Category Archives: best of 2009

Opinions Are Never Wrong

“I love music. I believe that for people who love music, the desire to share it is innate and crucial for music itself. When we find a song we love, we beckon our friends over to the turntable, we turn up the car stereo, we loan them the cd, we put it on a mixtape. We do this because music makes us feel and we want someone else to feel it too.”

So….after i posted my Top 30 Albums of 2009 last week i mentioned that i would put up a list of some of my friends opinions on the best albums of 2009. So without further ado….

My friends opinions on the Top 5 Albums of 2009 are:

GORDON
——–
1. Gui Boratto – Take My Breath Away
2. VNV Nation – Of Faith, Power And Glory
3. Moderat – Moderat
4. IAMX – The Kingdom Of Welcome Addiction
5. Major Lazer – Guns Don’t Kill People..Lazers Do

(may i also add that Gordon wanted to have the GBXperience Volume 2 in his Top 5 but i refused to allow him on the grounds that it’s a compilation and they’re not actually George ‘Unfunniest person in the World’ Bowies songs, just “remixes” he’s done…oh and it’s utter shite.

LUISA
——–
1. IAMX –  The Kingdom Of Welcome Addiction
2. Regina Spektor – Far
3. MSTRKRFT – Fist Of God
4. Florence And The Machine –  Lungs
5. Peaches – I Feel Cream

CHRIS
——
1. Fuck Buttons – Tarot Sport
2. Bloody Beetroots – Romborama
3. Vladislav Delay – Tummaa
4. Tiesto – Kaleidoscope
5. 2562 – Unbalance

AIOBFAN
————-
1. Metric – Fantasies
2. Florence And The Machine – Lungs
3. Bat For Lashes – Two Suns
4. Matt And Kim – Grand
5. Ryan Adams – Extra Cheese EP

GUS
—–
1. The Big Pink – A Brief History Of Love
2. The Horrors – Primary Colours
3. Moderat – Moderat
4. Miike Snow – Miike Snow
5. Bloody Beetroots – Romborama

SIMON
———-
1. Bloody Beetroots – Romborama
2. HEALTH – Get Color
3. Sonic Youth – The Eternal
4. The Qemists – Join The Q
5. Yello – Touch Yello

GARY
——–
1. Manic Street Preachers – Journal For Plague Lovers
2. The Baddies – Do The Job
3. Graham Coxon – The Spinning Top
4. Franz Ferdinand – Tonight
5.  Arctic Monkeys – Humbug

LISA
——
1. Temper Trap – Conditions
2. Metric – Fantasies
3. Air – Love 2
4. Florence And The Machine – Lungs
5. A Place To Bury Strangers – Exploding Head

RICHIE
———
1. The Prodigy – Invaders Must Die
2. Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Zero
3. Temper Trap – Conditions
4. Passion Pit – Manners
5. Manic Street Preachers – Journal For Plague Lovers

MORGAN
————
1. The Horrors – Primary Colours
2. Biffy Clyro – Only Revolutions
3. Dizzee Rascal – Tongue N Cheek
4. The Maccabees – Wall Of Arms
5. Noah And The Whale – The First Days Of Spring

ROMAIN
————
1. A Place To Bury Strangers – Exploding Head
2. Lightning Bolt – Earthly Delights
3. Soulsavers – Broken
4. Future Of The Left – Travels With Myself And Another
5. Them Crooked Vultures – Them Crooked Vultures

JOSH
——-
1. Isis – Wavering Radiant
2. Russian Circles – Geneva
3. Sunno)) – Monoliths And Dimensions
4. Dinosaur Jr – Farm
5. Alice In Chains – Black Gives Way To Blue

BLAKE
———
1. Andrew Weatherall – A Pox On The Pioneers
2. Yacht – See Mystery Lights
3. Bibio – Ambivalence Avenue
4. Animal Collective – Post Merriweather Pavilion
5. Nathan Fake – Hard Islands

SADIE
——–
1. The Mars Volta – Octahedron
2. The Veils – Sun Gangs
3. Mum – Sing Along To Songs You Don’t Know
4. Fever Ray –  Fever Ray
5. The Flaming Lips – Embryonic


S.I.T Wolf  X

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Top 30 Albums of 2009

Once again there were too many great albums to whittle down into a top 30 but i did it…eventually.

