Tag Archives: sufjan stevens

The Year In Music 2010.

Disclaimer: My list of top albums from 2010 is completely subjective. Like, not even remotely objective. I like what I like, and that’s that. We’re all entitled to our opinions, so don’t send me death threats for not including Kanye West’s album… I haven’t even listened to it yet. Capiche?

CHAMPIONS OF MEDIOCRITY:

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HONORABLE, HONORABLE MENTIONS:

PhotobucketM.I.A., /\/\ /\ Y /\
I wasn’t able to listen to this album as much as the others, but upon the first listen, I knew that it packed a punch and was worth a mention. M.I.A.’s sound continues to expand in really unpredictable and unique ways, and it’s exciting to try to anticipate what she’ll do next.
Excellent song: Born Free

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Warpaint, The Fool
Again, didn’t get to listen to this one extensively, but I heard “Undertow” on the radio and immediately fell in love with its quiet tenderness, so this is an album that I look forward to listening to on repeat in the coming year and growing to love wholly.
Excellent song: Undertow

HONORABLE MENTIONS:

Photobucket Tame Impala, Innerspeaker
Hail from: Perth, Australia
Generic label: Stoner Rock
Sonic descriptors: psychedelic, riffy, traditional
Stand-out element: The singer sounds so much like John Lennon, it’s uncanny.
Lyrical gem:
Space around me where my soul can breath
I’ve got body that my mind can leave
Nothing else matters, I don’t care what I miss
Company’s okay, solitude is bliss
(“Solitude Is Bliss”)
Favorite Song: Runaway, Houses, City, Clouds

Photobucket MGMT, Congratulations
Hail from: Brooklyn, New York
Generic label: Psychedelic Rock
Sonic descriptors: avant-garde, fantastical, relaxed
Stand-out element: The audacity and bravery of MGMT for following Oracular Spectacular with this. Gutsy, and commendable.
Lyrical gem:
Out with the whimper
It’s not a blaze of glory
You look down from your temple
As people endeavor to make it a story
And chisel a marble word
but all is lost if it’s never heard
But I’ve got someone to make reports
And tell me how my money’s spent
To book my stays and draw my blinds
So I can’t tell what’s really there
And all I need’s a great big congratulations
(“Congratulations”)
Favorite SongBrian Eno

Photobucket Sleigh Bells, Treats
Hail from: Brooklyn, New York
Generic label: Noise Rock
Sonic descriptors: boisterous, hedonistic, sexual
Stand-out element: Alexis Krauss’s sing-chanting. It’s hypnotic.
Lyrical gem:
There aren’t any, really.
Favorite SongTell ‘Em

Photobucket The National, High Violet
Hail from: Brooklyn, New York
Generic label: Indie Rock
Sonic descriptors: melancholy, jaded, adult
Stand-out element: Impeccable drumming, as always.
Lyrical gem:
Sorrow found me when I was young
Sorrow waited, sorrow won
Sorrow that put me on the pills
It’s in my honey, it’s in my milk
(“Sorrow”)
Favorite SongLemonworld

Photobucket Jonsi, Go
Hails from: Iceland
Generic label: Indie Pop
Sonic descriptors;: uplifting, expansive, immaculate
Stand-out element: It’s pure magnificence. Every song is an opus.
Lyrical gem:
Go sing, too loud
Make your voice break, sing it out
Go scream, do shout
Make an earthquake
You wish fire would die and turn colder
You wish your young could see you grow older
We should always know that we can do anything
(“Go Do”)
Favorite Songs: Animal Arithmatic

TOP 20 ALBUMS OF 2010

Photobucket20. Damien Jurado, Saint Bartlett
Hails from: Seattle, Washington
Generic label: Indie Folk
Sonic descriptors: hushed, spare, tender
Stand-out element: The slightly boozy tinge in every song; a je ne sais quoi in Jurado’s voice that creates intimacy, like he’s confiding in you and only you.
Themes: loneliness, places, social anxiety
Lyrical gem:
Kansas City, I hold back the tears
I know that I should have been thrilled
I can’t smile knowing all the while
Everything you did, you did for you
Kansas City, you asked me how I’ve been
I lie, and then say that I’ve been fine
Words that trailed off, that’s as far as we got
I know that I should have been thrilled
(“Kansas City”)
Favorite SongsThe Falling SnowRachel & Cali

