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    Default Best albums of the 2000s

    pitchfork's roundup of the best of the decade.
    i'll post the top 20 only, the full list can be found here:
    Pitchfork: P2K: The Decade in Music







    The Top 200 Albums of the 2000s:


    Today concludes our P2K coverage of the decade in music with... drumroll... the top 20 albums of the 2000s. You've read and listened to the tracks, read essays about developments in technology, pop, noise, and indie, watched the videos, heard what the artists' thought, taken in our recap of the big events, and read about albums from #200 to #21; now it's time for the best of the best. As indicated earlier in the week, in the interest of keeping the list broad, we capped the number of albums for any given artist at three. And, as with tracks, we're going to assemble an addendum with deserving albums released since we polled our writers for this list. Look for that in January.
    If you have a Lala account-- which doesn't cost anything, information on signing up here-- you'll be able to listen to the vast majority of the albums once for free, using a new widget they've devised. And Lala has set up aspecial page for the Top 200 Albums feature. Details and music can be found here.
    Thanks to you, our readers, for following along with our coverage of the decade. We also want to offer huge thanks to interns Chris Bosman, Eliot Gronstal, and Susannah Young for all of their work on the P2K features. Their contributions were invaluable.
    OK, here we go, the top 20...
    [#200-151]
    [#150-101]
    [#100-51]
    [#50-21]
    20. Interpol
    Turn on the Bright Lights
    [Matador; 2002]










    Interpol's 2002 debut has been slighted as being strictly a matter of a specific time and place. The band was quickly saddled with Joy Division comparisons, but its stormy, romantic rock was one of the decade's sharpest distillations of that common post-punk influence. At its best, Turn on the Bright Lights has the power and pull-- and the requisite dryness and ennui-- of Television's "Venus" or the work of early-70s Lou Reed. And so it was, and is, about its time and place: downtown New York recomposed in Giuliani's wake, proud of its rough history and ever skeptical of its future. This album exudes gritty glamor, careless pride, and that special sad lament of twentysomethings who have nothing to be sad about and everything to look forward to in life. "You've supported me for a long time/ Somehow I'm not impressed," Paul Banks sings on "NYC". Surely boys, you owe the city more than that. --Patrick Sisson
    19. Spoon
    Kill the Moonlight
    [Merge; 2002]










    Normally when rock bands enter a "using-the-studio-as-an-instrument" phase, their songs get overworked and overblown, but Spoon moved in the opposite direction, opting for a rhythm-centric economy of sound akin to what Prince achieved on hits like "Kiss" and "When Doves Cry". Every cut on Kill the Moonlight is stripped to its most essential elements, lending pop songs like "The Way We Get By" and "Jonathon Fisk" a bold, uncluttered urgency, while atmospheric numbers such as "Paper Tiger" and "Stay Don't Go" come across like loose gestural sketches rendered by the purposeful hand of a master craftsman. The arrangements may be spartan, but the production is rich in detail, with sleek textures scuffed just enough to seem lived-in, and painterly keyboard tones that evoke vivid nighttime imagery. Despite the brilliance of the production, the music is ultimately successful due to Britt Daniel's sexy rasp, which grounds even the most cerebral moments in the offhand intensity of his raw, immediate passion. --Matthew Perpetua
    18. Kanye West
    Late Registration
    [Roc-A-Fella; 2005]










    Kanye, you jerk. Late Registration? Perfect. Even in its unruly sprawl. The last time you really seemed to bother to push yourself. To give us over-stuffed, unashamedly contradictory, all-of-you-and-more art that lived up to your autodidact genius entitlement shtick. It arrived at precisely the right time, too, more or less a year after the intriguing if uneven The College Dropout said you'd be someone to fear if you could ever curb the hype-mongering to bear down in the studio. It mixed world-conquering pop crassness ("Gold Digger", "Diamonds From Sierra Leone", a friggin' guest spot from Adam "Maroon 5" Levine for chrissakes) with some of the harmonically oddest hip-hop in the genre's history (the drunken reverb on the guitars on "Addiction", the sly, conversational bounce of the strings on "Gone"). Even the throwaways were musically rich: Has any hip-hop track as slight as "We Major" bothered with such an opulent arrangement? You blurred social comment (some of it admittedly a little entry-level) into the enjoyable party-hound doggerel and shouts to mama and grandma. We all know that you're selling yourself short until you ditch the solipsism shoved through Auto-Tune and bother crafting a true follow-up to this album. --Jess Harvell
    17. LCD Soundsystem
    Sound of Silver
    [EMI/DFA; 2007]










