This year my goal is to tackle some of my book backlog. I've got books I've had for a few years that I haven't gotten around to reading. My goal for 2014 is to read 25 books, and 12 of them are backlog/rereads (one a month). The tough ones will be Infinite Jest and 11/22/63 cause they're both really long (which is why I haven't read them yet).
In no particular order....
Double Dexter- Jeff Lindsay Do the Work- Steven Pressfield Moneyball- Michael Lewis Infinite Jest- David Foster Wallace The Keep- Jennifer Egan The Dogs of Rome- Conor Fitzgerald 11/22/1963- Stephen King Killer's Island- Anna Jansson Blind Goddess- Anne Holt The Boy in the Suitcase- Lene Kaaberbøl & Agnete Friis The Bourne Identity- Robert Ludlum (reread) The Virgin Suicides- Jeffery Eugenides (reread)
Finished the last of the Glass Key books for the year. I read 9 winning books this year and have now read 12 of the 22 Glass Key winning books in all (I think 2 more will be published in the US next year).
I enjoyed every book I read and it was a nice goal to have because I read books I probably wouldn't have read otherwise.
Here's a final list of all the books I read in a loose order of best to "worst".
A Conspiracy of Faith- Jussi Adler-Olsen (2010, Denmark)
Faceless Killers- Henning Mankell (1992, Sweden)
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo- Stieg Larsson (2006, Sweden)
The Bat- Jo Nesbo (1998, Norway)
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest- Stieg Larsson (2008, Sweden)
Missing- Karin Alvtegen (2001, Sweden)
Silence of the Grave- Arnaldur Indriðason (2003, Iceland)
Don't Look Back- Karin Fossum (1997, Norway)
Jar City- Arnaldur Indriðason (2002, Iceland)
The Darkest Room- Johan Theorin (2009, Sweden)
Lime's Photograph- Leif Davidsen (1999, Denmark)
Smilla's Sense of Snow- Peter Hoeg (1993, Denmark)
2 years. 24 Albums. The David Bowie journey is finally over. I really enjoyed going through his catalogue and trying to figure out what "my Bowie" is. It really is an impressive body of work. The albums at the bottom of the list aren't even bad, just mediocre in comparison to the great albums. The top is really divided by a matter of degrees (like being lukewarm on one song). What I've learned is that "my Bowie" really depends on my mood. Although the top album is really my go-to Bowie.
24. David Bowie (1967)
23. Black Tie White Noise (1993)
22. Never Let Me Down (1987)
21. Outside (1995)
20. Space Oddity (1969)
19. The Man Who Sold the World (1970)
18. Tonight (1984)
17. Let's Dance (1983)
16. Hours... (1999)
15. Pin Ups (1973)
14. Earthling (1997)
13. The Next Day (2013)
12. Lodger (1979) Favorite songs: Boys Keep Swinging, Fantastic Voyage
11. Low (1977) Favorite songs: Speed of Life, Sound and Vision
10. Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps) (1980) Favorite songs: Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps), It's No Game
9. Reality (2003) Favorite songs: New Killer Star, Bring Me the Disco King
8. Heathen (2001) Favorite songs: Sunday, I Would Be Your Slave
7. Station To Station (1976) Favorite songs: TVC15, Golden Years
6. Aladdin Sane (1973) Favorite songs: Lady Grinning Soul, Let's Spend the Night Together
5. "Heroes" (1977) Favorite songs: Secret Life of Arabia, Beauty and the Beast
4. Young Americans (1975) Favorite songs: Fascination, Right
3. The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars (1972) Favorite songs: Starman, Rock 'n' Roll Suicide
2. Hunky Dory (1971) Favorite songs: Andy Warhol, Life on Mars?
1. Diamond Dogs (1974) Favorite songs: We Are the Dead, 1984
This was a stinker of a year musically. There were some albums that I really enjoyed but definitely not enough of them. Plus, albums that I was looking forward to turned out to be disappointing (I'm looking at you, Beach House). So here's my pathetic list of albums I actually really liked this year.
