The year 2007: Let’s dance to…!

Wednesday, 31 December, 2008

battles mirroredakron_family_love_is_simple

I bought more than 40 albums this year. This is a lot thinking 40 of them were from 2007. I started to buy “New and Used” at Amazon UK. There should go more than 1½ year before customs duty got some of my packaging. Well, the two albums were still cheaper including the tariff than buying it in a Danish store.
A lot of interesting things came out and I did go to a lot of concerts. Some great, some hilarious funny. Especially the Cradle of Filth concert at Amager Bio had this stupid, but funny, show on the scene. More of that, please!

The top 5 songs this year were:

Battles – Atlas (Warp Records)
Akron/Family – Ed is a portal (Young God records)
Of Montreal – The past is a grotesque animal (Polyvinyl Record Company)
Iron & Wine – Ressurection Fern (Sub Pop Records)
The Wombats – Let’s dance to joy division (14th Floor Records)

I’ve had my difficulties with “Shepherds dog” by Iron & Wine. Boy with a coin is beautiful, but getting behind these surreal texts and up-tempo songs was not easy for me. A paradox having theses troubles, as I about two years earlier would have left the record in the ditch.
The Wombats made a one hit wonder. I loved it, not much else to say about this. But there is a lot more to say about Battles. I’ve heard their EPs without being especially impressed. But “Mirrored” came with a tune that had a lot of soul on top and underneath their technical brilliance. Actually a shocking album to me, as I thought they were playing music with a new and fresh approach.
Of Montreal made several monster tracks on the album “Hissing Fauna, are you the destroyer”. I don’t really get the band and must admit that the other albums are not anything for me.
Akron/ Family is also a strange appearance. But the album has a joy and playful tune. Ed is a Portal is a fun and loveable track.

Regarding the “Night before New Years Eve” Jesper didn’t make the cut and no new one came in. The joker of the year was “best non-album” track giving the ability to put more attention on remixes, b-sides and the like. A lot of EPs was played. I did too. Mansbestfriend made an EP of outtakes from “Poly.sci.187”. It had lyrics and led the thoughts back to the amazing “New human is illegal” from 2004. I can’t get the original copy, is that non-album irony.

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The year 2004: Under the influence of .chrz.

Wednesday, 31 December, 2008

mansbestfriend new human is illegalblack heart procession solbakken in the fish tank

Mikkel moved out and .chrz moved in at Holtegade. He is an amazing guy with a outrageous taste in music. It’s funny, interesting, provocative and challenging. But this is also how music can get exciting.

We danced to Franz Ferdinand two-songs-in-one “Take me out” and we were amazed by the raw and endless energy by Lightning Bolt. It was a stunning year regarding musical exploration. Christian moved out in October and Lasse moved in instead. Another team player and inspiration regarding music.

This year we started a tradition, which has continued every year ever since.

The concept is rather simple: The day before New Years Eve we meet. In Danish we call it “Lille Nytårs aften”. There is no such word in English, so I’ll just have to refer to the “Night before New Years Eve”.
Everybody has their own list of the best five songs released within the last year. First the 5th best song is played by each participant. Then the 4th, then the 3rd and so on is played. Between the rounds the order is changed as everybody is taking a new ball – with a number on the inside – from the bowl.
Between the 2nd and 1st we have a “joker” (bobler), which is a changing theme every year. This year it was “Best band I never have heard before this year”. This was quite interesting, ’cause maybe others did know the band, but to me it was the first time I heard them and they were great.

The atmosphere is both relaxed but also intense. What are the others playing? What do they think and respond to my choice? But it’s also fantastic and surprising to be inspired by new music from friends you know so well. Music is a nice way to get each other to know better and also keep in touch. This is absolutely recommended. The following year we did also try some theme nights, meeting within the year playing “best hip hop songs ever”, “best country songs ever” and “I died in my teens”. An evening playing the best songs from our years as teenagers. We first met after the age of … 23? So there are a lot of unknown pleasures and it was a funny evening. But we haven’t kept these evenings alive in the same manner.

My choice of a top five was

Mansbestfriend: Victim Idol (Anticon)
Black Heart Procession: Dog Song (In the Fishtank)
90 day men: Too late or too dead (Southern Records)
Björk: Triumph of a heart (One Little Indian)
Rammstein: America (Universal)

No doubt about the first ones. Björk was a surprising choice. Dokaka is doing his stuff really well on this homogenic, warm and beautiful track.
One of the strengths of Rammstein is their popular sound. Its sing-along heavy without getting (too) corny and I believe “America” is one of their better tracks. The references to songs from the 80ies don’t make it worse.
90 day men made their best album – “Panda Park” – and “Too late or too dead” is only one of more exceptional tracks. To sad they stopped playing together. Never got to see them live. Well.
Black Heart Procession did play a rather boring concert at Roskilde Festival. Their “In the Fish tank” release with Solbakken is a very nice collaboration. “Dog song” and “Things go on with mistakes” are outstanding tracks.
Mansbestfriend – a project of one of the founders of Anticon, Tim Holland aka Sole – took me with surprise. It made me see Hip Hop as something completely else. My bad not knowing enough about this genre before. The concept of the record is brilliant and the lyrics have been a creative inspiration. Victim Idol is one of more songs that every year could go in my top 5.

I did also listen a lot to the demo of Wolf Parades “Songs and daughters of hungry ghosts” and Kå “Næste sommer”. Wolf Parade didn’t make it to the list and I have regretted this, as this was by far their best song until releasing “At Mount Zoomer”.