    What musty FM rock radio pixie dust did James Murphy scatter over Sound of Silver to make it feel so instantaneously like a classic? Here's a theory: It's an occupational hazard of dance music journalism that every so often you laud a record for sounding future-forward only to realize a few years later that your compass was way broke. So maybe a huge part of the overwhelming critical confidence in Sound of Silver had to do with the fact that it wasn't trading in new untested sounds as much as it was confidently updating a pastiche of the proven past. David Bowie? Check. David Byrne? Check. Brian Eno? Check plus. Combined with Sound of Silver's inspired songwriting and production, the easy familiarity of those touchpoints gave us something that was easy to immediately absorb and consequently mobilize behind. A dance-rock record from a former punk agnostic, this hybrid of 1970s art-rock and more traditional dance elements conspired for one of the only truly great dance albums of the decade. Simple, right? Ha! Guaranteed that producers all over the world are still shaking their fists in Murphy's general direction for making it seem this damn easy. --Mark Pytlik
    16. Sufjan Stevens
    Illinois
    [Asthmatic Kitty; 2005]










    When Illinois and Late Registration placed #1 and #2 in Pitchfork's Top Albums of 2005 list, some took it as symbolic, a situation in which a hip-hop record that catered to every single rockist habit in the book still played runner-up to our precious lily-livered indie rock. But they're a hell of a lot closer than they look: each a staggeringly ambitious, lushly orchestrated big-top extravaganza whose ringleader mixes in frivolous tall tales and Chicago civic pride with heavy meditations on God, mortality, and love, all to suffer criticisms about too many tracks, too many interludes, and too many French horns.
    No one's gonna confuse "John Wayne Gacy" with, like, "Drive Slow", but this sort of context is a helpful reminder that while there might be a discrepancy between these two in terms of ego, it ain't by that much. Though Stevens hasn't done much since to counter his image of a banjo-toting Cub Scout, Illinois is a record that took a massive amount of cojones to pull off, taking the framework of the Michigan album that Stevens seemed placed on this earth to make and then blowing it up in every way possible. But while Illinois is ultimately a testament to Stevens' sky-high confidence in his compositional and lyrical sophistication, it's also a record that's almost completely non-autobiographical. Stevens' self-confidence manifests itself in having enough belief in his own voice to tell everyone else's story-- all geographical namedrops aside, Illinois could've been relocated anywhere and it would still be nothing short of universal. --Ian Cohen
    15. The Knife
    Silent Shout
    [Mute/Rabid; 2006]










    The amazing thing about Silent Shout is how whole it feels-- the way it summons up every weird gift this Swedish brother/sister duo's been blessed with and puts it in the service of a sound so astonishingly complete and coherent. (So complete, in fact, that it becomes resistant to explanation: You can describe its attributes, but at some point it just sort of is.) So: There's the percussive clang of the rhythms. There's the way the synth arpeggios shudder and swell ominously in and out, like surf against rocks at night. There's Karin Dreijer Andersson's otherworldly voice, which gets stretched in every direction, distorted and detuned until the "real" Karin can keen against demonically low doppelgangers and creepily high doll versions. But somewhere within that, there's just multitudes more: fairy-tale creepiness, waltzes for ghosts, icy energy, stories, elegance, rage, gender critiques, forests, politics, wit, jokes, families, children, Volvo employees, The Godfather. It feels pretty colossal. There are certain aesthetics so whole and singular that we use them as shorthand to refer to other things-- stuff can be Lynchian, Dickensian, Pynchonesque. Repeated exposure to this record makes it tempting to start describing things-- say, a bird of prey circling an ice-covered lighthouse-- as Silent Shout-ian. --Nitsuh Abebe
    14. Animal Collective
    Merriweather Post Pavillion
    [Domino; 2009]










