01 December 2005

EAR FARM's top 15 albums of 2005

2005 has been one of the better years in recent memory for new releases. I personally think a top 10 is the way to go but this year I really needed at least five extra spots to cover the albums I think are tops from this year. See, there have been so many good records released this year that great albums like Apologies to the Queen Mary, Gimme Fiction, and The Loon just barely missed* making the top 15. Anyway, on with the list and please feel free to comment, complain, leave you own "tops of '05" list, or whatever. Click the title of the album to go buy it somewhere, click the artist's name to go to their site, click the (+) to read what some critics have to say.

15. Arular by M.I.A. (+)

14. Picaresque by The Decemberists (+)

13. The Woods by Sleater-Kinney (+)

12. The Mouse and the Mask by Danger Doom (+)

11. Birds Make Good Neighbors by The Rosebuds (+)

10. Take Fountain by The Wedding Present (+)

9. Feels by Animal Collective (+)

8. The Runners Four by Deerhoof (+)

7. One State Two State by The Light Footwork (+)

6. Illinois by Sufjan Stevens (+)

5. The Great Destroyer by Low (+)

4. Twin Cinema by The New Pornographers (+)

3. Open Season by British Sea Power (+)

2. Give Blood by Brakes (+)

1. Z by My Morning Jacket (+)

Some other places to find "Best of 2005" lists:
Top 30 albums ranked by Metacritic
gorilla vs. bear's Top 50 Albums of 2005
MOKB's Best Of 2005
Torr: Best of '05
2005's Largehearted Favorite Albums
Muzzle of Bees is doing theirs one day at a time
Rough Trade's top 100
NME's year end list - worthless?

18 artists whose 2006 album I'm really excited about:
Arcade Fire
Belle & Sebastian
Built to Spill
The Flaming Lips
The Futureheads
The Pixies
Pretty Girls Make Graves
The Walkmen
Yeah Yeah Yeahs

*it should be noted that I excluded live albums and more importantly that there are two excellent albums which were left off because I have a personal issue with thinking their vocalists sound too much like someone else, but this does not mean that these albums don't deserve a mention. I love the records, just not sure if they should make the top 15 given how much they sound like David Byrne and John Lydon.
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Self Titled
Wilderness - Self Titled


mike said...

I think you did alright, boyo, just fine. Problem is, I'm a hump and haven't heard the latest Deerhoof or that Danger Doom yet and I need to but with those caveats out of the way, let me be the first to pollute the comment board with MY list:

15. Love Kraft - Super Furry Animals
14. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
13. Picaresque - Decemberists
12. Silent Alarm - Bloc Party
11. Strange Geometry - Clientele
10. The Loon - Tapes N' Tapes
9. Ta Det Lungt - Dungen (used U.S. release date to get this one on here)
10. Extraordinary Machine - Fiona Apple
9. Tanglewood Numbers - Silver Jews
8. Gimme Fiction - Spoon
7. Give Blood - Brakes
6. Face the Truth - Stephen Malkmus
5. Z - My Morning Jacket
4. Black Mountain - Black Mountain
3. Open Season - British Sea Power
2. Feels - Animal Collective
1. Sunlandic Twins - Of Montreal

Notes: Of Montreal album is just so very good and so amazingly listenable under any circumstance, its magic.
Wolf Parade just missed it because they sucked so badly live. probably not fair because it has nothing to do with their album, but its my list and i can thus hold a grudge.

jesse said...

Fine list my friend...I know I already emailed you my list, but i think i'd like to make mine public to the [WORLD]. I'd also like to say that I didn't stray outside the genre of "indie ROCK", so therefore, no M.I.A., M.F. Doom, or Kanye, all of which are very deserving of a top spot.

1. My Morning Jacket - Z
2. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - CYHSY
3. Super Furry Animals - Love Kraft
4. Brakes - Give Blood
5. Sufjan Stevens - Illinoise
6. Wolf Parade - Apologies to the Queen Mary
7. British Sea Power - Open Season
8. Wilderness - Wilderness
9. Stephen Malkmus - Face the Truth
10. Of Montreal - The Sundlandic Twins
11. Bloc Party - Silent Alarm
12. Deefhoof - The Runners Four
13. Black Mountain - Black Mountain
14. Animal Collective - Feels
15. Tapes 'n Tapes - The Loon

I too will add a note: 2 of my top 3 albums come from my 2 favorite bands (MMJ & SFA), so there's a wee bit of bias. You and Mike have also made me feel like a bit of a schmuck with your comments on CYHSY, Wilderness, and Wolf Parade (which I agree with completely), but COME ON GUYS, the albums are fantastic.

french+fried=jam said...

My list is a little non-compatible with this format, really, but you know what, I don't give a shit. but here goes, and f you all if you don't like it:

15. Extraordinary Machine - Fiona Apple
14. Get Behind Me Satan - The White Stripes
13. En Tête à Tête - M (It's live and shouldn't count, but killing is wrong too, and people still do that...)
12. Blinking Lights and Other Revelations - Eels
11. Give Me Fiction - Spoon
10. Tanglewood Numbers - Silver Jews
9. Dimanche à Bamako - Amadou & Miriam
8. Feels - Animal Collective
7. Sunlandic Twins - Of Montreal
6. Face the Truth - Stephen Malkmus
5. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
4. The Loon - Tapes 'n Tapes
3. Suspicious Activity - The Bad Plus
2. Monsters in Love - Dionysos
1. Thelonious Monk Quartet & John Coltrane - Live at Carnegie Hall (Yeah bitch, shit was recorded in 1957, but released THIS year, only after the reels were found in the basement of the Library of Congress. Jeeezus, let ME in there, what else they got hidden under those stacks and stacks of the long lost illustrated version of FDR's Great Deal? And yes, it may seem odd that this would top my list, but this here album is up there with Kind of Blue, or Blue Train, just one of those albums that you'll be listening to when your 99 and can no longer even TRY to make sense of Malkmus lyrics or the hipster squeels of the David Byrn impersonators)

Anonymous said...

Top 5 this site's awful list missed.
1. I Am A Bird Now by Antony And The Johnsons
2. Black Sheep Boy by Okkervil River
3. LCD Soundsystem by LCD Soundsystem
4. Thunder, Lightning, Strike by The Go! Team
5. Late Registration by Kanye West

Satisfied '75 said...

i've gotta hear that Low album

Matt said...

Anon -
1. i can't stand Antony, or at least what i've heard.
2. Okkervil - havent given it much of a chance, seemed bland
3. LCD - fair and groovy, nothing excellent (in my opinion)
4. came out in 2004 (UK)
5. Kanye is good...could've made my top 25 maybe
6. did you just go to Metacritic and pick ones off of there that weren't on my list?? sorry. i am NOT meaning to infringe upon your right to complain.

Aqua Drunk -
that Low album is just so freaking good. it may take a couple of listens though before it clicks.

Axelmoloko said...

Hi you, if u don't mind i will include your blog and your top-ten in the worldwide poll i am doing on www.indiefordummies.blogspot.com . Any info about that on my blog. thanks and buon natale. alessio

jack de boer said...

i got a copy of the flaming lips at war with the mystics, its some more good stuff, worthy of being excited for.

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