The list once again goes in a countdown style, 30 to 1.

30. Arms and Sleepers – Matador
29. The Antlers – Hospice
28. The Qemists – Join The Q
27. Soulsavers – Broken
26. Memory Tapes – Seek Magic
25. IAMX – The Kingdom Of Welcome Addiction
24. Hazards Of Swimming Naked – Our Lines Are Down
23. Atlas Sound – Logos
22. The Prodigy – Invaders Must Die
21. Them Crooked Vultures – Them Crooked Vultures
20. HEALTH – Get Color
19. CircleSquare – Songs About Dancing And Drugs
18. Bibio – Ambivalence Avenue
17. Nathan Fake – Hard Islands
16. Lightning Bolt – Earthly Delights
15. MSTRKRFT –  Fist Of God
14. Lymbyc Systym – Shutter Release
13. Gui Boratto – Take My Breath Away
12. Fuck Buttons – Tarot Sport
11. Ex Libras – Suite(s)

10. Motor – Metal Machine


It first it seems like this is just a collection of bleeps and spluttering noises backed up with sound effects that would fit the scene of a midnight space ship race in some galaxy far away but if you give it a full listen from start to finish you’ll find an electronic classic full of gritty techno tracks.

9. Crocodiles – Summer Of Hate


These two guys have been labelled as a lot of things this past year. From Jesus and Mary Chain revivalists (more?) to the leaders of The New Shoegaze Generation (or Nu-Gaze as some call it… *shudders*) right through to “talentless noise” according to one reviewer (said reviewer is clearly in need of some sort of musical lobotomy operation). But whatever brush you decide to tar these two San Diego natives with at least take the time to listen to their scuzzy fuzzy pedal driven racket because it’s definitely an album worth snapping up (did i just say that?!). Oh and they used to be in a band called The Plot To Blow Up The Eiffel Tower, they’re worth checking out for the name alone.

8. Bloody Beetroots – Romborama


Bob Rifo has been around a while now and whilst he performs live as The Bloody Beetroots with Tommy Tea as his sidekick, there’s simply no getting away from the fact that he himself ACTUALLY IS the Bloody Beetroots. The songs are his. He does production, mixing, recording, composing and arrangement. All of it. Tommy Tea is just his sidekick on stage, although to be fair to him it wouldn’t be the same with just one crazy DJ in a mask jumping around stage so lets give him some credit. The point i’m getting at though is that this is essentially the work of one man, it’s raw, bouncy and aggressive yet playful at the same time, it’s an album that’s been a long time coming too. Some of the tracks on the album appeared online as early as 2006, “Butter” and “I Love The Bloody Beetroots” being examples. So was it worth the wait? Um…..yes!

7. Japandroids – Post Nothing


The two Canadians make a glorious thumping feast of noise when they play live and just about manage to achieve the same decibels on record. Hidden behind all the hard hit chords and biting drums though are actual songs. Good songs. A lot of good songs. A lot of good songs about good things. There’s no “oh everybody hates me”, “life is shit” or “me, me, me” in the lyrics. They sing about girls and good times. One set of lyrics goes “I don’t wanna worry about dying, i just wanna worry about those sunshine girls”. So that makes them ok in my book.

6. Passion Pit – Manners


Without a doubt this was THE pop album of 2009. A masterpiece in crafting hooks, melodies, harmonies and all things poppy into 4 minute gems. The use of chimed guitars, synths and gentle padded rhythms never sounded better.

5. Moderat – Moderat


When Modeselektor and Apparat got together there was always going to be a special outcome. But no one knew just how special. Moderat is an album awash with soundscapes that sound fresh and appealing. Waves of white noise tinged with a chromatic vibe and the distinguished, comforting voices of Sascha Ring and a few guest vocalists. There’s more than a few “chillout songs” on the album but there’s also a fair share grittier beats and dark synths from the Modeselektor side of the spectrum splattered around. On the bonus edition of the album there’s a dvd with music videos and a few extra tracks, namely “Beatswaysick” featuring the insane rapper BusDriver. There’s something for everybody on here and those ingredients add up to make this a Top 5 album easily.