5. Kimbra- Vows Favorite songs: Settle Down, Plain Gold Ring
4. David Byrne & St. Vincent- Love This Giant Favorite songs: Who, The One Who Broke Your Heart
3. Twin Shadow- Confess Favorite songs: Run My Heart, The One
2. Divine Fits- A Thing Called Divine Fits Favorite songs: Baby Get Worse, Shivers
1. Sharon Van Etten- Tramp Favorite songs: Give Out, Leonard
Typically at the beginning of the year I'm so burnt out on albums from the previous year from all my list making activities, I take a break from all those albums and listen to older stuff. Last year, I made a list of albums I wanted to spend more time with, which ended up being pretty nice (I never did get around to listening to the Bright Eyes ones though). So here's what I'm planning to listen to more in 2012.
R.E.M.: once the Bowie journey is over, the plan is to listen to all the R.E.M. albums from the beginning.
Destroyer- Trouble in Dreams: never got into this album when it first came out
I don't usually make resolutions of any kind, but I like the idea of having some crafty goals for the year. These are definitely subject to change depending on my employment status this year.
1. Make those Christmas cards I flaked out on last year.
2. Try knitting again. It was a frustrating, borderline disaster that really made me question wanting to knit in the first place. I'll try again in the fall.
3. Open an Etsy store. this is going to be my big project of the year (like my site redesign was last year). I've gone back and forth on the whole Etsy thing for a few years, but I think I'm ready to do it and see what happens.
4. Finish (and stitch) at least one pattern that I've put on hold.
5. Stitch something I'm really proud of. It's been awhile since I've done that. Still taking my stitchy break though.
Shockingly, this will be the first show I've been to since Thom Yorke at the end of 2009. I'll blame a lack of good shows and money for that. And really, at this point I've seen almost every band I've really wanted to see at least once. So it takes a lot for me to get excited about a show.
Anywho, I saw The National back in 09, but I didn't make a wishlist for that show. So here goes..
Available (I've heard this one, but now I love the song even more)
Afraid of Everyone
Baby We'll Be Fine (heard this one too, but it's one of my favorites)
And songs I know I won't hear (a girl can hope):
90 Mile Water Wall (there would be some serious freaking out if they played this)
Then there's Neko Case. I've never seen her live, so my wishlist is long.
So, there'll be no more monthly album lists. For the remainder of the year I'll be working on compiling the best of 09 list, albums of the decade and possibly songs of the decade. Haven't decided whether the album list will be 50 or 100, although I'm still leaning towards 50. Still have alot of albums to sift through, been slacking lately.
2006 was a decent enough year. Neko Case and Thom Yorke were highlights. I forgot how much I liked Sondre Lerche's Duper Sessions.
This months' 2007 albums should be pretty easy, since they're so recent. I've listened to most of them in the last few weeks. I really need some new music to listen to.
Beirut- The Flying Club Cup The Good Life- Help Wanted Nights PJ Harvey- White Chalk Interpol- Our Love to Admire Kings of Leon- Because of the Times Sondre Lerche- Phantom Punch The National- Boxer (which is NOT better than Alligator) The New Pornographers- Challengers Radiohead- In Rainbows Silverchair- Young Modern Spoon- Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga Tegan and Sara- The Con David Usher- Strange Birds John Vanderslice- Emerald City
Between being sick and vacation, I kinda slacked off on my '05 albums and still have a few to listen to. Luckily the list for '06 is fairly short.
Beirut- Gulag Orkestar Black Keys- Magic Potion Brand New Heavies- Get Used to It Neko Case- Fox Confessor Brings the Flood Cursive- Happy Hollow Gnarls Barkley- St. Elsewhere Grizzly Bear- Yellow House Emm Gryner- Summer of High Hopes Sondre Lerche- Duper Sessions Placebo- Meds Corinne Bailey Rae- Corinne Bailey Rae Silversun Pickups- Carnavas Thom Yorke- The Eraser
Been in a Sondre Lerche mood lately. Listening to Two Way Monologue a bunch. It's much better than I originally thought. Nice when albums surprise you like that. Definitely looking forward to the new album and the show in Sept. He's one of the artists I've been wanting to see again.
