Archive for January 2010

2009 In Music – 1,000+ Good Albums

January 3, 2010
This has been a mammoth undertaking, and it has occupied way too much of my life.  I hope you enjoy it.

Happy New Year, everyone!

It is now so easy and inexpensive to record and distribute music that far too many albums are released each week for anyone to hear them all.  I thought if I organized and listed all the bands with good 2009 albums I’ve heard this year it might be helpful to others.

My list differs from other year-end lists in three important ways:

Europe – Since the internet gives everyone around the world instant access to all albums released anywhere, it makes no sense for these other lists to ignore albums released in Europe but not the U.S.  Their probable justification, that there is no point listening to and recommending albums that are not available here, is nonsensical and silly.  Albums released only in Europe are instantly available for us to hear, and to buy as downloads, just like American releases.  Since I haven’t discriminated against or ignored Europe-only releases, this list includes a lot of great music missing from other year-end lists.

Finding Quality Via Quantity – Most year-end lists include a limited number of albums.  Does anyone seriously think there are only a few albums released each year that are worth recommending and hearing?  I’ve attempted to include every good album released this year, not just an inherently arbitrary Best Of.  You might conclude from scanning this list that I heard every indie album released.  Didn’t happen – not even close.  In 2009 I proved conclusively, once again, that no one can hear everything that comes out.

I tried to listen to every 2009 album that got substantial press attention.  As a result, any  well-known album not listed below is likely missing because I don’t think it’s worth your time.  Examples of artists that released poor 2009 albums include Alexisonfire, Animal Collective (for both Fall On Me and Merriweather Post Pavilion), Atlas Sound (Bradford Cox of Atlanta’s Deerhunter), Chris Brown, Cartel, Daughtry, Flight Of The Conchords, The Fray, Gossip, Imogen Heap, Jet, Jewel, Jack Johnson, Norah Jones, Alicia Keys, K’Naan, La Roux, Lady Gaga, Adam Lambert, Leona Lewis, Lotus Plaza (Lockett Pundt of Deerhunter), Anya Marina, Matisyahu, Carly Patterson (the gymnast), Peter Bjorn And John, Paul Potts, Rain Machine (Kyp Malone of TV On The Radio), Jill Sobule, Sunn O))), Thenewno2 (Dhani Harrison, son of George), Kanye West, Bernie Williams (Yankees centerfielder).  The common thread among many of these weak albums is their one-dimensionality, sounding the same throughout – how boring is that?  In some cases you wonder whether the artist fell asleep in the studio, or suffered from “obsessive-compulsive repetitious disorder”.

Twentieth-Century Coverage – Other year-end lists copy each other so much they generally include the same albums by the same new artists, and completely ignore albums by artists who’ve been around a while.  Since I don’t ignore older artists (not trusting folks over 30 is such a dated, 60s idea), this list includes categories for artists who made their mark in the 60s, 70s, and 80s, along with categories for well-known 90s artists.  Maybe those other lists only care about New Bands That Self-Proclaimed Trendsetters Decide Are Cool.

So, onward to my list of all artists that released 2009 albums worth hearing:

1.  Given how difficult it is to keep all this information and music straight, I haven’t even attempted to deal with the names of the albums.  Thus, listed below is just the band name, without the album title.  The internet of course makes it easy to discover the name of, and listen to, any of these 2009 albums.

2.  None of these albums are included because of just one song.  I’ve listened to each album at least twice all the way through (well, maybe not all the poor albums listed at the end), and would gladly listen to each again in the future.

3.   When at least two band members release solo albums or side projects, I’ve listed them in a separate category named for the band, which also lists the band’s own album if applicable.  I’ve also listed all-stars who released good albums with more than one band this year.

4.  What’s going on with all the “Black” bands?  Attack In Black, Black Cargoes, The Black Ghosts, Black Gold, The Black Heart Procession, Black Lips, Black Meteoric Star, Black Moth Super Rainbow, Blackbird Harmony, Blackfield, Blackout Beach, Crippled Black Phoenix, Helado Negro, Nadja & Black Boned Angel, Soul Of John Black.  How unoriginal – don’t these bands want to differentiate themselves from each other?  Anyway, all of them released good albums.  (Unlistenable albums were released by Black Cobra, Black Dice, Black Motor, Black Wall Street, Blakroc (with The Black Keys), Zwart Licht {Black Light}.)

The bands in each category are listed in alphabetical order.  We begin with my Top 7 albums of the year, and at the bottom is the full list of my choices as the best albums of the year, along with some awards.  I hope you enjoy reading this, expanding your musical horizons, and discovering some great new stuff!

My Top 10 Albums

Alice In Chains
The Field
The Horrors
Lydia Lunch
Mi Ami
Bob Mould
The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart
Wild Beasts


Alberta Cross
Art Brut
Arctic Monkeys
Bad Lieutenant (Bernard Sumner of Joy Division/New Order and Alex James of Blur)
Band Of Skulls
The Big Pink (Robbie Furze of Alec Empire)
Bombay Bicycle Club
The Clientele
The Cribs (members include Johnny Marr of The Smiths)
The Enemy
Golden Silvers
Heaven & Hell (Black Sabbath members Iommi, Dio, Butler, and Appice) – metal
The Heavy
Hot Chip (with Robert Wyatt of Soft Machine)
The Maccabees
Mongrel (Helders/Nicholson of Arctic Monkeys) (not the same-named U.S. metal band) – rap
The Noisettes
Official Secrets Act
The Rakes
Reverend & The Makers
The Rifles
Sky Larkin
Slow Club
Soulsavers (with Mark Lanegan of QOTSA)
Starsailor (for both All The Plans and Boy In Waiting)
The XX
The Veils
Wave Machines
The Wave Pictures
Wild Beasts

England Post-Punk

The Boxer Rebellion
Brakesbrakesbrakes (not the same-named U.S. jam band) (E. Hamilton, ex-British Sea Power)
Hatcham Social
The Horrors (not the same-named U.S. garage band)
White Lies

England Blues Rock

The Chatham Singers (Billy Childish)
‘Kitty, Daisy & Lewis’ Durham (siblings, mother is Ingrid Weiss of The Raincoats)
Davy Knowles & Back Door Slam
Ian Siegal – solo

England Psych-Folk

‘Nancy Elizabeth’ Cunliffe – female solo
The Leisure Society
Mumford & Sons
Alexi Murdoch – solo
Noah And The Whale
The Unthanks
Kathryn Williams & Neill MacColl (brother of Kristy)

England Experimental

Action Beat
Amusement Parks On Fire
Beak (Geoff Barrow of Portishead)
Les Triaboliques
Malakai (not the same-named U.S. metal band)
65daysofstatic (not a typo)
Rolo Tomassi (named after character in L.A. Confidential movie)

