Paste’s year end list raised some eyebrows yesterday, and we expect this countdown to do the same, despite its predictable top spot. Blender’s 33 favorites share ten with Paste’s 50, but represent a more diverse array of styles, for better (Ponytail, Erykah Badu) or worse (that’s Katy Perry above, not Zooey Deschanel). Thanks to reader JTO3 for transcribing the list from a copy of the Dec/Jan issue he made sure to point out was given to him as a gift.

33 Hayes Carll – Trouble In Mind
32 Taylor Swift – Fearless
31 Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds – Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!
30 Young Jeezy – The Recession
29 Raphael Saadiq – The Way I See It
28 Stephen Malkmus And The Jicks – Real Emotional Trash
27 Mariah Carey – E=MC²
26 Usher – Here I Stand
25 Santogold – Santogold
24 The Roots – Rising Down
23 The Cool Kids – The Bake Sale
22 Coldplay – Viva La Vida
21 Erykah Badu – New Amerykah: Pt. One (4th World War)
20 Wale – The Mixtape About Nothing
19 Katy Perry – One Of The Boys
18 Ponytail – Ice Cream Spiritual
17 Conor Oberst – Conor Oberst
16 Be Your Own Pet – Get Awkward
15 Bon Iver – For Emma, Forever Ago
14 Jenny Lewis – Acid Tongue
13 Al Green – Lay It Down
12 My Morning Jacket – Evil Urges
11 Death Cab For Cutie – Narrow Stairs
10 Fall Out Boy – Folie A Deux
09 Vampire Weekend – Vampire Weekend
08 Randy Newman – Harps and Angels
07 of Montreal – Skeletal Lamping
06 Robyn – Robyn
05 Hot Chip – Made In The Dark
04 Metallica – Death Magnetic
03 TV On The Radio – Dear Science
02 Girl Talk – Feed The Animals
01 Lil’ Wayne – Tha Carter III

Your move, Spin.

Comments (129)
  1. conrie  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Its great to see Usher finally get the critical acclaim he has so long been after. End of the year lists make me queasy.

  2. d@ve  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    c’mon blender wtf is this

  3. Where’s the love for Department of Eagles in all of these lists? I hope the NPR list comes out favorably.

  4. Tim  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    BLEH. Pretty gross list for the most part.

  5. Robert  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Stereogum, why incite the insuing riot with this post?

  6. Gerardo  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Fleet Foxes? Raconteurs? MGMT? El Guincho? CUT COPY? C’mon, this list sucks.

  7. Faith  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    They need to remove Katy Perry from that list immediately. She a big attention whore who will write “risque” songs just so they get played and she gets even more attention. That disgusts me.

  8. Albums that made Blender’s Top10 that would not make my Top50:
    10 Fall Out Boy – Folie A Deux
    09 Vampire Weekend – Vampire Weekend
    07 of Montreal – Skeletal Lamping
    06 Robyn – Robyn
    05 Hot Chip – Made In The Dark
    04 Metallica – Death Magnetic
    02 Girl Talk – Feed The Animals
    01 Lil’ Wayne – Tha Carter III

    Randy Newman and TVOTR can hang, but none of these other guys. .

  9. In the interest of not sounding like every single other person who’s going to post on all the year end list threads, I’m going to refrain from making any negative comment and merely point out the things I like: It’s great to so far see Girl Talk getting some love. Feed the Animals is my number two favorite this year and it’s quite possibly the most viscerally fun, party-like experience I’ve ever had listening to an album in the typically boring and very un-party-like confines of my own home.

    • Well, in my defense. I’m not being critical of this list just to be contrarian. To justify my claim that of their Top10 only TVOTR and Randy Newman would make my top 50:
      Lil Wayne- Occasionally the guy can string together an interesting couplet. But, that’s about it.
      Girl Talk- Yes, this album is fun as hell and perfect for a lively party. However, I think Girl Talk is more of a curiosity than something that will actually stand the test of time.
      Metallica- Really? They had an album come out this year? Really? They were last vaguely relevant in the early 80′s.
      Hot Chip- Too indie to be dance, too dance to be indie. These guys are trapped in a boring limbo that makes them safe enough to have mass appeal but not interesting enough to stand up to scrutiny.
      Robyn- Haven’t critics and blogs been blowing their load over this chick for about three years now? If she was from the States, she’d be opening for Pink.
      of Montreal- I respect this band. They’ve just never done it for me. Nothing negative to say about them though.
      Vampire Weekend- Sorry, I just don’t get it. I’ve tried. I really have. But there is just nothing happening with these guys. If I wanted to listen to a watered down version of Graceland, I’d pull that album off of my external hard drive, put it on, and then kick out one of my speakers.
      Fall Out Boy- This falls under the heading of I don’t feel the need to even justify my disdain for this band/album. Any Hot Topic employees out there? Flame away. I’m ready for you.

      • Actually, Metallica were relevant well into the late ’80s. Get your facts straight, buster.