Photobucket 19. Josh Ritter, So Runs The World Away
Hails from: Oberlin, Ohio
Generic label: Alt Country
Sonic descriptors: rustic, antiquated, timeless
Stand-out element: The man knows how to weave stunning tales of love and loss.
Themes: time, obsolete transportation, myth
Lyrical gem:
We talked of the other worlds we’d discover
as she gave up her body to me
And as I chopped up her mainsail for timber
I told her of all that we still had to see
As the frost turned her moorings to nine-tail
and the wind lashed her sides in the cold
I burned her to keep me alive every night
in the lover’s embrace of her hold
(“Another New World”)
Favorite Songs: Change Of Time, Rattling Locks

Photobucket18. Bloodgroup, Dry Land
Hail from: Iceland
Generic label: Electronic
Sonic descriptors: blippy, throbbing, measured
Stand-out element: Incredible beats; The way the male and female voice work together and blend.
Themes: solitude, fear, uncertainty
Lyrical gem:
They say that I need the poison just to loosen up my arms
But my lovers all agree its just a matter of the heart
Won’t you stay a while with me just to loosen up my arms?
Baby it’s the only way to make a flame come from the spark
(“My Arms”)
Favorite Songs: How Do We Know, My Arms

Photobucket 17. Wild Nothing, Gemini
Hail from: Blacksburg, Virginia
Generic label: Indie Pop
Sonic descriptors: swoony, anachronistic, impressionistic
Stand-out element: The obvious influence/love of music from the ’80s.
Themes: nostalgia, youthful angst, running away
Lyrical gem:
Pretty face, could you make the jump with me?
I’m dying just to let things go
Do you remember the lightning storm?
It was the first time I really felt you
Because our lips won’t last forever, and that’s exactly why
I’d rather live in dreams and I’d rather die
(“Live In Dreams”)
Favorite Songs: The Witching Hour, Summer Holiday

Photobucket16. Janelle Monae, The ArchAndroid
Hails from: Atlanta, Georgia
Generic label: R&B
Sonic descriptors: eclectic, modern, thematic
Stand-out element: The diversity of Monae’s voice and the way she tailors it to the needs of the song, and not the other way around. Each track sounds like a different artist.
Themes: love, identity, androids
Lyrical gem:
Mushrooms and roses is the place to be
Where all the lonely droids and lovers have their wildest dreams
The golden door of our emotions opens here
We’re all virgins to the joys of loving without fear
(“Mushrooms & Roses”)
Favorite Songs: Wondaland, Cold War

Photobucket 15. Charlotte Gainsbourg, IRM
Hail from: Paris, France
Generic label: French Pop
Sonic descriptors: nonchalant, intrepid, distinct
Stand-out element: How inherently cool Gainsbourg’s music is, without even trying.
Themes: control, journeying, death
Lyrical gem:
If I had my way
I’d cross the desert to the sea
Learn to speak in tongues something
That makes sense to you and me
I’d like to unplug the phone
Sending messages with a mirror
Stand on the old plateau
With a satellite dish and Geronimo’s ghost
(“Me And Jane Doe”)
Favorite Song: Trick Pony, Me And Jane Doe

Photobucket14. The Black Keys, Brothers
Hail from: Akron, Ohio
Generic label: Blues Rock
Sonic descriptors: full-bodied, unpolished, masculine
Stand-out element: Tasty guitar licks.
Themes: being bad despite trying to be good, female heartbreakers, commitment
Lyrical gem:
A sinister kid is a kid who runs to meet his maker
A drop-dead sprint from the day he’s born
Straight into his maker’s arms
And that’s me, that’s me
The boy with the broken halo
That’s me, that’s me
The devil won’t let me be
(“Sinister Kid”)
Favorite Songs: Sinister Kid, Ten Cent Pistol