England Cross-Cultural

The Latin Project (Latin)
Oi Va Voi (Yiddish)

England Garage Rock

Joe Gideon & The Shark (his sister, Viva, both ex-Bikini Atoll)
A Grave With No Name
Lovvers (not one of the same-named England experimental bands)

England Hard Rock

Baddies (not the same-named Australia punk band)
Frank Turner – solo

England Prog-Rock

Crippled Black Phoenix (Dominic Aitchison of Mogwai)
The Pineapple Thief

England Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

Bibio (Stephen Wilkinson) – solo
The Black Ghosts
Brighton Port Authority (Norman Cook as Fatboy Slim) – solo
Chris ‘Clark’ – solo
Filthy Dukes
F**k Buttons
Chris Lake – solo
Little Boots (Victoria Hesketh) – female solo
Micachu [Mika Levi] And The Shapes
The Qemists
Simian Mobile Disco
Andrew Weatherall – solo
The Whip (not the same-named U.S. psych-folk or hard rock bands)
Zomby – solo

England Male Solo

Jon Allen
‘Just Jack’ Alsopp
Peter Doherty (of Babyshambles and The Libertines)
Ben ‘Esser’
Piers Faccini
Fink (Fin Greenall)
Fryars (Ben Garrett)
John Garrison
Ed Harcourt
Richard Hawley
IAMX (Chris Corner of Sneaker Pimps)
Maps (James Chapman)
Max Morgan
Mika (Michael Penniman)
Alexi Murdoch (Away We Go movie soundtrack)
Jack Penate
‘Jamie T’ Treays
Charlie Winston
Patrick Wolf

England Female Solo

Lily Allen
Bat For Lashes (Natasha Khan)
Bird (Janice Price)
Blue Roses (not the same-named Dan Bejar Canadian band) (Laura Groves)
Olivia Broadfield
The Cocknbullkid (Anita Blay)
‘Helene’ Dineen
Joker’s Daughter (Helena Costas, produced by Danger Mouse)
Florence [Welch] & The Machine
Charlotte Gainsbourg
Tara Jane O’Neil
Gemma Ray
Carina Round
Polly Scattergood
Joss Stone
Theoretical Girl (Amy Turnnidge)
Kate Walsh


Broken Records
Camera Obscura
Danananaykroyd – hard rock
De Rosa
Franz Ferdinand
The Geesin Brothers
God Help The Girl (Stuart Murdoch of Belle & Sebastian)
Calvin Harris (Adam Wiles) – solo – synth
Twin Atlantic
The View
We Were Promised Jetpacks

Scotland Post-Punk

The Cinematics
The Twilight Sad

Scotland Psych-Folk

Aidan Moffat (ex-Arab Strap) – solo
James Yorkston & The Big Eyes Family Players

Scotland Male Solo

James Grant
King Creosote (Kenny Anderson)
Paolo Nutini
Alasdair Roberts


Future Of The Left
Cat Le Bon – female solo

Northern Ireland

Boxcutter (not one of the same-named Can., N.Ire., or U.S. bands) (Barry Lynn) – synth – solo
Therapy? – alt-metal


Fight Like Apes – synth
Legion Of Two – experimental
Lisa Hannigan – female solo
The Swell Season


Club Diana
De Staat
DeWolff – psychedelic rock
El Pino & The Volunteers
The Gasoline Brothers
Good Dog Happy Man
The Horse Company
I Kissed Charles
Kismet (not the same-named England band)
The Leo Sunrise – psych-folk
The Madd
Mama Lou
Mark & The Spies
Mdungu (African) – cross-cultural
Moss (not the same-named England metal band)
Most Unpleasant Men
The Polar Exploration Ship
The Secret Love Parade
The Sheer
Starring Lisa
Swelter (not the same-named U.S. hard rock or metal bands)
Templo Diez
We’ll Make It Right
The Wild Specialities

Netherlands Alt-Country

Amarins & Le Gatte Negre
Lucky Fonz III (Otto Wichers) – solo

Netherlands Blues Rock

Big Blind (not one of the same-named Germany, or U.S. blues rock, bands)
Mark Lotterman (shades of Tom Waits/Leonard Cohen) – solo
Andre Manuel & The Kettering Fanfare

Netherlands Experimental

The Giants Of Husavik
The New Earth Group
Stuurbaard Bakkebaard
We Vs. Death

Netherlands Cross-Cultural

Mdungu (African)

Netherlands Garage Rock

Daily Bread
The Death Letters
The Stilettos

Netherlands Hard Rock

Boutros Bubba
The Devil’s Blood
Elle Bandita
The Gathering

Netherlands Soul

New Cool Collective
Postman (Remon Stotijn) – solo
Steve & The Ottowanians
Wicked Jazz Sounds Band

Netherlands Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

Aux Raus
Matik (not either of the same-named England or Australia bands)
Transfolmer (Tjeerd Folmer) – female solo

Netherlands Male Solo

Awkward I (Djurre De Haan)
Wouter Hamel
Benjamin Herman – jazz
Kim Janssen
Tom Musca
Anne Soldaat
Meindert Talma
Yoshimi (Niek Hilkmann)

Netherlands Female Solo

Signe Tollefson
Sinja Van Hamel


A Brand
Absynthe Minded
Creature With The Atom Brain
Das Pop
De Anale Face (The Anal Stage)
De Portables
Dez Mona
The Hickey Underworld
Isbells – psych-folk
Jeune Toujours – cross-cultural (Balkan)
Malibu Stacy (not the same-named U.S. band)
The Sedan Vault – prog-metal
The Rudy Trouve Septet
Zucchini Drive – funk

Belgium Psych-Folk

Fred ‘Lyenn’ Jacques – solo

Belgium Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

Ansatz Der Maschine (Mathijs Bertel) – solo
Nid & Sancy (not a typo)
Vive La Fete

Belgium Male Solo

The Bony King Of Nowhere (Bram Vanparys)
Tom Pintens
Yppah (‘Happy’ backwards) (Joe Corrales) – solo


Cocktail Slippers
I Was A King
Katzenjammer – cross cultural (Balkan)
Kings Of Convenience – psych-folk
Marit Larsen – female solo – alt-country
Sondre Lerche – solo
The Low Frequency In Stereo – experimental
Skambankt – hard

Norway Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

Hans-Peter Lindstrom & Prins Thomas (Thomas Hermansen)
Mungoliian Jetset


Friska Viljor
JJ (neither of the same-named U.S. 70s funk band or the England female solo singer)
The Legends
Mando Diao – garage
Marching Band
The Mary Onettes
Mattias Hellberg & The White Moose – psychedelic rock
Miike Snow
The Sounds
The Soundtrack Of Our Lives
The Thing – experimental
Thus:  Owls
Truckfighters – hard
Wildbirds & Peacedrums (Andreas and Mariam Wallentin – married duo) – experimental

