Monday, 14 January 2013

Best of 2012: A Late Review Of Music

Favorite Songs

1) Animal Life (Shearwater)
The only song the entire year I could listen to over and over and sing to it endlessly and not have a fucking clue what the dude is singing about. Great, soaring melody, with lyrics that throw up bombastic words so fluidly that you won't really care what an anodyne is.

2) Walt Grace's Submarine Test, January 1967 (John Mayer)
WHAT??!!?? A John Mayer song??!!??? REALLY?? Well, before you judge me (DON'T JUDGE ME!), go listen to this song. It's a wonderfully understated, melodious ditty with a great little story, a catchy marching band-style drum beat (that always gets me), and lyrics that just roll off the tongue nicely when you singalong to it (kinda like last year's June Hymn, by The Decemberists.).

3) The Pit (Silversun Pickups)
I love the Silversun Pickups. I love them so much that I named a cocktail after them. It's awesome, like this sneeringly ferocious song, which is the sort of song I love to sing and scream while driving so other drivers will think I'm swearing at them.

4) We Are Young (fun.)
The only reason this isn't higher up this list is it is technically a 2011 song (it was released as a single at the end of 2011), and it's been overplayed to death by almost every single radio station, live band and DJ everywhere. But I love it anyway, especially the sheer joy of the chorus - it's a perfect song to singalong to when you're high and at a party. And the overexposure certainly doesn't detract from the fact that this is just a really, really awesome song.

5) On My Way (Passion Pit)
I was on my way to writing a top ten favorite songs but stopped at this because I couldn't be arsed to write more about five other songs I have no idea why I liked. This was the perfect addition to this rather short list because I just like the way they sing I'M ON MY WAY!!!! See? Short and sweet explanation. Go listen to it and feel your heart soar when they get to the chorus.

6) Some Nights (Fun.) - Some nights I like to sing the first line of this without warning. Just the first line. 
7) Angels (The XX) - You will be as in love with The XX as I am.
8) Day To Day (Ting Tings) - Ting Tings sing Day to Day while I tap tap my foot foot.
9) Cellophane (Ladyhawke) - I don't know what pink cellophane is but I want some. 
10) Dumb Ways To Die (Tangerine Kitty) - Go ahead, get it stuck in your head. You know you wanna.

Notable mentions:

- Dreams (The Temper Trap
- Automatic Systematic Habit (Garbage
- Beloved Freak (Garbage)
- Speed The Collapse (Metric)
- Runaways (The Killers)
- Be Still (The Killers)
- Clear Eye Clouded Mind (Nada Surf)
- How (Regina Spektor)
- Ekki Mukk (Sigur Ros)
- So Long You Pretty Thing (Spiritualized)
- The World Moves On (Jens Lekman)
- Decorate (Yuna)
- Loud Noises (Yuna)
- Planes (Yuna)
- The Bed Song (Amanda Palmer)
- Smile (Pictures Or It Didn't Happen) (Amanda Palmer)
- Kids (Mika)
- It's Time (Imagine Dragons)
- Demons (Imagine Dragons)
- Get A Job (Gossip)
- Mae (The Gaslight Anthem)
- Off To The Races (Lana Del Ray)
- Sovereign Light Cafe (Keane)
- The Unknown Faces At Father James' Park (The Phenomenal Handclap Band)
- Love Is Greed (Passion Pit)
- Oh Love (Green Day)
- Conduct (The Cranberries)
- Greatest Hits (Mystery Jets)
- Someone Purer (Mystery Jets)
- How (Regina Spektor)
- Subtraction (Coheed & Cambria)

Favorite Albums

I couldn't think of a single album I REALLY REALLY LIKED so I compiled a list of albums I listened to more often than the rest. I'm also lazy, so there.

- Gossamer (Passion Pit)
- Valtari (Sigur Ros)
- Some Nights (fun.)
- Yuna (Yuna)
- Coexist (The XX)
- Night Visions (Imagine Dragons)
- Neck Of the Woods (Silversun Pickups)
- Animal Joy (Shearwater)
- The Temper Trap (The Temper Trap)
- Blunderbuss (Jack White)
- Theatre Is Evil (Amanda Palmer & The Grand Theft Orchestra)
- Radlands (Mystery Jets)
- Come Of Age (The Vaccines)
- The 2nd Law (Muse)
- Uno! (Green Day)
- Dos! (Green Day)
- Tre! (Green Day)
- Born to Die (Lana Del Rey)
- Battle Born (The Killers)
- A+E (Graham Coxon)
- A Different Ship (Here We Go Magic)
- A Joyful Noise (Gossip)
- Handwritten (The Gaslight Anthem)
- Babel (Mumford And Sons)
- Something (Chairlift)
- The Stars Are Indifferent To Astrology (Nada Surf)
- Sweet Heart Sweet Light (Spiritualized)
- Sun (Cat Power)
- I Know What Love Isn't (Jens Lekman)
- Synthetica (Metric)
- Toy (Toy)
- Be the Void (Dr. Dog)
- Anxiety (Ladyhawke)

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Book Review: The Manhattan Projects, Vol. 1

Title: The Manhattan Projects, Volume 1
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Nick Pitarra
Publisher: Image Comics

Synopsis (from Amazon):
What if the research and development department created to produce the first atomic bomb was a front for a series of other, more unusual, programs? What if that department was staffed by some of the greatest geniuses that ever lived? And what if those geniuses were not exactly er... right in the head?
(Collects The Manhattan Projects issues #1-#5)

What I Liked:

  • Science. Bad. Very Bad.
  • A bad-ass Einstein with a posse of other super-geniuses who lean more towards evil than good? Now THAT'S an awesome concept.
  • I'm a sucker for stories that take real-life people or characters and put them together. This reminded me of BPRD and League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, but with super-genius scientists!
  • I also loved the way Hickman incorporates all the scientific stuff and history into the story, as well as the way he twists all those historical figures into a Fringe-like alternate version.
  • Oppenheimer. Holy crap.

What I didn't like:

  • Not much I didn't like, really.
  • Ok, it DOES remind me too much of Fringe, but that's not really a BAD thing.

Where to Buy it:
Kinokuniya KLCC lor. Where else?