Photobucket13. Local Natives, Gorilla Manor
Hail from: Los Angeles, California
Generic label: Indie Rock
Sonic descriptors: layered, vivid, conversational
Stand-out element: Harmonies!
Themes: discovery, youthfulness, wanderlust
Lyrical gem:
I climbed to the top of a hill, but I had just missed the sun
And although the descending arc was gone
Left behind were the traces that always follow along
The most beautiful colors chase the sun
They wrap her trail in a taunting gesture
That seem to sing out loud, “This is what you’re missing”
(“Sun Hands”)
Favorite Songs: Camera Talk, Wide Eyes

Photobucket12. Best Coast, Crazy For You
Hail from: Los Angeles, California
Generic label: Surf Pop
Sonic descriptors: beachy, adolescent, simplistic
Stand-out element: The youthful simplicity is irresistibly catchy.
Themes: pining after boys, smoking weed, an affinity for cats
Lyrical gem:
There’s nothing worse than sitting all alone at home
And waiting waiting waiting waiting by the phone
I hope that he’s at home
Waiting by his phone
I wonder if he knows
That I want him
(“Boyfriend”)
Favorite Songs: Boyfriend, When The Sun Don’t Shine

Photobucket 11. Maximum Balloon, Maximum Balloon
Hails from: Brooklyn, New York
Generic label: Alternative
Sonic descriptors: dense, maximalist, loose
Stand-out element: A plethora of blips and beats, like a 100-layer cake made out of sound.
Themes: Loss of control, desire, relationships
Lyrical gem:
I’ll be your messenger, your minister, your morbid curiosity
In the hands of the night you’re a plaything
I’ll be your passenger, your pleasurer, your terminal velocity
In the absence of light we’re the same thing
(“Absence of Light”)
Favorite Songs: Communion (feat. Karen O), Absence of Light (feat Tunde Adebimpe)

Photobucket 10. Belle & Sebastian, Write About Love
Hail from: Glasgow, Scotland
Generic label: Indie Pop
Sonic descriptors: spiritual, tongue-in-cheek, questioning
Stand-out element: The candidness with which Stuart Murdoch speaks about God and religion; guest vocalists (who knew Carey Mulligan could sing? who knew Norah Jones was so hip?)
Themes: God, youth, unreality
Lyrical gems:
Make me dance, I want to surrender
Your familiar arms I remember
Everybody’s talking about you, every word’s a whisper without you
But we don’t have the money
Money makes the wheels of the world go round
Forget about it honey, trouble’s never far away when you’re around
(“I Didn’t See It Coming”)
I’ve seen God in the sun, I’ve seen God in the street
God before bed in the promise of sleep
God in my dreams and the free ride of grace
But it all disappears and then I wake up
(“Ghost of Rock School”)
Favorite Songs: I Want The World To Stop, Write About Love (Feat. Carey Mulligan), I Can See Your Future

Photobucket 9. Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, I Learned The Hard Way
Hail from: Brooklyn, New York
Generic label: Funk/R&B
Sonic descriptors: soulful, sassy, revivalist
Stand-out element: Sharon Jones’s voice. Whoa.
Themes: cheating ne’er-do-well men, strong-willed women, nursing a broken heart
Lyrical gem:
I’m through with your window shopping, baby
I’m through waiting when you’re gonna come around
I know the question isn’t if you love me
But I know the answer is you’ll never settle down
Oh boy, you keep window shopping
You browse with no intent to buy
(“Window Shopping”)
Don’t like the way he dresses or the cigarettes he smokes
Don’t like the company he keeps or the color of his jokes
You say he ain’t no good, you say he’s rough and he’s lazy
But how can I explain the way he drives me crazy?
Loving him could be so easy, loving him could be so easy
But Mama don’t like my man
(“Mama Don’t Like My Man”)
Favorite Songs: Mama Don’t Like My Man, I Learned The Hard Way, Window Shopping

