Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Shananigans has been noughtie

Well, while 2009's Shanies are now long past (read: 4 days), I decided that it would still be fun to jump on the bandwagon and do a "best of" for the entire decade (read: I don't have anything better to write about today). In addition to my usual category of' 'Do I like it?' I've also considered albums which were influential or groundbreaking in time (IE: artists who paved new way, now that we have the benefit of hindsight) Thus, without excessive rambling (read: any more than you'd expect) I present to you Evil Shananigans Top 10 Albums of the 00's.

10. Radiohead - Kid A (2000)
Just making the list, and just making the decade, this was the band's first effort since the game changing OK Computer. The most impressive thing about this album was that even after such a drastic redefinition of the word 'rock' on OK, the band made an equally large jump for Kid A.

9. The Mars Volta - De-Loused in the Comatorium (2003)
How do you follow one of the most energetic, dynamic and original bands of the 90's (At the Drive-In)? You blow peoples minds. While their later work started to become to jam-band and noise tech, TMV's debut was pure, ethereal gold.

8. Mastodon - Blood Mountain (2006)
Metal was a dying genre, left to long haired stoners and guys named Chuck. Mastodon saved this genre by redefining what metal could be, and also how much acid one human body can handle.

7. Them Crooked Vultures - Self Titled (2009)
Did they win this year's album of the year? No, because I felt there was a better album THIS YEAR. HOWEVER, let it be told right now that this album will stand the test of time. In the same way that we still listen to Stairway, our children will hear Scumbag Blues on classic rock stations years from now.

6. Every Time I Die - Hot Damn! (2003)
Screaming was just becoming popular, but was still, for the most part, unpalatable. ETID's first couple of albums had been great, however damn allowed them to incorporate elements of southern rock and blues which gave a dirty, chunky, big fucking edge to the noise emanating from the Buckley brothers.

5. The Raconteurs - Broken Boy Soldiers (2006)
After the Stripe's '05 release, Get Behind Me Satan, one could almost see this album coming; Jack White needed something more. What we didn't expect was that he would form a band with a songwriter as talented as himself and create an album with dueling guitars, dueling vocals, and dueling songwriting... somehow all of which just clicked.

4. Gorillaz - Self Titled (2001)
Leave it to Damon Albarn, front man of Blur, to come up with an idea so crazy that it needed cartoon characters for a band. We all recall how groundbreaking this album was, blending elements of rock, pop, hip hop, electronica and blues. Considering the number of copycats since... this one was an obvious game changer.

3. The Postal Service - Give Up (2002)
At a time when indie pop/electro was just starting to break through, this album was years ahead of its time, and yet still remained infectiously accessible. While I can't say I was a huge fan of what this spawned, there is no denying that PS was onto something.

2. Mutemath - Self Titled (2006)
Rock had been largely unchanged for years. It was always a guitar driven beast with some full-of-himself guy screaming his lungs out at the front of the stage. Mutemath was the first band in a long time to create a truly percussive driven album. Almost as though these 4 guys have heartbeats which sync up, the rhythm and beat of this album drives forward overtop of a gorgeously arranged masterpiece.

1. Queens of the Stone Age - Songs for the Deaf (2002)
Rock was losing touch with its roots. Generic, shitty rock bands were being turned out by the dozen and people were forgetting what music was supposed to sound like. It helped that this was the album Josh Homme had been wanting to write for years. It helped that this was the peak of Nick Oliveri's drug addiction (right before he was kicked out of the band). It helped that the drumming help of Dave Grohl was enlisted. It helped that the stars aligned.

If you're not quite getting it yet... go give this one another listen.

-Talk to you next week when a whole new decade of Evil Shananigans begins!