Atomic Bomb."

Ok, that's what I have for now. I reserve the right to add to this list whenever I feel like it.

*I could do no such thing with my Tool albums- pick just one. You'd just have to kill me.