Thursday, August 06, 2009

The Top 10, Okay 300, of the Decade

A friend asked me last night to name my Top 10 albums of Aughties. Heh. Here they are. I haven't given it a lot of thought, but off the top of my head, and with thanks to iTunes, these are the albums that would be on my long list for Best of the Decade.


Soundtrack to O Brother, Where Art Thou?
Eels -- Electro-Shock Blues
Erykah Badu -- Mama's Gun
Flogging Molly -- Swagger
Godspeed You! Black Emperor -- Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven
Michael Penn -- MP4 (Days Since a Lost Time Accident)
Neko Case -- Furnace Room Lullabye
The New Pornographers -- Mass Romantic
Nickel Creek -- Nickel Creek
Outkast -- Stankonia
Radiohead -- Kid A
Ryan Adams -- Heartbreaker
Spoon -- Girls Can Tell
U2 -- All That You Can't Leave Behind
The Weakerthans -- Left and Leaving
The White Stripes -- De Stijl
16 Horsepower -- Secret South


Bob Dylan -- Love and Theft
Chris Whitley -- Rocket House
The Dismemberment Plan -- Change
Explosions in the Sky -- Those Who Tell the Truth Shall Die, Those Who Tell the Truth Shall Live Forever
Gillian Welch -- Time (the Revelator)
Jay-Z -- The Blueprint
Joe Henry -- Scar
Jon Brion -- Meaningless
Old 97's -- Satellite Rides
The Pernice Brothers -- The World Won't End
Pete Yorn -- Music for the Morning After
Red House Painters -- Old Ramon
Sam Phillips -- Fan Dance
A Silver Mt. Zion -- Born Into Trouble as the Sparks Fly Upward
Sparklehorse -- It's a Wonderful Life
The Strokes -- Is This It?
The White Stripes -- White Blood Cells


Beck -- Sea Change
Boards of Canada -- Geogaddi
Bruce Springsteen -- The Rising
Death Cab for Cutie -- You Can Play These Songs with Chords
El-P -- Fantastic Damage
Interpol -- Turn on the Bright Lights
Iron & Wine -- The Creek Drank the Cradle
Linda Thompson -- Fashionably Late
The Mountain Goats -- All Hail West Texas
Neko Case -- Blacklisted
Nick Cave -- Murder Ballads
Patty Griffin -- 1000 Kisses
Sigur Ros -- ()
The Streets -- Original Pirate Material
Tom Waits -- Blood Money
Wilco -- Yankee Hotel Foxtrot


All Things Bright and Beautiful -- Love and Affection
The Bad Plus -- These Are the Vistas
Belle & Sebastian -- Dear Catastrophe Waitress
The Black Keys -- Thick Freakness
British Sea Power -- The Decline of British Sea Power
Chip Taylor and Carrie Rodriguez -- The Trouble With Humans
The Clientele -- The Violet Hour
Erykah Badu -- Worldwide Underground
Fountains of Wayne -- Welcome Interstate Managers
Holopaw -- Holopaw
Jay-Z -- The Black Album
Joe Henry -- Tiny Voices
Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros -- Streetcore
Kathleen Edwards -- Failer
My Morning Jacket -- It Still Moves
Nada Surf -- Let Go
Over the Rhine -- Ohio
The Postal Service -- Give Up
Radiohead -- Hail to the Thief
Rufus Wainwright -- Want One
The Shins -- Chutes Too Narrow
Sufjan Stevens -- Greetings from Michigan
Sun Kil Moon -- Ghosts of the Great Highway
Ted Leo and the Pharmacists -- Hearts of Oak
The Thermals -- More Parts Per Million
The Weakerthans -- Reconstruction Site
The White Stripes -- Elephant
Willard Grant Conspiracy -- Regard the End


