To be honest, I was not impressed with the music of 2007 and 2008. With some obvious exceptions (Such as Radiohead’s In Rainbows) I just didn’t get into current releases. Mostly, I collected the catalogues of classic bands and avoided new music.
But seriously what is it with 2009?! There is so much good music coming out this year that there has been at least one record per month that I have greatly anticipated. My year end top ten will turn into a top twenty this year, I can almost guarantee it.
For the record here are my current favs from this year along with briefer than brief commentary (Currently not ordered, but at the end of the year my list will be):
- Derek Webb- Stockholm Syndrome [Derek goes electronica but holds onto the biting lyrics. His best musically, and lyrically too. If the only word you hear on this album is four letters long you aren't listening...]
- Thrice- Beggars [Easily their best album, and that's just from the initial listen.]
- House of Heroes- The End Is Not The End [How many Christian artists release concept records? How many artists release concept records about World War II? How many Christian artists release concept records about World War II? How many do you think could pull it off? I can think of one.]
- Project 86- Picket Fence Cartel [improvement over the past two releases, still figuring out how it holds up to the "classics"]
- Joy Electric- Curiosities and Such [honestly why didn't Ronnie go mono years ago?]
- Sleeping Giant- Sons of Thunder [phenomenal Spirit-filled hardcore... which reminds me, isn't there a series I should be completing...?]
- As Cities Burn- Hell or High Water [good record to go out on.... -10,000,000 points to T&N for making "Gates" a download only bonus track... shouldn't the PHYSICAL releases be the ones with bonuses? Sigh.]
- Boarders- The World Hates Me [very fun metal with obvious but divergent influences... dig the Megadeth cover]
- Ultimatum- Lex Metalis [as cover albums go, this is among the best]
- For Today- Portraits [10 musical "portraits" of biblical characters. A Spirit-filled hardcore concept record? Never thought I'd hear that, glad I did]
Listening to: John Davis Former (and I believe, now current again) singer of the retro-power pop band Superdrag. Converted to Christianity and made this record, it’s quite phenomenal.
Wow. I am keeping myself busy. Lots of reading and listening and reviewing…. How about some lists(!!!!!!) As much for my use as yours, I swear.
Current Book Reading List:
- R. Kent Hughes- The Disciplines of a Godly Man
- C.J. Mahaney, Ed.- Worldliness (This book will DESTROY you)
- Soong-Chan Rah- The Next Evangelicalism* (This is a real challenge to my individualistic, materialistic, and Western, White world view. And Thank God for that!)
- Peter B. Holmes & Susan B. Williams- Church as a Safe Place*
- Dave Harvey- When Sinners Say ‘I Do’
- John Piper- Don’t Waste Your Life
- Mark Driscoll- Death By Love
- G. K. Beale- We Become What We Worship
- R. Albert Mohler Jr.- He Is Not Silent
This is the relative order I intend to finish them in. Books with * are ones that I am reviewing.
And now the Frequent Listeners List, AKA What is gracing my CD player and my iPod as of late:
- Demon Hunter- Storm The Gates Of Hell & 45 Days (Can’t get any more bold than STGOH, and the soundtrack is rad too).
- The Chariot- Wars and Rumors of Wars* (Still melting my face three albums later).
- House of Heroes- The End is Not the End (truly a perfect classic pop record. Everyone should own it. I’m not kidding, go buy it right now).
- Emery- I’m Only a Man & When Broken Hearts Prevail (I am really enjoying their recent material, far superior to their first couple records).
- John Coltrane- A Love Supreme (John called it his “gift to God.” I believe him).
- Joy Electric- Curiosities & Such* (Great little EP, mixed in mono, gives it some character).
- Ronald of Orange- Brush Away the Cobwebs* (alternately catchy and hilariously kitschy pop from Ronnie Martin of Joy E).
- HB- Frozen Inside* (Swedish symphonic metal with female vocals. Very worshipful lyrics).
- Zao- AWAKE?* (their best album on Ferret. Great design too).
- In Grief- Deserted Soul* (Sweet progressive black metal).
Again, * are ones that I’ll be reviewing.
So essentially, I am reading, listening, and reviewing. Oh, and working, rock climbing, and hanging with Rach, of course. What are you reading and listening to lately?