I’m not surprised your comments rub people the wrong way, but i’m kinda with you, a lot of popular music from this year sounds like it’s been neutered. At least Oneohtrix Point Never’s getting some attention here. Check out the Quietus’s list that was mentioned above, they definitely showcase what i think you might be looking for.
But don’t take the position of ‘no one’s pushing the envelope anymore’. People always will be, and if you’re not finding what you’re looking for then look harder, rather than getting all self righteous about how things were so much better in your glory days.
With all due respect to the more popular indie mags like Stereogum, Pitchfork and Spin, their tastes can get pretty trendy and conservative, and all end up making lists that share at least 60% of the same artists. I wouldn’t say that the Quietus’ lists ever make a lot of sense in how they choose it’s order (how dare anyone put MBV at #65?!) or why they leave out so much other great music you would think they’d like (Hookworms, Julia Holter, Darkstar, Melt Banana, Doldrums and BoC all come to mind), but their always excellent at exposing readers to stuff they’re not gonna find anywhere else.
Dammit Windows 8! My laptop posted that before I was finished writing. Anyway, to finish that last sentence, it’s just starting to get really frustrating to see these ‘artists’ getting praised on all the end of the year lists when they don’t have anywhere close to the songwriting talent that a lot of other musicians that I love do.
Just needed to post that to relieve my angst. I feel better now =)
“This new album is the first one where he’s content to just sit around and do things he’s done before, with way less energy and inspiration and craft.”
I appreciate that the new album was given a bad review, but what the deal with praising his past work? I wouldn’t doubt that JT’s approach to this album was any different from the others, this one probably just had less money involved with it’s production to afford songwriters who can craft music to appeal to the masses. Why has it become such a big thing lately for internet music magazines like Stereogum and Pitchfork to embrace commercial artists like JT, Drake and Kanye? I always hear the defense that being able to get into pop music means that one has a more open mind or a mature, distinguished taste, but that’s such bullshit. It’s just empty music, and I’m sick being told I should think any more of it than that.
I hope I don’t sound too much like some douchey hipster for feeling this way, it’s just starting to get really frustrating to see these ‘artists’
I really agree with your critique. They made a big deal about how they were pushing disco forward and were using all of this space imagery and whatnot, but this album sounds like a big step backwards from Discovery. And with respect to DP, that’s a monumental album that no one expects them to top. But still, when they say that they’re trying to push forward with this album and for it to sound like sugar-coated revisionist disco, it really undermines all of the great achievements of smaller name artists, like Lindstrøm, John Talabot, Todd Terje and Mungolian Jetset, whose recent releases all sound far more experimental and imaginative than the new Daft Punk album. The press releases they used to hype this album may have been enough to get a lot of people interested in listening to the new album, but the actual album sounds nothing like the way they were describing it, and the sound really speaks for itself.
I was just thinking the same thing. Both albums use a lot of drones and noise experiments, and because of that a lot of the indie popper fan base for both of those bands is really thrown off by these albums. But that’s totally okay because both bands are exposing their true skills as artists, and as a listener, this is incredibly rewarding.
I personally thought that 2009 was a better year for music. Animal Collective, Grizzly Bear, Dan Deacon, Fuck Buttons, Dirty Projectors, The xx, The Field, Atlas Sound, Health, Fever Ray, Flaming Lips, Martyn, Oneohtrix Point Never, 2562, Mungolian Jetset, Pains Of Being Pure At Heart, Real Estate, Neon Indian, Silkie, Sonic Youth, A Sunny Day In Glasgow, Them Crooked Vultures, Tim Hecker and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs all had amazing albums that year (and that’s me leaving a ton of other great ones out!)
I have mixed feelings about A$AP Rocky’s new album too. Skrillex drops a beat on it.
Whoops! ‘Tunes of the Year’ is Mixmag’s list from last year’s. This year’s list is called ‘Best 2012 Tunes’. Sorry folks
Check out Mixmag’s ‘Tunes of the Year’. That list is solid.