Here's the rough sketch of my top 20 for 2004. These are in no particular order because I've never been big on deciding what's better than what. The list could have been twice as long, but what the hay. I'll be adding some basic descriptions in a few days, in the meantime........
Richard Buckner- Dents & Shells (Merge)
Kings Of Convenience- Riot On An Empty Street (Virgin)
Chuck Prophet- Age Of Miracles (New West)
Jesse Sykes & The Sweet Hereafter- Oh, My Girl (Barsuk)
The Fall- The Real New Fall LP (Narnack)
Bad Wizard- #1 Tonight (Howler)
Mr. Airplane Man- C'mon DJ (Sympathy...)
Luna- Rendevouz (Jetset)
King Cobb Steelie- Destroy All Codes (Outside)
Dave Alvin- Ashgrove (Yep Roc)
Comets On Fire- Blue Cathedral (Sub Pop)
The Unintended- S/T (Blue Fog)
Black Keys- Rubber Factory (Fat Possum)
Radio Dept.- Lesser Matters (XL Recordings)
These Arms are Snakes- Oxeneers Or The Lion Sleeps When It's Antelope Go Home (Jade Tree)
The Sadies- Favourite Colors (Yep Roc)
The Paybacks- Harder & Harder (Get Hip)
The Von Bondies- Pawn Shoppe Heart (Sire)
Patty Griffin- Impossible Dream (ATO)
Iron & Wine- My Endless Numbered Days (Sub Pop)
I'll Finish Up Soon.............In fact if you have a top 10 that you'd like to submit, send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll try to post some of the better ones. Please include your full name and all the details of your list, such as Artist, Title, Label etc. thanx.....
This Top 10 list was sent in by local musician/new dad and music fan Kory Gibbs.
Nine Pound Hammer - Kentucky Breakdown (Acetate Records)
Patty Griffin - Impossible Dream (ATO Records)
Prince - Musicology (NPG Records)
John Frusciante - A Will to Death (Record Collection)
Wynton Marsalis Quartet - The Magic Hour (Blue Note)
Bad Wizard - #1 Tonite (Howler)
Bad Religion - The Empire Strikes First (Epitaph)
Mary Chapin Carpenter - Between Here and Gone (Columbia)
Loretta Lynn - Van Lear Rose (Interscope Records)
Miroslav Vitous - Universal Syncopations (ECM)
Here's a list from big city dweller Wade Sakundiak who works @ Calgary's Melodiya Records. Wade used to reside in the Queen City where he fronted both Bluebeard & Bull Market. Cheers Wade!
#1. Arcade Fire - Funeral - Merge Records
#2. Hot Snakes - Audit in Progress - Swami Records
#3. Battles - B Ep - Dim Mak Records
#4. Nina Nastasia - Dogs (re-issue) - Touch and Go
#5. Pinback - Summer in Abaddon - Touch and Go Records
#6. Fiery Furnaces - Blueberry Boat - Rough Trade Records
#7. Mission of Burma - OnOffOn - Matador Records
#8. Savath and Savalas - A'propat - Warp Records
#9. Deerhoof - Milk Man - 5 Rue Christine Records
#10. Xiu Xui - Fabulous Muscles - 5 Rue Christine Records
Local roustabout & full time music fan Aaron Ulledal submitted this hand picked top 10 for your amusement and to pass judgement on. Thanx Aaron!
1. Arcade Fire - Funeral - Merge
2. Blood Brothers - Crimes - V2
3. Blonde Redhead - Misery is a Butterfly - 4AD
4. Tv on the Radio - Desperate Youth, Blood Thirsty Babes - Touch + Go
5. Icarus Line - Penance Soiree - V2
6. !!! - Louden Up Now - Touch + Go
7. Hot Snakes - Audit in Progress - Swami
8. Death From Above - You're a Woman, I'm a Machine - Vice
9. Of Montreal - Satanic Panic in the Attic - Polyvinyl
10. Air - Talkie Walkie - Astralwerks
This next list was sent to me by Shawn Cowan one of my main music reps at FAB distribution in Montreal. Lots of stuff I'm not overly familiar with, but you may recognize some things.
the Loved Ones Demo (self released, now Jade Tree)
Verse Rebuild (Rivalry)
Righteous Jams Rage of Discipline (Lockin Out)
Challenger Give the People What the Want in Lethal Doses (Jade Tree)
Champion Promises Kept (Bridge 9)
Hot Snakes Audit in Progress (Swami)
Stand Accused demo (self released, www.standaccused.com)
Sex Positions self titled (Deathwish)
Breather Resist Charmer (Jade Tree)
Honeysuckle Lights Out (Miss Teen Universe/Monstar)
This here list was given to me by Tyler Banadyga, who not only is a local indie musician, but a "Celebrity" DJ on CJTR Regina's Community Radio Station. A unique Top 10 as only Tyler can deliver it...........
