A post on the music-dominated blog BrooklynVegan inspired me to compile a top five of albums released so far in 2005. I can safely rank the first two:

1. The Decemberists – Picaresque
2. Bright Eyes – I’m wide awake… it’s morning

And unranked, here are the other three:

System of a Down – Mesmerize
Hot Hot Heat – Elevator
The White Stripes – Get behind me Satan

There are a few others that I played incessantly this year although their release date is pre-2005. They include in no particular order: Tilly and the Wall – Wild like children, The Arcade Fire – Funeral, Green Day – American idiot, the Garden State Soundtrack and Straylight Run – Straylight Run.

It’s even harder to compile a top five of movies because I prefer movies to records. I’ll try listing a few of the ones I saw this year (some “officially” opened in 2004): The Machinist, The Motorcycle Diaries, Batman Begins, The Power of Nightmares, Bad Education, Sin City, Life Acquatic and Downfall.

A special mention goes to March of the Penguins, a disarmingly beautiful movie that was just released.

3 Responses to “Lists”

  1. I’d have a problem with making lists based on ranks. For instance, although I perfectly agree with you on Decemberists, I have a hard time saying it ranks higher than White Stripes.

    And movies… ouch. For 2004-2005, the ones you mentioned, yes, but what about Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Stage Beauty, Love Song for Bobby Long, The Woodsman, The Assassination of Richard Nixon, what about Ray, what about the recent Cinderella Man?!… Ranking is tough. Impossible, even.

  2. I like the Decemberists fine, am enjoying the Fountains of Wayne double album bsides/rarities collection and am listening to a cut from the new Reggie and the Full Effect non stop (have heard mixed things about the album though), but I’ve been consistently disappointed this year. I’d say in addition to the Decemberists, the new Garbage and Ben Folds are both good, not great (Folds’ is a brilliant record, but I need shout-along-hooks, not ballads from Folds at this point in my life).

    So here are my top 5 disappointments:

    5) Foo Fighters- In Your Honor- conceptual double album with iconic artwork. Unfortunately, only one great track out of the whole set (DOA)
    4) Goldfinger- Disconnection Notice- 2 decent tracks, but the rest is neither fun nor relevan
    3) Reel Big Fish- We’re not happy until your happy. Neither ska nor punk, RBF serve up a forgettable middle-of-the-road rock album with horn licks.
    2) Billy Corgan- The Future Embrace- his egoism is astounding
    1) Mike Doughty- Haughty Melodic. More techno/electronica, drum and bass, Mike. Decent songs are savaged by Dave Matthewsesque productions.

    The good news is these disappointments have brought me back to some of my favorite records from high school- Mellon Collie (Pumpkins), Colour and the Shape (Foo) El Oso (Soul Coughing), Hang-Ups (Goldfinger), etc.

    My cousin says my problem is I’m still following bands from 10 years ago. True, but the Decemberists, while a good listen, doesn’t bring me as much joy as any of those albums did.

    (the Reggie song is hot though)

  3. The Machinist? Really?

    As for rediscovering albums…While writing my senior thesis, I decided to listen to pretty much every CD I own that I can still stand.

    Some of them weren’t as good as I remember. Others were better. But Soul Coughing? I really think they are bad, Josh.

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