So 2003 wasn't so bad, although it certainly didn't live up to the hype I manufactured in my head. These next few years (2004-06) should be interesting because I think they are hands down the worst of the decade overall. Not to say there weren't good albums released in those years, but the overall level of quality sunk to its lowest (particularly in '04). But here's the 2004 albums I'll be listening to:
Black Keys- Rubber Factory
Franz Ferdinand- Franz Ferdinand
Keane- Hopes and Fears
PJ Harvey- Uh Huh Her
Sondre Lerche- Two Way Monologue
Sonic Youth- Sonic Nurse
Tegan and Sara- So Jealous
John Vanderslice- Cellar Door
Since I'm at the halfway point of the decade, I'll also be re-listening to some albums from previous years that I think require more attention (see below). And post a list of the albums that have been fed to the Smoke Monster so far.
2002 was a pretty damn solid year for music. I enjoyed everything I listened to and all the albums will most likely make the list. I especially enjoyed listening to the Long Winters first album again. It has that debut album magic that is hard to replicate on future albums.
Up next, 2003, the year I've most been looking forward to for some unknown reason.
This decade has been pretty lousy for music, which doesn't come as much of a surprise to me, but I really thought that the early years were much better than they actually were. The stupidest realization I've had during this process is that hey, there's a reason you haven't listened to some of these album since they were new....THEY ARE CRAP! Imagine that, some rhyme and reason to my listening habits. 2001 was filled with albums from bands that just went to hell afterwards, and in some cases, on that particular album (I'm looking at you, Remy Zero). I was going to post my original best of list from 2001, but frankly, it's embarrassing. Let's just move on to 2002.
Bic Runga- Beautiful Collision
The Black Keys- The Big Come Up
Bright Eyes- Lifted....
Neko Case- Blacklisted
Emm Gryner- Asianblue
The Good Life- Black Out
Imperial Teen- On
Interpol- Turn On The Bright Lights
Sondre Lerche- Faces Down
Long Winters- The Worst You Can Do is Harm
Sonic Youth- Murray Street
Spoon- Kill the Moonlight
Queens of the Stone Age- Songs for the Deaf
Not too much for 2002, luckily there have already been a number of solid albums released this year so far, the Emm Gryner, Neko Case and Cursive albums are current favorites of mine.
thought 2000 had too many boring albums. Too much middle of the road,
non-offensive music for my taste, but I think that's all the UK was
producing the first few years of the decade. Hopefully 2001 will be better. This is what I'll be listening to.
Recently, it was brought to my attention that 2009 means best of the
decade lists. So of course I jumped at the opportunity to anguish over
another best of list, only this time, it can be drawn out for the
entire year! Luckily I have a partner in music snobbery who is into
this as much as I am. So a very long list was compiled of all albums
from 2000-08 that are currently owned (211). Some initial cuts were
made, because let's face it, beautifulgarbage should not be
on anyone's best of the decade list. So that leaves approximately 90
albums for me to listen to throughout the year, along with whatever
comes out this year and the possible addition of other albums I may
have missed out on the first time (suggestions very welcome). All to
create a top 50 albums of the decade list.
To break things up a
bit, I'm taking it one year at a time, of course starting with 2000. So
for the rest of Jan until the end of Feb, I'll be listening to the
Bright Eyes- Fevers and Mirrors
Neko Case- Furnace Room Lullaby
Death Cab for Cute- We Have the Facts and We're Voting Yes
Nelly Furtado- Whoa Nelly!
Emm Gryner- Dead Relatives
The Good Life- Novena on a Nocturn
David Gray- White Ladder
PJ Harvey- Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea
New Pornographers- Mass Romantic
Placebo- Black Market Music
Queens of the Stone Age- Rated R
Radiohead- Kid A
Travis- The Man Who
John Vanderslice- Mass Suicide Occult Figurines
Some of these albums are a lock to make the list, but some I haven't heard in so long I really have no idea.
last night. I enjoyed it, although there was some pretty messed up
stuff going on. But from what I know about Chuck Palahniuk that's par
for the course. I'll be starting Atonement this week.