Sweden Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

Cirkus (Neneh Cherry)
Fever Ray (Karen Dreijer of The Knife) – female solo
Andread ‘Kleerup’ – solo
Little Dragon
The Field (Alex Willner) – solo
Sally Shapiro – solo

Sweden Male Solo

Loney Dear (Emil Svanangen)
Daniel Norgren
Peter Von Poehl

Sweden Female Solo

Hanne Hukkelberg
El Perro Del Mar (Sarah Assbring)
Taken By Trees (Victoria Bergsman)


Kiila – experimental
The Micragirls – garage
Stratovarius – metal

Finland Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

I Was A Teenage Satan Worshipper – synth
Kiki (Joakim Ijas) – solo


The Asteroid Galaxy Tour
Tim Christensen – solo
Powersolo – garage rock
The Raveonettes
The William Blakes

Denmark Female Solo

Maria Timm
Tone (Sofie Nielson) – female solo


Lay Low (Lovisa Sigrunardottir) – female solo
Storveit Nix Noltes (The Nick Nolte Big Band) – cross-cultural – Balkan
Yagya (Adalsteinn Gudmundsson) (not the same-named India hard rock band) – solo – synth

Iceland Experimental

Riceboy Sleeps (Jonsi Birgisson of Sigur Ros)


Get Back Guinozzi!
John & Jehn (France’s Sonic Youth) – experimental
Krikor & The Dead Hillbillies

France Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

‘Joakim’ Bouaziz – solo
Caravan Palace
Data (David Guillon) (not the same-named England 80s synth band)
General Elektriks (HV Salter) – solo
David Guetta – solo
Chris Joss – solo
Krazy Baldhead (Pierre-Antoine Grison) – solo
Miss Kittin (Caroline Herve) & The Hacker (Michel Amato)
The Penelopes
Variety Lab (Thierry Bellia) – solo
Cosmo ‘Vitelli’ – solo
Yuksek (Pierre-Alexandre Busson) – solo


Finn (Patrick Zimmer) – solo
Ratfront – cross-cultural (Balkan)
The Whitest Boy Alive (Erland Oye of Kings Of Convenience)

Germany Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

Chicks On Speed
Hell (Helmut Geier) – solo
Moderat (not the same-named Sweden punk or U.S. bands)


Raz Ohara And The Odd Orchestra


Black Cargoes – prog rock
Sophie Hunger – female solo
The Pussywarmers


Mala Vita – cross-cultural (Balkan)
Nosound – Prog-rock
Zu – prog-metal

Italy Hard Rock

Lacuna Coil
The Vendetta

Italy Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

Bloody Beetroots
Misstress Barbara (Barbara Bonfiglio) – female solo
Whitetree (not one of the same-named Russia or U.S. bands)


Cayetano – funk
Palov & Mishkin – synth


Soap And Skin (Anja Plaschg) – female solo – experimental


Agaskodo Teliverek – experimental


Oksana Grigorieva (partner of Mel Gibson) – female solo


OMFO (German Popov) – solo – synth


Infected Mushroom – synth
TV Buddhas – psychedelic rock


‘Netsayi’ Chigwendere (Zimbabwe) – female solo
The Very Best (Esau Mwamwaya of Malawi and Radioclit, England synth band)


Vieux Farka Toure – solo

Africa Female Solo

Asa (Bukola Elemide) (Nigeria)
‘Mariza’ Nunes (Mozambique)

Cape Verde Female Solo

‘Mayra’ Andrade
Sara Tavares


Mulatu Astatle [Ethiopia] & The Heliocentrics [England jazz band]
‘Tommy T.’ Gobena (not the same-named Norway synth artist) (of Gogol Bordello) – solo – reggae

South Africa

Civil Twilight
Dear Reader


Ned Collette & Wirewalker
Decoder Ring – post-punk
Firekites – psych-folk
The Greencards – alt-country
Howling Bells
Lee Memorial (Laura MacFarlane of Sleater-Kinney)
The Kin
St. Helens
The Temper Trap
Wolf & Cub
Wolfmother – hard rock
Youth Group

The Church

The Church
Steve Kilbey- solo

Australia Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

Empire Of The Sun (Nick Littlemore of Pnau)

Australia Male Solo

Michael Johns (American Idol)
Ben Lee
Scott Matthew

Australia Female Solo

Kylie Auldist
Butterfly Boucher

New Zealand

Cut Off Your Hands
Moss (not one of the same-named England metal, Chicago blues, or NY bands)
Nadja [Canada band] & Black Boned Angel – experimental
7 Worlds Collide (Neil Finn of Crowded House)

New Zealand Reggae

Fat Freddy’s Drop
Splendid (not one of the same-named Australia or Canada bands)


Zee Avi – female solo


Yura Yura Tei Koku – psychedelic rock

Japan Experimental

Merzbow (Masami Akita) – solo
Mono (not the same-named England synth band)


Eliane Elias – female solo – cross-cultural
Lucy And The Popsonics – synth
Youlu (Viniciuis Marques) – solo


Matias Aguayo – solo – synth
Federico Aubele – solo


Novalina – synth


Anthony Joseph & The Spasm Band (Trinidad) – solo
Orange Grove (West Indies) – reggae
Tiempo Libre (Cuba)


Kinky – synth
Murcof (Fernando Corona) & Eric Truffaz – jazz
Rodrigo [Sanchez] & Gabriela [Quintero] – experimental


The Cliks (the name combines clits and cocks – singer is transgendered)
The Framework
Handsome Furs
Kevin Hearn [Barenaked Ladies] And Thin Buckle
The Hidden Cameras
The Junction
The Lost Singers (covers of 80s hits) (Balkan) – cross-cultural
The Lovely Feathers
The Most Serene Republic
Our Lady Peace
Pilot Speed
Still Life Still
Sunset Rubdown (Spencer Krug of Swan Lake)
Tegan And Sara
The Trews
The Wooden Sky
Young Galaxy
The Zolas

Black Mountain

Lightning Dust (Amber Webber and Joshua Wells)
Pink Mountaintops (Stephen McBean) – psych-folk

Broken Social Scene

Apostle Of Hustle (Andrew Whiteman)
Do Make Say Think (Ohad Benchetrit, Julie Penner, and Charles Spearin) – experimental
Amy Millan (also of Stars) – solo
Metric (Emily Haines and James Shaw) – synth
Reverie Sound Revue (Lisa Lobsinger)
Years (Ohad Benchetrit) – solo – experimental