Photobucket 8. Owen Pallett, Heartland
Hails from: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Generic label: Indie Pop
Sonic descriptors: cinematic, high-brow, defiant
Stand-out element: Ornate arrangements that manage to be traditional and modern simultaneously; Pallett’s pristine tenor.
Themes: rebellion, rural life, control
Lyrical gem:
I saw my son at seventeen
The shutters made projections on his naked frame
But now at twenty-five, he simply cannot stay away
From the ketamine
With make-up on his sores
He spends an hour a day composing his own eulogy
Sometimes he sends me letters
But they’re mostly garbled phrases and apologies
(“E Is For Estranged”)
Damn, I wrote it down, but I left it in the pocket of my other jeans
Scrawled across the foolscap: “I don’t know what your devotion means,
I don’t know what your devotion means.”
And up, upon the summit I can see
The one I worshiped as a boy
The Creator, The Great White Noise
The Great White Noise
(“Tryst with Mephistopheles”)
Favorite Songs: Keep The Dog Quiet, Lewis Takes Off His Shirt, Oh Heartland, Up Yours!

Photobucket 7. Laura Veirs, July Flame
Hails from: Portland, OR
Generic label: Indie Folk
Sonic descriptors: summery, dulcet, understated
Stand-out element: The beautiful poetic lyrics rife with natural imagery. I can listen, close my eyes, and see fireflies from my seat on a porch swing on a warm summer night.
Themes: weather, animals, wonder
Lyrical gems:
Even the most shimmering rain
Empties out the sky and comes to end
We all know that the sun is king
There’s no messing with our orbiting
So why is he standing in his own backyard
Crying at his fallen down house of cards?
(“Sun Is King”)
Since you turned your light upon my darkened dale
The pollinators flex their wings
And take into the air
Spin their emeraldine webs across the swales and prairies
And my stampeding buffalo stops in her tracks and watches the snow
Falling through the old oak tree when you give your heart to me
(“When You Give Your Heart”)
Favorite Songs: Make Something Good, Summer Is the Champion, When You Give Your Heart

Photobucket 6. Arcade Fire, The Suburbs
Hail from: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Generic label: Indie Rock
Sonic descriptors: anthemic, idealistic, heavy
Stand-out element: Repetition of key lyrics in multiple songs to give them a broader and more powerful meaning.
Themes: youth, war, suburbia
Lyrical gem:
So can you understand that I want a daughter while I’m still young
I want to hold her hand, show her some beauty
Before all this damage is done
But if it’s too much to ask, if it’s too much to ask
Send me a son
(“The Suburbs”)
Strange how the half light can make a place new
You can’t recognize me, I can’t recognize you
We run through these streets that we know so well
And the houses hide so much
We’re in the half light, none of us can tell
They hide the ocean in a shell
(“Half Light I”)
Favorite Songs: Suburban War, Rococo, Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)

Photobucket 5. Joanna Newsom, Have One On Me
Hails from: Nevada City, California
Generic label: Indie Folk
Sonic descriptors: folkloric, lilting, epic
Stand-out element: Intensely imaginative lyrical narratives; Newsom’s made-up words (see the lyrics to “Soft As Chalk”)
Themes: geography, mythologized women, thing coming to an end
Lyrical gems:
I bought a little plot of land in the garden of Eden
It was dirt and dirt is all the same
(“’81″)
I feel you, leaning
Out back with the crickets
Loyal heart marking the soon-ness darkness
Tonight, still the mourning doves
Will summon us their song
Of love’s neverdoneing lawlessness, lawlessness
While, over and over
Rear up, stand down, lay round
Trying to sound-out or guess the reasons
To sleep like a soldier, without rest
But there is no treason
Where there is only lawlessness, lawlessness
(“Soft As Chalk”)
Favorite Songs: In California, ’81, Occident

