Top 10 Albums of 2001
1. Clinic "Internal Wrangler"
2. Fugazi "The Argument"
3. Hefner "We Love the City"
4. Les Savy Fav "Go Forth"
5. Ted Leo/Pharmacists "The Tyranny of Distance"
6. The White Stripes "White Blood Cells"
7. The Strokes "Is This It"
8. Q And Not U "No Kill No Beep Beep"
9. The Shins "Oh, Inverted World"
10. The Pattern "Immediately"
[listed in no particular order]
Strike Anywhere "Change is A Sound"
Comets On Fire "s/t"
The Flaming Stars "Ginmill Prefume"
Kill Creek "Colors of Home"
The Strokes "Is This It"
Planes Mistaken For Stars "Fuck With Fire"
Hood "Cold House"
The Mercury Program "All the Suits Began to Fall Off"
Lost Kids "Belle Isle Is On Fire"
artist, Skyscraper Magazine / Drummer, Books Lie
[listed in no particular order]
Fugazi "The Argument"
Unwound "Leaves Turn Inside You"
Converge "Jane Doe"
Pretty Girls Make Graves EP
From Ahes Rise "Silence"
Excelsior "Can We Get Some Satisfaction...?" EP
The Scarlet Letter (in general)
Oil "Destination Delta"
Dick Army "Unsafe At Any Volume"
0. Nuggets II: Original Artyfacts From the British
Empire and Beyond
1. Radiohead "Amnesiac"
2. Serge Gainsbourg "Histoire de Melody Nelson" (reissue)
3. Mercury Rev "All is Dream"
4. Clinic "Internal Wrangler"
5. Destroyer "Streethawk: A Seduction"
6. Blo "Phases 1972-1982" (reissue)
7. Goldfrapp "Felt Mountain"
8. Gorky's Zygotic Mynci "How I long to feel that summer
in my heart"
9. Rockfour "Another Beginning"
10. Boyd Rice "The Way I Feel" (late late late 2000
11. Bjork "Vespertine"
12. Alicia Keys "Songs in A Minor"
13. James "Pleased to Meet You"
14. Claire Danes' voice echoing off the hills of New Haven
15. Amores Perros/The Royal Tenenbaums (soundtracks)
1. Wilco "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot"
How ironic that in the post-dot-com-meltdown era the album of
the year would be available only on the web, directly from the
artists themselves. Deemed too uncommercial and shelved by Reprise,
YHF risked languishing in major label limbo hell indefinitely
until the band bought back the rights to the album and immediately
began streaming it for free over the internet. Incorporating
non-traditional sounds and avant-garde techniques into any kind
of roots-oriented music makes for easy criticism; it's dangerous
territory because it usually doesn't work. Somehow, Wilco manages
to make this juxtaposition seem effortless and obvious while
crafting a majestic and beautiful record which, with all its
song-as-soundscape leanings, never once loses its sense of melody
nor tries to artistically coast on "texture." It is
a revelation, plain and simple, successful in all of its vast
ambitions, and one for the ages. Official CD release in spring
2. Ryan Adams "Gold"
Saddled with all the high expectations and hype that accompany
being the Next (circle one:) Dylan/Springsteen/Parsons/Earle/Westerberg,
this cocky sonofabitch writes songs like there's no tomorrow,
nearly all of them are good, many are brilliant. Sure, there's
some filler here that could be trimmed, and yeah, nearly every
song recalls a different '70s rock band almost to the point
of copyright infringement, but I fell in love with Gold, warts
and all, and probably listened to it more than any other record
3. Bob Dylan "Love and Theft"
The old bard still got it-after stumbling incoherently out of
the '80s and fidgeting nervously for the early '90s, Dylan started
making great records again, and this is the best of the batch.
Only time will tell, but this could be the equal of Highway
61 or Blood on the Tracks-the sharp wit and poignant storytelling
are back, alongside quite possibly the most exciting band Dylan
has ever fielded.
4. Spiritualized "Let It Come Down"
One of the best and most consistent acts of the '90s begins
the new century with a sweeping orchestral transcendence of
Rock, fueled by gospel and soul influences run through a Brit-pop
filter. Both similar to and unique among their other three albums;
as always, Spiritualized makes the best music to take drugs
5. Planes Mistaken For Stars "Fuck With Fire"
Ferocious and guitar-heavy, takes punk rock to task for its
stagnancy and play-it- safe mentality. Lizard-and-Sabbath low
end theory meets Rites of Spring crunch and conviction.
6. Idlewild "100 Broken Windows"
Like if Oasis were, say, half as good as the Beatles, and had
some balls. This just rocks, and the songs stick in your head.
7. Radiohead "Amnesiac"
The pre-release mega-hype and anticipation that accompanied
Kid A had disappeared, allowing this record to slip in under
the radar of some, dismissed as electro-wannabe knob-twiddling
by others. There are songs here, people, some of the most interesting,
intelligent, and emotionally rich of the year.
8. Lucinda Williams "Essence"
Fabulously talented alt-country matriarch puts on hold the folksy
storytelling style which won her critical acclaim in favor of
matters closer to the heart. A stark, brooding, confessional
song cycle, a setting so intimate you feel as if you're in her
very bedroom, where she serenades you with that sultry Southern
9. Gillian Welch "Time (The Revelator)"
Timeless and timely, transcendent, achingly beautiful, and utterly
unique. Proof that folk music can still be important.
10. The Strokes "Is This It"
It's hipper to hate these guys than to like them-the other reason
to like them besides the fact that they're actually a good band.
11. Buddy & Julie Miller "s/t"
12. Owls "s/t"
13. Jay Farrar "Sebastopol"
14. Mercury Rev "All Is Dream"
15. Blind Boys of Alabama Spirit of the Century"
16. Macy Gray "The Id"
17. Fugazi "The Argument"
18. The White Stripes "White Blood Cells"
19. Bjork "Vespertine"
20. Scott Miller & The Commonwealth "Thus Always to
Favorite Reissues of 2001:
Shuggie Otis "Inspiration Information"
Soft Boys "Underwater Moonlight"
International Submarine Band "Safe at Home"