Music Room sign at the Jericho Tavern
When I was in Vancouver in 2001, I found a kindred spirit in the form of Mason. He’s almost singlehandedly responsible for about 95% of the Canadian music that I have in my collection…introducing me to the New Pornographers, Mass Romantic.
His recommendations and the CBC Radio 3 Podcast have informed and developed my Canuck-o-phile instincts, to the point that I shamefully know more about independent Canadian music than Australian stuff.
Anyhow, we’ve kept in touch, although we haven’t actually spoken or met in person since Vancouver. Since I’m too lazy to compile my own best albums of 2007 list, I’ll point you towards Mason’s most recent blog post concerning the best albums of 2007. There’s a podcast in mp4 format where you can listen to an example track and hear Mason and Jehan’s opinions about some of the tracks, amongst others. It’s entitled “Hiptarded Podcast #1” which hints at the prospect of more in 2008. I wait with bated breath.
As for the selection, I’m not au fait with a majority of the albums, although I was familiar with more of the albums on his shortlist. I must say, from the Jamie T tunes I have heard, I have built up a natural aversion to him though. His reputation as the male Lily Allen reinforces that; I dont share Mason’s enthusiasm for her either.
I have to admit, I’m a bit of a curmudgeon when it comes to discovering new music…I’m pretty “anti” the music press, so you’re less likely to find many bands championed by the NME or similar publications in a Ed generated favourites list. The same goes for BBC Radio 1. I tend to think that taking a bit more time to dig deeper and not just accept the artiste du jour as decided by the payola-esque music industry is a better idea…YMMV. I’ve been like that for years, just replace Radio 1 with Triple J (Australia) and the NME with…well the NME to see what I mean.
By the way, a couple of albums that I would have thrown into the mix that Mason didn’t mention are Hvarf-Heim by Sigur Rós (which I guess isn’t technically a new album) and Last of the Chanranguitas by The Epstein (Oxford’s answer to Calexico).
Perhaps as significant as a best albums list is gig attended and enjoyed list. Here’s mine:
- numerous Stornoway gigs
- The New Pornographers at Koko, London
- Metric at The Zodiac, Oxford
- Howling Bells at The Fez, Reading
- The Epstein + Ox at The Holywell Music Room, Oxford
- Sol Samba at The Zodiac
- The Piney Gir Country Roadshow at The Jericho Tavern, Oxford
- Sky Larkin, The Round Heels, The Epstein, Stornoway, Fonda 500, Goldrush at Truck Festival
- You Say Party, We Say Die at The Zodiac
- Sons and Daughters at The Zodiac
Cancelled gigs that I was looking forward to:
- Rilo Kiley
- The Decemberists
Gig of the Year:
- Arcade Fire at Brixton Academy, London