sábado, 18 de febrero de 2012

Soundtrack for a Year

Good afternoon, you may remember me as the blogger who lived here but life got in the way and I didn't post a single thing since June. Anyway I'm back, I don't know for how long but, ideally, I would finish my NCFA for the best movies of 2011 before disappearing again. The Film Awards should begin soon at least by declaring which movies I haven't yet seen. But first, let's play some music. I have not blogged for almost eight months but I have listened to some albums. Repeatedly, I must confess. (By the way, thanks to Deivith Coast without whom I would still be listening to Destiny's Child Greatest Hits). Without further ado, these are the six albums I've had inside my head all year long (in no particular order):

La Joven Dolores, Christina Rosenvinge
Time to confess: I used to mock Rosenvinge because when she was a teenager she was in a group not very well remembered. Yes, I did not take her seriously and she shut my mouth with this wonderful masterpiece. I have decided not to play favorites in this post but if you really want to know (some people are addicted to rankings!) this is my most likely candidate for Best Album of 2011. The lyrics are smart, deliciously ironic and heart-breaking; the music has this ethereal and dreamlike quality and her voice... her voice! Besides having the most beautiful diction any Spaniard has ever had (she can make ugly words like "cacho" sound like heaven), her voice is so gorgeous, so full of wisdom and pain.

Best tracks: "La Idiota en Mi (Mayor)", "La Noche del Incendio", "Desierto", "Mi Vida Bajo el Agua", "Canción Del Eco", "Tu Sombra"... That's right, I have chosen more than half of the tracks and the ones I didn't say are so good as well... 

Born This Way, Lady Gaga
It was almost impossible to release a better album than The Fame Monster and Gaga made it by being completely herself. Though still retaining those dance beats that she handles so well, this album reads more like a personal diary, a road to gaganess.I am somewhat concerned with the backlash she's currently enduring but if she continues to make music with such high standards, I'll always be by her side... She really is the voice of this generation and the way she connects her tremendous talent with the zeitgeist is truly remarkable.

Best tracks: "Yoü and I" is probably my favorite Gaga song ever and that is a lot to say... "Bloody Mary" is such a smart song and "Hair" and "Government Hooker" are pure fun rebellion. I do love every track!

4, Beyoncé
I am scared. I am scared of what Beyoncé will do next. If she worries about the poor sales of this album she might pull a Katy Perry or a Shakira and turn into an auto-tuned sad slut... And it would be a pity after this wonderful CD. Definitely the most mature thing Beyoncé has ever recorded, this album was quite a bold and daring step for her and it is upsetting that the public didn't support her. 

Best tracks: "Countdown" and "Love on Top" are the two songs I could listen forever without ever tiring. "Start Over" and "I Was Here" are the power ballads here. And I love how fun "End of Time" and "Run the World (Girls)" are... 

Hacia lo Salvaje, Amaral

This Spanish group has really taken a left towards the wild side with this album and it payed off. More in touch with nature than ever, this album is the perfect soundtrack for an open-space state of mind. Eva's voice has grown and has a bitter ring that fits perfectly the disheartening themes of the album, that develop so organically that you may not notice you're crying by "Hoy es el Principio del Final"...

Best Tracks: "Riazor","Olvido", "Hacia lo Salvaje", "Hoy es el Principio del Final", "Si las Calles Pudieran Hablar", "Antártida"... All of them!

Ceremonials, Florence + the Machine
Truth be told, I am still discovering this album but it is so clearly perfect that it would be foolish not to include it just because I haven't listened to it as much as to the others... Florence Welch proves that she was not a one-trick-pony with this album which is also very much in touch with nature in a spiritual way. It is The Tree of Life in music... 

Best tracks: "Breaking Down", whose chorus made me tear up in the street the first time I listened to it, "What the Water Gave Me", "Seven Devils", "No Light, No Light", "All This and Heaven Too"...

21, Adele
Another album I wanted to hate but couldn't. I don't know why but I didn't want to like Adele. In fact I first heard "Turning Tables" sung by Gwyneth Paltrow in Glee... But I finally surrendered and gave the album a try. And my, oh, my, what album... It is so classic and contemporary at the same time, so classy and mature... And her voice is pretty fucking amazing as the whole world knows.

Best tracks: "Someone Like You", "Rolling in the Deep", "Turning Tables", "Set Fire to the Rain", "He won't Go"... I would go on, and on, and on... It would be much shorter to say which ones I'm not madly in love with, but I won't because that's just rude...

To end on a futuristic note I would like to say that, a year from now, Born to Die will be on this list. King's Wool forever!