Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Sonic Parthenon's The Year in Music 2008: Part 7

The Ting Tings
I'm not going to kid you. I loved We Started Nothing. They may flame out faster than even Vampire Weekend, but brother, this is a band. Everything felt good, everything sounded good (it certainly did from outside McCarren Park). Every song was a damn hit. Anyone who didn't feel like moving to this band really needs to lighten up a bit.

Titus Andronicus

Their nom-de-song is a keeper, one for the parties and the workouts, and their Maxwell's opening slot for the Dirtbombs was compelling enough.

TV on the Radio
No big shock that Dear Science is one of the best albums of the year. If any band demonstrated a keen ability to make a more open-arms record than what they had previously made it was this band. Essentially, this band can do anything it wants and probably do no wrong. Good on them. And good on Tunde especially for his sly role in Rachel Getting Married and good on Kyp for that hauntingly good opening over the summer for Celebration as Rain Machine, and good on Sitek for helping the Dirtbombs out in a gear jam in Austin last Spring.

Vampire Weekend
Like with the Ting Tings, if anyone truly went out of their way to dislike this band, they really need to consider the concept of loosening up. A band doesn't need to be the greatest thing ever to be good. They just need to be, at the bare minimum, conducive to having a good time. And Vampire Weekend fills that role smashingly. Another record where everything is a hit and so what? Good. They were really only a B+ band going into 2008, but the backlash was so out of proportion, it made them look like an A.

The Virgins
Their opening for the Hold Steady in the Spring at Webster Hall was a lightning bolt of polished pop-rock and the "radio edit" of "Rich Girls" should have been coming out of every car all summer long. 2009 should be a big year for these cats.

The XYZ Affair

With a scene-stealing performance at the Bowery Ballroom in February, and lending "Evening Life" to the soundtrack of our lives, the good, young lads in the XYZ Affair made a sparkling contribution to 2008.

Honorable mentions:
The Bird and the Bee - "Birthday" is such a cutie of a song.

Bound Stems - "Happens to us Otherwise" was the "Our Life is Not a Movie or Maybe" of 2008.

Brazilian Girls - "Good Time" is one of the best, if not the best, party songs of the year, and any band that tastefully covers the Talking Heads is a-ok in my book.

Don Cavalli - "New Hollywood Babylon" is a strange, spooky, captivating hybrid of India, folk, and hiphop.

Katie Costello - "Kaleidoscope" is a darn tootin' sweet pop single if ever there was one.

Katie Herzig - I know nothing about this woman except that "Wish You Well" haunts me everyday.

Holy Fuck - “Lovely Allen” was lovely indeed, an inspiring bit of instrumental heaven.

Honeyhoney – “Little Toy Gun” was an unexpected bit of Tex-Mex rock, a light version of something that belonged in a Tarantino movie.

Jaguar Love - They sounded terrible after literally 2 seconds at Siren Festival but then "Highways of Gold" turned out to be a humdinger of a single.

M.I.A. - Oh, "Paper Planes" - was there ever a better hiphop single that got a second life a year after its release?

The Notwist - once a metal band, now a provocative Indie pop band with "Good Lies". They could only be German.

Passion Pit - They are all over other lists but for purposes here, "Sleepyhead" was a truly great single. It would have been the "Paper Planes" of 2008 if "Paper Planes" hadn't come back. Instead it has to settle for the "D.A.N.C.E." of the year.

Saturday Knights - "45" was the funniest single of the year and sublimely smart too, and it's good that it came via rap.

The Stills - "Being Here" was one of those great Indie rock numbers, the kind you like to listen by your lonesome when feeling sappy, or at the very least, it didn't make you want to puke.

The Teenagers - "Starlett Johaanson" was the novelty hit of 2008. Moving on.

The Watson Twins - With "How Am I To Be" the Watson Twins sorta kinda proved that they were the secret to Jenny Lewis' solo success.

Labels: , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home