2008 is about to become 2009, but the old year will not turn into the new one without a fight.....and a top 10 album list. I decided to do this earlier this week (or possibly later last week) and realized I couldn't think of any albums that came out in oh-eight. I finally remembered some, and they automatically made a home towards the top of this list (due to memorability, maybe). I then went through my entire iTunes list and tried to remember which of the albums I had were released in this, the year of our Lord 2008. I was able to come up with a list of about 16 good albums. Unfortunately, I didn't know a lot of those albums too well because they haven't been in heavy rotation on my Pod. See, 2008 wasn't really anybody's best year. Well, maybe it was Jim Noir's (and mine [read: engagement]), but by the time I finally figured out how to download that album, the summer was over and I think Jim Noir had a place in the summery part of my heart and I never let him into the autumn part of my life. Alas, he did not make my top 10 this year. Chalk it up to bad timing. He's great, though.
So, on with the list....
This first one would have been ranked higher, but I didn't know if it counted and I had 10 really good options. So, I will use this as the teaser to the rest of the list. This album is like showing a little leg on the side of the highway. It's a smart move, I say, to show some of your better work, but saving THE best for the end. Not that the early part of the list has anything that you wouldn't stop and pick up should you see it hitchhiking.
Saves the Day - The Bug Sessions.
I like Saves the Day almost as much as I like any band. But, I wonder if I like them for different reasons than everyone else who likes them. See, I think their greatest accomplishment was the 'In Reverie' album, but I was reading a few months ago that it was a huge disappointment. Huh. I guess most fans like them to be a borderline hardcore band, which I also enjoy, but the songs on 'In Reverie' are incredible. The band has a tendency to change their style between albums (and surprisingly, it always works for me), and I keep hoping for another album like that one.
'The Bug Sessions' is a nice collection of acoustic Saves the Day songs. The interesting-slash-perplexing thing about this album is that none of the acoustic versions exceed the originals. Normally, the great thing about an acoustic album is a few of the versions provide a new spin on songs that sometimes make them better than the orginals. Not here, though, but it's totally fine. The acoustic versions herein are still great. No less than a minute later, and I am taking that statement back. 'My Sweet Fracture' is better acoustically than it was on the 'Through Being Cool' album. 'Freakish' comes the next closest and I bet that if 'Nightengale' was included, the acoustic version would top the normal version. I also would have liked to hear what 'Anywhere With You' and 'Tomorrow Too Late' sound like (hopefully, there will be a The Bug Sessions, vol.2).
Tidbit: Saves the Day's singer, Chris Conley, influenced me as a writer. On the band's old website, there was a section where he would just type stuff. And I mean 'just type stuff' that popped into his head. I had never seen it done like that back in 2004, and I couldn't get enough. I don't know that I have implemented that style, but it made something click in my head and seeing such a personalized style interested me more in writing than anything had. He also writes weird/cool/possibly disturbing lyrics like the blog title and: "I know blue eyes get boring, but I'll wear dark glasses all the time. And if you want me to, I'll take a knife to my bright eyes."
This album/collection would have probably rated in the top five, but I decided to keep it out of the official top 10 because it isn't a new recording. But don't take my word for it........
(this isn't really from the album)
Albums considered that didn't quite make the cut:
Jim Noir - 'Jim Noir'
People Under the Stairs - 'Fun DMC'
Giant Panda - 'Electric Laser'
Little Brother - '...And Justus For All'
Siah and Yeshua dapoED - 'The Visualz Anthology'
Also, I haven't heard the new Ben Folds album, but it likely would have garnered a ranking.