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Books I Read in 2009
03/09/10 at 02:26 PM by Adrian Villagomez
I'm surprised I haven't done this before, but I thought it would be cool to take note of the books I read in one year. I kept track of everything I read in 2009 (reserving a special space on one of my bookshelves) so I could compile the titles in 2010. Since I graduated at the end of 2008, I was somewhat burned out on reading, so this list isn't too grand. Some of these works are old favorites of mine that I decided to revisit (including Animal Farm and Lord of the Flies).


Margaret Atwood - The Handmaid's Tale
Ray Bradbury - Fahrenheit 451
William Golding - Lord of the Flies
Lois Lowry - The Giver
George Lucas - Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
Richard Matheson - I Am Legend
Cormac McCarthy - The Road
Walter M. Miller, Jr. - A Canticle for Leibowitz
George Orwell - Animal Farm
Georges Simenon - The Blue Room

Graphic Novels

Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming - Powers Vol. 1: Who Killed Retro Girl?
John Byrne - Superman & Batman: Generations, An Imaginary Tale
Peter David, Dale Keown, and George Perez - Hulk: The End
Robert Kirkman and Phil Hester - The Irredeemable Ant-Man
Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons - Watchmen
Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely - JLA: Earth 2
Kevin Smith and Joe Quesada - Daredevil Visionaries Vol. 1: Guardian Devil
Various Artists - Star Wars Omnibus: Tales of the Jedi, Vol. 1
Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra - Y: The Last Man, Vols. 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5

Short Story Collections / ETC

Rosario Ferre - The Youngest Doll
Harvard Student Agencies Inc. - The Official Harvard Student Agencies Bartending Course
Ana Menendez - In Cuba I Was a German Shepherd
Maurice Sendak - Where the Wild Things Are
Jerry Seinfeld - Seinlanguage
Luisa Valenzuela - Symmetries
Jeanette Winterson - Art Objects: Essays on Ecstasy and Effrontery
Tags: 2009, books i read
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2009: A Year in Review
01/16/10 at 01:00 AM by Adrian Villagomez

2009: A Year in Review

Put aside that Star Trek Blu-ray, it's time to reflect on the great music that was released in 2009. I think my list of top albums this year is pretty varied, so maybe it'll help you discover some new music that tickles your fancy. Next year I hope to listen to more hip-hop (new and old) and tons of Beatles songs (want!). If you think of an album from 2009 that is sorely missing from my list, let me know.

Top Albums

30. Alex Day - Parrot Stories
29. Andrew Bird - Noble Beast
28. Weezer - Raditude
27. Fake Problems - It's Great to Be Alive
26. The Decemberists - The Hazards of Love
25. Clipse - Til the Casket Drops
24. John Nolan - Height
23. We Were Promised Jetpacks - These Four Walls
22. Mansions - New Best Friends
21. The Swellers - Ups and Downsizing
20. As Tall As Lions - You Can't Take It with You
19. Third Eye Blind - Ursa Major
18. Little Boots - Hands
17. Dinosaur Jr. - Farm
16. Ace Enders and a Million Different People - When I Hit the Ground
15. Wale - Attention Deficit
14. Heartsounds - Until We Surrender
13. Jay-Z - The Blueprint 3
12. Paramore - brand new eyes
11. All the Day Holiday - The Things We've Grown to Love
10. Brand New - Daisy
09. Portugal. The Man - The Satanic Satanist
08. Green Day - 21st Century Breakdown
07. mewithoutYou - It's All Crazy! It's All False! It's All a Dream! It's Alright
06. Manchester Orchestra - Mean Everything to Nothing
05. Audrye Sessions - Audrye Sessions
04. Nightmare of You - Infomaniac
03. P.O.S. - Never Better
02. fun. - Aim and Ignite
01. Kevin Devine - Brother's Blood

Top AlbumsKevin Devine, where have you been all my life? Sure, I knew your duet "Cotton Crush" with Jesse Lacey was rockin' stuff, but I did not expect Brother's Blood to be my best musical experience of 2009. And why isn't everyone gushing over how very impressive Audrye Sessions' Radiohead/Muse inspired debut album is? Spread the word! I could blab about all these albums, but I'll save you the time - spend it listening to this excellent music instead.

Top Tracks

15. As Tall As Lions - "Is This Tomorrow?"
14. The Swellers - "Do You Feel Better Yet"
13. Paramore - "Where the Lines Overlap"
12. Portugal. The Man - "Do You"
11. Nightmare of You - "Hey Sweetheart"
10. Jay-Z - "Run This Town"
09. fun. - "Be Calm"
08. Brand New - "Bought a Bride"
07. Audrye Sessions - "Dust and Bones"
06. Manchester Orchestra - "Pride"
05. Third Eye Blind - "About to Break"

Third Eye Blind - "About to Break"I was walking alone on the ocean.
I felt a fever burning up all I am.
'Cause if there's one thing that I can't stand,
It's standing next to my fellow man.

04. Wale - "Shades"

Wale - "Shades"From a light skin girl to a dark skin brotha,
Shade doesn't matter, heart makes the lover.
Boy, you so beautiful.

03. Kevin Devine - "All of Everything, Erased" (this spot could be taken by any of the first five tracks off Brother's Blood)

Kevin Devine - "All of Everything, Erased"I prayed for providence,
God said, "Don't pray no more.
You went and made your mess.
Keep your blame off my feet."

02. P.O.S. - "Low Light Low Life"

P.O.S. - "Low Light Low Life"It seems we've fallen out of favor, the era ended on us.
Now the money's just paper, the houses all haunted.
We had a hell of a run before it caught up.
For all the corners cut we got an avalanche of sawdust.

