10 bands that wrote good songs that sounded good to me this year. Some with legal MP3s, some with videos.
…with two children.
Bill Callahan’s songs are the sound of home–the landscape that haunts my head. He recorded it in a new city, with his back to Chicago–and I listened to it in a new city, with my back to Chicago.
Andrew Bird – “A nervous tic motion of the head” [MP3]
Somebody should make another spaghetti western, so Andrew Bird could score it. On stage this song becomes epic–toes tapping pedals, looped violins, and that whistle. That whistle!
Feist – “Mushaboom” [ITUNES]
collect the pieces / one by one / guess that’s how / the future’s done
i got a man / to stick it out / and make a home / from a rented house
Sheer domestic bliss.
Abel, come on, give me the keys, man | I’m a perfect piece of ass
Good guitars, good singer, good songs–it ain’t brain surgery, folks. These songs follow each other on the album, so it’s best to just listen to them both.
Crooked Fingers – “Sleep All Summer” [WEBSITE]
Sunday morning, moping around the apartment. Heartache, even if you’re happy.
Decemberists – “Engine Driver” [MP3]
I am a writer / a writer of fiction / I am the heart that you call home. And I’ve written pages / upon pages / trying to rid you from my bones.
And the creative writing students swoon.
Animal Collective w/ Vashti Bunyan – “Prospect Hummer” [MP3]
No idea what they’re saying. Don’t know, don’t care. It’s the beat, and that “wha-wha-wha-wha-wha-wha-wooooooooo.”
Antony – “Hope There’s Someone” [MP3]
The good stuff is always about death, or the fear of death. Check out that ghost vocal line.
Jeremy Warmsley – “I believe in the way you move” [VIDEO]
My mind is in the gutter / but I’m looking at the sky
You get the privelege / of being with me
Sugary singer/songwriter pop with Bjork or Aphex Twin doing the instruments.
Wolf Parade – “Shine a Light / I’ll Believe In Anything” [MYSPACE]
Further proof that Springsteen is an unshakeable influence. Arcade Fire, Wolf Parade, Walkmen…all copping The Boss.
UPDATE: suggestions for making your own list