Neddy’s Top 69 Albums of 2008

Blitzen TrapperFurr

I feel like if I had any talent at all and could make music, this is the music that would result from my various influences. Perfect balance of good songs, rocking, grooving… definitely the big surprise for me this year. Looking forward to seeing these guys live in February.

Broken Social Scene presents… Brendan CanningSomething For All Of Us

Personally, this is my favorite Broken Social Scene album. A bass players sensibilities and songsmanship brought to the big, bad sound of the BSS.
Gnarls BarkleyThe Odd Couple

I’d couple this and the Raconteurs together with almost the same comments, even though the music couldn’t be more different. Darker, deeper and more complete than their first effort. Doesn’t sound like a “side project” any more. Less poppy, radio-friendly hits = more meat on the bone.

Stephen MalkmusReal Emotional Trash

This list is in alphabetical order, but make no mistake about it, this is my album of the year. Top to bottom, each song has “classic” potential. I’ve not yet determined the number of times I can listen to this before getting sick of it… such a number may not exist. Even my 4 year old digs half the tunes on this one.

Medeski, Martin & WoodZaebos

MMW put out three awesome albums this year and Zorn released at least three awesome Masada Book 2 discs. In the Venn Diagram of groovy, Jewy awesomeness, this one makes the grade. Classic, deep funky shit. Out there just enough to make it interesting. A perfect Chanukah present.

My Morning JacketEvil Urges

I guess part of me is disappointed that this didn’t quite live up to “Z.” Still, the more I listen, the more deeply I fall in love with MMJ. This is more of a repertoire-builder than a game changer — that album we all know they still have in them. Blazing rock riffs, Prince falsetto rip-off and some touching lyrics. I don’t think this album is as sick as they intended it to be, but it’s still pretty sick.

The RaconteursConsolers Of The Lonely

See above. Damn, this thing shreds. If they play their cards right, we might look back on the Raconteurs in 20 years the way we look back at Zeppelin right now.

John ZornDreamers

I guess you’d file this under jazz, but as with all Zorn’s music, there are no genres and no boundaries. This album stretches from Funkadelic Maggot Brain guitarotechnics to groovy surf music to offmetered brilliance to straight piano jazz without one jarring moment. It helps to have, pound-for-pound, the most talented musicians playing your music. At that, JZ does not fail. Even if you think you’d never want to listen to anything like this, it’s a must have for any discerning music lover. Yes, that good.

11-20 (alphabetical)

Cyro Baptista — Banquet of the Spirits
Bar Kokhba — Lucifer
The Black Keys — Attack & Release
Drive-By Truckers — Brighter Than Creation’s Dark
Aimee Mann — @#%&*! Smilers
Medeski, Martin & Wood — Radiolarians I
The Sea and Cake — Car Alarm
Todd Sickafoose — Tiny Resistors
TV On The Radio — Dear Science
McCoy Tyner — Guitars

21-30

Beck — Modern Guilt
Steven Bernstein — Diaspora Suite
Death Cab For Cutie — Narrow Stairs
The Fiery Furnaces — Remember
Fleet Foxes — Fleet Foxes
Jenny Lewis — Acid Tongue
Man Man — Rabbit Habits
Edgar Meyer/Chris Thile — s/t
Jenny Scheinman — Crossing the Field
She & Him — Volume One

31-40

Ryan Adams & the Cardinals — Cardinology
Andrew Bird — Live In Montreal
Dr Dog — Fate
The Felice Brothers — The Felice Brothers
Bill Frisell — History, Mystery
Stanton Moore — Emphasis! (On Parenthesis)
Ratatat — LP3
Marc Ribot’s Ceramic Dog — Party Intellectuals
Secret Chiefs 3 — Xaphan
The Wood Brothers — Loaded

41-50

Grand Archives — The Grand Archives
Charlie Haden & Friends — Ramblin’ Boy
Medeski, Martin & Wood — Let’s Go Everywhere
JJ Grey/Mofro — Orange Blossoms
Of Montreal — Skeletal Lamping
Old Crow Medicine Show — Tennessee Pusher
What Made Milwaukee Famous — What Doesn’t Kill Us
Robert Walter — Cure All
John Zorn — Filmworks XX
John Zorn — Filmworks XXI

51-60

AC/DC — Black Ice
Theresa Andersson — Hummingbird, Go!
Mike Gordon — The Green Sparrow
Juno — Soundtrack
Daniel Lanois — Here Is What Is
Brad Mehldau Trio — Live
Tift Merritt — Another Country
Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band — Whole Fam Damily
Jenny Scheinman — Jenny Scheinman
John Zorn — Filmworks XIX

61-69

Calexico — Carried To Dust
Cat Power — Jukebox
Kimya Dawson — Alphabutt
Girl Talk — Feed the Animals
Jimmy Herring — Lifeboat
I’m From Barcelona — Who Killed Harry Houdini?
Sonny Landreth — From the Reach
The Mars Volta — The Bedlam in Goliath
Marc Ribot — Exercises in Futility

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7 thoughts on “Neddy’s Top 69 Albums of 2008

  1. Rupert Reply

    Glad to see the Whole Fam Damnily made the list. That’s one of my faves this year for sure.

  2. Oliver Reply

    “If they play their cards right, we might look back on the Raconteurs in 20 years the way we look back at Zeppelin right now.”

    Or, we might not? Might not.

  3. shrooms Reply

    “I guess part of me is disappointed that this didn’t quite live up to “Z.” Still, the more I listen, the more deeply I fall in love with MMJ. This is more of a repertoire-builder than a game changer — that album we all know they still have in them. Blazing rock riffs, Prince falsetto rip-off and some touching lyrics. I don’t think this album is as sick as they intended it to be, but it’s still pretty sick.”

    Probably the most succinct and best analysis of Evil Urges that I’ve read. Well done.

  4. Scott Bernstein Reply

    I’m with Neddy on The Raconteurs. Can’t stop listening to that disc. I hope Jack White devotes plenty of time to that project.

    Great list, bud.

  5. Nate Diggity Dogg Reply

    Damn, man. I’m not saying The Black Crowes’ “Warpaint” was Top 10, but it was at least Top 69 ahead of some of the other crap/filler/look at me I’m cool shit on this list.

  6. Neddy Reply

    I did forget to put one caveat in there… which is, of course, I haven’t heard nearly everything this year. I’m sure there is plenty I’ve missed. Still need to work for a living and still buy all my music. But happy to hear what you think I’ve got to get at ASAP.

  7. pj hardly Reply

    I adore Apollo Sunshine. They’re so talented and have awesome taste too – ive been checking out Drummer Jeremy Black’s featured top 10 playlist on erockster.com. so far so good.

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