31 December 2008

2008 in Review: Summing Up

Already looking forward to 2009, but one last shout out to 2008... recapping:

Caveat: these are my favorites who knows what the best are. Who cares. I didn't listen to every album and I didn't see every concert, so your mileage may vary.

  • The Russo/Metzger award for Artist of the Year: Apollo Sunshine (read about 'em here)
  • Album of the Year: Stephen Malkmus "Real Emotional Trash" (full list here)
  • Live Album of the Year: Fiery Furnaces "Remember" (fantastic couldn't-have-said-it-better review of this album from Salon)
  • Jazz/Instrumental Album of the Year: John Zorn "The Dreamers"
  • The "Nedstalgia" Award Archival Release of the Year: Phish 5/8/93 & 2/20/93 (tie)
  • The HankNLil Kiddie album of the Year: Medeski Martin & Wood "Let's Go Everywhere" (runner up: Kimya Dawson's "Alphabutt")
  • Producer of the Year: Danger Mouse (rockin' it w/ Gnarls Barkley, The Black Keys and Beck... damn!)
  • Live Show of the Year: John Zorn's The Dreamers at St. Ann's Warehouse (full list here)
  • The I-Spilled-My-Drink-Again Party of the Year Award: Freaks Ball VIII
  • The "This better be worth the ticket price!" Award for Benefit show of the Year: HeadCount pre-election throwdown (runner up: Scotty Hard Benefit @ Highline Ballroom)
  • The "Good Riddance Knitting Factory" Award for Venue of the Year: Mercury Lounge -- was surprising how many awesome shows I saw there this year including Apollo Sunshine pre-Halloween Hendrix hit, the return(s) of Rana and the wild CD release party with Broken Social Scene. Good times. (runners up: Sullivan Hall, Music Hall of Williamsburg -- two old rooms under new names and attitidudes are welcome additions to the NYC live music diorama)
  • The "You Just Blew My Mind" Award for Jam/Interlude of the Year: The Bad Plus playing Giant at the Village Vanguard. My lord, that was gorgeous!
  • The "This sounds like the Talking Heads... sorta" Award for Influence of the Year: Prince. From My Morning Jacket to TV on the Radio to local faves Pimps of Joytime, it seems like this was the year to sound like the Purple One. Could be worse.
  • The "1's and 0's" award for Best Download of the Year: (tie) crazy Mojito residency from the Benevento/Russo Duo in San Fran (just get this and listen to the whole run from beginning to end & My Morning Jacket from Bonnaroo.
  • The "Medium Popcorn & Cherry Coke Award" for Best Movie: Happy Go Lucky (full list here)
  • The "I Love my DVR" Award for TV show I'm Not Ashamed To Declare My Love For: Chuck
  • The "I Dunno about this Facebook thingie" Award for online-app: Twitter.
  • The "Guaranteed to Have some LIRR-related mishap" Award for Night on the Town: (tie) 12/28/08 (Gov't Mule > Bustle > lost my phone (I was too hungover to integrate this into my shows of the year, but both were on the list somewhere)); 12/12/08 (ask me about the 2-act dramatic rendering if you haven't seen it); 8/15/08 (the return of Rana, 'nuff said)
  • The "Yes We Can!" list of things I'm looking forward to in early 2009: Andrew Bird's new CD and seeing him next month at Carnegie Freakin' Hall; The Bad Plus' new album and everything they will do ever; the new Marco Benevento CD; my finding Phish Hampton tickets, rocking it from the front row and coming back to tell you all about it (finger raised, c'mon, help a brutha out!!)

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