        • sad thing is, chrisd was probably born in the 90′s and his context is all fucked up. I wish Master of Puppets would come to life and eat him like truckasaurus

      • Chris Not D  |   Posted on Nov 26th, 2008 0

        I think you are spot-on Chris D. Your description of Hot Chip is perfect. Perfect. And I laughed out loud when I read your thoughts about Vampire Weekend. Dead the fuck on. The Brits beg for us to love Robyn. I don’t get it. Dear Science, however, was consistently brilliant.

  10. ao  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Pretty obvious that Blender only listened to 33 albums that came out this year. Why else the totally random number?

  11. openupya  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0


  12. zayin_451  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    With few exceptions, this could be called the top 33 albums that have had full sized posters displayed on the New rack at Borders.

    If only Bon Iver had tried harder, he could have beat Fall Out Boy.

  13. I can’t believe that’s NOT Zooey in that photo.

  14. Initially I was just going to say that Blender suck suck sucks. But Metallica at no. 4 is just beyond suck suck sucks. They should have just put JoBro at no 1

  15. Joel  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Ponytail randomly being on this list is hilarious to me

  16. BrianB  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Why the hell is no one giving any love to Los Campesinos? Hold on Now, Youngster… was really, really good.

  17. although some inclusions (mariah, katy perry, metallica’s absurdly high placement) is typical of blender, the list is actually a lot better than i expected it to be. a lot.

  18. Question: What do you do with albums like El Guincho and The Wombats that were out overseas before this year, but came out in the U.S. in 08?

  19. Take it case by case.

    El Guincho: embrace it.
    Wombats: throw it away.

  20. Tito  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Is it just Tito, or was this kind of a whack year for music? It was no ’08, that’s for sure.

    LCD Soundsystem, M.I.A. & Menomena

  21. Tom  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Very cool for Hayes Carll to be up there #33

    ……I remember him playing at TUT’s bar in Conroe Texas for new years……wow

  22. I’m really surprised Be Your Own Pet Is on here.

    I haven’t seen them on any other lists, but they are, or were, a very good band.

    • I know! Be your own pet before Coldplay!? I know it’s wrong for me to like this list, but I kinda actually do! Jokes! This lists sucks! I support the fact that Blender put Get Awkward on the list, but I pretty much don’t approve of the list in general (I’m talking to you Katy Perry and Fall out Boy!)

  23. I just threw up a little in my mouth…

  24. Spike  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    omg who reads magazines anymore

  25. yonan32  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    er, is the new Fall Out Boy even out yet?

  26. Where’s Street Horrrsing by Fuck Buttons, Dragging a Dead Deer up a Hill by Grouper, Saint Dymphna by Gang Gang Dance or Laulu Laakson Kukista by Paavoharju?

  27. dafs  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    I feel it is necessary to point out to everyone complaining that this was written by BLENDER, which is hardly a real music magazine. Seeing this list in a magazine I respect more like, say, Southern Living would actually upset me.

  28. Carrie  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Nail on the Head: Conor, Bon Iver, Malkmus, TVotR, Nick Cave (though would have liked to see him higher up)

    Pleasantly Surprised: Robyn, Death Cab, Jenny, Hot Chip

    Not My Personal Favorite But Can See Where You’re Coming From: Coldplay, Erykha, Lil Wayne

    Go Away Already: Fall Out Boy, Girl Talk (yeah I said it), Vampire Weekend For God’s Sake

    Really??: Katy Perry (??), Mariah Carey (???), Taylor Swift (???!!!)

    I am okay with Blender being mainstreamish, but I am not okay with them promoting shit. In no list should Taylor Swift be within spitting distance of Nick Cave, period.

  29. ariel  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    bottom line is that it was a pretty weak year…especially when you compare it to last year.

  30. Brian  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Yes, this was a weak year. But Fall Out Boy in the top ten and no Destroyer, Beck, Devotchka, Wolf Parade??? You Suck blender…

  31. Tyler  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Nice to see some love for Wale. It’s good album. Plus it appeals to white people love for Seinfeld so that’s an instant hit right there.

  32. So Bon Iver is officially from this year?
    If so, my list has to change..

    • bc  |   Posted on Nov 24th, 2008 0

      I disagree. The Bon Iver album was released independently in 2007. Jagjaguwar released it in February 2008. In my books it came out in 2007 and stands in my top 5 for LAST year.

  33. Cale  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    So I read this site quite frequently… And it seems that people on here on former dave mathews fans that have now moved on to “more complicated music” like Arcade Fire, The National, and The Walkmen….

    I guess the best way to explain the love of Lil Wayne and Vampire Weekend, is to consider it another step in musical evolution… Once you get past the earnest, boring, sometimes good music of Arcade Fire, National type bands you get to just enjoying good music.. And you realize that stuff like Lil Wayne,Vampire Weekend, Timberlake is fucking great… Because its fun and catchy and clever.. And Animal Collective, Black Dice, Panda Bear, Fuck Buttons, etc. Is great because its catchy, fun and complicated…

    And that shit like National and Arcade Fire is really just indie MOR….

