Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Musical Favorites from 2008

I realize it's nearly February, but I just barely took time to mull over my favorite music from 2008. By the way, here are some links to previous years' lists:

2007, Part 1: Albums
2007, Part 2: Hip-Hop
2007, Part 3: Rock
2007, Part 4: Miscellaneous



Turns out that 12 months is a long time. Thankfully I was able to see through iTunes what music I added to my library last year, and was able to show me what I listened to the most last year. Looking over those lists I was able to come up with 4 albums I listened to a lot last year, and 22 songs to share.

It turns out that I didn't listen to as much music last year as perhaps in years past. Partly, I've been filling my commute time with talk-radio-ish podcasts, and partly since I gave up file sharing, I just don't get around to checking out as much new music. However, with great things like Pandora and YouTube, there is tons of free music that you can stream over the internet totally legally. You'd be hard pressed to not be able to find somewhere to listen to music for free online. Sure, you can't save it to your iPod, but you can at least check something out and decide if it's worth purchasing. For my birthday, I got a $25 iTunes gift card and I still have about $6 left, just because I like to listen to a song quite a few times before I go ahead and buy a song to keep.

Anyway, this looks to be a three-part series. Today I'm starting with the best albums and then I'll get into the best songs over the next couple posts.

My favorite albums of 2008 (in no particular order):

Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings - Counting Crows

Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings

Originally scheduled for release in 2007, this album's release got pushed back to early 2008. As with most Counting Crows albums, it took me a few listens to get a feel for which songs I liked the most. It's always interesting to see how their albums resonate, or don't resonate with me. So far...I'm not loving this album, but I do like it, and probably with time I'll come to like more as I have with the rest of their albums. If I had to rank their albums (original content only, not counting live albums or repacked best ofs), I'd probably go in this order:

1-August & Everything After
2-This Desert Life
3-Hard Candy
4-Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings
5-Recovering the Satellites

Not to say I don't love songs on each album and can enjoy listening to just about anything Adam Duritz is willing to sing.

Feed the Animals - Girl Talk (Warning: Explicit Lyrics)

Feed the Animals

If you don't know who Girl Talk is, it's high time you found out. Basically he's a guy who puts lots of song clips together on his computer and then plays them. At his concerts, he covers his laptop in saran wrap and people dance all around him. Here's a clip:

Anyway, Feed the Animals is his new album that came out this fall -- available at a cost of your choosing, including free. Part of the fun for me is trying to pick out all the samples he uses, you can use Wikipedia to check your answers. Lots of great samples on this album. One word of warning, all the samples are unedited, and he does seem to pick a lot of stuff with explicit lyrics, so if you get offended by that, you'll want to skip this one.

Metro Station - Metro Station

Metro Station

I realize that this band is probably just the latest band to come around singing emo love songs with a peppy beat, but I can't help but like so many of their songs. From "Shake It" to "Kelsey" to "I Wish We were Older". I fell in love with Shake It before I knew the name of the band, and Pandora was happy to mix most of the rest of the album in with other stuff I was listening to.

Alive - Daft Punk


Now, this album actually came out sometime in 2007, but it was something I found on my buddy's computer and decided to check it. It's a recording of a live Daft Punk show in Japan. And it's awesome. If you like Daft Punk, you should definitely check it out. I think all, or most, of the tracks are 2 or 3 of their songs mashed up together and it's a great, high-energy album. I can't really pick any tracks that stand out especially, but the vibe is great from start to finish.

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