Death From Above 1979

Sebastien Grainger & The Mountains
MSTRKRFT (Jesse Keeler) – synth

The New Pornographers

Destroyer (Dan Bejar) – experimental
Carl ‘A.C. Newman’ – solo
Swan Lake (Dan Bejar, with Spencer Krug of Sunset Rubdown)

Canada Alt-Country

Kendel Carson – female solo
Corb Lund – solo

Canada Psych-Folk

Attack In Black
Blackout Beach (Corey Mercer of Frog Eyes) – solo
Great Lake Swimmers (for both Lost Channels and Song Sung Blue soundtrack)
Jon And Roy
The Rural Alberta Advantage
Andy Shauf – solo

Canada Experimental

Bell Orchestre

Canada Cross-Cultural

The Lost Singers (Balkan) (covers of 80s hits)

Canada Garage

The King Khan & BBQ [Mark Sultan] Show
King Khan & The Shrines

Canada Hard Rock

CFCF (Mike Silver) – solo
Die Mannequin
Three Days Grace

Canada Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

Trevor ‘Trouble’ Andrew – solo
Circlesquare (Jeremy Shaw) – solo
Everything All The Time
Junior Boys
Shout Out Out Out Out
The Slew (Kid Koala, with ex-members of Wolfmother)
Tiga (James Sontag) – solo
You Say Party!  We Say Die!

Canada Male Solo

Matthew Barber
Timber Timbre (Taylor Kirk)
Patrick Watson
Matt York – soul

Canada Female Solo

Ash Koley
Melissa McClelland

Athens, GA

Baroness (Savannah, GA) – prog-metal
Modern Skirts
Passafire (Savannah, GA) – reggae
Phosphorescent (Matthew Houck) (now in N.Y.) – solo

Drive-By Truckers

Drive-By Truckers – southern rock
Patterson Hood – solo – southern rock
Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit – southern rock

Athens Alt-Country

Luke Bryan (Albany, GA) – solo
The Lovell Sisters (Calhoun, GA)
‘Jason Aldean’ Williams (Macon, GA) – solo

Athens Experimental

Dark Meat


Blackberry Smoke – alt-country
Coathangars – hard
Kaki King – female solo
Manchester Orchestra
Mastodon – metal

Atlanta Garage Rock

Almighty Defenders (Black Lips and King Khan)
Black Lips

U.S. Indie

Action Pack
Bishop Allen
Amazing Baby
Analogue Transit
… And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead
The Antlers
Antony & The Johnsons
Army Of Me
As Tall As Lions
Audrye Sessions
Au Revoir Simone
Bad Veins
The Band Of Heathens
Bear In Heaven
Beep Beep
Birds Of Avalon
Black Gold (not the same-named U.S. alt-country or rap, or England, bands)
The Blakes
The Boy Least Likely To
Brian Bonz
Cage The Elephant
Clock Hands Strangle
Cold Cave
The Color Fred (Fred Mascherino of Taking Back Sunday)
The Color Turning
Cryptacize (Chris Cohen, ex-Deerhoof)
Cymbals Eat Guitars
Dead Weather (Jack White and members of The Kills, The Raconteurs & QOTSA)
Death Cab For Cutie
The Decemberists
Rocco DeLuca And The Burden
Digital Leather
The Dodos
The Drums
Justin Townes Earle (son of Steve) – southern rock
Early Day Miners
The Elms
Darla Farmer
Fiction Family (Jon Foreman of Switchfoot and Sean Watkins of Nickle Creek)
Foreign Born
Glass Ghost
Grace Basement
Grand Archives
Harlem Shakes
Harper Blynn
Here We Go Magic
Historics (Mickey Madden of Maroon 5)
Holiday Shores
The Honey Brothers (the actor Adrian Grenier)
Hotpress For Leopold
Idle Hands
Iran (Kyp Malone and Dave Sitek of TV On The Radio)
The Jaguar Club
Jones Street Station
Jupiter One
Kiss Kiss
Le Loup
Jeffrey Lewis & The Junkyard
The Little Heroes (not the same-named Australia 80s band)
Local Natives
Mae (Multi-Sensory Aesthetic Experience)
Mewithoutyou (not a typo)
Motel Motel
Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band
Minus The Bear
Operation Aloha (members of Gomez, Maroon 5, and Phantom Planet)
Other Girls
Other Lives
Painkiller Hotel
The Paper Chase
Elvis Perkins In Dearland (son of ‘Psycho’ actor Anthony)
The Postmarks
Portugal. The Man
The Queen Killing Kings
Radical Sons
Real Estate
Royal Bangs
The Scene Aesthetic
Sea Wolf
The Shaky Hands
Steve Shiffman & The Land Of No
Silversun Pickups
The Sun
The Swimmers
The Takeover U.K. (no, they aren’t from Britain)
Tape Deck Mountain
Team B (6 guys, not including Zach Condon, from Beirut band)
The Thermals
These United States
Throw Me The Statue
Thomas Function
Tinted Windows (J.Iha/S. Pumpkins, A.Schlesinger/F.Of Wayne, B.E.Carlos/Cheap Trick)
Until June
Abe Vigoda (named after the actor)
We All Have Hooks For Hands
We Just Shot The Moon
White Denim
White Rabbits
Wild Light
The Young Republic

U.S. Indie – Female Vocals

Asobi Seksu (Japanese for ‘casual sex’) (sounds like the Cocteau Twins)
The Bird And The Bee (Inara George, daughter of Lowell)
Clare And The Reasons
Company Of Thieves
Dirty Projectors
The Ettes
The Fiery Furnaces
Fol Chen
Girl In A Coma
Grand Duchy (Frank Black of Pixies and his wife, Violet Clark)
Heartless Bastards
Magik Markers
Now, Now Enemy Children
Rupa [Marya] & The April Fishes
Hope Sandoval (Mazzy Star) & The Warm Intentions (Colm Ciosoig of My Bloody Valentine)
A Sunny Day In Glasgow
Thao [Nguyen] With The Get Down Stay Down

Azure Ray

Orenda Fink – female solo
O+S (Orenda Fink)
Maria Taylor – female solo

Queens Of The Stone Age

Hello=Fire (Dean Fertita)
Sweethead (Troy Van Leeuwen) – hard rock
Them Crooked Vultures (Josh Homme, D. Grohl of F.Fighters and J.P. Jones of Led Zep) – hard rock

Straylight Run

Destry (Michelle DeRosa)
John Nolan – solo

U.S. Post-Punk

All The Day Holiday
The Appleseed Cast
Blank Dogs (Mike Spiner) – solo
Mi Ami (sounds like The Raincoats and The Slits)
The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart
A Place To Bury Strangers

