It goes without saying that it has been quite a phenomenal year for music. Just as you get one great record, another one or two end up hitting the iTunes Library. It doesn't matter the genre or "type" of music you're generally into, because across the board, the sounds have been pleasant for most. Later this week, we, the mighty staff of AP.net, will be revealing our mid-year top ten list per each staffer. As hard as it's been on us to just type out ten albums (when there's more like 30 thus far), there's still a-whole-nother six months to the year. So here's five albums I'm still salivating on getting my ears wrapped around.
1) Portugal. The Man's In the Mountain In the Cloud (Atlantic) - While I've heard all the clips, the word is I won't be receiving an advance until after we celebrate our country's independence. Sitting down with a Portugal. The Man album is an experience. You need it to be in stereo and you need no other distractions. I foresee this being their biggest sounding record to date, and will hopefully pull the rest of the world missing out from underneath their rocks.
2) La Dispute's TBA (No Sleep) - It's funny to see some users on here fight back and forth between how much they either love or hate the band, but one thing is for sure, they're certainly doing their all to produce some of the best post-hardcore music out there today. There's an intricacy and method to La Dispute's last album, and I only can predict that it was pushed further in the studio this time around.
3) Thrice's Major/Minor (Vagrant) - Beggars was arguably one of the most controversial releases of the band's fan base to date. As a long time fan, it even took a couple of listens to sink in. That said, I see Major/Minor as another push for the four piece this year. Really, every release has had its own sound and has taken a shift in production and mood overall. Why should this one be any different? It shouldn't, and it should keep us as fans waiting impatiently for the result.
4) Zechs Marquise's Getting Paid (Rodriguez-Lopez Productions) - After seeing the guys' performance at this year's SXSW, I'm still floored. It was simply breathtaking, and I don't expect much less with the band's sophomore release. I'm wondering if it will be more focused or less focused or just a shit storm of jam. Either way, I'm going to let it engulf me once I get a listen to it.
5) Russian Circles's TBA (Sargent House) - Russian Circles might easily my favorite instrumental band out there. Heavy, lush, crushing, atmospheric and never boring. I just can't wait to hear this damn thing.
I've been pretty satisfied with this past year's music selection. Many of you regular readers of this blog know I'm quite obsessed with knowing what the next decade will bring us. Even if it's crap for the first few years, I think enough has come out to tide me over until the new millennium Nirvana comes our way.
Brokencyde was close, but barely.
While the only thing I'm really looking forward to is that Glassjaw EP I was promised sometime back, I asked staffer Drew Beringer to give us his top five anticipated to close the year out. If you browse the review section, you can see that Drew usually has his hands full with a quite a bit of music.
Here are five albums that are holding him back from creating his end of the year list.
1. Tegan & Sara - Sainthood (Sire/Vapor; October 27th): My favorite band returns later this month with the hotly anticipated Sainthood. Featuring production from Death Cab for Cutie's Chris Walla, the band's sixth album looks to continue where 2007's The Con left off. If its first single "Hell" is any indication of the overall vibe of Sainthood, then you can expect it in many top 10's at the end of 2009.
2. Clipse - Till The Casket Drops (Re-Up Records/Columbia ;November 10th): Brothers Pusha T and Malice aren't angry anymore. After getting their anger off their chests with 2006's classic Hell Hath No Fury, the duo is back with a new label and a new attitude. Singles "I'm Good," and "Kinda Like A Big Deal" prove that you can't be pissed forever, and it's time for the Thornton brothers to shine.
3. Wale - Attention Deficit (Interscope; November 10th): The D.C. rapper is ready to unleash his debut on the hip hop world after creating buzz with his stellar mixtapes. Featuring guest spots from Lady Gaga, Dr. Dre, Gucci Mane, and others, Wale aims to put D.C. back on the map.
4. Say Anything - Say Anything (RCA, November 3rd): With his third major label album to release in a few weeks, Max Bemis continues to offer commentary on his life, only this time it's a bit more positive. One is for certain, Bemis and company will continue to push the envelope.
5. John Mayer - Battle Studies (Columbia; November 17th): One of the best live guitarists of my lifetime, John Mayer is one of the brightest minds in the music industry. Who knows which influences Mayer will pick out of his hat this time around on his upcoming Battle Studies, but one can bet he'll continue to beautifully fuse pop, jazz, and rock into another fantastic record.