It was difficult to decide what to write about for my 2000th post. I decided to do a list of the best albums that have come out since I launched this blog in the fall of 2007. Some of my friends have a laugh over the fact that so many of the artists I listen to are "old" (which is silly and ageist), but in fact there are some newer artists, some who are celebrated by the hipster elite. In fact, one of these albums topped the Village Voice "Pazz & Jop" album list!
favorite album of 2010, and also my favorite album of the past few years. The DBTs is a band I was hardly aware of until a few years ago. It was basically listening to SiriusXM's Outlaw Country that turned me on to them, and for that, I'm grateful. Once I started hearing a couple of songs, I started buying albums, and then attending concerts. I'm in: I'm a fan for life. The Big To-Do is one of their best albums. If my peers ask me about "new" bands to get into, I'll mention the Truckers. They're not new, but they're new to a lot of people.
favorite album of 2009. It's amazing to me that Dylan still is adding to his unbelievable body of work. He was 68 (I think) when this came out. How many 68 year olds are still putting out classic LPs? Well, I guess you can't compare anyone to Dylan anyway. The songs on this album were incredible - instead of writing them all on his own (as he usually does), he collaborated with Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter. But the secret sauce here is in the musicians he assembled for this record: Heartbreakers guitarist Mike Campbell and Los Lobos multi-instrumentalist David Hildago.
as relevant as he ever was, and he drove that point home with this album. By this point, he'd driven away lots of his politically conservative fans, and goes hard at the bu$h administration. And he did it with some of his best songs ever. I love "Long Walk Home." The line "The flag flying over the courthouse, certain things are set in stone: who we are, what we'll do and what we won't." The song has one of Clarence Clemons' last great sax performances. Actually, the live version is even better than the one on Magic, it has great vocal performances by Steve Van Zandt and Nils Lofgren. On the same album is "Girls In The Summer Clothes" which is pretty self-explanatory. This was around the time that lots of younger acts, from Arcade Fire to Gaslight Anthem, were citing Bruce as a major audience. For a long time you didn't have young artists referencing Bruce that much, around Magic that started to change.
My favorite album of 2007. It was an album that they recorded in Paris over a (I think) two week period while touring for 2006's Both Sides Of The Gun, but it it totally a different album. The Innocent Criminals were really gelling as a band at this point... so it's weird that this is the last that we've heard of them (Ben has recorded either with Relentless7 or Fistful Of Mercy since then). I really hope we hear more from Ben and The Innocent Criminals in the future (I love R7 and Fistful though). The album has a laid back but really soulful sound. It's one of my favorites by Ben (who is one of my favorite artists ever).