Photo by Pieter Van Hattem
April 29, 2007
“This show doesn’t count!” said Dick Valentine. “We’re in-between albums right now, so this one’s unofficial.”
I leaned against the railing of the balcony at Neumo’s cheering with every bit of Tuesday night enthusiasm I could muster as the band took stage. The six of them each buzzed with high voltage electricity as promised. They clicked on their amps and checked their various levels as Dick pushed his mic stand to the side.
A heavy and spastic electro-ghetto sound has been spreading west from New York City like a tidal wave, forcing everything in its path to dance; and in the process, making me very, very happy.
The truth? This is nothing new. Conor Oberst is a brilliant writer who can’t seem to do wrong with his lyrics. His poetic folk-pop verses wrench your gut like a bad break-up or a book that entertains you every time you read it—never getting old, always simple and beautiful.
February 15th 2007
“The band requested that there weren’t chairs I guess?” I overheard a man in a flannel shirt say. “That’s shitty, I’m tired.” The woman with him, I presume was his date, had her arms crossed and was looking around the room for a chair. The only seats available were the few copper and red velvet stools surrounding the bar. And they were certainly taken by that point.
The Trucks have gained one very skeptical fan in this writer. I can’t stand it when music is directed at a specific audience. I hated every single, critically acclaimed Sleater-Kinney album because I felt so completely alienated by their lyrics, their fan base, and often their message. I would go as far as to say that I felt unwelcome to enjoy many all-female bands.
Imagine being in one of the coldest places in the world—a land known for desolation and long, dark nights. And imagine being in a packed club filled with the most beautiful people you’ve ever seen, dripping with sweat from hours of dancing. Sound nice?
It seems to me that every year I find myself less and less interested with new music and more and more buried into the endless catacomb of 70’s rock and 80’s New York City art/rock shit. This year some new talent—as well as some of music’s staple recording artists—have shown up on the billboard charts. The most exciting part of it all for me is that there were so many young artists making interesting music this year, music that challenged traditional themes and genres. So, without further ado, here are my top ten albums for 2006…