The Return of eLf ideas

ideas of an eLven being in Canada

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Is 2008 a Lackluster Year in Terms of Music?

by aLfie vera mella

[published in my music column, "Sa Ugoy ng Musika," in the January 2009 issue #1 of Filipino Journal, the leading Filipino-owned newspaper in Manitoba, Canada]

A year-ender article published in a particular music magazine claimed that 2008 was an uninteresting and lackluster year in terms of music. What! Did I read it correctly? Sorry, but I beg to disagree. I disagree. There, twice said. To a true music enthusiast, every year is as interesting as any other year when it comes to discovering music and rediscovering classics, simply because countless singles and albums—both by old and new artists—are being produced and released and reproduced and reissued each year. Whatever your taste in music is, for sure, there will always be something for you. Gone were the days when music lovers rely on mainstream radio to know what’s new out there. In the Internet Age, where we are now, all one needs is resourcefulness.

Being a music enthusiast, I download a lot of music. But I don’t stop there. Because I’m a music collector too, I still buy CDs especially of artists I like.

Here are 24 of the albums I bought last year to add to my record collection. These are just a minute fraction of all the records produced and released in 2008. Enclosed in the parentheses is my favorite song off each album.

file under Alternative Rock:
British Sea Power – Do You Like Rock Music? (“Waving Flags”)
Coldplay – Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends (“Viva la Vida”)
The Cure – 4:13 Dream (“The Only One”)
Fleet Foxes – Fleet Foxes (“Ragged Wood”)
Keane – Perfect Symmetry (“Spiralling”)
The Killers – Day & Age (“Human”)
The Lucksmiths – First Frost (“Never and Always”)

file under Metal:
Death Angel – Killing Season (“Dethroned”)
Guns n’ Roses – Chinese Democracy (“Street of Dreams”)
Journey – Revelation (“Faith in the Heartland”)
Judas Priest – Nostradamus (“Visions”)
Metallica – Death Magnetic (“
The Day that Never Comes”)
Motörizer (“The Thousand Names of God”)

file under Pop:
Britney Spears – Circus (“Womanizer”)
Madonna – Hard Candy (“4 Minutes”)
Pink – Funhouse (“So What”)
Taylor Swift – Fearless (“White Horse”)

file under Filipino Alternative Rock:
Rico Blanco – Your Universe (“Yugto”)
The Camerawalls – Pocket Guide to the Otherworld (“Clinically Dead for 16 Hours”)
Kenyo – Radio Surfing (“Sana”)
Taken by Cars – Endings of a New Kind (“A Weeknight Memoir [In High Definition”])

file under Ambient/Electric:
Enya – And Winter Came… (“Trains and Winter Rains”)
Enigma – Seven Lives, Many Faces (“The Same Parents”)
Portishead – Third (“We Carry On”)

Final Note
No need to listen to the radio and wait for what’s new. All you need is resourcefulness. Just a google on the Internet lets you know if there’s something new from your preferred genre or favorite artists. There are also Web sites like Limewire, Multiply, and MySpace from which you can sample old and new releases before deciding if buying such albums is worth your hard-earned money.


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