01. mewithoutYou - "A Stick, a Carrot & String"

mewithoutYou - "A Stick, a Carrot & String"The horse's hay beneath his head
Our Lord was born to a manger bed,
That all whose wells run dry
Could drink of his supply.

Artist of the Year


Artist of the YearWith one of the best albums of the year (featuring some of the most creative limited edition packaging I've ever seen), P.O.S. breathed new life into our scene in 2009. He earned himself a new group of loyal fans, and we're all looking forward to new music from the punk rocker turned hip-hopper.

Best New Band


Best New BandWipe those tears, fans of The Format, because fun. is pretty much the sweetest musical candy you could ask for. With its catchy pop hits ("All the Pretty Girls", "Walking the Dog") and heartfelt ditties ("Light a Roman Candle With Me", "The Gambler"), fun. came roaring out of the gates with Aim and Ignite. I'm thinking fun.'s freshman album is better than either of The Format's albums.

Most Disappointing Album

Say Anything - Say Anything

Most Disappointing Album...Is a Real Boy is full of wit, vulgarity, and young honesty; some may dub it a modern classic. In Defense of the Genre overextends its reach, but at least it hits its fair share of high points. Say Anything is simply forgettable. We should all be glad that Max Bemis is happily married, but his latest album is a pretty sad effort.

I Don't Get It

The Dangerous Summer - Reach For the Sun

I Don't Get ItI bought Reach For the Sun because Julia Conny seemed to really dig The Dangerous Summer. I have to admit, I don't see what the fuss is about. The album isn't bad, it just isn't very creative or special. The lyrics don't do much for me at all.

Releases I Rocked in 2009 That Weren't Released in 2009

AFI - Sing the Sorrow
Alkaline Trio - Crimson
The Beach Boys - Pet Sounds
The Beautiful Mistake - This Is Who You Are
The Benjamins - The Art of Disappointment
Bush - The Science of Things
Butch Walker - Sycamore Meadows
Cartel - Chroma
Cary Brothers - Who You Are
Coldplay - A Rush of Blood to the Head
The Early November - The Acoustic EP
Eve 6 - Eve 6
Frank Sinatra - Songs For Swingin' Lovers!
The Format - Dog Problems
The Format - Snails
Green Day - Nimrod
Gym Class Heroes - As Cruel As School Children
Incubus - Make Yourself
The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Are You Experienced?
Jimmy Eat World - Static Prevails
John Anderson - Seminole Wind
Jonathan Vassar - The Hours and the Days
Lifetime - Jersey's Best Dancers
Midtown - Save the World, Lose the Girl
Muse - Absolution
MxPx - Teenage Politics
The Narrative - Just Say Yes
Ramones - Greatest Hits
Ramones - Ramones
Saves the Day - Can't Slow Down
Various Artists - La Bamba Original Soundtrack
Weezer - The Lion and the Witch

Released I Rocked in 2009 That Weren't Released in 2009Here are the quality albums and EPs I listened to for the first time in 2009. Well, a few of them I'd heard before (Green Day - Nimrod), but for the most part they were brand new listens for me. Pet Sounds is the first MP3 album I've purchased, and it opened up a new door for me when it comes to buying music. Gotta love Amazon MP3's awesome sales.

Crazy F@&%ing Song/Video I Couldn't Help But Love

Lady Gaga - "Bad Romance"

Crazy F@&%ing Song/Video I Couldn't Help But LoveLady Gaga fascinates me. The outfits, the lyrics ("disco stick" is a hilarious euphemism), the fact that she actually sings live - what kind of pop artist does she think she is?? She's definitely an oddball, a throwback to some great showmen who came before her, namely Freddie Mercury and David Bowie. Besides all that, songs like "Bad Romance" are way too catchy not to enjoy. Electro-funk verses combined with a traditional pop hook - consider me sold. And how about that video? It's like something Tool would think up, only less frightening and with more choreography. Yes, I am a bit googoo for Gaga.

Favorite Film

(500) Days of Summer

Favorite FilmJoseph Gordon-Levitt is one of the top young actors in Hollywood (alongside such greats as Ben Foster), so it's no wonder his performance helped catapult (500) Days of Summer to such critical acclaim. It's easy to smile from ear to ear when Gordon-Levitt's character dances through the streets after spending the night with his new lover, and it's just as distressing to watch that same joyful character's heart drop. (500) Days of Summer is a story about love that breaks away from cliche, replacing it with fresh narrative technique and a real relationship to delve in. It's lovely.

Best New TV Show

Modern Family

Best New TV ShowModern Family shines using the mockumentary format made famous by The Office, and the show's writing is near perfect. Its characters are interesting, likable, and pretty hilarious. If you haven't fallen in love with this not-so-traditional sitcom yet, you don't know what you're missing. Ed O'Neill picked the perfect time to return to the forefront of television.

Historic TV Moment

The Seinfeld Reunion on Curb Your Enthusiasm

Historic TV MomentHere's something I learned in 2009: Curb Your Enthusiasm is prett-ay, prett-ay, prett-ay good. I'm a huge Seinfeld fan, so when I heard there was going to be a Seinfeld reunion on the HBO series, I knew it was time for me to become a Curb Your Enthusiasm fan. "The Seinfeld Reunion" actually extends to multiple episodes (not just one moment), and that's definitely something to be thankful for. Oh, and here's one more reason to check out Curb Your Enthusiasm: Leon Black is comedic gold.

Smiley That Should Be Renamed :adrian: in the Future

Keep Up with Me in 2010

AP.net Profile | Blog | Last.fm | Twitter


View my list from last year.

View other staff and band members' end of the year lists
Tags: absolutepunk business, aoty, best of 2009, eoty
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