This is some serious shit right here. “Favorite Albums of the Decade?” tough stuff but I think I got it down. So much sweet tuneage, I even wrote an additional review until I realized I had eleven (Louis XIV was originally on my list). Anyhow let’s go forth and gain a little insight into the musical likings of a man named John.
The Best Little Secrets Are Kept by Louis XIV
Broken Boy Soldiers by The Raconteurs
Fever to Tell by Yeah Yeah Yeahs
X&Y by Coldplay
Sam’s Town by The Killers
10. Jet – Get Born (2003)
A fan from the first single, nothing rocked quite like Get Born upon it’s debut. Definitely an influence on my music, Jet brought back classic rock fundamentals on this raw and bluesy debut. Nic Cester’s scratchy howls give it a real punch and the songs, although strangely familiar are all pretty solid. I mean The Defenestrators covered two of their songs, that’s gotta count for something.
9. Franz Ferdinand – Franz Ferdinand (2004)
What a great debut from this swinging Glasgow quartet complete with the instant modern rock staple “Take Me Out”. I’m all about every single track, from their catchy riffs to discoesque bass lines and drum beats. There’s a great dynamic between front-man Alex Kapranos and guitarist Nick McCarthy, playing off each other and singing together, makes a hell of a live show (just watch out for charging fat guys) This is one of those acts that will probably never live up to their debut but boy, what a debut.
8. Vampire Weekend – Vampire Weekend (2008)
Gotta dig this hip preppy quartet which was probably my most listened to album of 2008. Inventive “look how smart I am” lyrics with some great rhythms behind em’ and simplistic yet entertaining arrangements. It’s the perfect album to pump up while strolling around a college campus. I have not a single complaint here and am thrilled to see what these guys will dish out next time round.
7. Radiohead – Hail to the Thief (2003)
Ah my first taste of Radiohead is still the sweetest. Being initially sucked in by the haunting and eerily beautiful single”There, There” my favorite all-time Radiohead song, Hail to the Thief is a dark yet moving piece from some of the most inventive guys in music. Thom Yorke’s soaring tenor and falsetto is as usual a highlight but the production and instrumentation are just out of this world. It’s an album that still gives me the chills every-time I listen to it.
6. The Vines – Winning Days (2004)
Even after seeing The Vines suck balls live in concert in 2004 I was still intrigued to check out one of their albums and I’m glad I did. Winning Days is by no means considered a notable album or was even that well received of an album but somehow I was totally absorbed by it. Going back in forth between crunchy grunge rockers like “Ride” and British Invasion style pop music seen on the title track, Winning Days is one of the most exciting and best produced albums I can recall hearing in this decade. Front-man/head songwriter Craig Nicholls although insane, truly is gifted in the studio. He’s a great singer (when he wants to be) and his songs were never better than on this trippy pop rock record. The Vines are definitely not for everyone and they’ve only gone downhill since this album but I’ll always hold this dear to my heart, after all it inspired me to write The Defenestrators classic “Wish I Were Flying.” Well that and The Monkees.
5. The Killers – Day & Age (2008)
Somehow The Killers have become my favorite band of this decade but I’m not ashamed to announce that as all three of their albums especially Day & Age have really been top notch entries into the modern rock. Synthy goodness with U2 inspired guitars and My Name is Earl on drums…. How can you lose? I’m just amazed by how many tracks on Day & Age feel like they could be singles. They got it down in the song-writing department and really excel from a production standpoint. Day & Age almost sounds like a greatest hits album and I don’t know what else to say but “I am Dancer.”
4. Kaiser Chiefs – Employment (2005)
This energetic debut from these english rockers is just too much fun. With songs powered by shouting sing-along chorus complete with hella “ohhhs!” and “La la la la la” backup vocals, The Kaiser Chiefs keep the spirit of Brit Pop alive while proudly wearing one of their greatest influences The Jam on their sleeve. But the Chiefs really kick it up a notch with some poppy numbers perfectly suited for shouting out during any sporting event, which isn’t that surprising as the group took their name from a South African soccer team.
3. Oasis – Don’t Believe the Truth (2005)
The album that made me the huge Oasis fan I am today, “Don’t Believe the Truth” was in my opinion this Brit Pop groups true comeback creatively. New members Gem Archer (Guitar) and Andy Bell (Bass) prove to be perfect editions to the band, being the first members aside from Liam or Noel to write songs, pretty damn good songs at that. Not to mention Noel and Liam are at the top of their game bringing on their trademark rock swagger in some excellent stadium rockers. Add in excellent drummer Zak Starkey (You know Ringo’s son) and you have one of Oasis’ best albums period. Seeing these guys perform this live at the Everett Events Center in 2005 was the concert going experience of my life, I was in the third freakin’ row too. It’s a damn shame that creative force Noel Gallagher quit the band this year but I have a feeling the Gallagher brothers will reunite someday.
2. The Strokes – Is This It? (2001)
The Strokes are one of those bands that just blew me away the first time I heard them. They just seemed so unique to me when I became a fan in about 2003. For some reason I just couldn’t get enough of this New York Quintet’s slick debut. Great guitar riffs and progressions all tied together with Julian Casablancas’ crooner like vocals. I even remember talking to Colin and Nancy over AIM when we all first heard it as we all listened to it at the same time… Something like that I don’t know it was awesome, good times.
1. Spoon – Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga (2007)
: It seemed like a breeze picking a favorite album for my “Best of the 90s” list but picking a favorite album of the decade your still in? It’s hard to say how time will treat certain albums but eventually I decided that my top spot would go to whatever album has most greatly affected my life and that would easily be Spoon’s triumph Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga. Buying this album was the first thing I did after I got my drivers license, I pumped it up after getting my first and current job and it’s only left my car a total of three times. I’m not sure why I have so much affection for this album but I’ll try to explain.
I was never a Spoon fan before (I’d never really even heard them) but their minimalist style somehow really spoke to me. Instantly I fell in love with Britt Daniels’ vocals and along with Jim James he’s probably my favorite vocalist currently in rock music. The compositions and arrangements are simple but so damn catchy and it all flows together perfectly. It’s probably the best album this band will ever make and has more or less become the soundtrack to my life, I don’t think I’ll ever tire of it, hell I’m gonna listen to it right now.