Photobucket 4. Robyn, Body Talk Pt. 1
Hails from: Stockholm, Sweden
Generic label: Electro Pop
Sonic descriptors: confident, sincere, futuristic
Stand-out element: Robyn’s vocal genuineness. She doesn’t sound like she’s singing anything she doesn’t mean wholeheartedly.
Themes: longing, assertions of preeminence, robots
Lyrical gem:
My system’s in mint condition
The power’s up on my transistors
Working fine, no glitches
Plug me in and flip some switches
Pull up in docking position
Pop the hatch and hit ignition
B-b-burn out, baby
Ready for demolition
(“Fembots”)
I’m just gonna dance all night
I’m so messed up, I’m so out of line
Stilettos and broken bottles, I’m spinning around in circles
I’m in the corner, watching you kiss her
I’m right over here, why can’t you see me?
I’m giving it my all but I’m not the girl you’re taking home
I keep dancing on my own
(“Dancing On My Own”)
Favorite Songs: Dance Hall Queen, The Girl And The Robot, Dancing On My Own

Photobucket 3. Tallest Man On Earth, The Wild Hunt
Hails from: Sweden
Generic label: Indie Folk
Sonic descriptors: earnest, unbridled, raw
Stand-out element: the pairing of spare arrangements and intricate lyrics; uncanny vocal resemblance to Bob Dylan
Themes: nature, going and returning, forgetting worries
Lyrical gems:
Well I walk upon the river like it’s easier than land
Evil’s in my pocket and your strength is in my hand
Your strength is in my hand
And I’ll throw you in the current that I stand upon so still
Love is all, from what I’ve heard, but my heart’s learned to kill
Oh, mine has learned to kill
(“Love is All”)
Oh I was sent to find the lonesome place
Where I was lost but left to trace by carving riddles on the lonesome pine
Oh but rumor has it that I wasn’t born, I just walked in one frosty morn
Into the vision of some vacant mind
(“Burden of Tomorrow”)
Favorite Songs: You’re Going Back, A Lion’s Heart, Love Is All

Photobucket 2. Sufjan Stevens, Age of Adz
Hails from: Detroit, Michigan
Generic label: Experimental Folk
Sonic descriptors: apocalyptic, pseudo-schizophrenic, vulnerable
Stand-out element: The level of lyrical depth and candidness, incomparable to anything else in Sufjan’s catalog.
Themes : heart-sickness, madness, end times
Lyrical gems:
Vesuvius, are you ghost?
Or the symbol of light? Or a fantasy host?
In your breast I carry the form
The heart of the earth and the weapons of warmth
Vesuvius, the tragic oath
For you have destroyed with the elegant smoke
Oracle, I fathomed at last
For they were the feast of a permanent blast
(“Vesuvius”)
And when you crochet I feel mesmerized and proud
And I would say I love you, but saying it out loud is hard
So I won’t say it at all
(“Futile Devices”)
Favorite Songs : Vesuvius, I Want To Be Well, I Walked

Photobucket 1. Beach House, Teen Dream
Hail from: Baltimore, Maryland
Generic label: Dream Pop
Sonic descriptors: fuzzy, nuanced, vast
Stand-out element: Victoria LeGrand’s voice, at once delicate and powerful.
Themes: dissolution of relationships, memory, escapism
Lyrical gems:
There’s something wrong with our hearts
When they beat pure, they stand apart
In the black room, the light
Watch the seabird fall
Real love, it finds you somewhere with your back to it
(“Real Love”)
The face that you saw in the door isn’t looking at you anymore
The name that you called in its place isn’t waiting for your embrace
The world that you love to behold cannot hold you anymore
In a matter of time it would slip from my mind
In and out of my life, you would slip from my mind
In a matter of time
(“Walk In The Park”)
Favorite Songs: Walk In The Park, Take Care, 10 Mile Stereo

BEST EPs:
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Sufjan Stevens, All Delighted People EP

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Tallest Man On Earth, Sometimes The Blues Is Just A Passing Bird

LIVE PERFORMERS OF THE YEAR:
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Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings

and

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Sufjan Stevens

VOICE OF THE YEAR:
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Victoria LeGrand of Beach House

SONG OF THE YEAR:
Soft As Chalk by Joanna Newsom

VIDEOS OF THE YEAR:
The XX’s “Islands”
The XX’s album was released in 2009, but this video was released in early 2010. The concept is incredible, I couldn’t not include it.
Janelle Monae’s “Tightrope”
So fun and fresh. I love the tailored suits and Monae’s pompadour.
MGMT’s “Flash Delerium”
So strange, but in a good way. Like a David Lynch movie.
Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs”
So intense. Spike Jonze captures the emotions of youth and the essence of the song so well.
Broken Bells’ “The Ghost Inside”
So unexpected. Christina Hendricks as a robot in dire straits… what’s not to like? An excellent video and song from an otherwise meh album.

