TSURURADIO Vinyl Preservation Society Presents… The 16 Most Awesomest Society-Rific Albums Of 2008 with Accompanying Mixtape!!!

Photography by Tsuru

Well, the results are in, the points have been tallied, and it’s time to FINALLY put this year to rest before Baby and I head up to Canada for a nice long weekend of family, wine, food, and of course, record & book shopping…. Yay!

What? You are confused again? You thought we already did a Best Of 2008?

Well, you are right, BUT any vaguely casual fan who’s paying attention even with only about, say, 0.1% of their brain knows that TSURURADIO, i.e. me, is only one branch in the Tsuru Family Tree… As I’ve been not-so-subtly reminding everyone, rather repeatedly, down in our beloved society of music freaks and geeks, we’ve been receiving & then compiling everyone’s (who was willing to submit) top ten best albums list and assigning point values to the list, where your #1 will get 10 points, #2 gets 9 points, etc, etc… A fun way to figure out who really is the collective shit!

Well, after a few weeks, we got ourselves a shit ton of lists with over 153 artists represented! This meant I had a big ass spreadsheet to build (I do love Excel) and started crunching some numbers. A bunch of typing, sorting, punchcard-making, counting, sueing, recounting again, appealing, and finally accepting the numbers, it is time to share with you, our humble readers, our dear receivers of the music and opinions spread out on the internet, like Paris Hilton at a Herpes Convention, the results.

But first, let me say a big hardy “thank you” to our incredible members who made this year way better than any of us could have expected. We have the best & loveliest people on our board, ego-free, fun, and always willing to help get music to each other’s ears. You are all part of the Tsuru Family! I love you guys…

Second, why 16 albums? Because, my friends, as always, the music rules the list size, not the other way around. Our “best of” lists are as big as the mixtape calls for… If you want nice even numbers, go to pitchfork or something.

And now, let’s get on with the results! As the…

(drum roll please)

TSURURADIO Vinyl Preservation Society Presents… The 16 Most Awesomest Society-Rific Albums Of 2008 with Accompanying Mixtape!!!

First up…

Nos. 14, 15, & 16, A Three Way Tie between:

Rural Alberta Advantage – Hometowns

Born Ruffians – Red, Yellow, And Blue

Cloud Cult – Feel Good Ghosts (Tea-Partying Through Tornadoes)

I’m so happy Rural Alberta Advantage squeezed in there, such an amazing debut album, as well as the wonderful Cloud Cult release, both of which made it on my Top 18, hell, Top 5! The new guy is Born Ruffians, with their intelligent Canuck pop, it’s surprising it didn’t wind up on my iPod for longer than it did. Oh well, I can’t catch everything….

Nos. 12 & 13, A Two Way Tie between:

M83 – Saturdays = Youth
Why? – Alopecia

Two who I didn’t really get into made their way onto the lists of a quite a few members and why not? M83’s beautiful pop and Why?’s rhythmic mastery mixed with interesting talk/singing are hard to ignore. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some black & puerto rican porno to go look at. Mmm… teh sexors.

No. 11 Department Of Eagles – In Ear Park

I battled including this one on my own list, stunning album of psychedelic-like folk-like something something. Very original, very beautiful, and the one album I sometimes regret not putting on my top list…. already.

No. 10 Horse Feathers – House With No Home

Stark, sleepy, quiet, just like the album cover. A beautiful album that deserves more devoted listenings. I’m not sure what it was about this year that resulted in all these mountain cabin, secluded-like albums? But I’m rather thankful for them..

No. 9 Margot & The Nuclear So & So’s – Animal/Not Animal

Such a wonderful album(s), Animal/Not Animal, orchestral swaying pop…. Listen to either, listen to both, whatever the issues, an album I fear will be over looked this year was caught by our team down in the society….

No. 8 Shearwater – Rook

Ah, Shearwater. Great album, intense music, but really…. that voice. Quite haunting, almost too much so at times it seems, well not for my crew. They soaked this up and gave it a #8 spot! It’s hard to find a song on the album that’s not moving, not captivating….

No. 7 Portishead – Third

Portishead is BACK and on a lot of lists, not just the society’s but all over the damn place. I, for one, didn’t get into it, but if there’s one thing we should all know about music by now… there are no wrong answers, no wrong obsessions, to each his own and we all should celebrate in that, well, except maybe any of you who bought the Paris Hilton album, you may say it was a joke, but for shame on you…….. for shame.

No. 6 Sigur Rós – Með Suð Í Eyrum Við Spilum Endalaust

Everyone’s favourite Icelandic fake language singing near-prog-rock, more like epic rock/pop made another transcedental album, another album from a different planet, another album that just seems to come from a place we can only dream to visit.

