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Sound Bites

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Who the fuck cares what you’re listening to? Right?

Well, possibly. Quite probably.

I’ve heard it said that providing the latest in your listening, reading, viewing pleasures is akin to blog suicide…

If you feel this way, then best toddle off. Right. Now.

Because this is one of those posts.

To those who have stayed, let me begin by saying that 2004 was, for music lovers everywhere, a big steaming pile of shite. (When I say for music lovers everywhere, I mean specifically for me, 2004 was a big pile of steaming shite).

With a few rare and notable exceptions (oh – who? The Arcade Fire, The Junior Boys, Sufjan Stevens), the past year has been a decidely flaccid affair in terms of sumptuous and scintillating musical specimens. Sadly.


The good news – the fantastically heartening and exciting news – is that 2005 is already shaping up to be a killer. Releases in the last month alone are almost enough to assuage the ennui brought on by the boredom of the past 12 months.

Let me get a bit more specific for you. Here are some discs that deserve your attention:


Doves – Some Cities. Beautiful, soaring arrangements. Think The Verve crossed with Coldplay. Then think: much, much better.

thievery corp

Thievery Corporation – The Cosmic Game. Mr Harza and Mr Hilton have done it again. Another album of delectable beats. Dub meets jazz meets lounge meets pop. Sophisticated and schnazzy in all the right places.

Brazilian Girls

Brazilian Girls. Fronted by the sultry Sabina Scuibba, Brazilian Girls sounds like Shirley Bassey, Grace Jones and Los Amigos Invisibles at an outdoor reggae fest.* Multilingual, zesty, stupid and very fun.

lemon jelly

Lemon Jelly – ’64 to ’95. As the good folks over at Smoke CDs so succinctly put it: “…this delicious and delightful album quickly becomes dangerously addictive with repeated plays.”

album leaf

The Album Leaf – In a Safe Place. Ethereal, absorbing, vast, humane. Brings to mind Sigur Ros, or Mum, which is fitting, seeing as how the album was recorded in Iceland and all. For the contemplative moments.

And here is a band I’ve recently rediscovered, much to my on-going delight – and surprise – owing to the fact that I thrashed them soundly and resoundingly in late 2003:


These bastards are so gloriously catchy they give the clap a good run for its money.

Blame Canada, blame Canada…

*I couldn’t have said it any better, so I stole it from this site.

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About Kirsten Cameron

  • Eric Berlin

    “assuage the ennui”… I like.

  • Michael

    The Album Leaf’s In A Safe Place came out last year.

  • Mike Wu

    Heck we have a whole website dedicated to what people are listening to called so we applaud your post, your taste and hope you’ll put up a playlist or two on our site.

  • sydney

    I’ll add “arcade fire” to your list. another canadian band.

  • kirsten

    Sydney: Arcade Fire topped my list for last year – I thrashed their album for a LONG time!

    Oops and thanks Michael – The Album Leaf did indeed come out last year – I heard about it through a friend from New Zealand, where it has just been released.

    And I will definitely check out – thanks Mike!