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Don’t Hold Out Hope for a Clever Name

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A few year-end lists by Doug Mosurock.

Don’t Hold Out Hope for a Clever Name

You’ll forgive me for losing my sense of humor at this late stage of 2007. I just listened to two of the worst color commentators I’ve ever heard stumble their way through the Pats’ shellacking of the Steelers. I have lost my patience with those who don’t take pride in their work, those who just do the minimum job necessary and go home. The music I’m listing below, gladly, didn’t take an easy way out.

As you might sense from the list of runners-up, this has been an extremely healthy year for new music and reissues. Wasn’t too bad for me, either. I moved in with my girlfriend and we promptly got engaged. I went out on the road with Clockcleaner and Times New Viking, and attended SXSW for the first time. I started work on the first mix CD for my monthly DJ night in Brooklyn, and reviewed more records than I’ve ever covered in a single-year stretch. Speaking of which, if you’re looking for Still Single, you’ll have to wait until January. I’m taking a well-earned break until then.

Top 10 albums of 2007

1. Panda Bear - Person Pitch (Paw Tracks)

40 or 50 years of pop music led to this, one of the most sweetly divine repurposing of others’ music of our times.

2. The Cherry Blossoms - The Cherry Blossoms (Apostasy/Black Velvet Fuckere/Breaking World Records/Consanguineous/Hank the Herald Angel Recordings/Yeay!)

Appalachian-tinged folk pop hymn bong rips that have remained stuck firmly within my head since the first time the needle hit. 500 copies are now long gone; make a wish and maybe you’ll land a copy (and check out their collabo CD-R with Josephine Foster if you can’t find one of your own).

3. Daft Punk - Alive 2007 (Virgin)

Essentially the tour program of one of the greatest live performances we’ve seen in decades, this gives us a chance to focus on the music that drove it all, revealing Daft Punk to be some of the most successful programmers in modern music, dance or otherwise, not to mention helping us to find the good in the stinker that was Human After All. Their best since Homework; if you’re not feeling it now, just wait.

4. Valet - Blood is Clean (Kranky)

Here’s the sleeper of the year, the narcoleptic wanderings of one Honey Owens, who crafts tense 5 A.M. psychedelia with an assured sense of purpose, lifting her on a green sunbeam above just about anyone else working in this idiom. Much more solid and song-oriented than most of them, as well, and all the better for it.

5. Modeselektor - Boogybytes Vol. 3 (Bpitch Control)

Can’t really count Daft Punk as a mix CD (even though it is), so the best one this year will go to Germany’s Modeselektor, bouncing through Detroit techno, Spank Rock, and Radiohead like Super Mario.

6. Sightings - Through the Panama (Load)

Their best yet; a stunning restructuring of rock music from the inside out.

7. Von Sudenfed - Tromatic Reflexxions (Domino)

Didn’t seem like it at the time, but Mouse on Mark E. Smith has longer legs than any of us could have thought. Can’t stop listening to this one.

8. Yeasayer - All Hour Cymbals (We Are Free)

High-minded dollar-bin epiphanies, strung together with voices and technology to create a dystopian epic like we haven’t heard in a while. Just bonkers, onstage and off.

9. Mike Bones - The Sky Behind the Sea (The Social Registry)

The return of the lonesome sound, the way some of us prefer it.

10. Der TPK - Harmful Emotions (Siltbreeze)

Furiously chugging basement Krautrock/punk/avant skree, breathless and diffuse; a signpost for the times which spawned them.

Honorable Mentions:

Prinzhorn Dance School - Prinzhorn Dance School (DFA)
Pissed Jeans - Hope for Men (Sub Pop)
Black Dice - Load Blown (Paw Tracks)
Lamps - Lamps (In the Red)
3/4HadBeenEliminated - The Religious Experience (Soleilmoon)
Los Llamarada - The Exploding Now (S-S)
Pharoahe Monch - Desire (Universal)
Pink Reason - Cleaning the Mirror (Siltbreeze)
Cloak/Dagger - We Are (Jade Tree)
Iron Lung - Sexless/No Sex (Prank)
Angels of Light - We Are Him (Young God)
Shit & Shine - Cunts With Roses (Noisestar)
Cynics - Here We Are (Get Hip)
Times New Viking - Present the Paisley Reich (Siltbreeze)
Group Doueh - Guitar Music from the Western Sahara (Sublime Frequencies)
The Dead C. - Future Artists double-LP version (Ba Da Bing)
Map of Africa - Map of Africa (Whatever We Want)
Cheater Slicks - Walk Into the Sea (Dead Canary)
Eddy Current Suppression Ring - Eddy Current Suppression Ring (Dropkick)
1990s - Cookies (Rough Trade)
Black Moth Super Rainbow - Dandelion Gum (Graveface)
Meg Baird - Dear Companion (Drag City)
Clockcleaner - Babylon Rules (Load)
Reports - Mosquito Nets (The Paper Cities)

Label of the year:


It’s like Tom Lax never left, like the forward-thinking insanity that once poured forth from his imprint was just waiting for him to get started again. Almost everything this label put out in 2007 was a sure shot. Dig ‘em out.


Magma @ Club Europa, Brooklyn, NY
Daft Punk @ Keyspan Park, Brooklyn, NY
Marked Men @ J & J Pizza, Denton, TX
Mika Miko @ Death by Audio, Brooklyn, NY
Roky Erickson & The Explosives @ Southpaw, Brooklyn, NY
Audionom @ Luna Lounge, Brooklyn, NY
Children @ Luna Lounge, Brooklyn, NY
Clockcleaner / Times New Viking /Television Ghost @ Downtown Records, Lafayette, IN

Top 10 singles:

You’ll have to wait for the next Still Single for these. Come on, you can’t expect me to give it all away at once.

Top 10 reissues (no order):

Bobb Trimble - Iron Curtain Innocence and Harvest of Dreams (Secretly Canadian)
Various Artists - The Bombay Connection Vol. 1 (Bombay Connection)
Tamam Shud - Evolution (Em Records Japan)
Various Artists - Tales from the Australian Underground, vols. 1 & 2 (Feel Presents/Shock)
Harvey Milk - My Love is Higher than Your Assessment of What My Love Could Be and The Pleaser/Live Pleaser (Relapse)
Audionom - Retrospektiv (Kemado)
Various Artists - Psychedelic Phinland (Love)

10 album tracks deserving of mention (no order):

LCD Soundsystem - “All My Friends” (Sound of Silver, Capitol)
Moviola - “Rudy” (Dead Knowledge, Catbird)
High Tension Wires - “Old Enough to be Home Alone” (Midnight Cashier, Dirtnap)
Andre Ethier - “On Lies” and “Pride of Egypt” (On Blue Fog, Blue Fog)
Brain Handle - “Wallet Sniffin’” (Brain Handle, self-released)
Bottomless Pit - “Dogtag” (Hammer of the Gods, Comedy Minus One)
Wu Tang Clan - “Unpredictable” (8 Diagrams, Universal)
Dungen, - “Mon Amour” (Tio Bitar, Kemado)
The Busy Signals - “Got It All Wrong” (The Busy Signals, Dirtnap)

By Doug Mosurock

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