    With that said… Tha Carter 3 is one of the best records of the year… Right next to THe Ruby Suns, El Guincho and Deerhunter.!!! All brilliant in different ways…

    This has been a very good year for music.. You just have to listen with open ears..

    Oh yeah… Oberst, New Malkmus, Coldplay= MOR

    MGMT and Bon Iver are last year releases….. And MGMT is bullshit,, Bon Iver good but not top 25 anyways…

    • you’ve figured it all out! way to go!
      also, shut up.

    • Joe  |   Posted on Nov 23rd, 2008 0

      What? I’m glad you think you’ve figured me out though.

    • Rich  |   Posted on Nov 24th, 2008 0

      Considering the forum, you may as well have just said “you know what, that Hitler guy had some good ideas…”

      But as much as I love the new Walkmen and Malkmus, I gotta admit, you’ve got some points. The best one is “MGMT is bullshit”. They so are, you guys! The worst, that is.

  34. this list is weird but i like about half the albums so not too bad. the real question is are Katy Perry and Zooey Deschanel related? twins?

    • moi  |   Posted on Nov 24th, 2008 0

      I know! I’m so put off that that ISN’T Zooey Deschanel! I think there should be a rule that one cannot be famous at the same time as one’s bizarro twin – therefore Katy Perry needs to be locked up in a closet (forever).

      Also, this list is pretty random. I only agree with 10-12 of their picks.

  35. this list isn’t that terrible. i’m glad real emotional trash and skeletal lamping are on it. Nos 12-10 are kinda wtf, along with a couple of other curious choices, but all in all it could have been a lot worse

  36. frank  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2008 0

    Pretty hilarious to see people jump all over Blender, when the reviews for the mag are written by bloggers, old guard rock scribes (Christgau, Pareles, Eddy, Wolk, Sheffield) pitchforkers (Dombal), etc. What, because it says “Maxim” somewhere in it and not “New York Times,” these guys have less weight? Honestly, this list is far more interesting than the predictable, unpopular-in-the-grand-scheme-of-things Fleet Foxes, Deerhunter, Cut Copy, Dodos, No Age indie rundown that will appear everywhere else. It’s great to see the Saadiq and Al Green get some love.

  37. Nylund  |   Posted on Nov 23rd, 2008 0

    I think this proves it was a pretty terrible year in music. I do not see one album on this list that I will likely still listen to 5 years from now with the exception of Bon Iver, which is a really great, and pretty timeless record.

  38. Meh  |   Posted on Nov 23rd, 2008 0

    That’s NOT Zooey Deschanel?!?! Whew, close one, I almost whipped out the little bishop to beat him furiously. Guess I’ll just pop “The Happening” in the DVD player instead.

  39. Take it easy kids, this is Blender we’re talking about.

  40. Andrew  |   Posted on Nov 23rd, 2008 0

    I don’t think this year was bad for music, there were some really good albums. Most of them are not listed above!

  41. kirk  |   Posted on Nov 23rd, 2008 0

    does anybody else not get the appeal of lil wayne to hipsters.

  42. this list is bullshit except for My Morning Jacket at 12!

  43. radio zero  |   Posted on Nov 23rd, 2008 0

    what is the difference between katy perry and wayne gretzky? wayne gretzky showers after 3 periods……sex with katy perry is not unlike wearing one of shaquile o’neals old tennis shoes….they are both very loose fitting and the smell is horrible….good album though….she kissed a girl, right?

  44. lol  |   Posted on Nov 23rd, 2008 0


  45. Wow. Of course it goes without saying that this list blows.

    But I could really tolerate it pretty well if it weren’t for the inclusion of Metallica. Jesus Christ! Who the fuck could honestly consider those assholes relevant anymore, much less good. I know I haven’t heard the record, but I find it impossible to believe that an album made by a band that made shitty music in their prime could somehow reverse that a make an album topping most of the fantastic stuff that came out this year.

    In my mind, Metallica really ought to just die off and not be heard from again. Fuck you, Blender. Fuck you if you bought this record. And fuck Metallica, because they are a bunch of first class pricks who unleashed mainstream cornhole rock on the world and called it metal. God damn I hate everything about Metallica, the idea of it, the existence of it, etc. Shit.

    And my hope is that this post will somehow change the world.

  46. there’s katy perry over there what about lady gaga, ladyhawke and duffy. phew~

  47. i don’t understand the love for the new MMJ and Death Cab. I think those records are absolutely terrible.


  48. colin  |   Posted on Nov 23rd, 2008 0

    why hasn’t Dr. Dog shown up on anyones list? fate is an amazing album. what about Nights Falls in Kortadella? not even paste has love for Jens?

  49. Elwiz  |   Posted on Nov 23rd, 2008 0

    Where in the h*ll is PORTISHEAD Third album? Should be placed in TOP 10.

  50. ryanaaxxx  |   Posted on Nov 23rd, 2008 0

    I can’t believe people think tvotr new album is any good. This list is far worse than Paste’s.

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