A.C. Newman -- The Slow Wonder
The Arcade Fire -- Funeral
The Black Keys -- Rubber Factory
Brian Wilson -- Smile
Buddy Miller -- Universal United House of Prayer
Camera Obscura -- Underachievers Please Try Harder
Damien Dempsey -- Seize the Day
Devendra Banhart -- Rejoicing in the Hands
Drive-By Truckers -- The Dirty South
Feist -- Let It Die
The Frames -- Burn the Maps
The Hold Steady -- Almost Killed Me
Iron & Wine -- Our Endless Numbered Days
Jolie Holland -- Escondida
Kanye West -- The College Dropout
Lori McKenna -- Bittertown
Mando Saenz -- Watertown
Mary Gauthier -- Mercy Now
Modest Mouse -- Good News for People Who Love Bad News
Nick Cave -- Abbatoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus
Pedro the Lion -- Achilles Heel
Ray LaMontagne -- Trouble
Ron Sexsmith -- Retriever
Sam Phillips -- A Boot and a Shoe
The Streets -- A Grand Don't Come for Free
Sufjan Stevens -- Seven Swans
The Thermals -- Fuckin' A
Todd Snider -- East Nashville Skyline
Vetiver -- Vetiver
Woven Hand -- Consider the Birds


Amos Lee -- Amos Lee
Andrew Bird -- The Mysterious Production of Eggs
Bettye Lavette -- I've Got My Own Hell to Raise
Caitlin Cary and Thad Cockrell -- Begonias
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah -- Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
The Clientele -- Strange Geometry
Damien Jurado -- On My Way to Absence
The Decemberists -- Picaresque
The Detroit Cobras -- Baby
Diana Jones -- My Remembrance of You
The Hold Steady -- Separation Sunday
Iarla O Lionaird -- Invisible Fields
Iron & Wine/Calexico -- In the Reins
Laura Veirs -- Years of Meteors
Lizz Wright -- Dreaming Wide Awake
Low -- The Great Destroyer
M.I.A. -- Arular
The National -- Alligator
The New Pornographers -- Twin Cinema
Okkervil River -- Black Sheep Boy
Robert Glasper -- Canvas
Serena Maneesh -- Serena Maneesh
Sigur Ros -- Takk
Silver Jews -- Tanglewood Numbers
Spoon -- Gimme Fiction
Sufjan Stevens -- Come On, Feel the Illinoise


Alasdair Roberts -- The Amber Gatherers
Amy Winehouse -- Back to Black
Anathallo -- Floating World
Arctic Monkeys -- Whatever People Say I Am, That's Why I'm Not
Art Brut -- Bang Bang Rock 'n Roll
Beirut -- Gulag Orkestar
Bob Dylan -- Modern Times
The Broken West -- I Can't Go On, I'll Go On
Camera Obscura -- Let's Get Out of this Country
The Decemberists -- The Crane Wife
Eleni Mandell -- Miracle of Five
The Frames -- The Cost
Gnarls Barkley -- St. Elsewhere
Grizzly Bear -- Yellow House
The Hold Steady -- Boys and Girls in America
James Hunter -- People Gonna Talk
Jolie Holland -- Springtime Can Kill You
Lambchop -- Damaged
Lucero -- Rebels, Rogues & Sworn Brothers
Lupe Fiasco -- Food & Liquor
Manchester Orchestra -- I'm Like a Virgin Losing a Child
Mastodon -- Blood Mountain
Neko Case -- Fox Confessor Brings the Flood
The Soul of John Black -- The Good Girl Blues
Thom Yorke -- The Eraser
Tim Fite -- Over the Counter Culture
TV on the Radio -- Return to Cookie Mountain