    At its core, Merriweather Post Pavilion is very ordinary. The lyrics read like stuff you'd talk about around the grill. Even that UFO at the start of the disc sounds like its drain got clogged. But on their strongest and-- not coincidentally-- most accessible album to date, celebrating the everyday is the point. High-pitched electronics heighten alertness. Every detail of the daily routine brings joy. The lover you dream about is the one at home. And making that home is the thing that makes life amazing.
    The hominess may be a departure from their early tribal adventures, but it's a natural one. The 00s didn't hurt for talented and idiosyncratic artists striving to make their mark against the generations of records they'd inherited. If Animal Collective outpaced the rest, it's because they pulled their experiments toward the center-- not just by easing the rhythms to an everyday heartbeat, or by penning ever-warmer melodies, but by celebrating the most common connections between human beings. The wrenching confusion and stabs of ecstasy have never been more intense, now that the backstory's so banal. The masked, pseudonymous Collective may still be in a tribe, but the tribe they've joined is our own. --Chris Dahlen
    13. OutKast
    Stankonia
    [La Face; 2000]










    Look back at the cover of Idlewild. Not the split-screen, we're-still-a-team version but the original with Andr 3000 in the foreground, staring intently at sheet music above an antique piano. Then there's Big Boi, deep in the recess, pimp suit on, mic in hand, ready to rap, shrugging in frustration as if to say, "What the hell are we doing here?" Never did they seem so far apart, and it's one of the great disappointments of the decade that OutKast, once America's most promising pop group, have effectively stopped making music together. Still, Stankonia remains. The sprawling LP, as weird and futuristic as mainstream hip-hop gets, finds the duo managing a delicate balance between its two very distinct personas. They drew you in with sugary sweet, ladies-first jams like "Ms. Jackson" and "I'll Call Before I Come" only to invite Killer Mike to spit vulgarities like "Need her to gobble up jism like school lunches" on the violent "Snappin' & Trappin'". Vehemently anti-flossing one minute ("Red Velvet"), they sounded hard as nails the next on "Gangsta Shit". The tightrope act must have drained them, but one thing seems obvious listening to Stankonia now: OutKast need each other as much as we need them. --Joe Colly
    12. The White Stripes
    White Blood Cells
    [Sympathy for the Record Industry; 2001]










    An aspiring young journalist once said to me that the Strokes were our Beatles and the White Stripes our Rolling Stones. If you'll forgive the reductive nature of the comment, she may have had things backward. Jack and Meg White hit like an adrenaline shot to the chest when they released their third album-- mostly because the mainstream media found a peg with the band's Michel Gondry-directed Lego-to-life video for "Fell in Love With a Girl". But lo and behold, the band just happened to be arriving at a creative peak at the same time, transmogrifying the scuzzed, tensile garage rock of their first two underrated albums into pop pandemonium. And they were fortunate to exploit their truly strange, typically inspired shenanigans to the press. Siblings, lovers, friends-- it ultimately didn't matter. WBC is still their best album because it is so amazingly true to their ethos-- no bass, no overdubs, no bullshit-- but also because it so merrily dances between fire and flowers. There is an almost impossible transition from the dark, haunted "The Union Forever", with its "no true love" caterwaul, to the big-hearted weeper "The Same Boy You've Always Known". Maybe Beatles proclamations are a bit overenthusiastic. But what's wrong with a little ambition? --Sean Fennessey
    11. Ghostface Killah
    Supreme Clientele
    [Sony; 2000]









    In 1997, Wu-Tang Forever was released. A mere two years later, thanks to ill-fated tours, internal squabbling, and a run of mostly regrettable solo albums, the Clan entered the new century with almost no momentum. If Ghostface Killah hadn't been incarcerated in Rikers Island during that span, Supreme Clientele might've come out in 1999, but its release in the decade's first month provided an unexpected millennial rebirth, singlehandedly restoring Wu Tang's mysterious artistic vitality and positioning Tony Starks as hip-hop's most consistently astonishing and confounding lyricist.
    When it first hit, new possibilities in language emerged with a topical breadth that's become Supreme Clientele's most underrated aspect. Rap definitely got weirder, but you weren't getting a straight-up party rhyme like "Cherchez La Ghost" on an Anticon disc; on an El-P record, "Child's Play" becomes "Stepfather Factory"; and whatever you want to call the indelible character sketch of "Malcolm" ("He eat hams, shitted on his self twice/ Big-hatted Jews rushed a nigga out in Crown Heights"), nobody was on that level. --Ian Cohen

