Best of '07
"Oh lord another list of the same Arcade Fire, Animal Collective, Women's Suffrage Pistachios, and of course LCD Soundsystem” you may be saying to yourself. Fear not fellow readers this list of best releases of 2007 is answering to a higher calling, the REAL best of 2007 right here for only the most eclectic individuals out there who are aware of us.

#10 - Coconut Records
Nighttiming [Young Baby Records]

Jason Schwartzman's debut solo album is a short record with warm, laid-back tunes. This album has many different sounds but yet all the songs seem to seamlessly flow together, they range from acoustic tracks such as "This Old Machine" to catchy dance tunes such as "Nighttiming". Something remarkable about this album is that it was recorded in only one week, it really doesn't seem like it was because every song seems to be beautifully crafted.

Highlights / It's Not You It's Me

#9 - Jens Lekman
Night Falls Over Kortedala [Secretly Canadian]

The modern-day troubadour. He really went to those nine yards for this one, I knew it the first time I listened. From the first kiss to the drive in bingo I was hooked and don't even ask me about. “Kanske Ar Jag Kar I Dig” must be the best song of the year. If you want a more in depth review you should visit one of those other review sites that babble on about personal garbage.

Highlights / Kanske Ar Jag Kar I Dig

#8 - Of Montreal
Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer? [Polyvinyl]

Of Montreal
's third album on the Polyvinyl Records label was for the most part written and recorded by Kevin Barnes himself. It proves to be a very lyrically personal album for him. He describes his frustrating relationship history in the twelve-minute long “The Past is a Grotesque animal”, one of the most interesting songs on the album. Songs like "Gronlandic Edit" and “Faberge Falls for Shuggie” feature a sweet bassline that you can’t help but dance to. With each song being vastly different from the last, this album is clearly one of the best ones to come out this year.

Highlights / Gronlandic Edit

#7 - La Casa Azul
La Revolución Sexual [Elefant Records]

"Va a suceder, el verano del amor. Sé que Va a suceder, la revolución sexual " / [I know it will happen, the summer of love. I know it will happen, the sexual revolution]. That really doesnt make a lot of sense at this point of the century, in fact a fictitious pop band lead by an spanish Shibuya-Kei lover that sings and plays the songs alone at concerts doesn't make any sense either and maybe that's what makes this album one of the greater productions of this year. Guille Milkyway just wants to have fun, he doesn't feel like a canadian bohemian white guy who loves the sound of a violoncello. With dreamy melodies, optimistic lyrics and some Archies' songs on his head, La Casa Azul made it again.

Highlights / Triple Salto Mortal

#6 - The Rakes
Ten New Messages [V2]

English album, I guess it didn't catch us with us yanks too well. I for one was impressed with the witty lyrics and fantastic opener and I mean c'mon these guys invites some guys they found on myspace to guest on the record, how cool is that? Wikipedia lists these guys as “dance-punk” and I feel pretty safe saying they rock the pants off of the Rapture and !!! and all that garbage. I feel proud knowing we are the only publication on the web who lists these guys in our year end list.

Highlights / The World Was A Mess But His Hair Was Perfect

#5 - Sondre Lerche
Phantom Punch [Astralwerks]

Sondre's fifth album is a change of direction away from his previous work. While 2006's Duper Sessions was more
jazzy and mellow, Phantom Punch, as the title suggests it hits you like a blow to the face. Songs like "Face The Blood" and "The Tape" have a rhythmic rock sound never previously heard on any of Sondre's work. However, songs like "Tragic Mirror" and "After All" are more ballad-like and prove the versatility of Sondre's talent. Not only is Phantom Punch one of the best albums of the year, but because of this versatility, it is also Sondre's best album to date.

Highlights / She's Fantastic

#4 - Burial
Untrue [Hyperdub Records]

“Dubstep”... First time I saw this term I thought of “bloghouse” but then I thought “Well, at least I can step to this music, I couldn't blog to bloghouse”. I guess the critics were right with this one though, groovalicious beats combined with voices that don't really make a lot of sense somehow create something that sounds so profound.

Highlights / Archangel

#3 - Band Of Horses
Cease To Begin [Sub Pop]

Since the first seconds of "Is There A Ghost" - BoH's hymn to loneliness - you realize Bridwell's vocals are just amazing, with a very simple melody and fourteen word lyrics, BoH makes a memorable thing here, although most of the other songs on the album don't have the same structure as the first one, - because if we had to choose a really representative song, it would be "Detlef Schrempf" - "Is There A Ghost" can easily be the only song in which Bridwell's country passion doesnt flow, and this passion is exactly what makes it difficult for some people to listen to a whole BoH record, it gets pretty boring if you dont really appreciate those country music roots
, because let's face it from the "what a beautiful night" cover art till "Cigarettes, Wedding Bands" [Drunk brother said he could reason with them / While they lied at night] you can see those roots. But the most important thing in "Cease To Begin" aren't those country-harmonies or Bridwell's shiny voice, this album has balance, each song here was placed carefully in the track list just like stones in a pyramid, without every song in this record, it wouldn't be the amazing creation it is, and that's what it's all about.

Highlights / Is There A Ghost

#2 - The Avett Brothers
Emotionalism [Ramseur Rec.]

Some Carolina boys singing about matters of the heart, and some talented pickin' to accompany it. Every now and then there is a group like this everyone can agree on (Ryan Adams comes to mind) and not be afraid they'll start fucking their sister. Growing up in Tennesse I didn't see too much incest but I did hear a lot of shitty country music and I know this isn't.

Highlights / Shame

#1 - Bishop Allen
The Broken String [Dead Oceans]

We simply can’t imagine a better opening song in an album, the mythical touch in “The Monitor” it’s just perfect for this release. In fact, just like a 5,195 piece Millennium Falcon, every part of this album really fits, every song has a unique space. 2006 was a big year for Bishop Allen, after they released their 12 EP Project (Ten of the twelve tracks in “The Broken String” are re-workings of selections from those EP’s) They signed to Dead Oceans and began recording what we think is the best album of the year. Justin Rice and Christian Rudder dont need poetic lyrics or powerful piano solos, they have something that music has been losing progressively, a true melody.

Highlights / Rain


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