i had planned a very detailed and conventional Top Ten LPs list but then found myself with one resounding question ringing in my head... "why are you doing this?" Yeah, it's a simple(ton) question but it was enough to make me not want to do a list ala my Top 12"s.
So here's a semi stream of consciousness round up of what albums i was really into in the '06.
Easily the my favorite album was J DILLA "Donuts". it came out right at the crack of the new year and was never replaced. Even during the few short weeks before he passed away i was struck with a sense of utter amazement at this thing. It felt like a calm release that only someone that has been "through it" could create. Every track and sound had a depth to it that seem to... not so much suck you in, but settle you down for a real lesson. Yes, it's basically beats and samples some may be described as half-baked ideas or sketches but only a douche bag would see it that way.
It's a whole created by perfect parts. Like how enjoying the moment makes you in the long run have a more complete life. Unlike other great artists that passed away that hadn't made a note of importance in 30 years, this loss truly sucks. Consider the current state of hip hop and you'll understand.
Most of the year i was blown away by post-glitch bliss. TIM HECKER "Harmony In Ultra violet" was a reflex grab for me since almost everything this canuck craps out of his laptop is truly beautiful. It's dumbfounding in it's amorphous haze and overwhelming in it's indescribable beauty. DONATO WHARTON "Body Isolations" was picked up because of the great cover and never put down because of the music. It breathes and thinks thru it's shimmering piano tinkles and atmospheric scapes. KANGDING RAY "Stabil" sounded lika an orcestra of cold drops of water on an aluminium tray and i played it non stop.
Pitchfuckers were all over BURIAL last year but basically turned a deaf ear and a dumb ass to the better of the 2 Hyperdub full lengths, KODE 9 + SPACEAPE "Memories Of The Future" is (sort of) a modern take on the LKJ/Dennis Bovell connection. Deep hypnotic tones with a croaking baritone spoken word glaze. Marc Leclair (bka Akufen) released a loose concept album in "Musique Pour 3 Femmes Enceintes". Thru the full course of this disc you are taken on a journey from minimal fuzzy clicks to polyrhythmic overload. This album seems to last a lifetime, but in a very, very good way.
Ahh, rock and roll... is it dead? is claiming it's dead, dead? Yes and no on all accounts. Comets On Fire "Avatar" was on constant replay. Getting better which each release this one is a mother fucker! Tempering the all out feedback assault with the mellower (melodic) segments works perfectly. I know very little about the group ON who had a CD released on Campbell Kneale's Celebrate Psi Phenomenon label, but what i do know is that it's a NZ scuzz rock mind fuck that needs to be blasted whilst drinking heavily (beer, liquor or Windex will do nicely). Remember when SY was somewhat youthful and good? Well, take all the dissonant love they once spread and spread it on thicker. Makes one understand that "noize rock" is a pussy moniker. I LOVE Major Stars... when half that group was Magic Hour and played the Euclid Tavern with Ghost it changed my life forever. Every Major Stars album is untouchable so of course i couldn't wait for another one to be unleashed upon us mortals. Well, the pre LP 7" with the new singer didn't totally float my yacht but the music was still perfect... leads that howl like a wolf god at the full moon, a rhythm section that understands that sitting in the pocket doesn't mean laying back. "Syntopticon" ended up being a fucking beast, although i still think the new singer is sub par to Wayne's wobbly warble. Jazkamer "Metal Music Machine" is one of thee most intense albums I've heard in many a blue moon draft. They distill metal to it's basic parts: blast beats and blazing riffs, doom laden drop C chords and squealing feedback. Not blending them together but meditating on each part like a Buddhist in a bullet belt.
I really played the hell out of Black Angels "Passover" (please do not mention BJM to me) and then played it more. Working For A Nuclear Free City may be a stupid as shit name but their worship of Stone Roses and all things Manchester (their hometown... does that make their ripping it off better?) sounded great to me.
So if you are interested in any of these albums use the old cut and paste and google method and find out more... then buy them!