4. Cougar – Patriot


Ok so having a purely instrumental album at Number 4 may seem like a bold move but Cougar are deserving of it. The arrangement of the songs are bordering perfection and every instrument seems to come in at exactly the right time. The songs shift between slow and fast, quiet and loud, between intricate guitar lines and full blown power chords and all the while manage to sustain the listener, each song representing a different mood. It’s a common misconception among most people that bands with no singer must be Instrumental Post Rock. In my eyes Cougar aren’t, they’re just a band of great musicians on top of their game making absolutely essential music.

3. Maybeshewill – Sing The Word Hope In Four Part Harmony


This is probably another surprise entry but yet again one i feel is more than deserving of its place. Maybeshewill have been on the scene for a few years now and have consistently stuck by their ethics when making albums. They do things their own way and are beginning to reap the rewards for it. Their sound consists of movie samples, keyboards, synths and very heavy guitars and heavier drums. They can do the whole “quiet” side of things when they want to as well mind. Add all the louder components together though and all you’d expect to hear was a washing machine of incomprehensible noise rattling around, yeah? Wrong. These guys know to make a tune work.

2. Tape Deck Mountain – Ghosts

“Ghosts” may come across as somewhat of a concept album about, well, ghosts. It’s layered with lyrical references to ghosts and even burial throughout several tracks and it certainly has an eerie sound that escalates during the whole album. Tape Deck Mountain are very Lo-Fi and remind me from time to time of the slacker kings “Dinosaur Jr” and “Pavement”, which by the way isn’t a bad thing. The vocals are very low in the mix. The band instead are seemingly happy to focus on feedback and psychedelic tones. “Ghosts” might not be everyones cup of tea but it ceratinly caught my attention this winter. The release date could have something to do with how much i like this album. It came out at a very gloomy dark time here in Scotland and i think somehow that feeling channelled into the album on the first listen and i’ve been hooked since.

1. A Place To Bury Strangers – Exploding Head


What can i say about A Place To Bury Strangers that i haven’t already said before on this site. They are the undisputed Lords of Noise.  “Exploding Head” didn’t exactly mark a change in direction or indeed progression from their debut album but why change something when it sounds this good. From the opening track right through till the last second of feedback is squeezed out of Ackermanns pedal this album is a sonic assault. Sure, it’s laced with lyrics of a heartbreak, betrayal and love. It’s wrapped up in a bubble of delay and reverb. It’s pushed along by a rhythm section that came straight from outer space. But most of all it’s consistent. It never stops for breath. It’s just track after track of classic shoegaze.

S.I.T Wolf  X

ps. later this week i’m going to stick up a quick post including some of my friends lists of their Top 5 albums of 2009. I think it’ll be nice to get a few different outlooks on the music of 2009. Feel free to leave your own opinions on what you believe were the Top 5 albums of last year.

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The 30 Best Songs of 2009

Ok so a week into 2010 is a bit late for a “best of 2009” post but any regular readers (are there any?) will know i’ve had problems with hard-drives, my internet connection, my laptop in general and more recently some other stuff has came up that has prevented regular posting recently.

But back to the post..

Deciding on the songs and the order of them for this Top 30 was a hard decision (the Top 30 albums was even harder, post that at the weekend) to make. Basically there were only one rule when picking the list. The rule was that a band can not feature more than once in the list. If that rule wasn’t made then i’d have had the full APTBS album in there, shit, i’ve just gave away the identity of my album of the year haven’t i?

Apart from that it was pretty simple. 30 slots and hundreds of songs. Pick the best.

Remember though, having a song in the Top 30 songs doesn’t automatically mean that the artists will be in the Top 30 album countdown as well. Take for example Yes Giantess, Ou Est Le Swimming Pool and Stuck In The Sound. In the case of YG and OELSP they won’t make the Top albums cos they don’t have one out yet and in the case of Stuck In The Sound its because their album just wasn’t good enough (imo) to be in the Top 30. The song i included here however “Zapruder” is pure shoegaze genius. There’s also the other side of the coin. Bands like The Prodigy, MSTRKRFT and many more brought up absolute brilliant albums in 2009 but even though their albums as a collective were amazing, none of the individual tracks managed to make it into the Top 30 songs.