U.S. Psychedelic Rock

Black Moth Super Rainbow
Crystal Antlers
Darker My Love
Sleepy Sun
Wooden Shjips

U.S. Alt-Country

‘Big Kenny’ Alphin (Big & Rich) – solo
Rodney Atkins – solo
Avett Brothers
Chris Ayer – solo
Sam Baker (from Texas – not the same-named artist from Wisconsin) – solo
‘Jimmy Wayne’ Barker – solo
Blackbird Harmony (Evan Birdsong) – solo
Neal Casal (of The Cardinals, with Ryan Adams) – solo
Neko Case – female solo
The Cave Singers
Samantha Crain & The Midnight Shivers – female solo
Will Dailey – solo
The Felice Brothers
Jill Hennessey (the actress) – female solo
Sarah Jarosz – female solo
Cotton Jones (for both Paranoid Cocoon and The River Strumming)
Ben Kweller (ex-Radish) – solo
Miranda Lambert – female solo
Phillip LaRue – solo
Love And Theft
Magnolia Electric Company
The Maldives
Cass McCombs – solo
Mandy Moore (married to Ryan Adams) – solo
‘Lissie’ Maurus – female solo
My Cousin, The Emperor
Jake Owen – solo
Landon Pigg – solo
Rascal Flatts
Miranda Lee Richards – female solo
Amy Speace – female solo
Cortney Tidwell – female solo
Trailer Choir
Uncle Kracker (Matthew Shafer) – solo
Carrie Underwood – female solo

U.S. Blues Rock

Johnny Cooper – solo
Ben Harper & Relentless7
The Derek Trucks Band (nephew of Butch of Allman Brothers, husband of Susan Tedeschi)
William Elliott Whitmore – solo

U.S. Psych-Folk

Assembly Of Dust
Devendra Banhart – solo
Bon Iver (Justin Vernon) – solo
A.A. Bondy – solo
Blitzen Trapper
Sam [Brooker] & Ruby [Amantu]
The Builders & The Butchers
Cory Chisel & The Wandering Sons
Cub Country
Dead Man’s Bones (the actor Ryan Gosling)
Alela Diane – female solo
The Dimes
Drug Rug
The Duchess & The Duke
The Duke & The King (Simone Felice of The Felice Brothers)
The Echo Falls
Jay Farrar (Uncle Tupelo and Son Volt) & Ben Gibbard (Death Cab For Cutie)
Forest Fire
Fruitbats (Eric Johnson of The Shins)
Laura Gibson – female solo
Trevor Giuliani – solo
Grizzly Bear
Holy Sons
Husband & Wife
Hush Arbors (Keith Wood) – solo
Iron And Wine (Sam Beam) – solo
Scarlett Johansson & Pete Yorn
Lewis & Clarke
Graham Lindsey (ex-Old Skull) – solo
The Low Anthem
Tony Lucca, Jay Nash, Matt Duke
Middle Distance Runner
[Jason] Molina & [Will] Johnson
Monsters Of Folk (Jim James, Conor Oberst, M.Ward)
The Mumlers
MV [Matt Valentine] & EE [Erika Elder] With The Golden Road
Nudge (Honey Owens of Valet)
Old Canes
Our Brother The Native
Pearl And The Beard
Port O’Brien
Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros
Josh ‘J’ Tillman (of Fleet Foxes) – solo
Vandaveer (Mark Heidinger) – solo
Volcano Choir
Emily Jane White – female solo
Wye Oak
Yim Yames (Jim James of My Morning Jacket, covering George Harrison songs) – solo

U.S. Experimental

Aethenor (Stephen O’Malley of Sun O)
Black Dice (like Animal Collective, but much less boring)
Blind Man’s Colour
Tyondai Braxton (Battles) – solo
Ryland Bouchard – solo
Mount Eerie
Omar Rodriguez-Lopez (of The Mars Volta) (El Grupe Nuevo, with Cedric of TMV, and 2 solo)
Russian Circles
Saxon Shore
Sufjan Stevens
These Are Powers
Tune-Yards (Merrill Garbus) – female solo

U.S. Cross-Cultural

Beirut (Balkan)
A Hawk And A Handsaw (Jeremy Barnes, ex-Neutral Milk Hotel) (Balkan)
Mariachi El Bronx (Mexican)
Ocote Soul Sounds (Latin)
The Sway Machines (Yiddish)

U.S Garage Rock

Dan Auerbach (of Black Keys) – solo
Beaten Awake
Condo F**ks (aka Yo La Tengo)
Electric Six
Grampall Jookabox (David Adamson) – solo
Heavy Trash (Jon Spencer) of Blues Explosion)
The High Strung
The Hunches
Miss Derringer
The Ohsees
Jay Reatard – solo
Reigning Sound
Ty Segall – solo
The Strange Boys
TV Ghost

U.S. Hard Rock

Adelita’s Way
As Cities Burn
Burn Halo
Capgun Coup
Care Bears On Fire
Charm City Devils
Chickenfoot (S.Hagar and M.Anthony of V.Halen, Chad Smith of RHCP, and Joe Satriani)
CKY (Camp Kill Yourself)
Cycle Of Pain (John JD DeServio of Black Label Society)
Dead By Sunrise (Chester Bennington of Linkin Park)
Endless Hallway
Halfdown Thomas
Janus (not the same-named German metal band)
Ladyfinger (the band from Nebraska, not New York)
The Last Vegas
Loaded (Duff McKagen of Guns ‘n Roses)
Madina Lake
Masters Of Reality
Mika Miko
Need To Breathe
Papa Roach
Papercut Massacre
The Parlor Mob (was called What About Frank?)
Adam Payne (from Cal. – not the same-named guy from Athens, GA, or Mass.) – solo
Person L
The Product
The Riverboat Gamblers
7daybinge (not a typo) (Todd Harrell of 3 Doors Down)
Smile Empty Soul
Spinnerette (members from Red Hot Chile Peppers, Pearl Jam and QOTSA)
Steel Panther
Teenage Bottlerocket
Thirty Seconds To Mars
Ultra Violent Lights
Vivian Girls
The Von Bondies

U.S. Industrial


U.S. Prog-Metal

Final Gravity

U.S. Alt-Metal

Cage (Chris Palko) – solo
Street Sweeper Social Club (Tom Morello of Rage Against The Machine)

U.S. Prog Rock

The Dear Hunter
Native Window (Phil Ehart and others from Kansas)
Umphrey’s McGee

U.S. Soul

James Dee – solo
Melinda Doolittle (from American Idol) – female solo
Floating Action (Seth Kaufman) – solo
Mayer Hawthorne (Andrew Cohen) – solo
Calvin Richardson (covers of Bobby Womack) – solo
Urban Mystic (Brandon Williams) – solo

U.S. Funk

The Budos Band
Felix Da Housecat (Felix Stallings) – solo
Shafiq Husayn – solo

U.S. Reggae

The Aggrolites
Sean Bones (of Sam Champion band) – solo
Easy Star All-Stars (cover of entire Sgt. Pepper album)
Major Lazer (Wes ‘Diplo’ Pentz)
State Radio

