Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010 in Music: 1. Shows

I have lots of posts hopefully in the offing if I can find time. About my semester: this post may not actually come. It's not that I wasn't fascinated with my classes. It's that it is my job. And about this past week: a beautiful wedding, a phenomenal New Year's Eve party, and an enlightening stroll through Phoenix.

But priorities... I am beginning my overdue year-end music posts. I won't be doing a videos post this year because I simply didn't watch as many. Out of curiosity I combed my iTunes library and realized I listened to about a third fewer songs this year. In Germany at the end of last year I was manically buying and stealing every album I could get my hands on, watching every music video I could. Escapism, I believe you could call it. I listened to less, but I do think I was more selective. Some albums I eliminated before downloading that I spend time listening to. So my albums list won't be shorter, really. My playlist will be organized differently this year, but I'll get into that in the second part.

For now you can run over to the Sad Bear to check out the collaborative albums extravaganza Jack put together featuring myself and some of the Sad Bears. Consider my contribution like a preview or an early version. I will probably tweak it, maybe change some things, and I will be adding a number of other albums too.

On top of these shows, I also really enjoyed seeing video?, Dead Western Plains, and the Octopus Project.

5. The New Pornographers (the Dodos) @ the Rialto, Tucson 07/20/10 - That's not a link to a show review. I thought I had written one, but I did not. It's more of a preview. I will say that the show just about met my extremely high expectations. The Dodos were great, and the New Pornographers were very good. Neko Case is amazing. Sam and I saw this show when he stayed with me this summer while finalizing his apartment contract. Much to Sam's amusement, a drunk fifty-something lady was hitting on me heavily during the Dodos opening set.

4. Thao & Mirah with the Most of All @ Club Congress, Tucson 06/08/10. Excellent show. I have a crush on Thao Nguyen. Saw this with Hannah D, her brother Jimmy, and Jimmy's girlfriend. We had fun--though Jimmy was a bigger fan of Mirah than Thao, which I find mystifying.

3. The National (Owen Pallett) @ the Rialto, Tucson 10/13/10. Saw this with my Dad, which was a blast. Blaine and Kelly B were supposed to come along but both canceled out.

2. Sufjan Stevens (DM Stith) @ Mesa Arts Center 10/22/10 - I never posted about this for a handful of reasons. Primarily my semester heated up like crazy, and I had absolutely no time. Additionally, though, I was just overwhelmed by the show. By the time Sufjan had finished three songs I was exhausted. It was a mind-blowing show. I may still post about it later--for my own sake, seeing as it's a bit late for anyone else's interest. Saw this with Sam, but there were also a billion Tucson people there: Cody and Lauren L, Bill, Katie's husband Rick, Taylor and Debbie Jo, and I think Ben Adam was somewhere too, though I didn't run into him.

1. The Walkmen (Dan Mangan + Japandroids) @ Clubhouse Music Venue, Tempe 09/17/10 - Definitively spectacular. One of the best shows I've ever attended. Sam and I sweated a lot at this show.

Still to come: A 2010 Playlist, Unranked Albums, Ranked Albums