Thursday, June 27, 2013

The MJR Top 5 Albums of 2013 Weekly Standings and 3 Thoughts/Facts/Opinions/Lies/Kneejerk Reactions

There he is.

The MJR Top 5 Albums of 2013 Weekly Standings (which may or may not be in a particular order and are subject to wild changes upon the author's whim)*

*Spotify links provided when available

1.  After Dark 2 by Various Artists (Last Week: 1)

2.  ...Like Clockwork by Queens of the Stone Age (Last Week: 3)

3.  We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic by Foxygen (Last Week: 2)

4.  The Flower Lane by Ducktails (Last Week: 4)

5.  Trouble Will Find Me by The National (Last Week: NR)

Other contenders: MCII by Mikal Cronin, OutRun by Kavinsky, Floating Coffin by Thee Oh Sees, Amok by Atoms For Peace, Modern Vampires of the City by Vampire Weekend, Curiosity by Wampire, Specter at the Feast by Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

Newly Added Contenders This Week: Settle by Disclosure, Hummingbird by Local Natives

3 Thoughts/Facts/Opinions/Lies/Kneejerk Reactions to Music This Week

1.  On a recent roadtrip with the lady, I feared what kind of Top 40 pop misery she'd subject me to.  And then something odd happened.  She dove head first into a Janet Jackson "best of" collection and I was suddenly reminded how truly great her body of pop work really was.  Seriously, in a world shared with Madonna, Whitney Houston, and Mariah Carey, is it possible that Janet Jackson was relatively underrated?  Madonna is the greatest proprietor of real and manufactured controversy of her era and likely the most influential cutural icon of the 80s and early 90's.  Janet Jackson just had the better music.

2.  The actual level of Yeezus-lash I've felt is far less than I had anticipated.  Maybe that's due to a music consuming culture where we're incapable of maintaining focus on any one thing for very long or because 2013 seems to be bursting at the seams with quality releases on a weekly basis.  I can't be certain.  But despite the usual cynicism I reserve for the celebrity that is Kanye West, I didn't hate the new album.  I actually found myself enjoying the industrial aesthetic and his embracing of the power of "loud".  As I said with his last album though, there is no artist currently working today whose boom/bust factor is so closely tied to the listener's interest in them--especially lyrically.  If Kanye West interests/fascinates/intrigues you, you'll find his music that much more interesting/fascinating/intriguing. If you don't care about Kanye the person, his music has a much more difficult task in retaining the stigma of"brilliance" that so many mainstream music critics swear is residing therein.

3.  As I am moving out of my apartment and in to a new home with my future wife very soon, I've decided to trim down my "stuff" level and sell my entire CD collection for a $1 each (proceeds going to United Way of OKC, by the way!).  These hundreds of CDs were accumulated over the last couple decades and were the sweet source of much of my college debt.  In response to this announcement, I've received several super brilliant "What are CDs?" and "Why would anyone buy CDs?" type responses.  Yet when informed that this sale will also include some vinyl records, I never receive such responses.  It's amazing where we are in regards to the relevancy of some formats over others in 2013.  I wonder if CDs will ever make the nostalgic comeback of vinyl.  I doubt it, personally.  But I can assure you that after ripping one of my CDs to your iTunes collection, you'll have a GREAT coaster.  Not bad for a buck.

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