Sorry folks. A couple technicalities caused an unplanned delay in our year end countdown, but it looks like things are ready to roll along now (*crosses fingers).
I find it funny how music snobs try to add all kinds of sub-genre’s and labels to music so that they can listen to certain artists but not have to feel like they like “that kind of music”. Hip-hop is the worse victim of this and for proof you need only take a random sample of hipsters and ask them to describe the non-existent difference between “hip-hop music” and “rap” then listen to how many different and outlandish answers you get. What it comes down to is good music is good music and while yes, sometimes you’ll find a sound that blends genre’s or does something new… you can usually find an already existing category that it fits into the best.
That being said I like country music. I’m not talking about the drivel you hear on most of your C&W radio stations or CMT and TNN nowadays. That’s more pop music than anything else (and I swear to God someone should be shot for Honky Tonk Badonkadonk). The plain and simple fact is that I grew up listening to country-gospel radio all day every day at my grandmother’s house and I have a certain affinity for what the hipsters try to distinguish as “alt-country”.
Let me set the record straight… the history between blues, rock, and country is so incestuous and intertwined it’s really redundant to say rock-influenced country or blues-inspired rock, because you can’t have one without the other. So chill out with the snobbery and admit it. Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Dusty Springfield, Wilco, The Old 97’s, Calexico, Deadstring Brothers and any number of rockabilly acts… all these artists can be found in rotation on my cd player, and if you quit being pretentious you’ll hear that those are clearly country chord progressions you’re listening to.
That brings us to our number nine album of 2006 Fox Confessor Brings the Flood by Neko Case. I had been hearing about Neko’s stuff for a while, but I have to admit I was late to catch the bandwagon when it came to this album. I do know however that these songs’ll stick in your head like a cheesy 80’s tune… but I don’t mind it at all. Here’s a few words from raerae about her thoughts on the album:
Neko Case is one of those singers, like Stevie Nicks or Exene Cervenka, that may not have incredible range with her voice, but invites you to feel every word and nuance with her songs. With this masterpiece, she has created a true piece of Americana. “Margaret Vs. Pauline” is a gut-wrenching tale any girl could painfully relate to, whether it be from Margaret’s point of view or Pauline’s. “Star Witness” is my favorite song of the year and will remain a favorite forever.
Neko Case – Star Witness
performing Maybe Sparrow on Letterman
Neko Case – Hold On, Hold On Neko Case – Margaret vs. Pauline