Top 10 albums of the year:[table id=1 /]Honorable mention:Wavves – King Of The Beach, Black Keys – BrothersBest concert of the year:Titus Andronicus at the Bluebird. Completely epic. ’Four Score and Seven’ rocked so insanely hard it’s in the top 10 songs I’ve heard live.Other notable concerts:White Rabbits at the Fox. Surprisingly rocking and some of the best percussing / drum pounding ever witnessed.The Henry Clay People at the Larimer Lounge. So FUN! Fun fun fun. Lots of covers, smiles, beer and rock ‘n roll.The Thermals at the Bluebird. Such a great live act.Poison Control Center at the Larimer. Not exactly the best show I’ve seen, but easily the weirdest. Between the weirdo dancing and the song long shoulder stands that show left me confused.Pavement at the Ogden. They play better live now then they did in the 90s. Straighten the Crooked several times. Hyped Zach is making it happen.Looking forward to in 2011:New Bright Eyes Feb 15 (already preordered it!)New J Mascis March 15! All acoustic J Mascis studio album. Might be epic. Very high hopes on this one, kinda scared.More from my friends bands Straighten The Crooked and Gangcharger. Also looking forward to John’s new band.
This album is the surprise album of the year for me so far. Not best album of the year, but something I didn’t think I would enjoy so much. I’ve always somewhat enjoyed Guided By Voices and I thought their best of compilation was awesome. But this new album by Boston Spaceships might be my favorite thing Robert Pollard has done. It’s good ol’ indie rock done proper along the same lines as Guided By Voices. The drumming seems better then GBV though and the songs seem more consistent. The song “Keep Me Down” is so good I’ve considered skating to it for my Off The Couch part if somehow I decided to not use a Dinosaur Jr song (impossible).Rating: bostonspaceships.com
Drive Like Jehu and even Hot Snakes to some degree are a couple of my favorite bands. Rick Froberg’s voice is and heavy guitars are guaranteed goodness. Or so I thought. I didn’t know about this band before I saw a review on Pitchfork. Upon seeing it was Rick from Jehu and the sample song sounded good I ordered it immediately.This album does not live up to my expectations at all. It’s good, but it’s not great. Half of the songs end slower than they start. There isn’t a standout song either. Gonna keep this one short, but basically it’s not as good as I hoped.Rating:
Rating: The Thermals became one of my all time favorites after Fuckin A came out. Two albums later they are even higher on my list and have yet to disappoint. Each album has a different feel and there seems to be less punk in their rock with each album, but they are all awesome. The new one “Now We Can See” is easily their poppiest and cleanest to date. I was skeptical at first, but hearing it live and listening to the record over and over has sold me on it. I’m not going to give this album a perfect rating. I don’t think any of their albums have been a perfect 10, here’s my minor complaints about this one:* The album doesn’t start as strong as all other Thermals albums. ’When I Died’ seems like they forcefully toned it down. Still a great song, but it’s lacking that Thermals album opener overdrive. * The high pitched parts of “We Were Sick” are a little tough on the ears sometimes. I’m all for Kathy helping on the vocals, but parts of that song don’t work so well. Luckily the “We were high, we were alive, we were sick” makes up for it. * The order of the songs could be better. ”At The Bottom Of The Sea” could be a great ender. Not sure, but listening to the record sounds better sometimes starting at side 2 which starts with “When We Were Alive”. That being said don’t think for a second I don’t love this album. There are some epic Thermals songs on here. ”I Let It Go”, “Now We Can See”, “At The Bottom Of The Sea”, “When We Were Alive”, “I Called Out Your Name”, “When I Was Afraid”, and “You Dissolve” are all amazing to me. I think their song writing and structuring has improved on this album and Hutch seems to deliver the lyrics as good as ever. I give this album an ‘A-’. Kudos Thermals, your one of my favorites.