Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Progress Report, 2007

It's been a grand old year for the Toaster. Looking back on the first half of the Year of the Cricket*, I have:
  • renewed contracts with suspiciously absent staff;
  • commandered the tone and person of the blog's language;
  • fired fictional staff, denying them severence pay;
  • purchased 15 albums, putting myself on pace to outmatch last year's purchasing habits by 43%;
  • bought a new mouse upon third-party diagnosis that the old one had an inoperable dysfunction;
  • ran into the New Pornographers while visiting the Cleveland Indians in Central Florida, reinvigorating my hunger for new New Ps material;
  • installed new mouse through third-party service and immediately realized how much better the world was;
  • figured out how RSS feeds work, leading to a near-clinical obsession with Google Reader; and
  • defended Paris Hilton's newsworthiness from the likes of Al Gore.

For those of you who are concerned with new-now-NOW, I will inform you that the new editorial material ends there for this week. The year in music has yet to really wow me. This is no 2005 - not yet anyway. Here's how I see it:

Honor Roll
The Shins - A
The National - A
Arcade Fire - A
Of Montreal - A

Good Marks
Patrick Wolf - A-
LCD Soundsystem - A-
The Hold Steady (Live acoustic) - A-
Beirut (EP) - A-
Let's French - A-
Elliott Smith - A-
Once (soundtrack) - B+
The Broken West - B+
The Fratellis - B+

Missing Something
Aqueduct - B
Son Volt - B
Sondre Lerche - B
Voxtrot - B-

Paul McCartney - C+
Nine Inch Nails - C

Still Researching
Ryan Adams
Immaculate Machine
Rufus Wainwright
The Polyphonic Spree
Arctic Monkeys
Andrew Bird
Maria Taylor

You Sure They Put Out an Album?
Fountains of Wayne
Bright Eyes
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
Blonde Redhead

..What did I get wrong? What did I get right? What am I forgetting?

Regardless, the case is being made that there is a decent amount of good stuff already out there. Looking forward, the big players in the second half of 2007 appear to be the aforementioned New Pornographers, Iron + Wine, Spoon, Rilo Kiley, Interpol and maybe Jimmy Eat World and Smashing Pumpkins (maybe...).

* It is not the Year of the Cricket. I think.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...


Best song on Fountains of Wayne was the first single - Strapped for Cash.

Favorite song on Arctic Monkeys was Flourescent Adolescent.

Couldn't really get into Fratellis, though some of it was catchy.

Need to listen to your A rankings... everyone is into the Arcade Fire but me. Maybe I need to change that.

Hope you are well,

And the new Smashing Pumpkins is an interesting listen... The cover looks cool to me.