Monday, December 15, 2008

2008: Was That What It Was?

I'm not going to try and produce a list of the best albums of 2008. I'm just not qualified. I've bought a few new albums, but just as many from the 80's and 90's, and with one exception, I've not found myself returning to a single album for repeated listening. There were, however, a number of tracks that caught my ear in 2008 - this is a summary of some of my favorites.

Fischerspooner - The Best Revenge
I just loved this. Released as a single only, no album yet.

Empire of the Sun - Walking on a Dream
Another great electroclash record. Probably my song of the year. As yet, the album
has not been released in the US, but what I've heard I like. Hear it at

Kerli - Walking On Air
This was an iTunes single of the week. Something a little different, a mix of
goth, pop and plain old kookiness. I bought the album almost immediately
but couldn't really comment on the other tracks.
Hear it at

Neon Neon - Michael Douglas
I could have picked several tracks from this solid new wave inspired collaboration.
But this cut is probably my pick. Nice artwork as well.

Duffy - Mercy
Kind of forgotten about now, but I think time will reveal this as an all time great,
great single. Still not sure about the album as a whole.

Kamera - Borderline
Not strictly speaking a 2008 release, but I've not heard anyone else mention the
sublime debut album Resurrection. Great synth rock sound.

Gran Ronde - Wisdom
Another iTunes Single of the Week, and another album that was hard to
track down. This particular cut sounds strangely lived-in, like you just know
you've heard it before. Very Britpop, actually.
Hear it at

Charlotte Sometimes - I Could Just Kill A Man
While it's interesting to imagine a guy singing a chorus like this, with Charlotte's
delivery this perky ode to boy bashing fizzed along with a
delightful mix of playfulness and exasperation.
Hear it at

Matt Costa - Cigarette Eyes
While not as exquisite as the pastoral bliss of 2006's Songs We Sing, the
follow up Unfamiliar Faces produced several sparkling pop tracks, including
this catchy ditty. Hear it at

Here it is, hands down my favorite album released in 2008. This is why I still love music after 25 years, you can buy something for $0.75 because you like the cover and - hey - there's a new love in your life. Yes, it's short, and repeats itself a little, but that's part of the charm, like a good old fashioned album. You can sample four tracks at the MySpace page. The (spoof) alternative cover is cool too. "Birthday" is just one of a shimmering cascade of electro-pop loveliness that hits all the right spots, in the right order. It says something when a perky cover of "Girlfriend In A Coma" is the weakest song on the album. Trust me on this. And thank me in due course, because your ears will be grateful.

1 comment:

josmon10 said...

Great track by Kamera, thanks for the tip! But the link takes you to another band's website, from the US, by this name. The Swedish Kamera you are referring to can be found at