The best part from the otherwise boring spelling bee
Yet again, new month means new albums. I enjoyed listening to
both Placebo and Spoon. I had some serious nostalgia going on while
listening to A Series of Sneaks. That album reminds me of Austin so much. Without You I'm Nothing, even
though I can remember when I bought the album, doesn't remind me of
anything else. Nut listening to it for a month reaffirmed that it's not
my favorite Placebo album. Since those albums have 2 of my favorite
album covers, I thought i'd make a proper list..
In no particular order...
Joe Jackson- Look Sharp!
Placebo- Without You I'm Nothing
Keane- Under The Iron Sea
The Police- Ghost in the Machine
Spoon- A Series of Sneaks
This month's albums are similar because I used to really like these 2
bands and then they started to completely suck and sadly, I've
abandoned them to the point that I don't even listen to their good
albums anymore. So this month I'll be constantly wondering what went
wrong and thinking how good these bands used to be. I've actually been
looking forward to these albums.
Death Cab For Cutie- Something About Airplanes I'd
guess it's been 6 or so years since I listened to this album. I gave up
on death cab around the time Transatlanticism came out and Ben Gibbard
did all that horrible electronic crap known as The Postal Service
(which in my opinion is what ruined his ability to write good songs). But way back in 98, I was just hearing about Death Cab and for 3 albums
they were really fucking good. So it's going to be hard to listen to
this album without wanting to curse the music gods for turning Ben Gibbard into a complete toolbox. No doubt I will like it as much as I
did back when it was new.
Snow Patrol- Songs For Polar Bears Um....I last listened to this album maybe 6 years ago as well. Unlike Death Cab, I think this is Snow Patrol's only good album. Their second
album had some good songs on it, but overall kinda sucked. And then
after that they decided they wanted to turn into Coldplay (who now
wants to be U2, go figure), changed their sound and got successful. For
the record, it's not the success that bothers me, it's the turning into Coldplay. Anyway, I think this first album is pretty good, and it's sad
they've changed so much from what they used to be.
Thank you Kansas and Memphis for ruining my chances at winning either one of my tournament pools.
Saw the Black Keys last week. Good show, but too short. I'm liking the new album.
I think XTC is one of those bands I think I should like more than I actually do. I've listened to
'Skylarking' a bunch of times, and I do like some of the songs, but
it's just not doing it for me overall. I definitely hear the influence
the album had on Blur's 'Great Escape'.
It's almost vacation time!
thoughts after a week of listening to Bic Runga and Madonna (see last
entry)...I remember why I liked 'Drive' so much, and how much I like Bic Runga's voice. 'Ray of Light'.....you can definitely tell it's Madonna's "motherhood has changed me" album. There are some songs I
still like though. But it got me thinking about my favorite Madonna
songs...in chronological order....
Material Girl (this is
mostly for sentimental reasons, when this song was out, pink was my
favorite color, so the video was like heaven to me)
Spent the evening making and discussing top 13 favorite songs by various bands.....here's some of mine...
(In no particular order)
never tear us apart stay young need you tonight to look at you kiss the dirt taste it by my side everything disappear i'm just a man the stairs faith in each other devil inside
thirty-three ava adore saturnine tonight tonight drown stand inside your love in the arms of sleep obscured muzzle let me give the world to you cherry everlasting gaze xyu
street spirit fake plastic trees the bends just black star how to disappear completely no surprises karma police let down punchup at a wedding myxomatosis there there sulk
this mad acid phonecall 45 the good you make your sort of human being july seranade big day revenge half sorry doomsday stereochrome queen of the boys
everything changed my old flame radiant with terror continuation me and my 424 time travel is lonely you were my fiji amitriptyline up above the sea they won't let me run trance manual keep the dream alive letter to the east coast
shame long snake moan the dancer send his love to me no girl so sweet the garden we float cat on the wall a place called home the slow drug the darker days of me & him the whores hustle and the hustlers whore you said something
the guestlist/the execution reservations anything you want the fitted shirt paper tiger i turn my camera on the way we get by the delicate place the two sides of monsieur valentine i summon you my mathematical mind take a walk jonathon fisk