    10. The Avalanches
    Since I Left You
    [Modular/Interscope; 2000]










    Here's a curious album: It's constructed like a hip-hop record, it flows with the momentum of a great dance mix, but its component parts seem to come from strange places-- musical soundtracks, oddball comedy routines, and easy-listening thrift-store pop from the 60s and 70s. It skirts cheese but hits the pleasure center of the music-geek brain dead-on, blurring lines we never knew existed: sunny lite-soul congeals into the surrealist coda from a John Cale song, flashes of Camp Lo and De La Soul mutter hooks over some unseemly alternate-reality disco, and a gothic choir gets chopped up and modulated to provide the wordless vocals of a funk jam that, as it turns out, is sourced from an especially dirty Blowfly single. Non sequiturs spring up even as all the musical patches hide their seams; "Frontier Psychiatrist" alone has enough bewildering decontextualized soundbites to count as some kind of deranged dada exercise ("And tighten your buttocks/ Pour juice on your chin/ And I promised my girlfriend I'd get/ A violin"). But Since I Left You isn't just a well-built assemblage of sample-based plunderphonics, it's a masterpiece of mood-setting that riffs off an ideal where getting on an airplane and landing in another corner of the world was the most exotic thing a person could do. It's like a travelogue put through a Steinski filter, an escape to a world so new: "Get a drink, have a good time now, welcome to paradise." --Nate Patrin
    09. Panda Bear
    Person Pitch
    [Paw Tracks; 2007]










    Person Pitch is the third solo album from Noah Lennox, yet it seems difficult to take measure of the album except as it relates to his regular work as a member of Animal Collective. (This is partially because Person Pitch was the first AC-related album to really lure some of their more skeptical listeners into the tent.) In many ways, the album seems the most succinct possible distillation of exactly what qualities Lennox brings to the Collective's kaleidoscopic mix. And it certainly doesn't hurt Person Pitch's cause that those very qualities-- the beatific melodies, the multi-tracked choral vocals, and the general head-in-the-clouds drift-- tend to be the most immediately appealing draws of the AC universe.
    The premise for Person Pitch is fairly simple-- take the production techniques and repetition of minimal techno and apply them to what might otherwise be relatively straightforward dreamy guitar pop. In Lennox's hands, however, this basic template becomes a pathway for sublime invention, as his layered loops of acoustic guitar, overlapping voices, and stray sound effects encircle his songs like halos of sunlight. The album balances widescale epics "Bro's" and "Good Girl/Carrots" with such irresistible short pieces as "Ponytail" and the radiant "I'm Not", resulting in a cohesive whole that is lean, symmetrical, and filled with a continual abundance of fresh surprises and discoveries. --Matthew Murphy
    08. Sigur Rs
    gtis Byrjun
    [Smekkleysa; 2000]










    They came from Iceland and Radiohead liked them. That's about all we knew back when gtis Byrjun first starting making its way around near the turn of the decade, but in those days, that was enough to get people intrigued. Discovering the music of Sigur Rs was an active process, because a series of questions inevitably followed: How do you pronounce their name? What does it mean? Is that a man or a woman singing? Did I hear right, that the words aren't actually in any language? Indeed, since gtis Byrjun was one of those records that filled a deep-seated need listeners didn't even know they had, experiencing it was at first a little confusing. Punk had taught us to be skeptical of pure, unapologetic prettiness, so as underground music fans, we'd been conditioned to reject this sort of thing. We were used to it being cut with noise, irony, or emotional distance, which left us unprepared for exquisitely crafted music that asked to be appreciated in the same way as a bright orange sunset or the first snowfall of the season. But we got over it, and once that happened, after we'd given the record a couple of spins, one final question came to mind: Is there any other music like this? --Mark Richardson
    07. The Strokes
    Is This It
    [RCA; 2001]










    The Strokes helped to keep alive the romantic notion of pre-Giuliani New York, before the Lower East Side became an amusement park and Times Square became Disneyland. At the time, these guys were nave enough (and good-looking enough) to firmly believe they were the best band in the world; and for a moment, it actually came true. Is This It is a time capsule of that youthful bravado and it would probably sound quaint if the songs weren't so amazing. Never mind that Julian Casablancas' detached vocals presaged a good percentage of the music that came out this year-- listen to the effortlessness with which the band brings tracks like "Barely Legal" to life, literally laughing during "New York City Cops" because it sounds so damn easy. Part of that was skill, part of it was innocence. These days, even the Strokes know they'll never make another record this good. That's not to say they couldn't come close, but nearly a decade later, we're all seasoned enough to recognize you only capture this kind of a lightning in a bottle once. --Joe Colly
    06. Modest Mouse
    The Moon & Antarctica
    [Epic; 2000]










