So I thought I would throw together a little list of my “best of” for music for this year. If you are at all familiar with me and my music tastes, much of this shouldn’t come as a surprise.
1. Butch Walker and the Black Widows – The Spade I mean, come on. Who else would be #1? I didn’t think there was any way for Butch to top 2010′s “I Liked It Better When You Had No Heart”, but he managed to do it. There is flat-out not a bad song on this album. I thought about trying to list my favorites, but they all are, for different reasons. I honestly listen to this nearly every day. And Butch and the Widows live? unreal. They just blew me away.
2. Ryan Adams – Ashes & Fire I picked up my first Ryan Adams album (Heartbreaker) a couple years back after seeing a librarian friend mention him a bunch. I liked it but never really listened to it a whole lot. I ran across Ashes and Fire and was totally hooked from the first listen. I’ve gone back to listen to more of his past work, and I don’t know how I never picked up on him before now. It’s all a matter of timing, I think. The whole album is great, but “Lucky Now” is the standout track, in my eyes. er, ears.
3. The Decemberists – The King is Dead To me, this is just straight-up Decemberists. Another album that doesn’t have a bad song on it. Like The Spade and Ashes & Fire, this is an album I can listen to on repeat with no qualms. I really need to get around to seeing them live at some point (she says, sort of embarrassed, since she lives in PDX where they are also from.).
4. Adele – 21 Some songs on this album got way overplayed this year, but with good reason – they are just some damn good songs. She’s got a great voice and most of the time it shines. Favorites: Rolling in the Deep and Rumour Has It. Skip It: Lovesong (I love covers, but this is meh) and Someone Like You (she hits this sour note near the end of the song that just ruins it for me; she seems to have corrected this during some live versions I’ve heard, but… ugh.)
5. Gavin DeGraw – Sweeter I’d heard Gavin’s name mentioned here and there, but never his music. I’d heard about Sweeter because Butch produced a couple of the songs on it, so I listened to a few samples of some of the songs and was immediately hooked. I do appear to be in an indie singer-songwriter phase and this fits in there perfectly. My favorite (at least today) is probably the title track. Hook-y, soulful good stuff.
Panic! at the Disco – Vices and Virtues I can listen to “The Ballad of Mona Lisa” endlessly
Fran Capitanelli – Kave Talk Fran is the guitarist in Butch’s band, and his solo stuff is fantastic too
Ponderosa – Moonlight Revival Just good Southern rock/country-ish stuff
This is was actually easier to come up with than i thought it would be. I spend so much time discovering new music that isn’t actually new that I had a much smaller pool to pick from.
I am an obsessive scrobbler, so feel free to follow me on last.fm and see what I listen to next year.