Saturday, December 22, 2007

Best Of 2007

Hello friends,
It's the end of the year so it's an obvious, psychologically satisfying time to list all of the best that 2007 had to offer in music, movies and television (in my not-so-humble opinion, anyway). Disagreements are to be expected, so feel free to post any comments or your own picks below. Just know that you're probably wrong and that I am, in fact, always right.

"How can it be bullshit to state a preference?"

Rob (John Cusack) in High Fidelity

Best Records (in no particular order)

-The Arcade Fire, Neon Bible
-Wilco, Sky Blue Sky
-Feist, The Reminder
-Radiohead, In Rainbows
-Menomena, Friend And Foe
-Elvis Perkins, Ash Wednesday
-Kanye West, Graduation
-Avett Brothers, Emotionalism
-Jay-Z, American Gangster
-Okkervil River, The Stage Names
-Sondre Lerche, Phantom Punch
-The White Stripes, Icky Thump
-Ryan Adams, Easy Tiger
-Iron & Wine, The Shepherd's Dog
-Andrew Bird, Armchair Apocrypha

Best Reissues, Soundtracks & Compilations

-Elliott Smith, New Moon
-Various Artists, I'm Not There O.S.T.
-Elvis Costello, My Aim Is True Deluxe Edition
-Eddie Vedder, Into The Wild O.S.T.
-Counting Crows, August And Everything After Deluxe Edition
-Sondre Lerche, Dan In Real Life O.S.T.

Good Albums, But Not Up To Par To Previous Achievements (try harder next time, please)

-Bright Eyes, Cassadega
-Modest Mouse, We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank
-Band Of Horses, Cease To Begin
-Pinback, Autumn Of The Seraphs
-Devendra Banhart, Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon

Best Japanese Psychedelic Pop Album

-4 Bonjour's Parties, Magpie Will Peck A Hole In My Plaster Cast

Best Comedy Album

-Patton Oswalt, Werewolves And Lollipops

Most Overrated Albums

-The National, Boxer (Somehow it still made it to 1 on Paste's list; I tried to stop them...)
-Animal Collective, Strawberry Jam (Not *actual* music!!)
-Panda Bear, Person Pitch

Albums That Would Have Made The "Best Of" List Had I Actually Listened To Them All The Way Through More Than Once

-Spoon, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga
-Rogue Wave, Asleep At Heaven's Gate
-The Shins, Wincing The Night Away
-José González, In Our Nature
-Beirut, The Flying Club Cup

Best Albums I Haven't Heard Yet

-PJ Harvey, White Chalk
-Wu-Tang Clan, The 8 Diagrams
-Ghostface Killah, The Big Doe Rehab

Best Songs

-"Intervention" by The Arcade Fire
-"1234" by Feist
-"Young Folks" by Peter Bjorn and John
-"You Are My Face" by Wilco
-"Two" by Ryan Adams
-"All I Need" by Radiohead
-"Roc Boys (And The Winner Is...)" by Jay-Z Featuring Kanye West
-"Myriad Harbour" by The New Pornographers
-"Smile" by Lily Allen
-"Girls In Their Summer Clothes" by Bruce Springsteen
-"Lake Michigan" by Rogue Wave
-"Good Life" by Kanye West featuring T-Pain
-"Our Life Is Not A Movie Or Maybe" by Okkervil River
-"Plaster Casts Of Everything" by Liars
-"You Know I'm No Good" by Amy Winehouse
-"The Underdog" by Spoon
-"Rag And Bone" by The White Stripes
-"The Heinrich Maneuver" by Interpol
-"Sinking Soon" by Norah Jones
-"Florida" by Modest Mouse

Guilty Pleasures (I must be getting pretty secure in my tastes 'cause I could only come up with a few that I truly feel guilty about this year)

-"Umbrella" by Rihanna (Enjoy it while eating paella, ella ella eh eh eh. Or while watching Cinderella, ella ella eh eh eh)
-"Walk It Out" by Unk (I actually had to look up who did that song; now I know)
-"Crank That" by Soulja Boy (I still don't understand a single word of it)
-"Makes Me Wonder" by Maroon 5 (This one I feel really guilty about)