    The Moon & Antarctica
    is easily Modest Mouse's most ambitious album, a staggering leap in vision and scope from their previous records and a completely self-contained universe. Frontman Isaac Brock's worldview had always made room for a fair amount of existential loneliness and drugged madness, but from the opening moments of "3rd Planet", all of those elements suddenly cohered into something serenely whole. It's as if the garbled transmission he'd been receiving from parts unknown his whole life suddenly beamed in clear, and in three minutes, he spins out a creation myth so bewildering and uncanny that we're still trying to parse it nine years later. Brock manages to channel this unearthly perspective for an entire album, and everything old, under this gaze, is rendered new and freshly strange: stars become projectors, lives end but no one ever completes them, someone smart says nothing at all. Even Brock's trademark scathing insults turned trippy: "You were the dull sound of sharp math when you were alive/ No one's gonna play the harp when you die," he mutters in "Lives". If there's a way into that statement, I haven't found it yet, but it's hard not to sense a rare wisdom encrypted in its code. --Jayson Greene
    05. Jay-Z
    The Blueprint
    [Roc-A-Fella; 2001]










    When it comes to prophetic hip-hop album titles, Ready to Die was the most tragically accurate of the 1990s. This decade, The Blueprint was rap's supreme soothsayer: a grand layout too enamored with life to entertain fatalism. Without it, Kanye West may have never gotten out of his mom's basement. Nas' "Made You Look" probably wouldn't exist. And Jay-Z may have become another aged-out rap casualty, gasping for relevance in a realm where 30 may as well be 60.
    When the album wasn't mastering tried-and-true hip-hop tropes like the diss track ("Takeover"), the player's anthem ("Girls, Girls, Girls"), and the puffy-eyed ballad ("Song Cry"), it perfected a lush, sample-based aesthetic that didn't rip-off Al Green, David Ruffin, and Bobby Byrd as much as it paid homage. Just as The Chronic revived 70s funk, The Blueprint brushed off 70s soul for fresh ears. And at the center is Shawn Carter, then 31, who supposedly recorded the bulk of the record's vocals in a near-divine two-day, paperless outpour. Reasonable Doubt may be more complex and The Black Album more personal, but Jay's Blueprint persona is the one that will match his legacy-- towering, effortless, and as eternal as its 12-minute finale. "If I ain't better than Big, I'm the closest one," he claimed-- a controversial line at the time. In 2009, the sentiment seems quaint, if a bit modest. --Ryan Dombal
    04. Wilco
    Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
    [Nonesuch; 2002]










    Jeff Tweedy had allegedly been boning up on World War II while he wrote many of the songs that would become Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, an all too fitting lead-up to Wilco's well-documented battles with the record industry as well as within the band itself. Touring behind an album still weeks away from official release, Tweedy would often pause to ask how many people in the crowd had downloaded the new Wilco record, and if the substantial show of hands wasn't answer enough, the folks singing along to every word only amplified the extent to which the disc had made the rounds. More importantly, it was making new fans, too, as burned copies of YHF were passed around like totems with the band's tacit blessing. But the historic, narrative-defining leak of Yankee Hotel Foxtrot was only part of the story. The real story was the resonance of elliptical songs like "I Am Trying to Break Your Heart", "Ashes of American Flags", and "Jesus, Etc.", which often reduced crowds to hushed silence once 9/11 attached a real world frame to Tweedy's cryptic lyrics. Given the general hoopla surrounding the supposedly "experimental" turn the former alt-country standard bearers were taking, the album itself is a relatively austere work, the subtle sonic tweaks (courtesy of Tweedy's late collaborator Jay Bennett, with an assist from Jim O'Rourke) complementary rather than distracting, adding an extra layer of enticing mystery to the band's most unlikely breakthrough. --Joshua Klein
    03. Daft Punk
    Discovery
    [Virgin; 2001]



