The reason I always make these lists so blasted huge is simple to explain. There were so many great albums, I wanna give credit to them all...But really its almost like I feel bad for them, like when I was little and had to play with all my toys at once. If I left He-Man out, he'd feel bad! So, ya gotta put in all the good ones in a list like this.
So, first off, here is some miscellaneousness:
Best Guilty Pleasure: Hilary Duff - Dignity
Ahem...dunno what to say. I just really liked this. Its fun to shake to. So sue me.
Biggest Let Down: Bloc Party - Weekend in the City
I better be careful, cuz I could make a whole blog about why this album sucked. Their first one was so fabulous, mainly because of the amazing rythm section and the intense energy the songs had. (Check out "Helicopters," "Banquet," "So Here We Are," and "This Modern Love" from that album for examples) That Asian drummer of theirs was simply one of the best I'd heard in a long time. Then, for their second album, they decided it would be better to NOT have intense songs with amazing drumming, but instead rely on their never-great-to-begin-with melodies and then tour with Panic! At the Disco. I'm all for creative change and what not, but when it makes you sound like a watered down, less talented Blink 182, with a less talented Seal at vocals no less, it just doesn't do it for me. Come on guys. Same problem I had with Guster last year. (Except they didn't sound like Blink 182) Anyway...
(Runners Up:) Smashing Pumpkins - Zeitgeist, Bjork - Volta. These albums actually made my good list, so I do like them. But with how much I totally worship these guys, it was just a little sub-par comparitively. The Pumpkins was still great considering its the first in 7 years, I just wish they woulda mixed it up a little and put some good pop songs in with the rockers. With Bjork, it was just a handful of gems, and a handful of duds. Still decent albums though.
Biggest Surprise: Bright Eyes - Cassadaga
To many, it doesn't surprise you that Conor Oberts makes a good album. And I won't go so far to say I hate Bright Eyes, but I really have never been able to swallow his style. He's a talented songwriter, but it just doesn't do it for me. So, this year I was surprised to find I actually kinda liked Cassadaga. The arrangements and instrumentation do this one good. Which sorta makes up for the fact he sounds like an emo-goat.
Best Non-Album Release: Sigur Ros - Hvarf/Heim
I decided to count Gorillaz "D-Sides" as an album the way I did Sufjan Steven's "Avalanche" last year, so the next best is Sigur Ros. Amazing. One disc of new recordings (which include brilliant new renditions of songs from their first album) and another disc of acoustic live versions of some of their popular songs.
(Runner's Up:) Radiohead - In Rainbows disc-2, Daft Punk - Alive 2007, Bird and the Bee - Please Clap Your Hands EP
Best Importers (besides England): Sweden
Shout Out Louds, Peter Bjorn & John, the Hives, Jens Lekman
(Runners Up:) Canada - (Arcade Fire, Feist, Tegan & Sara, Steve Nash) Iceland - (Sigur Ros, Bjork, Amiina)
And the rest, is the best. These aren't numbered, but the lower they go on this list, the better I thought they were. Kinda like counting down...without numbers. (If you want any explanations as to why I liked any certain of these, lemme know and I will personally give you a review, savy? haha.)