I’m obvisously not Pitchfork or Complex, but all this “Best Of The Decade” talk, got me thinking as well. The past 10 years haven’t been the best for my all time favorite genre, hip-hop. I mean, 1990 to 1999 will probably hold forever some of my favorite albums of my lifetime. You really can’t argue with Reasonable Doubt, All Eyez On Me, The Chronic and Aqemini to name a few. That being said, 2005-2006 did occur during the current decade.
Late 2005, my music taste started a drastic transformation. I had just moved into an insanely fun college duplex with the best roommates I could ask for, met some great friends next door (including my girlfriend) and started my last year at Michigan State. I was pretty much only listening to hip-hop and was probably the biggest fan of the genre of anyone I knew. Sometime in November, while Laura was just getting into the rap/hip-hop we forced in her eardrums, she made me 2 mixtapes. They featured many artists I knew like Tom Petty, CCR, Black Crowes and Van Morrison, but the rest were bands I’d never heard of. Though it seems crazy to say now, the mystery tracklist had the likes of Tegan and Sara, Jack Johnson, Ben Harper, The Jayhawks and The Shins on it.
I listened to it a couple times at first, but didn’t give it a proper listen until a few months later. Aside from Kanye West’s Late Registration, hip-hop was hitting an all-time low and I was bored. I was flipping thru the tracks I hadn’t given proper due and came upon “Kings of Rodeo” by Kings of Leon. I listened to that song on repeat constantly. I didn’t know what to call it, let alone understand what Caleb was saying. I was pretty sure it was rock, but it certainly wasn’t the Nirvana and Green Day I listened to in middle school. I had no idea what indie rock, alt country or baroque pop were, but I was beginning to like it.
That song pretty much lead to the last 3 and 1/2 years of an obsession. As many concerts as my wallet would afford, an insane number of blogs in my rss feed, mixtapes sent via sendspace and my own blog that has been my main outlet in letting my friends know of my musical findings. I can honestly say my musical palette has expanded greatly and am probably a better person for it.
Over the next few posts, I’ll be defining 7-8 albums that made an impact on me. These aren’t necessarily what the music critics would say are the best works of music this decade. Instead of writing objectively or what I’m supposed to praise, these are just experiences felt through these albums. Then again, this is all about me anyways.
Amazing artwork by Logan Groulx.