    Daft Punk's first album had helped refresh house music in the mid 1990s; the second went further, rewriting electronic pop's pleasure principles to such a degree that when it came out a lot of people thought Discovery must be a put-on. They took the joy in the record for irony. Rather, the band had simply plunged into the raw popstuff of their 70s childhoods, from AOR to disco, Buggles to Manilow, rock to robotics. They wanted their listeners to get the rush of context-free delight they had hearing music as kids, and on "Aerodynamic" and "Digital Love" they succeeded wildly, dissolving a decade-plus of dance music good taste. And not all of Discovery looked back. The middle of the album is house music as string theory, with the duo finding dimensions of pleasure coiled within the tiniest loops: "Crescendolls" releases an awesome, gleeful energy by repeatedly triggering one five-second sample.
    Discovery was simply the decade's best good-times record, with Daft Punk as pyramid-toting party wizards and the chipmunk Kraftwerk of "Harder Better Faster Stronger" their anthem. But this most celebratory of records has a bittersweet streak, too: Daft Punk know that a rush always carries the risk of exhaustion. Perhaps the album's most underappreciated track is the sad but gorgeous "Short Circuit", a three-minute robot graveyard of crumbled transistors and dying LEDs. But from Romanthony's first blissful, vocoded shout of "one more time!" the dominant emotion on Discovery is joy. A joy that wasn't afraid to be sentimental and funny as well as hard and futuristic, and is all the better for that. When a generation looks back and tries to catch a fuzzy hold of the music that made them happy this decade, Daft Punk's will be top of the list. --Tom Ewing
    02. Arcade Fire
    Funeral
    [Merge; 2004]









    Will there ever be another album like Funeral? Sounds silly considering the second half of this decade has seen plenty of bands establish nice careers by ripping off the communal euphoria that Arcade Fire made fresh after four years of rock records that boasted metropolitan chic, emotional austerity, or lyrical removal-- the music was amazing, but it was all kind of a downer. It's debatable that Funeral itself is even original-- considering they share a label, love of archaic brass and string instruments, and an undeniable ability to wring life affirmation in the face of personal tragedy, it might just be a crossover version of Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Aeroplane Over the Sea.
    But besides being a turning point for indie rock, Funeral was one for the indie communityas well. Whether it's due to increasingly fractious listening habits or the increased ability for dissenters to be heard, Funeral keeps on feeling like the last of its kind, an indie record that sounded capable of conquering the universe and then going on to do just that. The consensus hyperbole that met Funeral resulted in any record that threatened to reach that level becoming met with severe scrutiny or even outright derision. And still, we wonder if there will ever be anything quite like Funeral-- something tells me that as music becomes even more readily available to us in the next decade, we'll still go through it all in the hopes we can find something with the unifying force and astounding emotional payload that only albums like Funeral can provide. --Ian Cohen
    01. Radiohead
    Kid A
    [Capitol; 2000]










    Nine years ago this month, Brent DiCrescenzo reviewed Radiohead's Kid A for this website. As far as its rating, no one blinked. Pitchfork was still a blip then, but if you cared at all about the broad sphere of music that included Radiohead, chances are that you heard something very special in Kid A. It was that exceptional artifact of modern culture-- something about which most people could agree. To ears that'd had the second half the 1990s to ingest the rapid developments in electronic music, ears weary of the bankruptcy of post-Nirvana alternative rock, Kid A sounded like a next development in rock music that was both logical and surprising. And, of course, a lot has been written about this record since. "What's left to be said about Kid A?", Pitchfork founder Ryan Schreiber wondered when we published our Top 20 Albums of 2000 list. Good question.
    First, I go back to the old reasons, the ones that were kicked around from the moment the record hit: Thoughts about millennial techno-dread; fragmentation, broken transmissions, garbled communication; the feeling of helplessness that comes from having access to so much information about the world while not having the power to change any of it; the subtle and dramatic ways that electronics are altering our landscape and our consciousness. And there's still something there, though in some ways it's all now more intense. Part of our brains moved online in the last 10 years, and this will continue; it's not a good or bad thing; it's just the way it is. Refracting these developments through the prism of Kid A, it still resonates, even if so much has changed since. Radiohead were not only among the first bands to figure out how to use the Internet, but to make their music sound like it, and they kicked off this ridiculously retro decade with the rare album that didn't seem retro. Kid A-- with its gorgeously crafted electronics, sparkling production, and uneasy stance toward the technology it embraces completely-- feels like the Big Album of the online age.
    But you know what? I almost never think about that stuff. It all feels true, of course, but when I slide Kid A into the CD player (how's that for a retro image?), something else happens. Once that drawer closes and the first chords of "Everything in Its Right Place" start-- those haunting, clicking keyboard textures and Thom Yorke's warped voice-- all these other ideas feel secondary. Instead, I get lost in the dissonant horn blasts of "The National Anthem" and hypnotized between the play of the drones and the hissy beats in "Idioteque"; I feel the deep pang of yearning and sadness with the title track, and I rest during the gorgeous Brian Eno-like interlude of "Treefingers". I'm listening to a brilliant album by an especially creative rock band functioning at its peak. Such records have strong melodies, exciting chord changes, unexpected arrangements, and tricky rhythms that you want to hear over and over again. Songs. Kid A has those, too. Ten of them, all great, here, in this order, working together perfectly. For a record with so much baggage and such a reputation for density, the appeal, in the end, is pretty simple: Other records were catchier or better for dancing or more appealingly nostalgic. But no other record captured the complex feeling of the era in such an elegant and beautiful way. --Mark Richardson
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