U.S. Dance-Rock/Electro/Synth

Awesome New Republic
Bad Boy Bill (William Renkosik) – solo
Beehive (Zach Hinkle) (from N.Y. – not the same-named Seattle synth band) – solo
Birds & Batteries
Black Meteoric Star (Gavin Russom) – solo
Blue Stone (not one of the same-named Arizona or Canada bands)
Built By Snow
Andy Caldwell – solo
Cassettes Won’t Listen (Jason Drake) – solo
Dan Deacon – solo
The Deadbeats
Deastro (Randolph Chabot) – solo
Discovery (Rostan Batmanglif of Vampire Weekend and Wes Miles of Ra Ra Riot)
Former Ghosts
The Gaslamp Killer – solo
Har Mar Superstar (Sean Tillman) – solo
Scott Hardkiss – solo
Matt (Johnson) & Kim (Schifino)
The Juan McLean (John McLean of Six Finger Satellite, Nancy Whang of LCD Soundsystem)
Memory Tapes (Dayve Hawk) – solo
Neon Indian
Nova Social
Odd Nosdam (David Madsen) – solo
James Pants – solo
Passion Pit
The Phenomenal Handclap Band
The Secret Handshake (Luis Dubuc) – solo
A Setting Sun (Jay Bodley) & Shigeto (Zachary Saginaw)
Jeffree Star (Jeff Steininger) – solo
Telefon Tel Aviv
Vinyl Life
Vowels (not the same-named Brazil band)
Yacht (DJ Willow) – solo
Yeah Yeah Yeahs

U.S. Male Solo

Kris Allen (American Idol)
Ape School (Michael Johnson)
Kevin Barker
Aaron Barnhart
David ‘Bazan’
Andrew Bird (ex-Squirrel Nut Zippers) (for both Noble Beast and Useless Creatures)
Sam Bisbee
Jay Brannan
Peter Broderick
Julian Casablancas (The Strokes)
Peter Cincotti
Coconut Records (the actor Jason Schwartzman)
Will Dailey
Howie Day
Keith Devine And The G**d*** Band
Kevin Devine
Gregory Douglass
Tim Easton
Arthur ‘Ace’ Enders And A Million Different People
Benjy Ferree
William Fitzsimmons
Robert Francis
Frankel (Michael Orendy)
Trevor Hall
Helado Negro (Robert Lange)
Taylor Hicks (from American Idol)
Will Hoge
Andrew Hoover
Hurricane Bells (Steve Schiltz of Longwave)
Mason Jennings
Reed KD
Mat Kearney
Crosby Loggins (son of Kenny)
Jason Lytle (Grandaddy)
Mansions (Christopher Browder)
Dent May & His Magnificent Ukelele
John Mayer
Scott Miller (from Tenn. – not either of the same-named guys from Cal. or Minn.)
Franz Nicolay (of The Hold Steady, with Brian Viglione of The Dresden Dolls)
Conor Oberst (Bright Eyes) And The Mystic Valley Band
Orba Squara (Mitch Davis)
Alec Ounsworth (Clap Your Hands Say Yeah)
P.J. Pacifico
Papercuts (Jason Quever)
Peasant (Damien Derose)
Julian Plenti (Paul Banks of Interpol)
Ramona Falls (Brent Knopf of Menomena)
The Record Life (Jakob Johnson)
Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson
Say Hi (Eric Elbogen)
Harper Simon (son of Paul)
Langhorne Slim ( Sean Scolnick)
Jonah Smith
David ‘DM’ Stith
Richard Swift
Systems Officer (Armistead Smith of Pinback)
Josh ‘J.’ Tillman
John Vanderslice
Kurt Vile (The War On Drugs)
Matt ‘M.’ Ward
Tim Williams
Luke Winslow-King
Pete Yorn

U.S. Female Solo

Aimee Allen
Leah Andreone
Diane Birch
Bosque Brown (Mara Lee Miller)
Colbie Caillat
Alela Diane
Linda Draper
Kate Earl
A Fine Frenzy (Alison Sudol)
Anne Heaton
Molly Jenson
Dayna Kurtz
Juliette Lewis (the actress)
Sara Lov
Eleni Mandell
Erin McKeown
Leslie Mendelson
Marissa Nadler
Karen O And The Kids (K. Orzolek of Yeah Yeah Yeahs) (soundtrack to film Where The WIld Things Are)
Madeleine Peyroux
St. Vincent (Annie Clark, ex-The Polyphonic Spree)
Scary Mansion (Leah Hayes) (channeling Cat Power)
Brandi Shearer
Shannon Stephens
Angel Taylor
Vienna Teng (Cynthia Yih Shih)
Tiny Vipers (Jesy Fortino)
Lissie Trullie (Elizabeth McChesney)
Brooke White (American Idol)
Jenny Owen Youngs
‘Mirah’ Zeitlyn

90s Artists – good albums


Alice In Chains
Tori Amos (for Abnormally Attracted To Sin)
… And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead
Lou Barlow (Dinosaur Jr. and Sebadoh)
David Bazan (Pedro The Lion)
Brendan Benson
Better Than Ezra
The Black Crowes
The Black Heart Procession
Joe Bonamassa
Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy (Will Oldham)
Buckethead (Brian Carroll)
Cherry Poppin’ Daddies
Vic Chesnutt
Crystal Method
Mike Doughty (Soul Coughing)
Drive-By Truckers
Elysian Fields (not the same-named Greece metal band)
Jeremy Enigk (Sunny Day Real Estate)
Richmond Fontaine
Fu Manchu
Oscar G [Gaetan]
Gov’t Mule
The Handsome Family
Hot Club Of California
Toby Keith
Kill Hannah
The Killer And The Star (Scooter Ward of Cold)
Frankie Knuckles
Danny Krivit
Lifter Puller (Craig Finn and Ted Kubler of The Hold Steady)
Courtney Love (Hole)
Marilyn Manson
Marcy Playground
‘Martina McBride’ Schiff
Tim McGraw
Buddy & Julie Miller
Rhett Miller (Old 97’s)
The Minus 5 (Scott McCaughey and Pete Buck of R.E.M.)
Moby (Richard Hall)
Modest Mouse (Johnny Marr of The Smiths)
The Mother Hips
Bob Mould (Husker Du)
The Mountain Goats
Brad Paisley
Robert Pollard (Guided By Voices) (for 2 solo, and one with Circus Devils)
Powerman 5000
Reel Big Fish (ska-punk covers of classic songs)
Ike Reilly
The Rentals (Matt Sharp of Weezer)
Charlie Robison
Josh Rouse
Duncan Sheik
Sister Hazel
Son Volt
Sophia (S.Diego band – not the one from Tenn., Swed., Jap., Braz., Australia, or the U.S. female)
Spiral Stairs (Scott Kannberg of Pavement)
DJ Spooky (Paul Miller)
Squirrel Nut Zippers
Strung Out
Sugar Ray
Third Eye Blind
Vertical Horizon