Sorry i’m not very good at trying to get my point across. I think i might just be trying to justify the fact that i had to leave some amazing songs out of the Top 30. I would have made a Top 500 if i had the time!

So away from the mumbled jibberish that i just wrote, here is the list in countdown style 30 to Number 1

SOMEONE’S IN THE WOLF TOP 30 SONGS OF 2009

30. Erol Alkan & Boys Noize – Death Suite (Bobermann Remix)
29. Paper Planes – Permanent Marker
28.  Ou Est Le Swimming Pool – Dance The Way I Feel
27. Freeland – Borderline
26. Nathan Fake – Basic Mountain
25. Stuck In The Sound – Zapruder
24.  Mew – Introducing Palace Players
23. Tigers That Talked – Artificial Clouds
22. The XX – Night Time
21. Yes Giantess – Tuff N Stuff
20. Bat For Lashes – Daniel
19. Miike Snow – Animal
18. Russian Circles – Malko
17. IAMX – I Am Terrified
16.  Maybeshewill – Co-Conspirators
15. Them Crooked Vultures – New Fang
14. The Temper Trap – Sweet Disposition (re-release)
13. Japandroids – Wet Hair
12.  Tape Deck Mountain – Ghost Colony
11. Crocodiles – I Wanna Kill
10.  A Place To Bury Strangers – In Your Heart
9. The Tupolev Ghost – Diagrams
8.  Moderat – A New Error
7. Ex Lovers – You Forget So Easily
6. The Big Pink – Velvet
5. Cougar – Florida Logic
4. Zaza – Sooner Or Later
3. Lymbyc Systym – Ghost Clock
2. Passion Pit – Moths Wings

And the winner of Track of 2009 goes to

1. Ex Libras – Radar

Instead of making all these tracks available individually i’ve  put them all in a ZipFile for anybody who wishes to download the list. The songs have been numbered so they should play in the correct order.

Download it here:
http://www.4shared.com/file/190954768/e192dfa6/best_of_2009.html

Once again sorry for the delay.

S.I.T Wolf  X

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SIT WOLF: The Top 10 Music Videos of 2009

25 Years after MTV first aired “Video Killed The Radio Star” by The Buggles the art of the music video is still alive. Thanfully. Music and film together has always been the perfect combination and when it’s done right it’s art in its most inspiring form.

The Top 10 Music Videos of 2009

1. MODERAT – RUSTY NAILS

2. EX LIBRAS – RADAR

3. MAJOR LAZER – HOLD THE LINE

4. THE SUBS – MUSIC IS THE NEW RELIGION

5. TIGERS THAT TALKED – ARTIFICIAL CLOUDS

6. METRIC – GOLD GUNS GIRLS

7. BLODDY BEETROOTS FEAT STEVE AOKI – WARP

8. THE ROSIE TAYLOR PROJECT – LOVERS OR SOMETHING LIKE IT

9. OU EST LE SWIMMING POOL – DANCE THE WAY I FEEL

10. WILD BEASTS – HOOTING AND HOWLING

Honourable mentions for videos go to The Temper Trap for “Sweet Dispostition”, Ex Lovers and “You Forget So Easily”, “In Your Heart” by A Place To Bury Strangers, Florence and The Machine and “Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up” and The Big Pink with “Velvet”.

S.I.T Wolf XX

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SIT WOLF: The 5 Best EPs of 2009

As the year comes to a close it’s time to start compiling the end of year “2009 Best Of” lists. Over the next 10 days there will be a list of the best EPs of 2009, the best music videos, a countdown of the top 30 tracks. Finally there’ll be a top 30 album countdown. As a bit of fun there might be a Top 5 Worst albums of 2009 and a Top 5 “Let Downs” of the year which will consist of albums that promised so much more than they delivered…..are you listening Andrew Weatherall?

So the first List we have is the Top 5 EPs of 2009.