Best Cover Songs

-Elliott Smith, "Thirteen" (Big Star)
-José González, "Teardrop" (Massive Attack)
-Alison Krause, "Trampled Rose" (Tom Waits)
-Devendra Benhart, "Little Boxes" (Malvina Reynolds)
-Regina Spektor, "Real Love" (John Lennon)
-Jeff Tweedy, "Simple Twist Of Fate" (Bob Dylan)
-The White Stripes, "Conquest" (Patti Page)
-Sondre Lerche, "Let My Love Open The Door" (Pete Townshend)

Best Mash-Up

-DJ Axel, "Guns N' Hovas" (Guns N' Roses' "Paradise City" v. Jay-Z's "Dirt Off Your Shoulder")

Coolest Aging Alternative Icon I Met This Year

-Wayne Coyne of the Flaming Lips at the Echo Project in October. He's slender and quite handsome. He was also wearing a bitching custom suit.

Band That I Once Loved But Should Have Stayed Broken Up For Its Own Good And The Good Of Humanity

-Smashing Pumpkins (Billy, just stop and let me still enjoy your first three albums in peace)

Best Singer-Songwriter That I Drove To A Gig In My Car Through Atlanta Rush Hour Traffic From The Paste Offices

-Josh Ritter on November 1st; we talked about Dylan and girls walking in the sunshine (he's weird)

Best Movies (I didn't see that many movies in the theater again this year so forgive me for my crappy selection)

-The Darjeeling Limited (probably my favorite)
-Knocked Up
-Ocean's Thirteen
-Grindhouse: Planet Terror & Death Proof

Movies I Really Wanted To See But I Probably Won't Until I Can Netflix Them

-Eastern Promises
-Lars And The Real Girl
-Into The Wild
-The King Of Kong
-American Gangster
-Shoot 'Em Up
-Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten
-I'm Not There

Movies I'm Going To See For Sure In The Next Two Weeks

-Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story
-No Country For Old Men

Worst Movie To See In A Theater Full Of Teenagers Who Feel Compelled To Talk On Their Cell Phones And Scream Advice To The Actors On The Screen Without Considering The Fact That It Might Ruin The Experience For Other More Mature Moviegoers

-Rob Zombie's Halloween (never again!)

Best Television Shows

-Entourage: Season 4 (HBO)
-The Sopranos: Season 6, Part 2 (HBO)
-Big Love: Season 2 (HBO)
-Real Time With Bill Maher (HBO)
-Flight Of The Conchords (HBO)
-Weeds: Season 3 (Showtime)
-Dexter: Season 2 (Showtime)
-The Office: Seasons 3&4 (NBC)
-Survivor: China (CBS)
-It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia: Season 3 (FX)
-The Henry Rollins Show (IFC)
-Iconoclasts (Sundance)
-No Reservations with Anthony Bourdain (Travel Channel)
-Ramsey's Kitchen Nightmares (BBC, not the shitty FOX Version!)
-Gordon Ramsey's F Word (BBC)
-The Soup (E!)
-Best Week Ever (VH1)
-Pardon The Interruption (ESPN)
-Top Chef: Season 3 (Bravo)
-Attack Of The Show (G4)

Best Excuse To Get Digital Cable With DVR

-Being able to have a life that is not dictated by television schedules. That, and to instantly replay people getting hit in the nuts on American Funniest Home Videos. Oooh, and fast forwarding through commercials; watching an hour long show now only takes 41 minutes!

Best Unabashed Display of "Scarm" (Scar + Arm) On Television

-Padma Lakshmi on Bravo's Top Chef; disfiguring scars have never been so damn sexy.

So there you have it, I hope this list will inspire you to draft your own selections or perhaps encourage you to pick up an album or watch a show you otherwise wouldn't have.

See you next year!

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