Top 100 CD’s (2000-2009) –> #79 through #70

#79: Red Hot Chili Peppers/Stadium Arcadium (2006) — I’ve already noted that John Frusciante is one of the best guitarists of all time. As a collective, any band than can pull off the prolific feat of a double album in this day and age and have a sizable chunk of that music trully showcase why a band should be a Hall of Fame act is considerably impressive. Check out: ‘Snow (Hey Oh)’ ‘Wet Sand,’ Storm in a Teacup,’ and ‘Turn It Again.’

#78: Dinosaur, Jr/Farm (2009) — Before Nirvana, there was Dinosaur, Jr. That was 16 years ago in my mind…and in MY mind, my formative years took place just before the alternative era…I was listening to the Pixies by way of the U2 Zoo TV tour, and naturally found myself turned on to Mascis and Murph and the 1993 commerical breakthrough, Where You Been?…this was back when MTV played videos, kids. ‘Start Choppin,’ and ‘Out There,’ garnered several spins in the tape deck (yes, remember walkmen? No, no the band…) Jump ahead to today and they’ve never sounded so good (with Barlow back in the fold)…every song a testament to why J Mascis should be remember for the guitarist and songwriter he is. Check out: ‘Pieces,’ ‘Plans,’ and ‘See You,’ for a brief tutorial.

#77: Pete Yorn & Scarlett Johansson/Break Up (2009) — o.k. we all know the story – Pete woke up one morning and decided to do a duets album. Save for the Robert Plant/Alison Krauss record, there haven’t been too many duets records this decade that have been able to truly cross lines and blow people away. As with anything over time, this album is an update on a theme, but it works (addressing both the past and present musically) – in the end, it’s a beautifully crafted pop album. Scarlett’s voice is truly a gift and a great foil and muse for Pete’s music. In a nutshell, it just works. Check out: ‘Relator, ‘I Am The Cosmos,’ and ‘Clean.’

#76: Our Lady Peace/Spiritual Machine (2001): Up until ’01, was a damn good year for music and competitive for my ears, OLP was the only music coming out of Canada worth my time. OLP probably produced their most artistic and well balanced album that year, save for the whole conceptual, sci-fi b.s. The music stands the test of time, and holds up remarkably well. Check out: ‘In Repair,’ ‘Are You Sad?’ and ‘Made to Heal.’

#75: Nonpoint/Statement (2000) — these guys, like fellow East Coast Nu Metalers Sevendust, made a household name for themselves by just constant touring…I can’t tell you how many times (ad nauseum) they have ended on local bills. So much so that perhaps their message is a bit watered down these days. That aside, 10 years ago Statement was released and the crunchy metal along with a lead singer was the right amount swagger, sway and full-on rage fit the time in place. Bear in mind I was 23 and was still one for the pits. In fact I think it was crushing blow to the spine and jaw at a subsequent show that finally made me hang it up. When you ‘re having a bad day and want to imagine breaking sh*t…this is what one listens to. Full album is a TANK. Check out: ‘Endure,’ ‘What a Day,’ and ‘Tribute.’

#74: Head Automatica/Decadence (2004) — I remember the first listen of this album (my expectations were low, seeing as I just never got into Glassjaw – surprising, I know…), but I love a lead singer who can completely re-invent himself for a new project and that’s exactly what Daryl Palumbo does for Head Automatica. Decadence is a hard-rocking pop gem. The boys in H.A. get the party starting and never let up. Such great lyricis, such great funky rock. Check out: ‘At the Speed of a Yellow Bullet,’ ‘Brooklyn is Burning,’ and ‘Beating Heart Baby.’ — and you’re hooked.

#73: Thirty-Six Crazyfists/A Snow-Capped Romance (2004) — 36CF’s second album and second entry on my Top 100 of the decade. They don’t call it a sophomore slump for nothing folks – I can’t tell you how many bands I’ve seen crash and burn this decade b/c of it. 36CF cleaned up some of Brock’s vocals (but not the heart-on-sleeve reverence of his lyricism) and continued to bridge that gap between the hardcore sound remniscent in late 90’s acts like Handsome, Deftones and Flaw while maintaining a metal following for their brash, angular guitar-work. In other words, not for the weak of heart. Checkout: ‘The Heart and the Shape’ ‘Skin and Atmosphere,’ and ‘Waterhaul.’

#72: The Duke Spirt/Neptune (2008) — during my brief tenure at R.S. there were only a handful of acts that really got my juices flowing and made me want to bend over backwards to promote them despite many obstacles. Liela Moss is a true rock n’ roll frontwoman. That powerful European voice …fits into the hipster melodies crafted perfectly around her. The band is equal parts Spiritualized, Sonic Youth and My Bloody Valentine. God love ’em. Another great ‘road,’ record. ‘The sky is more certain than you will ever be/the rainclouds are angry at you and at me/forgive me baby/I’m not all that you see/I would understand your heart/if I could feel it…’ Check out: ‘The Step and The Walk,’ ‘This Ship Was Built to Last,’ and ‘Wooden Heart.’

#71: Smashing Pumpkins/ZEITGEIST (2007) — It’s hard to say whether or not this release might’ve ended up higher had it not been for the past two years of Billy slowly jumping the shark and Jimmy finally jumping ship. I was a believer as promo built for the album and the Pumpkins returned to active touring duty for the first time in seven years. Yes, I say Pumpkins b/c I still believe the Pumpkins were really just Billy n’ Jimmy anyway. Save for ‘Starz,’ this album, when put together completely after you bought the final Best Buy version (and added the iTunes and Target exclusive tracks), is a formidable asset to the discography. While 2000’s MACHINA was the formal swan song of the band as SP diehards new it; this is the rock album fans wondered if they would see after Mellon Collie. Check out: ‘Bleeding the Orchid,’ ‘Tarantula,’ and ‘Stellar.’

#70: System of a Down/Toxicity (2001) — at the turn of the century, nu metal was on its last legs. Korn’s Issues was released in (1999) and they would only release one meaningful album over the next 10 years. Limp Bizkit were also fading away. Godsmack’s Awake came out in 2000 and, save for newcomers Mudvayne, could widely be considered the mainstream hard rock success as a heavier new scene in metal began to develop. S.O.A.D. debuted in 1998 and three years later launched Toxicity with all the manic tendencies of eccentric frontman Serj Tankian, railing about multiplying, leaving keys on the table, and pogoing at swinger parties. Beyond that Daron Malakian was creating metal riff’s that spoke to the masses while an Armenian percussion and backdrop offered a well-rounded, Grammy-winning style that set the band apart from its peers. Check out: ‘Chop Suey,’ ‘Bounce,’ and ‘Deer Dance.’


~ by kjbox76 on November 21, 2009.

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