--Wax Mannequin "The Price" A celebration of the redemptive power in rock. Even in, or maybe especially in the most emotionally simple rock("And just when you thought that your Thing would burst, it's a call for you, it's Bryan Adams on the phone!")
--Pretty much anything I heard from Three Gut Records Gentleman Reg's album "Darby and Joan" is gorgeous and I think will be one of those classic records that sounds fresh and new with each generation. Seeing the Constantines at the State this year was amazing. The Pixies earlier in the year were good but this show was much better, it made me feel like I was part of something very important. I was ready to do anything the band asked of me.
--Jandek finally, unbelievably played a live show this year The most reclusive, anti-social musician of all time made his first known public appearance in 26 years at a music festival in Scotland. Why did he do this? I don't know how I feel about it yet but this is big news. Seriously.
--Testimonial by John Frusciante of the Germs' album (GI) in the April issue of Mojo He said he felt "such a weird kind of confusion and rage" when he was nine and that Germs album relaxed him and helped him reconcile his conflicting selves. I've never even heard the record but Frusciante's recollections of his relationship with it were genuinely moving.
--album by the Penticton Retirement Centre Tune-Agers We are very lucky that people make souvenir albums of their musical hobbies.
--The Complete Peanuts, Vols. 1 and 2 This year Fantagraphics Books began a 12 year project to reprint every single strip in one of the 20th century's most significant works. The first two volumes, reprinting many strips for the first time reveal Charles Schultz experimenting with and developing his work. Reading the first strip where Charlie Brown refuses to quit a ball game on account of a storm broke my heart. I don't think I'm able to say how much these comics mean to me.
--The introduction to the copy of "The Bride Wore Black" I got at a used book store Noir novelist Cornell Woolrich had this to say about seeing a productio of "Madame Butterfly" when he was eight and being confronted with his own mortality for the first time: "I had that trapped feeling, like some sort of insect that you've put inside a downturned glass and it tries to climb up the side and it can't, and it can't, and it can't." Chilling.
--Miles Davis "In a Silent Way" (1969) I heard this for the first time this year. I couldn't think of anything else for a couple of weeks. During that time I practically counted the minutes at work till I could go home and listen to it.
-- Nirvana "With the Lights Out" Hearing a sub-demo quality recording of a ten-minute jam of the riff that becomes "Scentless Apprentice" right before your very ears could probably only be interesting to someone who lived, breathed, ate and slept "In Utero" in high school. I found it enthralling.
-- I splurged and bought some expensive premium bacon once this year and cooked it in maple syrup. It was the most satisfying feed of bacon I've ever had. I couldn't help yelling "BACON!!" I'll never forget it.
This next list just submitted by my buddy Rob Algera who took his sweet time to make sure that no mistakes were made, no worthy bands were omitted, that and he just likes to be fashionably late. thanx for taking the time.....
1. The Libertines- self titled (Rough Trade)
2. The Fall- The Real New Fall LP (Action)
3. Giant Sand- Is All Over The Map (Thrill Jockey)
4. Rocket From The Tombs- Rocket Redux (Smog Veil)
5. Loretta Lynn- Van Lear Rose (Interscope)
6. The Stranglers- Norfolk Coast (Universal)
7. Holly Golightly- Slowly But Surely (Damaged Goods)
8. Lambchop- No You Cmon (Merge)
9. Mr. Airplane Man- C'mon DJ (Sympathy)
10. Guided By Voices- Half Smiles Of The Decomposed (Matador) (sentimental)
1. The Kinks- Village Green Preservation Society (Sanctuary)
2. Guided By Voices- Bee Thousand (Matador)
3. The Beatles- The Capital Albums Vol. 1 (Capitol)