No. 5 Deerhunter – Microcastle

Ah, a critical darling this year, Deerhunter’s Microcastle is popping up like zits on a teenager the night before the big dance, and it’s worth the praise! Definitely in my personal top something for the year, this one was also given the TVPS Seal of approval and a #5 spot on our coveted list.

No. 4 Vampire Weekend – Vampire Weekend

Pompous Northeastern rich boys? Possibly, but Vampire Weekend took their Paul Simon like hooks straight to the smiles of a lot of people this year, our society included. Now, they might have been biased by the vinyl rip that made it’s way in the Society Hall, but I’d like to think I had no sway in the matter, and Vampire Weekends collection of pop songs with, what feels like, inside jokes is just adored by most anyone who hears it.

No. 3. Wolf Parade – At Mount Zoomer

Mmm….. My #1, #2, and ultimately #3 album of the year. Indie-prog at it’s best this year…. Can’t WAIT to hear what Krug & Dan have up their sleeve of ’09, as I firmly believe that the individual parts are better than their sum. Now let’s bring on Face Control already!

No. 2 Fleet Foxes – Fleet Foxes

Reeeed squirrel in the morrrrnin’…. reeeed squirrel in the eeeevenin’, reeeeed squirrel in the morrrrnin’, I’m comin’ to take you hoooome.

Yeah, right after our little accapella opening I and many many others were hooked. If you haven’t heard this album, go see what you are missing. Seriously. And be transported to a different time, a different place…….

And finally… our number, most highly ranked album for the entire society is…

No. 1 Bon Iver – For Emma, Forever Ago

Come on skinny looove…..
One of the most blogged about bands this year proves it’s not just hype, strumming and singing his falsetto right into our hearts, souls, and to #1 on our compiled and amassed list. I hope you aren’t sick of him yet because it looks like he’s gonna be around for a while. Though… I’d hate to have to follow THIS album up. But go on a longer, more secluded hike there Mr. Iver and Co. and you’ll be right as rain. Regardless, there’s no denying the beauty of this album, and it certainly didn’t get missed by the society.


Not too shabby, eh? A few familiar albums, a couple I never listened to, and a few surprises! Wasn’t that fun? Who needs Pitchfork? We got you covered. But I know what you are thinking….. where’s the mixtape? Man, I spoil you guys, don’t I? Fine… here you go, just don’t let it spoil your dinner as the…

(what the hell, give me another drum roll please!)

TSURURADIO Vinyl Preservation Society Presents… The 16 Most Awesomest Society-Rific Albums Of 2008 Mixtape!!!
(Full Zip)

01 M83 – Graveyard Girl
02 Vampire Weekend – Oxford Comma
03 The Rural Alberta Advantage – Edmonton
04 Wolf Parade – Fine Young Cannibals
05 Why? – These Few Presidents
06 Shearwater – The Snow Leopard
07 Born Ruffians – Foxes Mate For Life
08 Bon Iver – For Emma
09 Deerhunter – Saved By Old Times
10 Portishead – Plastic
11 Margot And the Nuclear So and Sos – Hello Vagina
12 Fleet Foxes – Tiger Mountain Peasant Song
13 Department Of Eagles – Waves of Rye
14 Horse Feathers – Helen
15 Sigur Rós – Festival
16 Cloud Cult – Love You All
17 Bon Iver (Reprise) – Flume

That’s it! Bon Iver, your trophy & prize money (well, really more a coupon… to Applebees and the trophy? Well, to be honest, it’s really just a paper clip I found, but it’s fancy bcause it’s red!) are in the mail. Now, let’s call this year done. I mean yeah, I’m sure if a 2008 album comes my way, and I like it, I’ll talk about it or whatever, but as far as quantifying this year, thinking about who or what is my favourite, we are……. check, done. So, if you’ll excuse us, Baby & I need to hop in the car for about 7 or so hours and make our way to the motherland. You, on the other hand, need to go show all these artists all your love, monetarily speaking, here and here and here’s to an amazing 2009!!!

Cheers, happy holidays & whatnot, and we’ll be seein’ you on Monday if, as I always say, the good lards a-willin’ and the creeks don’t rise, so until then…


2 comments for “TSURURADIO Vinyl Preservation Society Presents… The 16 Most Awesomest Society-Rific Albums Of 2008 with Accompanying Mixtape!!!

  1. michael
    December 25, 2008 at 4:39 PM

    very good list
    intelligent rock music
    no kanye
    no lo-fi (i hate it)
    unfortunately no dodos
    thanks for your blog
    wish you and your baby a nice holiday

  2. June 15, 2011 at 2:26 AM

    Amazing blog! Do you have any recommendations for aspiring writers? I’m planning to start my own site soon but I’m a little lost on everything. Would you suggest starting with a free platform like WordPress or go for a paid option? There are so many options out there that I’m completely overwhelmed .. Any tips? Appreciate it!

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