  2. #2
    Elite Member Daphne's Avatar
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    Pitchfork always has great lists. Interpol, LCD Soundsystem, The Knife, Arcade Fire, and The Avalanches are my favorites from this list.

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    Elite Member msdeb's Avatar
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    as much as i loathe Kanye, Late Registration is awesome.
    Basic rule of Gossip Rocks: Don't be a dick.Tati
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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    The only two albums in that Top 20 that I like are Jay-Z & OutKast. And Eminem's 'Marshall Mathers LP' should definitely be in the Top 20, if not the Top 10.

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    Elite Member calcifer's Avatar
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    my favourites:
    silent shout, since i left you, gtis byrjun, the moon & antartica, kid a.

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    Elite Member TheONe's Avatar
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    Late Registration is a CLASSIC!
    "My style is impetuous, my defense is impregnable and I'm just ferocious. I want your heart. I want to eat your children. Praise be to Allah." TEAM MILEY!!

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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    i own every single one of these but my favourites, and the ones that are regularly in rotation in my itunes, are kill the moonlight, silent shout, merriweather post pavillion, person pitch, yankee hotel foxtrot, funeral, kid a, agaetis byrjun and since i left you.

    there are definitely a few which i would move up or down, and some which i think deserved to be in the top 20 and aren't - for example, blur's incredible opus, 'think tank', to name just one, but overall it's a pretty good list.


    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    The only two albums in that Top 20 that I like are Jay-Z & OutKast. And Eminem's 'Marshall Mathers LP' should definitely be in the Top 20, if not the Top 10.
    it's pretty high up on the rest of the list, not top 20 but definitely in the top 50 if i remember correctly. it's a fantastic album.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sputnik View Post
    i own every single one of these but my favourites, and the ones that are regularly in rotation in my itunes, are kill the moonlight, silent shout, merriweather post pavillion, person pitch, yankee hotel foxtrot, funeral, kid a, agaetis byrjun and since i left you.

    there are definitely a few which i would move up or down, and some which i think deserved to be in the top 20 and aren't - for example, blur's incredible opus, 'think tank', to name just one, but overall it's a pretty good list.



    it's pretty high up on the rest of the list, not top 20 but definitely in the top 50 if i remember correctly. it's a fantastic album.
    I couldn't find it on the list, but it is a great album. I think it's the best album Eminem's done.

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    Elite Member calcifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sputnik View Post
    i own every single one of these
    sputnik, you're terminally hip. *ruffles hair*

    Quote Originally Posted by sputnik View Post
    it's pretty high up on the rest of the list, not top 20 but definitely in the top 50 if i remember correctly. it's a fantastic album.
    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    I couldn't find it on the list, but it is a great album. I think it's the best album Eminem's done.
    no, it didn't even make the top 100. the problem is that every album after his 2002 effort didn't really receive a high enough rating. and because of that his 'one brilliant album' ends up lower on the list. the same thing occurs with other bands/artists who also produced one brilliant album but failed to maintain that standard on their subsequent albums and as a result that one good album is pushed back as well.

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    Elite Member Honey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by calcifer View Post
    sputnik, you're terminally hip. *ruffles hair*
    Tell me about it! I own one of them- Radiohead

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    All i own is LCD soundsystem out of all this. I'm such a hipster.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Good on ya Sigur Ros; gtis Byrjun is an excellent album!

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