The original line up back together, sharing song writing duties and showing that they are not only still relevant, but injecting life back into guitar focused rock. Mars Volta stepped aside when true exponents returned to take their throne. An excellent and welcome return.
‘That album with the weird sea shanty.’ You’d be forgiven for dismissing Modest Mouse’s 2007 opus as novelty rock. I’m predisposed to dismiss that genre myself, but ‘We were dead…’ deserves a second chance. The album is full of finely crafted rock songs that reward repeated listens. Marrs deft touch is evident through out this layered album.
Paul Smith and crew deliver a rock album that sounds refreshingly different to the current crop of ‘post rock neu wave’ whathaveyous. Melodies that hark back to the days when people were concerned with…you know…melody. Lyrics that propell and provide intrigue. It’s never been less grim up north.
A late entrant to the top ten, Pet Genius was released in November. This three piece gave us a whole album, best listened to in one sitting. Pet Genius is an album of light and shade, or to put it bluntly, distortion pedal and less distortion pedal. It has delicate melodies and plenty of chugg. The best ’straight up rock’ album of 2007.
Mice Parade were new to me in ‘07, despite the seven previous albums. But I caught them at their ( imho) best. They played at the Sydney festival and were a crowd favourite. Beautiful drumming lies beneath Mice Parade compositions, with delicate guitar, keys and vocals layered sparingly over. A welcome addition to any collection
Sophmore from enigmatic englishman Burial is what I liek to call ‘corroded dubstep’. The tracks are filled with athmospherics, heavily distorted vocals and beats made from found sounds like Metal Gear Solid bullet shells hitting concrete. A perfect album for headphone space.
Lounge. Smooth Jazz. Call it what you will, but Waldeck’s Ballroom Stories has been a hit with everyone who has heard it. It stands head and shoulders above the competition with sophisticated arrangements, cooler than ‘cafe beats’ and smokey vocals that seduce.
03. Deerhoof - Friend Oppertunity
A tidalwave of sound, topped with tiny Japanese vocals. What’s not to like? Deerhoof defy classification. From crazy suppositions ( If I were a man, and you a dog I’d throw a stick for you) to heartfelt longings the tempo and style of Friend Oppertunity changes within each track, let alone from one to the next. A wild ride that’s difficult not to love.
02. Radiohead - In Ranbows
Worth all the fuss. Nuff said.
01. LCD Soundsystem - Sounds of Silver
James Murphy, not content with curating one of the best music labels of late, took time out to write, record and release the best album of 2007. Less ‘Skipping Rock’ than Go! Team, a generation removed from big beat, Sounds of Silver managed to become the dance music record indie kids loved. Personally, I credit the basslines, but with LCD, everyone will have an opinion on why they like them. No alarms and no surprises here.