How Does Jimmy Fallon Do It?

Jimmy Fallon was never one of my SNL faves. I never found him very funny (although it was funny when he couldn’t contain his laughter during especially hilarious skits), and even now I only find him moderately funny part of the time. But as a late night talk show host, he’s really gone above and beyond and deserves some major dap. Not only does he have the best band in late night, The Roots, but he’s managed to nab a handful of elusive artists to perform on his show. He snagged Joanna Newsom earlier this year (it probably didn’t hurt that he’s pals with her boyfriend, Andy Samberg), and in recent weeks he’s had Robyn perform a rousing dance set, as well as Sufjan Stevens in his first-ever network television performance (!).

My hats off to you, Fallon.

Love and the Apocalypse.

I went to see Sufjan Stevens perform at the Paramount on Saturday night, and it was a pretty incredible experience. I saw him the last time he played in Seattle in 2006 and it was totally magical: he had a giant band with him onstage complete with a full string section, and everyone was wearing wings and it was very mellow. This time, however, it was more of wholly sensory experience, with lots of visual effects and choreographed dancing. Very different from what I expected, but still amazing.

Between songs, Sufjan explained the inspiration for his new album and why it’s so sonically different from anything else he’s done before, and pointed out the threads of heartbreak and madness and the apocalypse that run through Age of Adz. And he made a joke about it (he’s surprisingly funny), saying that he felt there was no healthier way to view love sickness than through the standardization and mythology of end times.

I know it was a joke, but I think there’s something profound in that statement. I’ve been thinking for the past couple days about relationships and the emotions that so often accompany their end, how easy it is for one to view the dissolution of a relationship as the end of the world. It makes sense: when you’re with someone, you’re creating a life that wouldn’t have existed otherwise. You do things differently and view things differently, want different things, expect different things, pursue different things when you’re with someone as opposed to being alone. And the beginning of a relationship is like the beginning of life, like birth, in that you start with nothing and then grow and learn as a person, with another person. It’s the creation of an entire world that you inhabit as if there were nothing else. So when it ends, it really is like the end of the world because it’s the end of your world, the world that you’ve made and invested in and loved.

And if that’s true, then ending a relationship and moving forward with your life is like a rebirth. It’s a chance to start fresh, forge something new, wipe your slate clean. But if you’re on the powerless end of a break-up, if you’re the one being broken up with, a clean slate is not appealing. It doesn’t feel like the positive rebirth that it should be; it feels more like purgatory, or a holding cell. It feels like a prolonged apocalypse. There is so much fear in facing the unfamiliar because the life you’ve known is ending and you’re forced to reinvent yourself as a single person, alone. But as Belle & Sebastian sing, “Forward’s the only way to go.” In the midst of the crumbling edifice that you’ve constructed to be your life, you can only keep living and keep trying to be alive.

So begins my apocalypse.

the decade list.

Nothing in the world makes me feel older than looking back at a decade’s worth of music that tickled my fancy.
It would be close to impossible for me to rank these albums according to value, so they are ranked chronologically and alphabetically.

