Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Awesome of ‘08

Hey folks.  Welcome to what is sure to be one of the final posts of the year 2008.   If you’ve been following along with the blog all year all I can say is thank you.  If you’re new to my little corner of cyberspace welcome!

Since the year is winding down, I thought that it might be time to go back into the memory banks and talk about a few of the things that made 2008 a year made of win.  Now, I suppose I need to elabourate a bit on my own peculiar method of creating my “best of” lists.    While most people create their lists from things that were newly released in the year in which they are reviewing, I take a different path.  I like to put together lists of things that I felt help to make my year enjoyable.     I find this far more fun mostly, because now I don’t have to pay attention to when stuff came out, but just that I first exposed myself to it during the year in question.


The Awesome of ‘08


As far as music goes, I have to say that 2008 was a very good year for me.   This summer I got to go to my first Lollapalooza festival, and I had a great time.    The thing that I love about going to music festivals of this nature are the bands that sneak up and surprise you.  Sure, it was great to finally see Radiohead, and at least now I can cross Rage Against the Machine off my list.  However, the bands that really stood out to me I’d never experienced before.   My favourite band of the festival was easily The Bloc Party.   Well, lets break some things down into categories so that they’re more digestible.

Song of the Year:   I think of all the categories in the music department, picking one song that made the biggest impression on me in ‘08 was the hardest.  There certainly have been many strong contenders that deserve mention.   However, when all is said and done, I think that the song this year that I think was “the best” song that I heard all year would have to be:  This Modern Love by The Bloc Party

Sentimental Favourite: I think this song gets a co listing, because it is the song that reminds me of the person who’s presence in my life has had such a tremendous impact on my life.  Thank you Finch.  For this song, and all the other wonderful gifts you’ve given to me.  Fake Palindromes by Andrew Bird

Honorable Mention:  These songs are all awesome.  I wont embed the videos to save space, but I’ll link as many as I can for your listening pleasure.  Enjoy!

Album of the Year – While I had to devote some serious hand ringing to my decision of which single track to select as my favourite of the year choosing an album was a far easier decision.   When I think back, were three albums that over the course of the year found themselves on constant replay  on my iPod.   Of the albums that kept my toes tapping, there was none I spent more time with then “Blue Eyes Meets Bed Stuy”.   A Remix album put together by DJ Cappel & Smitty brings together the very divergent worlds of Frank Sinatra and The Notorious BIG with wonderful results.   Hearing the hardened street rhymes of The Notorious BIG remixed with the smooth jazzy hooks from some of Frank Sinatra’s most loved tunes creates a potent melodic mix.   These sonic compositions are so well done, that listening to the original Notorious BIG tracks will leave you feeling as if they are missing something.  This is a brilliantly conceived and constructed piece of music, that truly speaks to versatility of the hip-hop genre.  

Honorable Mention:

  • Vampire Weekend – Vampire Weekend
  • Silent Alarm – The Bloc Party
  • The Wombats Proudly Present…A Guide to Love, Loss and Despiration – The Wombats

Special Mention: - I also wanted to take a moment to plug and acknowledge a band that features the guitar playing of one of my TeamFortress2Fort clan mates.   It would appear, that not only is TeamChuckles one of the best and most annoying Scouts around, but he also knows how to rock.   Right now you can download his band All Heroes’ second album “Chronos” for free.  Check it out.  It has some pretty good songs on it and I would highly recommend it.  If you like it, you should tell him that you enjoyed it and that you heard about the band from theButterFly.  Maybe he’ll take it easy on me the next time.  (But probably not.)


Band of the Year – Band of the year is easy.  Actually the easiest one of these to pick.  Without question the best band that I discovered this year was The Bloc Party.   Thankfully for me this British band was scheduled to perform at Lollapalooza just prior to Radiohead’s performance.  Their set blew me away (and gave Radiohead a tough act to follow, that they may not have been able to top.) and made me an instant fan of the group.  Inspired by this energetic performance I went out and devoured their three studio albums.  Just watch:

Honorable Mention:

  • Mates of State
  • Vampire Weekend

Well, that is all I want to say about music.  Give some of this stuff a listen.  I bet you’ll find something that you like in there.  Stay tuned for a follow up best of article where I’ll run down some of the other things this year that made ‘08 just great.

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