1. THE TUPOLEV GHOST – SELF TITLED EP


Released on the 30th March 2009

1. A Hymn For
2. Zeroes And Noughts
3. Diagrams
4. Giant Fucking Haystacks
5. The Night
6.  Our Greatest Destroyer *(downloadable MP3)*

I only just discovered last week that the Tupolev Ghost broke up on the 13th December and must say i’m more than a bit gutted. I’d been keeping tabs on them since 2006 and told anyone that would listen that i thought they were destined to be the new At The Drive In. If anything they were a bit more melodious than the famous ATDI, they’re certainly louder anyway thats for sure. Their live shows have left many an ear bleeding and their politically charged lyrics on certain songs acted as the perfect vehicle for their blend of edgy post-hardcore punk. They mixed elements of thrash with spiky drumming, thunderous bass playing and had the ability to pen a tune or two along the way. They’re a sad loss to the independent music industry.

2. HUORATRON – CORPORATE OCCULT EP


Released on the 17th November 2009

1. Corporate Occult (Original Version)
2. Gbay *(downloadable MP3)*
3. Prevenge
4. Corporate Occult (Mixhell Remix)
5. Corporate Occult (Passion Splatter House Remix)
6. Prevenge (SPA Remix)

This is the mighty electro Fin’s second EP release on New Judas. Following up “$$ Troopers” was going to be hard but the bearded nutter has somehow managed to do it and possibly eclipsed his previous effort. All the usual ingredients are there from the one man wrecking machine. His pounding rhythms, his chopped up glitchtronica noises, his electro loops. He seems to know the exact perfect time to drop his noises. The title track shows this more than others with its slow build up and vocal samples, it waits till it knows the listener can’t wait any longer then just goes all out assualt. This EP is perfect for getting you up for a night out or when you get back in from a big night out….depending on your state of mind obviously…. 

3. EX LOVERS – YOU FORGET SO EASILY EP


Released on the 22nd September 2009

1. You Forget So Easily
2. New Years Day
3.  Just A Silhouette *(downloadable MP3)*
4. Incomplete
5. The Moon Has Spoken

This wonderful EP shot onto the scene in September and hasn’t been off my iPod since. With more than a tinge of Elliott Smith influence and a few leanings towards The Cure, the Exlovers have managed to make the perfect alternative pop EP. Every tune is accessible. Wistful lyrics, intricate guitar lines and delicate tones are the backbone of the acoustic driven songs. The title track is the standout and will be included in the Top Tracks of the year without a doubt but “New Years Day” is a thoughtful song that bares the Elliott Smith influence at its soul and the other tracks that follow fall into place perfectly.

4. TIGERS THAT TALKED – BLACK HEART BLUE EYES EP


Released on the 8th June 2009

1. Black Heart, Blue Eyes *(downloadable MP3)*
2. Smokescreen
3.  The Electric Press
4. Duet

Described in some circles as “anti-folk” this Leeds group managed to separate themselves from the pigeonhole they were put in and produced an EP full of pop gems. The songwriting ability is clear on all four tracks and the element of catchy melodies are evident through the sombre guitar picking and the mood lifting violins. The fact that their best song (in my opinion) “Artificial Clouds” wasn’t included on this EP and was released as a separate single later in the year proves that we can expect so much more from this band in the future.

5. THE RADIO DEPT – DAVID EP


Released on the 28th July 2009

1. David *(downloadable MP3)*
2. Messy Enough
3. David (The Rice Twins Remix)
4. The Idle Urban Contemporaries

The Radio Dept already had an impressive discography before releasing “David” this summer. With a back catalogue that contains cult classics “Lesser Matters” and “Pet Grief” the Swedish shoegazers are in a world of their own when it comes to writing the perfect Dream Pop songs. “David” is set to be included on the upcoming 2010 album “Clinging To A Scheme”. It can’t come quick enough. Here on this EP the group stay true to their style and never stray from their usual songwriting structure. It’s the old saying “if it isn’t broke don’t fix it” and thats exactly the way i like The Radio Dept. Don’t ever change.

Some other EPs worthy of a mention are Blood Bank EP by Bon Iver, the self titled and online only EP by Union Of Knives, Unicorn Kids Lion Hat EP/Single, Up and Down EP by She Wants Revenge and The Rock N Roll EP from Dirt Road Logic.

S.I.T Wolf  XX

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