Which brings me to the subject of year-end lists. If you are anything like me, you love to rank and debate and get rankled over the Hype Machine and Pitchfork and Last.fm and Emusic's critically weighted/subjective/user data-based lists. But the reality is: Good Music is Good Music. Since it's impossible to hear every single record released in 2009, even in this day and age, ranking the best albums is an abitrary excercise at best. In my experience, recently obtained records that you listen to on Christmas vacation (Matt and Kim's Grand) tend to be ranked artifically high while other albums that you have already played a million times (Wilco The Album) slide down the list.
All things considered, I've decided to list my top ten albums in alphabetical order this year. Great Albums have a general way of appearing on everyone's lists somewhere, whether they are tenth or first. And Good Music is good music, depending on what you've sampled, and the Irish steaks really were quite excellent, if you ask me.
David Bazan || Curse Your Branches
Eels || Hombre Lobo
Phoenix || Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
Matt and Kim || Grand
Mos Def || The Ecstatic
Superdrag || Industry Giants
The Rural Alberta Advantage || Hometowns
U2 || No Line on The Horizon
Yeah Yeah Yeahs || It's Blitz
David Crowder Band || Church Music
Silversun Pickups || Swoon
Julian Casablancas || Phrazes For the Young
Switchfoot || Hello Hurricane
OK and just to nullify everything I just wrote, I must come out and say that my favorite album of 2009 is ... no surprises: PHOENIX.