Alright, finally, a 2007 wrap-up. I was getting nowhere with trying to make a cohesive mix, so I've decided to go about this a bit differently. Basically, this whole week is going to be "2007" week and I'm going to try to post something everyday - the first two days will be my top ten albums, the next two will be songs from other good albums, and the third will be sort of an "anticipated in 2008" post. I've posted quite a few of these songs in the past, but it gives you the chance to realize that these are my very favorites and if you haven't tried them by now, I definitely recommend you to! There are still some albums I haven't listened to properly but I realized that if I kept trying to listen to everything, this wouldn't be done until the end of 2008, so I decided that none of those would probably make it into my top ten anyway and settled on this list. I'm pretty happy with it; the only spot that doesn't feel completely static is #10, which was occupied by quite a few different albums until I decided on what's there now. So, without further ado, the latter half of my top ten, complete with reviews, purchase links, and Youtube videos!
10. Emma Pollock
- Watch The Fireworks (purchase) Watch the Fireworks
, in many ways, picks up where Emma's previous band the Delgados' final album, Universal Audio
, left off. It's full of catchy, slightly quirky indie pop tunes sprinkled with well-written lyrics and Emma's distinguishable raspy yet sweet vocals. The album opens with "New Land", which could be a pretty generic singer-songwriter track if not for the carnival-esque melodies and persistent drumbeat propelling it. This is true of most of the tracks; they don't tread any new territory, but Emma knows how to make them memorable and instantly lovable. "Acid Test" is a bit edgier and more rock-oriented while singles like "Paper and Glue" and "Adrenaline" are poppy without being completely vapid. All of the catchiness is interspersed with more folky simple songs like "Limbs", "Fortune", and "The Optimist" which are soft and pretty but Emma's slightly raw voice keeps them from sounding bland. Her music is probably most reminiscent of female artists like Anna Nalick and Nerina Pallot, but her years of experience with the Delgados allows her songs to be more meaningful, impactful, and durable than others with a similar style who haven't been active for as long. Her delivery sounds both youthful and wise at the same time and her songs fit nicely as one unit but never blend together until you don't know which is which. I used to listen almost exclusively to artists of the "female singer-songwriter" ilk but I've grown a bit tired of that these past couple of years, so it takes a lot to capture my attention in that category anymore. For that reason, Emma definitely deserves to be on this list. From the moment I first heard Watch the Fireworks
I knew I was in love and even if her chosen style of music isn't terribly unique, she definitely stands out as one of the most talented women in that group right now.
( See #9-6. )
Acid Test Paper and Glue The Optimist
#5-1 tomorrow! (Unless you know the one other place I've posted this. In that case, you're lucky.)