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Elliott Smith – Figure 8 (2000)
Modest Mouse – The Moon and Antarctica (2000)
Radiohead – Kid A (2000)
Bjork – Vespertine (2001)
The White Stripes – White Blood Cells (2001)
Interpol – Turn On The Bright Lights (2002)
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Mirah – Advisory Committee (2002)
Mum – Finally We Are No One (2002)
Rilo Kiley – The Execution of All Things (2002)
Brand New – Deja Entendu (2003)
Cat Power – You Are Free (2003)
Damien Rice – O (2003)
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Death Cab For Cutie – Transatlanticism (2003)
Her Space Holiday – The Young Machines (2003)
M. Ward – The Transfiguration of Vincent (2003)
Mates of State – Team Boo (2003)
Murder By Death – Who Will Survive and What Will Be Left Of Them? (2003)
The Postal Service – Give Up (2003)
The Shins – Chutes Too Narrow (2003)
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Sufjan Stevens – Greetings From Michigan (2003)
Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Fever To Tell (2003)
The Good Life – Album of the Year (2004)
Joanna Newsom – The Milk-Eyed Mender (2004)
The Killers – Hot Fuss (2004)
Regina Spektor – Soviet Kitsch (2004)
Ryan Adams – Love Is Hell (2004)
Say Hi To Your Mom – Numbers & Mumbles (2004)
Sufjan Stevens – Seven Swans (2004)
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Tilly & The Wall – Wild Like Children (2004)
Antony & The Johnsons – I Am A Bird Now (2005)
Bright Eyes – I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning (2005)
Death Cab For Cutie – Plans (2005)
Devendra Banhart – Cripple Crow (2005)
Fiona Apple – Extraordinary Machine (2005)
Great Lake Swimmers – Great Lake Swimmers (2005)
Jens Lekman – Oh You’re So Silent, Jens (2005)
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The Kills – No Wow (2005)
M.I.A. – Arular (2005)
Ryan Adams & The Cardinals – Cold Roses (2005)
Spoon – Gimme Fiction (2005)
Sufjan Stevens – Illinoise (2005)
Wolf Parade – Apologies To The Queen Mary (2005)
Beirut – Gulag Orkestar (2006)
Grizzly Bear – Yellow House (2006)
Jenny Lewis & The Watson Twins – Rabbit Fur Coat (2006)
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Joanna Newsom – Ys (2006)
Justin Timberlake – FutureSex/LoveSounds (2006)
The National – Alligator (2006)
Neko Case – Fox Confessor Brings The Flood (2006)
Ratatat – Classics (2006)
Regina Spektor – Begin To Hope (2006)
Rocky Votolato – Makers (2006)
TV On The Radio – Return to Cookie Mountain (2006)
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Arcade Fire – Neon Bible (2007)
Feist – The Reminder (2007)
Fionn Regan – The End of History (2007)
The National – Boxer (2007)
Ryan Adams – Easy Tiger (2007)
Wilco – Sky Blue Sky (2007)
Beach House – Devotion (2008)
Bon Iver – For Emma, Forever Ago (2008)
Emiliana Torrini – Me and Armini (2008)
Fleet Foxes – Fleet Foxes (2008)
Lady Gaga – The Fame (2008)
Lykke Li – Youth Novel (2008)
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Mates of State – Re-Arrange Us (2008)
MGMT – Oracular Spectacular (2008)
She & Him – Volume One (2008)
Vampire Weekend – Vampire Weekend (2008)
The Welcome Wagon – Welcome To The Welcome Wagon (2008)
Antony & The Johnsons – The Crying Light (2009)
Animal Collective – Merriweather Post Pavilion (2009)
Bat For Lashes – Two Suns (2009)
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Grizzly Bear – Veckatimest (2009)
Jay-Z – The Blueprint III (2009)

things are okay.

things that make me happy:
+ sufjan stevens’ creative writing skills.
+ i found a signed copy of amy bloom’s normal at half price books and am so excited to start reading it.
+ being able to drop a class that was way too much work and stress for me without being penalized or having to graduate later than planned.
+ ‘siren song’ by margaret atwood. yay feminism.
+ being at rockaway beach. the best.

also! i have a tentative sumer reading list that i am super stoked on:
the history of love by nicole krauss
new and selected poems by mary oliver
moby dick by herman melville
disgrace by j.m. coetzee
the adventures of tom sawyer by mark twain
the subjection of women by john stuart mill
travels with charley by john steinbeck
mrs. dalloway by virginia woolf
crime and punishment by fyodor dostoevsky
ulysses by james joyce (which will probably take me all summer)