Friday, December 11, 2009

My Favorite Albums of the '00s

Although I was able to discover a fair amount of music I enjoyed in this decade, and tried to expose myself to several heretofore unknown artists that wound up on year-end best lists, played at Lollapalooza/Pitchfork or were topping the charts in England, the '00s seems to be relatively scarce when it comes to albums or even artists that captured the public zeitgeist.

To be fair, I am not a fan of most rap or hip-hop, nor have I sought out any music by anyone from American Idol--which seems to have replaced radio & MTV as the #1 source for breaking new artists--so while albums by Eminem, Jay-Z, Kanye West, 50 Cent, Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Daughtry, etc., may have achieved some level of mass consciousness, to my perspective none were decade-defining in the vein of Sgt. Pepper's, Zeppelin IV, Purple Rain or Nevermind.

So while "mass success" and "artistic excellence" are often not synonymous, even in the ever-splintered musical world of the digital age, I feel a bit sheepish that my two favorite albums of the decade are by UK bands that barely made a dent in the US.

But having given it considerable consideration, these are the albums I enjoyed most throughout the '00s:

1. Maximo Park - A Certain Trigger
2. The Fratellis - Costello Music
3. The Killers - Sam's Town
4. Green Day - American Idiot
5. Coldplay - A Rush of Blood to the Head
6. The White Stripes - Elephant
7. The Flaming Lips - Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots
8. Bruce Springsteen - The Rising
9. The Killers - Hot Fuss
10. Dixie Chicks - Taking the Long Way

Honorable Mention:

Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
U2 - All That You Can't Leave Behind
White Stripes - White Blood Cells
Johnny Cash - American IV: The Man Comes Around
Radiohead - In Rainbows
The Kooks - Inside In, Inside Out
Zwan - Self-titled
Paul McCartney - Memory Almost Full
The Decemberists - The Crane Wife
Kings of Leon - Aha Shake Heartbreak
Longwave - The Strangest Things
The Enemy - We'll Live and Die in These Towns
Bruce Springsteen - Magic
Paul Weller - As Is Now
The Hold Steady - Boys and Girls in America
Miranda Lambert - Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
The Wildhearts - Riff After Riff
Ray Davies - Other People's Lives
The Smashing Pumpkins - Machina: The Machines of God
The National - Boxer

What did I miss? Please let me know and I'll check it out if I haven't already.

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