Speed kills, and that’s what has happened to my year-end choices for 2009. I even said as much, detailing all the ways 2009 differed from past years.
The big issue was deferring a lot of listening till after my November trip, and rather than keeping up with 2010 releases, I’ve spent the first half of this year catching up with what I missed in 2009. In that time, my opinion has changed about a number of things, drastically enough to necessitate some changes to that list.
Why make this change half way through the current year? Well, I don’t want to consult 2009’s list at the end of 2010 and get the wrong impression. "Did I really think that was album was that great? Why didn’t this title end up there?" That kind of thing.
So here’s the revised list, with comments only on the changes.
- … And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead, The Century of Self
- LEO Imai, LASER RAIN
- Van Tomiko, Van.
- Alarm Will Sound, a/rhythmia This breathtaking collection of dense modern works (well, mostly modern) explores the ridiculously complex rhythmic demands composers ask of performers today. Alarm Will Sound pretty tells these composers, "Bring it, bitch." And boy do they bring it.
- Onitsuka Chihiro, DOROTHY When I first compiled the list, I had only recently acquired DOROTHY. After listening to it for a number of months, it’s turned out to be one of Onitsuka’s best moments and certainly good company for the likes of Shiina Ringo’s Sanmon Gossip and Tomosaka Rie’s Toridori. I originally listed it as a year-end contender, when I really should not have.
- Shiina Ringo, Sanmon Gossip
- Tomosaka Rie, Toridori.
- mono, Hymn to the Immortal Wind
- Wendy & Lisa, White Flags of Winter Chimneys
- Sacha Sacket, Hermitage This EP has only five tracks, but Sacket does more with these five tracks than he did with his entire last album. Hermitage was released in November, while I was in Japan, and I didn’t manage to get till after the start of 2010. It probably would have ended up on the list had I gotten to it sooner.
The albums that were dislodged are still good albums, but their staying power doesn’t have as much resonance as the ones replacing them.