Another year has past, and an exciting one it was. A couple of the things that kept me sane were great music and films. I’ve created a comprehensive list of my top ten albums, shows, and films of the year. 2007 was a cultural explosion for my eyes and ears and it was really difficult narrowing down these lists.
10 Best Albums –
1. Animal Collective – Strawberry Jam
-While riding the train, whether I was on my way to work or to Inwood, this album was perfect for zoning out.
2. Radiohead – In Rainbows
-Yes, old habits die hard, but still, this album is undeniably amazing and was a beautiful surprise. I didn’t pay for the download (I know, I know) but I bought it on vinyl January 1st. Plus, I’ve seen them four times, people. Give me a break.
3. St. Vincent – Marry Me
– This album has been stuck in my head from the moment that I first heard it. And, Annie can fucking shred.
4. Jens Lekman – Night Falls Over Kortedala
-Beautiful man, lovely songs. He makes me want to nest.
5. Panda Bear – Person Pitch
-This album is like lying in a park on a beautiful day. You close your eyes and the sun shines right through your eyelids. I don’t know if that makes sense and I don’t care.
6. MIA – Kala
-I’m not the biggest fan of her fashion sensibilities, but how can anyone resist her booty-shake inspiring bhangra funk? It makes me long for MJQ on Wednesday Nights (ATL reference).
7. Of Montreal – Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?
-Break out performance of the year must go to Kevin Barnes’ schlong in Vegas. Anyway, the music is infectious. This is my favorite album of theirs yet.
8. Battles – Mirrored
-I enjoyed putting this album on for background music. Sometimes, it’s not about the lyrics.
9. Scout Niblett – This Fool Can Die Now
– If I had discovered this album earlier, it would probably be higher on my list. Kiss is one of my favorite songs of the year.
10. Dan Deacon – Spiderman of the Rings
-I understand if you don’t get it, because I didn’t, until I saw him live.
Honorable Mentions: Grinderman, PJ Harvey – White Chalk, Deerhunter – Cryptograms, Beirut – Flying Cub Cup, Deerhoof – Friend Opportunity, Boris – Rainbow, PB&J – Writer’s Block
10 Best Shows (In order by date)
4/21 – Flaming Lips at Brown University
-There’s not much better in life than playing with huge, inflated balls and truckloads of confetti with fucked up ivy leaguers.
5/5 – Bjork at United Palace Theater
-Bjork didn’t make it on my top ten albums. I was a little disappointed with Volta, to be honest. She definitely made it up to me with her performance that night.
5/6 – Beirut at Bowery Ballroom
-All the horns!! It was a busy weekend.
6/10 – Melt Banana at the Knitting Factory
-I had forgotten how much fun it can be to rock out next to a mosh pit.
6/15-17 – Bonnaroo in Manchester, TN
-I still don’t think that I have recovered from all of the dust inhalation, but holy crap, I had so much fun. DJ Shadow and Ween were my favorite performances.
7/24 – Porter Wagoner, ,White Stripes and Grinderman at Madison Square Garden
-I was hesitant to purchase tickets to this show, based on the venue. Both bands delivered amazing performances. I’m glad that I got to see Porter Wagoner live, before he died. Plus, Nick Cave fell on his ass—definitely funny. I vaguely remember wanting to throw beer bottles at people booing Grinderman.
8/9 – Daft Punk at Keyspan Park, Coney Island
-I know this is a controversial topic, but…BEST SHOW OF THE YEAR!
10/10 – PJ Harvey at Beacon Theater
-This was my first time seeing Polly Jean live. She was wearing that crazy, Victorian looking dress that she dons on the cover of her new album, White Chalk. Her voice sounded amazing and the theater perfectly complemented the creepy, ethereal vibe of her latest album.
10/18 – St. Vincent at the Knitting Factory
-Although she didn’t start until after 1AM, and I had to sit through 2 or 3 completely uninspiring opening acts, and I had to work the next day at 830AM, I still could not get over this girl and her guitar!
10/26 – Scout Niblett at Union Pool
-She commented on our photo booth pictures before the show. She was wearing a reflective construction worker’s jacket and camouflage. She looked like she needed a shower, bad. I love her.
Honorable Mentions: Peter Bjorn and Joan @ Bowery Ballroom, Fujiya and Miyagi @ Mercury Lounge, Built to Spill and Cat Power @ McCarren Pool, Boris @ Music Hall of Williamsburg, Jens Lekman – Music Hall of Williamsburg, Justice @ Terminal 5
10 Best Movies
1. No Country for Old Men – Javier Bardem is obviously the main draw of this film, as a psychopath with a Prince Valiant haircut. Honestly, I don’t understand why people were so upset about the ending. Obviously, the Coen Brothers (and Cormac McCarthy) wanted to show that life is bleak. The good guys don’t always win. Get over it.
2. Control – How did they find someone who looks so much like Ian Curtis?
3. La Vie En Rose – Marion Cotillard deserves some kind of award for her portrayal of Edith Piaf.
4. Into the Wild – It made me want to go on a long road trip, that is, until the ending.
5. This is England – Who doesn’t like a movie about skinheads?
6. Darjeeling Limited – I had to grow to love this film, but it really was great. I felt that it had more depth than other Wes Anderson flicks.
7. I’m Not There – Cate Blanchett is going to make me gay. I swear.
8. Rescue Dawn – Christian Bale ate maggots in this movie. He is one dedicated actor.
9. Lust, Caution – pretzel sex. Yeah.
10. Sicko – This movie made me angry, which is saying a lot, because I’m pretty apathetic.
Honorable Mentions: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Sherry Baby, Grindhouse Presents: Death Proof, Sunshine, Scott Walker: 30 Century Man, Sicko, Juno, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly