Yep, the decade isn’t even over yet, in fact it still has another year & 3 1/2 months, but we aren’t talking about “the decade” really, we are talking about the 00’s (oh how we LOVE 0’s, eh?), and yeah, it still has 3 1/2 months left and there’s still plenty of albums to be released, including a new one from last year’s favourite Islands, but fuck it, mainstays Gorilla Vs. Bear (he even got Carles from Hipster Runoff to write some “intro” for it) and Pitchfork have decided they can announce the “best of the decades” shit already, hell, even Paste has announce the best romantic comedies of the decade (huh?), well you know what……. So can I, goddammit!
First, I’d like to apologize to all the bands who’s albums are coming out later this year, well, I would apologize but you know what? You snooze, you lose. If your album is truly epic and worth consideration for “best of the decade”, you really should’ve got that shit released earlier, or at least “leaked it” to the big boys. I mean, c’mon! You know Pitchfork’s got a deadline to make!
Too all of you who WERE able to get there albums out before these list started coming up, congrats! You’re in! But, I’ll admit, waiting until 2009 to get your masterpiece out can be kinda risky. Being new & fresh can work with you or against you. “With you” in the sense that, your favourite blog might still be all hot and horny for it still when they make their list, whether or not it deserves to be on it. Take Gorillia Vs. Bear’s favourite albums list…
No. 16 is Veckatimest by Grizzly Bear, which was officially released less than 3 months ago. Not bad, really good album.
But at the same time, that album could’ve been, as we music geeks call them, a “grower”, requiring you to build a history with and really, with it already being August, who has time to let some masterpiece grow on you? Who had time to build a memories with an album, to have it be there during yoru best & worst of times, to mean something to you beyond anything the artist even remotely conceived…. Albums released this year need to be immediate masterpieces, not something that stands the test of time and lives with you! Sorry Dragonslayer, et al, and etc, you really should’ve thought this through a little bit more.
I’ll give the other sites some credit… This isn’t easy. I have a challenging enough time determining my best of the year, trying to compare albums I’ve just started loving to albums I’ve had in my ears for almost a year, is it fair to compare Andrew Bird’s Noble Beast that leaked in November of LAST YEAR to the new Islands which will only have had a month or so MAX to bounce around my cranium? Is it better or worse for an album to come out earlier or later, do the January albums risk going stale to the December albums risk getting missed? Am I just “high” on a new release? Or has it not grown on me yet?
Then… to expand it to almost 10 years worth of amazing albums? Impressive, my bloggy friends. Hats off to you guys.
When you think about it, reeeeeally think about it, how many albums were there during the 00’s? A couple hundred thousand? A million? A kabillion-trillion-zillion? According to the RIAA & Soundscan (depending on what you look at), about 27,000 – 35,000 are released per year, add in all the albums they don’t catch via self-released, obscure foreign releases, and what not, and we’ll say about 32,000 albums are, on average, “released” each year. How many different albums did you listen to over the past ten years? I mean REALLY listen to?
Hell, even if only 1,000 albums were released a year, that’s nearly 3 albums a day you need to truly evaluate. Yeah, sure, most the albums are absolute crap to you and me, but there are thousands & thousands of good ones, and a shit ton of REALLY REALLY good ones! How do you grade them, rank them, make sure you really got it right, missed no one of consequence?
To help demonstrate, I built a chart, TSURURADIO Fig. 1:
This graph represents the quantity of albums in the 00’s to the subjective level of awesomeness of those albums. To make sure anyone and everyone can follow along with what is “awesome” I used the 3 stages of Van Halen as examples. Note, the vast majority of the albums from the 00’s (and really this is for every year, decade, century, etc), are craptacular i.e Van Halen with Gary Cherone. A good chunk of the albums are good, not great, but definitely enjoyable, like Van “Hagar”.
As we approach Fucking Awesome, aka the original Van Halen, sure the number of albums decreases, but you know what? 1% of 320,000 is still 3,200 albums. But hell, even if the numbers are all wrong and there were only 100 “Van Halen” albums in the past decade, how do you rank those? How do you decide who gets number 17 and who gets 18?
No clue, and honestly, I couldn’t do it. I’d be a lying sack o’ shit if I told you that Funeral was one notch better than Crane Wife, or whatever, because it depends on the day, my mood, the weather, what I’m doing, who I’m with, etc, etc, etc. Hell, for 2009, my top 5 has rotated around more than a toddler on a Sit & Spin!
So again… hats off to ya fellas. I’m starting to see why you didn’t wait for the 00’s to be over, who needs another couple hundred albums to consider?? Ugh.
Much will be said about the choices these music sites make, “dude, where’s X?”, “no way man, how is Y better than Z”?, “oh, you just threw in W to get indie-cred-points”, “rap?” and so on and so on. I doubt you’ll see much by way of “mainstream” music, maybe a few token ones thrown in on the large lists to make sure they seem like they were being fair, that kinda thing (after all, making lists like this IS a political process of sorts). But that’s the point right? Make a list, start a discussion, stir things up a little, get people (like me) talking about it and then in a few months when you hear that new album by So & So or that album your buddy just gave you from this obscure band from 2002, you can go kick yourself (publicly or in private, depends on your personality) and ponder what could’ve been.
But anyways, I AM blogger, a music blogger to boot (-ish), and they say, “when in Rome, do as the Romans do”, I quasi-did then, and I quasi-will now. But, instead of some made-up list, I’ve decided to skip all the bullshit and just announce what is THE GREATEST ALBUM OF THE 00’S!!! Yep, going balls to the walls, baby, fuck these list, fuck all the bullshit, let’s just call it like I sees it, and now it’s time to present it!
Waaaaait for it…..
Here we go!
Should we go with…
Nah, let’s do…
Wait, did’nt like that one song…
Ooo! I know! Eeny-meeny-miny-moe…
My mother told me to pick the very best one…
Well, what WOULD Jesus do?
For a Klondike Bar… HA!
Oh wait, getting distracted, where we’re we?
Oh yeah, best of the “decade”…
Shake the magic 8-ball for verification…
Oh fuck it, I’m listening to it now, so let’s go that…
TSURURADIO’SGREATEST ALBUM OF THE 00’S!!!!
HAZARDS OF LOVE by THE DECEMBERISTS
2. “The Hazards of Love 1 (The Prettiest Whistles Won’t Wrestle the Thistles Undone)”
3. “A Bower Scene”
4. “Won’t Want for Love (Margaret in the Taiga)”
5. “The Hazards of Love 2 (Wager All)”
6. “The Queen’s Approach”
7. “Isn’t It a Lovely Night?”
8. “The Wanting Comes in Waves/Repaid”
9. “An Interlude”
10. “The Rake’s Song”
11. “The Abduction of Margaret”
12. “The Queen’s Rebuke/The Crossing”
13. “Annan Water”
14. “Margaret in Captivity”
15. “The Hazards of Love 3 (Revenge!)”
16. “The Wanting Comes in Waves (Reprise)”
17. “The Hazards of Love 4 (The Drowned)”
Congratulations Decemberists, you win!!! Your award, my love, is in the mail, metaphorically. So keep checking your figurative heart-mailbox (just hope I got the postage right).
That’s it! So, until next decade, or year, or week or tomorrow…. Cheers!
OH, by the way! Today is your LAST DAY to get your “Dirty” Photo Entries in for our contest! Our winner will be announced, along with a very special mixtape presentation, tomorrow!!!!! HURRY!!
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Edit (later that day) —- You know, I was just thinking. I probably should’ve built my best of the year before deciding on a best of the decade, eh? Makes sense. How can one evaluate a whole decade without evaluating the last year of that 10 year clumping? Oh well… maybe next decade.