The Acorn -- Glory Hope Mountain
Andrew Bird -- Armchair Apocrypha
Animal Collective -- Strawberry Jam
Aradhna -- Amrit Vani
The Arcade Fire -- Neon Bible
The Avett Brothers -- Emotionalism
Blitzen Trapper -- Wild Mountain Nation
Bon Iver -- For Emma, Forever Ago
The Clientele -- God Save the Clientele
Devon Sproule -- Keep Your Silver Shined
Do Make Say Think -- You, You're a History in Rust
El-P -- I'll Sleep When You're Dead
Ezra Furman and the Harpoons -- Banging Down the Doors
Future Clouds and Radar -- Future Clouds and Radar
Iron & Wine -- The Shepherd's Dog
James Blackshaw -- The Cloud of Unknowing
Joe Henry -- Civilians
Levon Helm -- Dirt Farmer
M.I.A. -- Kala
Marco Benevento -- Invisible Baby
The Mendoza Line -- Thirty Year Low
The National -- Boxer
P.J. Harvey -- White Chalk
Radiohead --- In Rainbows
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss -- Raising Sand
Southeast Engine -- A Wheel Within a Wheel
Spoon -- Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga
St. Vincent -- Marry Me
The Weakerthans -- Reunion Tour


Adele -- 19
Al Green -- Lay It Down
Anathallo -- Canopy Glow
Blind Pilot -- 3 Rounds and a Sound
Blitzen Trapper -- Furr
Bonnie "Prince" Billy -- Lie Down in the Light
British Sea Power -- Do You Like Rock Music
Darrell Scott -- Modern Hymns
DM Stith -- Heavy Ghost
Eleni Mandell -- Artificial Fire
Erykah Badu -- New Amerykah Park One
Fleet Foxes -- Fleet Foxes
Frightened Rabbit -- The Midnight Organ Fight
The Hold Steady -- Stay Positive
Ida Maria -- Fortress Round My Heart
Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey -- Li' Tae Rides Again
James Hunter -- The Hard Way
Jamey Johnson -- That Lonesome Song
Johnny Flynn and the Sussex Wit -- A Larum
Jolie Holland -- The Living and the Dead
Josh Garrels -- Jacaranda
Los Campesinos -- Hold On Now, Youngster
Loudon Wainwright III -- Recovery
M83 -- Saturdays = Youth
Morley -- Seen
Nick Cave -- Dig, Lazarus, Dig
Portishead -- Third
Shearwater -- Rook
A Silver Mt. Zion -- 13 Blues for 13 Moons
Son Lux -- At War With Walls and Mazes
Sun Kil Moon -- April
TV on the Radio -- Dear Science,
Vampire Weekend --- Vampire Weekend

I told you this was a long list.


We'll see, but I'm fairly certain that Joe Henry, The Antlers, Aaron Strumpel, and The Decemberists will be there.

Umm, narrowing this down to 10 might be challenging. I love all these albums.


cnb said...

This is a great list, Andy. But wasn't Nick Cave's Murder Ballads issued in the mid-1990s? Let me check. . . -- yes, 1996.

Gar said...

Dang it, now I have to spend more money. Thanks Andy.....

Gar said...

Also, surprised you didn't have any Matthew Ryan, Peter Case, or Jacob Golden on the list.

Shane MacGowan's Teeth said...

Your tastes are almost identical to mine. (I can't tell you how happy I am to find another soul in this world who loves both Bob Pollard and Bill Mallonee!) As such, I'm a bit surprised that M. Ward doesn't make any of your lists. Post-War constantly wrestles with Boys and Girls... for the spot as my favorite record of 2006. I'm curious as to your opinion of him.

I'd also add Centro-Matic's Love You Just The Same to 2003. But judging by the attendance at shows in Chapel Hill,
there aren't 100 people in the country who'd agree with me.

Andy Whitman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andy Whitman said...

Shane/Missing Molar, I like M. Ward. There are many folks whose music I like who didn't make that list. M. Ward is one of them. Also included are Peter Case, Matthew Ryan, and Centro-Matic, just to mention the folks who have been named in the comments. I like all of the above. For whatever reasons (and I'm content to leave it to the vagaries of personal taste), they didn't make albums that I would consider to be among the best of the decade. That doesn't mean I don't think they're well worth supporting. I do.