Rest Of World

Air (French synth band, not the same-named Japan band)
Basement Jaxx
Bingo Trappers
A Camp (Nina Persson of The Cardigans)
Jarvis Cocker (Pulp)
Graham Coxon (Blur)
Lord Cut-Glass (Alun Woodward of Delgados)
Danko Jones
Julie Doiron
Laurant Guarnier
John Wesley Harding (Wesley Stace)
PJ Harvey & John Parish
Imogen Heap
Neil Landstrumm
Baaba Maal
Manic Street Preachers
Massive Attack
Gramp Morgan
Paul Oakenfold (for both Perfecto:Vegas and )
Dolores O’Riordan (The Cranberries)
Paradise Lost
Piano Magic
The Popes (this time w/out Shane McGowan of The Pogues)
Porcupine Tree
The Prodigy
The 69 Eyes
Super Furry Animals
Tricky (Adrian Thaws)
Luke Vibert
Robbie Williams

90s Artists – weak albums


Tori Amos (for Midwinter Graces)
Backstreet Boys
Bowling For Soup
Green Day
Jay-Z (Shawn Carter)
Juvenile (Terius Gray)
Robert ‘R. Kelly’
Tracy Lawrence
Brian McKnight
Medeski Martin And Wood
Methodman & Redman
Mos Def
Pearl Jam
Sacred Oath
Snoop Dog (Calvin Broadus)
Jill Sobule
Angie Stone
Al B. Sure!
They Might Be Giants
Lawrence ‘Larry Tee’ Thorn
Wu-Tang Clan

Rest Of World

Michael Buble
Chantal Kreviazuk
Wyclef Jean (The Fugees)
Diana Krall
Baaba Maal
‘Shakira’ Ripoll
Keith Urban

60s, 70s, 80s, Over-40 Crowd – good, worthy, interesting, “I’m glad they’re still around” albums


Dave Alvin And The Guilty Women (The Blasters)
Lou Barlow (Dinosaur Jr. and Sebadoh)
Adrian Belew (King Crimson and Talking Heads)
Harold Budd & Clive Wright
J.J. Cale
Rosanne Cash
Les Claypool (Primus)
Commander Cody (George Frayne)
Dennis DeYoung (Styx)
Dinosaur Jr.
Drivin’ ‘N Cryin’
Bob Dylan (for Together Through Life)
Steve Earle
Lee Fields
Dan Fogelberg
Robben Ford
Ace Frehley (Kiss)
Bill Frisell
John Frusciante (Red Hot Chile Peppers)
Rob Halford (Judas Priest)
Joe Henry
Susanne Hoffs (The Bangles) & Matthew Sweet (best album of covers I’ve ever heard)
Peter Holsapple & Chris Stamey (both of The dBs)
Indigo Girls
Chris Isaak
Yusuf Islam (Cat Stevens)
Daniel Johnston
‘Booker T.’ Jones (of the M.G.’s, with Eric Clapton and Drive-By Truckers)
Jonathan Kane (Swans and La Monte Young)
Jorma Kaukonen (Hot Tuna and Jefferson Airplane)
‘Lydia Lunch’ Koch (Teenage Jesus & The Jerks
Kronos Quartet
Richard Lloyd (Television) (album of Hendrix covers)
Lynyrd Skynyrd
Michelle Malone
Richard Marx
Nathaniel Mayer
Delbert McClinton
Meat Puppets
Mission Of Burma
Gurf Morlix
Chuck Mosley (Faith No More)
Willie Nelson (for Willie And The Wheel, with Asleep At The Wheel)
New York Dolls (produced by Todd Rundgren, who also produced their 1st, in 1974)
The Nighthawks
Pere Ubu
Grant Lee Phillips
Plastic Ono Band
Iggy Pop
Chuck Prophet (Green On Red)
Tom Rush
The Smithereens (covering The Who’s Tommy)
Sonic Youth (for both The Eternal and Sensational Fix)
Soul Of John Black (John Bigham of Miles Davis and Fishbone)
Bruce Springsteen
Candi Staton
George Thorogood
Vanilla Fudge (for Out Through The In Door, all Led Zep covers)
Cassandra Wilson
Yo La Tengo
Neil Young
John Zorn

Rest Of World

And Also The Trees
Cabaret Voltaire
Nick Cave & Warren Ellis (both are members of both The Black Seeds and Grinderman)
Julian Cope (The Teardrop Explodes)
Elvis Costello
Depeche Mode
Aynsley Dunbar
The Durutti Column
Echo And The Bunnymen
Los Fabulosos Cadillacs
John Foxx (Ultravox) & Robin Guthrie (Cocteau Twins)
Ian Gillan (Deep Purple)
David Gray
Robin Guthrie (Cocteau Twins) (for Angel Falls)
Colin Hay (Men At Work)
Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits)
Julian Lennon
Larry McDonald
Stephen ‘Morrissey’ (The Smiths) (for both Swords and Years Of Refusal)
Os Mutantes
New Model Army
Pet Shop Boys
The Proclaimers
Simple Minds
The Slits
Rod Stewart
Nikki Sudden (Adrian Godfrey of Swell Maps)
Robin Trower
Caetano Veloso
Jah Wobble [John Wardle] & The Chinese Dub Orchestra
Hans Zimmer (soundtrack to Angels & Demons)

60s, 70s, 80s, Over-40 Crowd – dull, boring, poor, “why did they even bother?” albums


Beach Boys
Jimmy Buffett
Cannibal Corpse
Harry Connick, Jr.
Neil Diamond
Bob Dylan (for Christmas In The Heart)
The Flaming Lips
Bela Fleck
Grandmaster Flash (Joseph Saddler)
Aretha Franklin
Levon Helm (The Band)
Whitney Houston
Rickie Lee Jones
‘Wynonna’ Judd
Queen Latifah (Dana Owens)
Barry Manilow
Teena Marie
Michael McDonald
Ronnie Millsap
Liza Minnelli
Willie Nelson (for American Classic)
Smokey Robinson
Spinal Tap
Charlie Wilson (Gap Band)

Rest Of World

Tony Allen
Colin Blunstone (The Zombies)
The Church (soundtrack to film Shriek)
Bruce Cockburn
Ray Davies (The Kinks) (chorale versions of Kinks songs)
‘Horace Andy’ Hinds (with Ashley Beedle)
Robyn Hitchcock & Venus 3 (with Pete Buck Of R.E.M.)
Christy Moore
Rick Springfield
David Sylvian (Japan)

Worthwhile Live Albums – U.S.

