Not even a contest this year. Most of you who know me know that, really...I have been a total geek all my life. To say that I was excited for its May release was, without a doubt, the understatement of the millennium. I was a little concerned when I saw the trailer and wondered if JJ Abrams was going to go the "Dawson's Creek" eye candy route but all of that was washed away in the first three minutes of the film.
Star Trek was fucking spectacular.
I have been a Trek devotee since I was a child. I was happy to hear that Abrams was taking the mantle away from Rick Berman (barf) who had run the franchise into the ground. I knew there would be plenty of action and great special effects but had no idea the plot would be so compelling. I don't want to give too much away but the way they rebooted the series was tragically brilliant. All of the actors were top notch and it was so fucking enjoyable that I have seen it three times and it hasn't lost it's magic.
It is now out on DVD. Go buy it.
BEST TELEVISION SHOW
Perhaps it was because everyone I know panned it and said it got all "science fictiony" but I loved Season 5 of Lost. I admit I am a sucker for time travel but it was so much more than that. Rousing action, red hot blast of a thousand suns romance, compelling (and always head scratching) writing and a massive WTF ending made it my favorite season and the best TV show of the year.
How in the heck are they going to end the series in 2010? I can't wait.
Buy Season 5 of the DVD here.
It was a long four years since Doves released Some Cities. I think about what my life was like back when that came out...how wonderful it was in 2005....and then how equally amazing it is now in 2009 when they released Kingdom of Rust. It always blows me away that a band like Doves, whose music has terrifically depressing overtones, can manage to cheer me up. Perhaps it's because every time I listen to them I think about my friends George and Annette and how much I love them. Perhaps, too, it's because every track is mega.
From the opening chords of "Jetstream" (written as an alternative soundtrack to Blade Runner!) to the closing track "Lifelines" the album is a tome to why music is the healing elixir of the soul. "Outsiders" is just a flat out wonderful rocker... "10.03" is a heartfelt and beautiful ballad..."Winter Hill" is crush my heart wonderful for so many reasons.
Doves can wait 8 years to make another record. I don't care as long as they keep coming out as brilliant as this.
From the moment of its release in February of this year, I have had OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) about this track. I think I have played it every day of the year since that time. And from such an interesting band...
American Sam Spiegel (aka Squeak Spiegel) and Brazilian Ze Gonzales (aka Zegon) came together in 2007 to create a massively cool indie hip hop band called N.A.S.A. No, it’s not your father’s space agency but actually North America-South America…a sisterhood and brotherhood of unity that, quite frankly, our country could really use right now. All of their music reflects this mood quite wonderfully.
On February 17, 2009, the duo released The Spirit of Apollo. There are several great tracks on this record as well as a collection of guest stars like David Byrne, John Frusciante, Tom Waits, Santogold, George Clinton, and a wide variety of rappers and hip hop artists.
The track that officially became the OCD song #1 of 2009 is “Strange Enough”, featuring the late Ol’ Dirty Bastard (Wu Tang Clan), Fatlip, and the seriously stunning on several levels Karen O (lead singer of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs). What an absolute fucking corker of a song!
Virtually everyone I have played it for has downloaded it. It’s rhythm is tight. The mood is intense and the lyrics are just plain cool. “Freak show pantie lover…but I’m getting too old for this like Danny Glover” or “Wild boy cowboy entertainer…insane…Purple Rainer” are just two examples of how much fun this song is.
And Karen O’s bit is mega fucking cool. Towards the end of her third rap in the tune, which is essentially the chorus of the song, she breaks down and giggles, asking Squeak and Zegon, who were presumably in the control room while she did her part…
“Something like that, right? Is that what you want?”
To which, the reply from Fatlip is:
Yes, "Strange Enough" sure is.
So, those are my picks. What are yours?