Thursday, December 14, 2006

Music 2006: My Half-Assed Overview

"So what kind of music do you like?" "Um... well you know... a little bit of everything." If that sounds like the start of many conversations you've had this year about music, you're definitely not alone. It is fairly hard not to have eclectic tastes these days (although many people manage to pull this off) because of the abundancy of cheap (and free) download sites on the Internet and the ever-present file sharing services. As a result of all this, the market for music has splintered into many different pieces, with an increasing amount of artist opting to distribute their work themselves over the Internet.

There are definitely some genres that are more popular that others. In San Francisco, most young music fans are either into hip-hop, indie rock, or a combination of the two. In the hip-hop world, Hyphy was all the rage this year (at least in the Bay Area), but no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn't get it. The beats are too cheesy for my tastes, and I can't relate to any of the lyrics.

Hipsters multiplied like rabbits this year and so did indie bands.

Electronic music remained in the ghetto this year, although some electro groups like the Knife and Junior Boys managed to achieve some cross-over success. Minimal house was huge this year... over in Europe. However, there is a burgeoning scene here in San Francisco. The monthly Kontrol parties brought in some great artists like Modeselektor, Akfuen, and Isolee. The Burning Man dance scene is poppin'. There are a lot of cheesy breaks DJ's around right now, but there are a few artists that are absolutely killing it. Tipper, The Glitch Mob, Bill Bless, Kraddy, and Ooah The Mad Turntablist all put out some excellent work this year. Glitch breaks is a sound to look for in 2007.

I'm obviously over-simplifying things here, but to accurately cover all of the new developments in music this year would require at least a ten page paper, time I don't have. I thought 2006 was a great year for music. Many music critics have called it a "lean year"... but when don't they say that? Anyways, here are ten albums I really liked this year.

1. Final Fantasy- He Poos Clouds
2. Vorpal- Digressions
3. Owusu & Hannibal- Living With Owusu & Hannibal
4. Orla Wren- Buttefly Wings Make
5. Califone- Roots and Crowns
6. Hot Chip- The Warning
7. Grizzly Bear- Yellow House
8. Clark- Body Riddle
9. Bonnie Prince Billy- The Letting Go
10. My My- Songs For The Gentle

1 comment:

Mike said...

Hey AJ!
Thanks for hooking me up with the low down on your top music picks for the year, its great. You always have been the BEST source awesome music.

Anyway dude, I love your blog. It's awesome. I also have a blog Check it out when you get a chance.


ps. I got your phone call but I was in Colorado this past week snowboarding. Let's see if we can hang out sometime over the next few days.