Asobi Seksu – psych-folk
Beirut – psych-folk
Bon Iver (Justin Vernon)
Jeff Buckley (Tim’s son) (Grace Around The World album)
Tim Buckley (Jeff’s father) (1967 New York) – psych-folk
Cold War Kids
The Doors (1970 New York – Felt Forum)
Flipper (with Krist Novoselic of Nirvana) – hard
Ernie Halter – blues rock
The Hold Steady
Ministry (2008 Farewell Tour) – industrial
Jason Mraz
My Morning Jacket
Stevie Nicks (2007)
North Mississippi Allstars – blues rock
R.E.M. (2007 Dublin, Ireland)
Shudder To Think – hard rock
Toubab Krewe – cross-cultural (Mali, W. Africa)
Tom Waits (2009 Glitter And Doom tour)

Worthwhile Live Albums – Rest Of World

Blackfield (Steven WIlson of Porcupine Tree) – prog-rock – England
David Bowie (1999 New York – VH1 Storytellers episode)
Leonard Cohen (for both 2008 London and 1970 Isle Of Wight)
Echo And The Bunnymen (2008 – performing Ocean Rain album)
Mick Fleetwood Blues Band
Lisa Hannigan – female solo – psych-folk – Ireland
Hillsong United (Australia)
Joe Jackson (1979 BBC)
Paul McCartney (2009 New York)
New Model Army – hard rock – England
Van Morrison (2209 Live Astral Weeks)
Thin Lizzy (1977 Philadelphia – Tower Theater) – hard rock – Ireland
The XX (2009 Williamsburg)

Poor Live Albums

Animal Collective (Jan. 20, 2009 New York – Bowery Ballroom) – experimental – U.S.
Shawn Colvin – U.S.
Drowning Pool – hard rock – U.S.
Arlo Guthrie – U.S.
‘Beyonce’ Knowles (2009 Las Vegas) – U.S.
John Mellencamp – U.S.
Phish (1996 Plattsburgh, NY – The Clifford Ball) – jam – U.S.

Most Overrated And Boring Indie Band Animal Collective

Most Aptly Named Band

The Long Lost  So dull and lifeless it should have remained hidden – and unreleased.

Silliest Idea Of The Year

Ben Folds – University A Cappella  College groups singing B.Folds songs a cappella.

Most Valuable Players, Who Released Good Albums With More Than One Band In 2009

Lou Barlow (Dinosaur Jr. and Sebadoh)
Dan Bejar (Destroyer and Swan Lake)
Ohad Benchetrit (Do Make Say Think and Years)
Pete Buck (The Minus 5 and R.E.M.)
Simone Felice (The Duke & The King and The Felice Brothers)
Orenda Fink (O+S and Solo)
Robin Guthrie (Solo and with John Foxx)
Patterson Hood (Drive-By Truckers and Solo)
Jim James (Monsters Of Folk and Yim Yames)
King Khan (with The Shrines and with Mark Sultan)
Spencer Krug (Sunset Rubdown and Swan Lake)
Nick Littlemore (Empire Of The Sun and Pnau)
Johnny Marr (Modest Mouse and The Cribs)
Karen Orzolek (Solo and Yeah Yeah Yeahs)
Robert Pollard (for 3 albums – 2 solo, and with Circus Devils)
Omar Rodriquez-Lopez (for 3 albums – El Grupo Nuevo and 2 solo)
Steven Wilson (Blackfield and Porcupine Tree)
Pete Yorn (Solo and With Scarlett Johansson)

Fred’s Best Albums Of The Year


Alice in Chains
Antony & The Johnsons
Diane Birch
Black Gold
The Felice Brothers
Oscar G
Ben Harper And Relentless7
Patterson Hood
Lydia Lunch
Meat Puppets
Delbert McClinton
Mi Ami
Bob Mould
The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart
Silversun Pickups
Sleepy Sun
Wooden Shjips

Rest Of World

A Brand
The Boxer Rebellion
Cabaret Voltaire
The Chatham Singers
The Cliks
Crippled Black Phoenix (for Night Raider)
The Field
Filthy Dukes
Joe Gideon & The Shark
Hatcham Social
The Horrors
John & Jehn
Junior Boys
King Khan & The Shrines
Mark Lotterman
The Low Frequency In Stereo
The Mary Onettes
Morrissey (for Swords, not Years Of Refusal)
New Model Army
Piano Magic
Reverend & The Makers
The Rifles
Shout Out Out Out Out
Nikki Sudden
The Twilight Sad
White Lies
Wild Beasts
Wolf & Cub
Young Galaxy

2008 (And Earlier) Albums First Heard In 2009


Alaska In Winter (Brandon Bethancourt) – solo – synth
Color Cassette – psych-folk
Miniature Tigers (Darren Robinson of Phantom Planet)

Rest Of World

Barbie Bangkok – Belgium
The Black Seeds – reggae – New Zealand
A Certain Ratio – post-punk – England
Dark Captain Light – England
Grapes Of Grain – alt-country – Netherlands
Hokie Joint – blues rock – England
The Kilimanjaro Darkjazz Ensemble – experimental – Netherlands
Katie Melua – female solo – England – 2007
Olympus Mons (not the same-named France or U.S. bands) – England
Alice Russell – female solo – soul – England
Wintersleep – post-punk – Canada – 2007
The Woodwards (Peter Schuyff) – solo – Netherlands – 2007

Released Outside America And On My 2008 List, Then Released In America In 2009

The Acorn – Canada
Amadou & Mariam – Mali, Africa
Angil & Hiddntracks (not a typo) (Mickael Mottet) – solo – experimental – France
Luka Bloom (Barry Moore, brother of Christy) – solo – Ireland
The Duke Sprit – England
Marianne Faithful – female solo – England
Glasvegas – post-punk – Scotland
Insurgentes (Steven Wilson of Porcupine Tree)
Steve Kilbey (The Church) – Australia
Late Of The Pier – synth – England
Mark Louris & Gary Olson (The Jayhawks) – alt-country – U.S.
Psapp – synth – England
Razorlight – England
Marjoleine ‘Leine’ Reitsma  – female solo – Netherlands
Sam Roberts – solo – Canada
Sin Fang Bous (Sindri Sigfusson of Seabear) – solo – experimental – Iceland
‘Ida Maria’ Sivertsen – female solo – Norway
Angus & Julia Stone – Australia
Temper Trap – post-punk – Australia
Rokia Traore – female solo – Mali, Africa
Marty Willson-Piper (The Church) – solo – Australia
Woodpigeon – psych-folk – Canada
James Yuill – solo – England