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Music I Liked In 2009 [1]

By which I mean music released in 2009. And [1] because I’m obviously not going to get them all in one post. It’s going to be lots of little ones. I’m giving myself a month for my memory to work properly. But I think it’s still worth making a note of what was good to my ears this year.

THE SPOILS, Zola Jesus: of which I’ve made much mention lately. Nika’s a beautiful ghost moaning from the shadows of a bombed-out cathedral, on this record. Possibly an aspect of my continuing fascination with The Haunted in early 21st Century music. But I’m returning to this record a lot.

GABON and INCAPULCO and a bunch of other releases, High Wolf: top of the whole glo-fi thing, for me, has been High Wolf and his wet lo-fi tropical dreamstates. GABON in particular was a glorious thing. Hypnogogic reverie when you’ve still got the drugged beat of a rainforest drone-rave beating in your ears.

MAN OF ARAN, British Sea Power: always a band I’ve almost-liked rather than love, but "The SOuth Sound" off this soundtrack they prepared for the re-release of the eponymous film is the best piece of classical building/soaring postrock I’ve heard since "Raise Yr Skinny Fists." I mean, flat fucking out. Coda to the whole subgenre.

HORRIBLES PARADE, Gary War: this thing continues to fascinate me. It’s melted music. Seriously. Like someone went at a wax master with a blowtorch and then struck the record with it. A gorgeous gurgling gargoyle of a thing. Partially dissolved rock.

FLORINE, Julianna Barwick: astonishing vocal music, multitracked and layered and processed until it became the sound that the trails of collapsing photons passing through the feathers of angels’ wings in a particle accelerator should make. Or something.

BROADCAST AND THE FOCUS GROUP INVESTIGATE WITCH CULTS OF THE RADIO AGE, Broadcast And The Focus Group: the title should tell you all you need to know. You’re either the sort of person who wants to own an album by that title, or you’re not. It is, as Moon Wiring Club would say, in the finest tradition of confusing English electronic music. It’s less a "proper" album than a collection of sounds that surround a certain set of timebound notions about Strangeness. As the title implies, it sometimes seems more like research (in the form of original music). It is really bloody good, yes.

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  1. Okay,man ; give it a try at everything you put on the list & I didn’t know it yet . Just thought you should know ; real comments later , k?

  2. I went to a listening party last week. They played that Zola Jesus record. My skeleton left my body to be among the ageless forests. My body is now free, it expands and contracts of its own dark will.

    Its dark will has left me immobile for several days. I am trapped by my body’s horrible freedom.

  3. Salome Salome

    Juliana Barwick changed my life. Guess I’ll have to listen to your other recommendations.

  4. Clueless Clueless

    Who are these people? And no–I don’t live on Mars.

  5. That Broadcast & The Focus Group release really really is bloody bloody good! My album of the year, I reckon.

  6. Steven Steven

    HAHA, this is great. Read Transmetropolitan some time ago and it never occurred to me I’d have so many music favorite in common with the writer! The Gary War and Broadcast stuff I haven’t stopped listening to since release. Cheers.

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