Right. So we’re getting close to the yearly “Top Ten” list, aren’t we? VERY close, in fact! But we’re not there yet. First, I want to share with you just how hard it was to choose from MANY great options.
Following is a list of new music I’ve bought this year–and three I haven’t bought, but will soon because I’ve heard bits of them. The listing is followed by the arbitrary “grade” I’d give the record, with no explanation of why. I’ll explain a few of them when we get to the ACTUAL “Top Ten” (or so–it MIGHT have to go to 15!), but for now there’s just a “grade” for each one.
Presented in Alphabetical Order (more or less–this is how Microsoft Excel ordered it). And keep in mind that just because a record is given an “A,” that doesn’t necessarily immediately get it into the Top Ten!
- …and You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead: “Lost Songs” – B+
- Aimee Mann: “Charmer” – B+
- Alabama Shakes: “Boys & Girls” – A
- Alanis Morissette: “Havoc and Bright Lights” – C+
- Antony and the Johnsons: “Cut the World” – A
- Beach Boys: “That’s Why God Made the Radio” – Haven’t heard ALL of it yet, but what I’ve heard is a definite A.
- Billy Talent: “Dead Silence” – A
- Bob Dylan: “Tempest” – Haven’t heard ALL of it yet (it’s on my Christmas List), but from what I’ve heard, I’m thinking B, with a possibility of going higher or lower, depending on the rest of the album.
- Bob Mould: “Silver Age” – A
- Bro. Stephen: “Baptist Girls” – C+
- Bruce Springsteen: “Wrecking Ball” – B+
- Corrosion of Conformity: “Corrosion of Conformity” – B
- Foxy Shazam: “The Church of Rock and Roll” – A
- Godspeed You! Black Emporer: “Alleluia! Don’t Bend! Ascend!” – Haven’t heard all of it, but what I’ve heard sounds like it should. Going with a B until I get the record.
- Heartless Bastards: “Arrow” – A
- Hospitality: “Hospitality” – B-
- Leonard Cohen: “Old Ideas” -A
- Mark Lanegan Band: “Blues Funeral” – A
- Metric: “Synthetica” – A
- Mumford & Sons: “Babel” – A
- OFF!: “OFF!” – A
- Patterson Hood: “Heat Lightening Rumbles in the Distance” – B-
- Punch Brothers: “Who’s Feeling Young Now?” – C
- Reverend Horton Heat: “25 to Life” – B-
- Rufus Wainwrignt: “Out of the Game” – A
- Rush: “Clockwork Angels” – A
- Sharon Van Ettan: “Tramp” – A
- Tenacious D – “Rize of the Fenix” – B
- The Lumineers: “The Lumineers” – C-
- Willie Nelson: “Heroes” – B-
And that’s what I’ve got to choose from! Tough list this year!
…and there’s no good time to mention what happened in Newtown yesterday, and no appropriate post to write, especially since I’m limited in my writing ability right now. And maybe that’s best. I found yesterday’s events profoundly shattering, and I am grateful to know that no matter where we all stand on the political ramifications (if any), we ALL seem to at least share the horror and sadness. As it should be. Humans should be better than that, and I am comforted to know that so many of us ARE. My thoughts, prayers, and tears are with those poor, heroic teachers, parents, and beautiful children.
TEACHERS ARE HEROES. Now let’s stop making them prove it.