Saturday, 8 December 2007

Special Imaginary Review: Albums of the Year

It's the end of the year, and I'm a geeky male. Put those two facts together and what do you get? Lists! Here's my top 10 albums of 2007!

1) Broken Pelvis: Songs About Matthew Perry

If you'd have come to me a year ago and said that best album of 2007 would be 12 tracks of devotion to a former Friends cast member sung by an Australian band who were brought together in a snowboarding accident, I'd have punched you in the spleen and called you a bloody liar. But I'd be apologising to you now and conceding that you were right all along, possibly allowing you to give me a dead arm as compensation. This album was an emotional roller coaster, including such highlights as 'I Know You Didn't Really Love Courteney Cox' , 'I'll be Your Joey' and 'Could You Be Any More Lovely?' The first time I listened to this album, I cried. Now I only need to think about this album and I cry. I'm crying now, dammit.

2) Shatterstar: Got You in my Fridge

Shatterstar were the break-through band of the year, and Got You in my Fridge has to be the strongest debut of 2007. The album is a rip-roaring cacophony of noisy guitars and songs about homework and decapitation. Their live shows lived up to the recording, too, with the entire band playing on pogo sticks. Gimmick or not, this was music at its most exciting.

3) The London Philharmonic Orchestra with Einstruzende Neubaten: Unlistenable Tripe

Take a full orchestra, steal their instruments and give them a load of power tools. Now shoot their regular conductor and have them play the power tools while conducted at gunpoint by the German noise band Einsturzende Neubaten. What do you have? The third best album of the year, that's what. Somewhere amongst the wailing, the feedback, the unstoppable cacophony of drilling, breaking and weeping, you can literally hear the beauty.

4) Bleep: Bleep

The sound of the summer had to be Bleepcore, and the sound was epitomised by Bleep, whose album remains high on the charts despite being outlawed by the government. The critics called it 'dance music that you can listen to', and nobody is more right about everything than critics. I should know. I am one. Altogether now, 'Bleeeeeeep!'

5) Runny Egg Slippage: The Mauve Album

The Mauve Album saw Runny Egg Slippage reform after fifteen years. Nobody was holding their breath, however, as nobody heard of the band the first time around. The quality of songs like 'Tamboureeeeeeen' and 'Gruntflap' sent people flocking to second hand shops to find copies of their first album which was, unfortunately, shite.

6) Death by Dry Hump: Off Biscuits

From the other side of the pond, Death by Dry Hump made it okay to fall in love again, after it was banned by Puff Daddy in 2005. This is the sound of five men who know what they're doing with their instruments, doing their instruments. And doing it well. Fans of the band will be pleased to know that they are going to appear in the next Hostel movie next autumn.

7) Iggy Pop and Friends: Duets

While some of this album was teeth-grindingly awful, some of it was orgasmic. When Iggy and Tony Bennett sing 'Strawberry Fields Forever' together, you know that these are two men who have lived every word of this song. The uptempo cover of Aerosmith's 'Janey's Got a Gun' with rapper Snow always puts a smile on my face.

8) Bum Gravy: Self-Taught

Bum Gravy are a three-piece band who live down my road and who promised to brick my windows if I didn't give them a plug on my website. I fear them.

9) The Number Four: The Number Two

With all the hype surrounding The Number Four's follow up to their debut album, The Number One, it was easy to forget about the music. That was a shame, though, as the music was quite nice. Lead track 'Caisse Populaire DesJardins' was a stomping rocker that echoed Slade at their best, while 'Is it Wrong to eat Dolphin?' was raucous and fresh, if somewhat politically incorrect. Top.

10) There is no number 10. Sorry, I only listened to nine albums this year.

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