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Monday, December 11th, 2006

The Readers Have Spoken

Newsflash – Chromewaves readers have similar tastes to Chromewaves. The mind boggles. As part of sorting out the winners of my promo giveaway contest (congratulations to Doug, Daniel, Patrick, Chris, Erin, Vince, Blair, Eric, Travis, Kenn, Sean, Sam, Carly, Daniel, Jason, Jeremy, Amanda, James, Zoë, Karen, Thierry and Canada Post who were the big winners in this little exercise), I also tabulated the results of my reader’s poll. If you recall, I asked people to submit a list, in order, of their top five albums of 2006. Each record was assigned a score inverse to their position (so #1s were given 5 points, #5s given 1 point) and the totals tabulated. In total, 244 albums (give or take) were submitted by 120 readers, revealing a pretty wide range of tastes amongst the lot of you. Good on you. But as with all polls, the cream (or the populist) rises to the top and the ten most favoured records of 2006 as selected by you were as follows:

1. The Decemberists / The Crane Wife (Capitol) (77 pts)
1. TV On The Radio / Return To Cookie Mountain (Interscope) (77 pts)
3. The Hold Steady / Boys And Girls In America (Vagrant) (63 pts)
4. Belle & Sebastian / The Life Pursuit (Matador) (49 pts)
5. Cat Power / The Greatest (Matador) (48 pts)
6. Destroyer / Destroyer’s Rubies (Merge) (47 pts)
7. Neko Case / Fox Confessor Brings The Flood (Mint) (41 pts)
8. Band Of Horses / Everything All The Time (SubPop) (40 pts)
8. Joanna Newsom / Ys (Drag City) (40 pts)
10. Beirut / Gulag Orkestar (Ba Da Bing) (33 pts)

The Decemberists appeared on more lists (25 vs 17) but TV On The Radio was consistently ranked at or near the top of the lists they appeared on. What’s it mean? I dunno – as far as I’m concerned, they’re tied for first. Four of the top ten made my own list and that number would have likely doubled if I’d gone with a top 20. Otherwise… yeah. Not a whole lot of analysis to be done on these results. If I’d gone with a more objective approach to my list this year, then it’d may well have looked a lot more like this one. Anyone, thanks to everyone again for their lists, they’ve encouraged me to either check out some records and revisit some others.

M Ward returns to town for a solo show at the Mod Club on January 27, one of only five dates on this solo tour. As good as Ward’s full-band shows are, I’d argue that on his own and presumably acoustic, he’s even better so if you’ve never seen him play before – and even if you have – you should check this out.

Reissue announcements are a dime a dozen these days and I rarely pay attention when folks try to entice me to re-buy an album that I’ve already bought at least once before, but the news that Leonard Cohen’s back catalog is getting the archival treatment is something to take notice of. The reissue series will begin with Songs Of Leonard Cohen, Songs From A Room and Songs Of Love And Hate on March 27 and feature not only the remastered album but fresh liner notes and bonus tracks. And if that’s not news enough, Cohen has also dusted off the old Casio keyboard and is recording a new studio album for release sometime mid-Summer. Info via MusicTap.

eye talks to Evan Dando about his recent, less-than-triumphant Toronto shows but he promises that Tuesday’s Lemonheads show at Lee’s will “be a joyous rock ‘n’ roll experience!”. He also talks to The Cleveland Plains Dealer and The Salt Lake Tribune. Update: Radio Free Canuckistan has posted the whole text of the Dando interview that yielded the eye article. Go check it out.

Chris Olley of Six By Seven, who supposedly broke up last year but continue to have a rather active afterlife, talks about how he unintentionally yet deliberately ripped off The Church’s “Under The Milky Way” for his own band’s “IOU Love”. Recounted in IM-ese, no less.

Robert Smith of The Cure tells Billboard that he’s got writer’s block. But, even without words, the new material has “got a rock edge again” thanks to the return (again) of guitarist Porl Thompson.

Why did no one tell me that Twitch City was out on DVD? You’ve no idea how long I’ve been waiting for this to happen. Best CBC show of the past… ever.

By : Frank Yang at 8:54 am
Category: Uncategorized
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  1. Chris says:

    I saw M. Ward solo acoustic (+piano) at Tanned Tin in Spain and seeing him thrash while simultaneously working a complicated set of sampleboards with his feet (or whatever that thing that records and loops phrases is)… well, it was inspiring. One of the best sets I’ve seen.

  2. Five says:

    The Twitch City news is GREAT!! I’d rush out and buy it today if I wasn’t going away in a couple of days… Do you have it? I’d be interested to know how the special features hold up.

  3. Frank says:

    I do not – I was browsing Queen Video when i saw it on the shelf and literally did a double take. I am going to pick it up over Boxing Week, probably. I’ve waited six years, I can wait a little longer.

  4. danieljosef says:

    Pretty excited about the M.Ward show, missed the Sept. 11th show and really looking forward to this one :)

    Ps. there is a pre-sale on now for the toronto show
    http://mward.ducatking.com/

  5. Jason Carlin says:

    Twitch City!? Holy crackers, that’s one more for the Christmas list, thanks!

  6. bill p says:

    I wrote about it a while back on my blog…
    http://soundbites.typepad.c
    The commentary tracks — only on two episodes — are good, funny. Don is alone, but calls people (Mark McKinney and Molly Parker) during them.

    I hadn’t seen it since it aired on Bravo in 99 or 2000, but the episodes really hold up well. At one point Callum Keith Rennie comes over to Curtis’ apartment with a box of videotapes of old TV shows…including Battlestar Galactica.

    The Canadian version plays on American DVD players, obviously, but Twitch City is getting a US release in February.

  7. sean says:

    Just discovering the Twitch City DVD now is preferable, let me tell you, to anticipating its release in September, only to have it pushed back to October, and again pushed back to November…

  8. palpable says:

    Congrats to all the lucky winners. Great Contest Frank – I really enjoyed looking at your readers selections for 2006.

    I think the Eye article about Dando is pretty good. Evan seems to have things in check. He did play a full acoustic set at the ‘Shoe, and I don’t think it was too much to ask that people shut up, even if it was Saturday night.

  9. graig says:

    Frak, Twitch City… I’m usually the TV on DVD master. How’d that one slip past me. Awesomeness. Thanks for the news. It will be in my collection by the end of next week.

  10. Casey says:

    The commentary on the Twitch City DVD gets cut way short, but it sure beats the VHS transfers I’d gotten from bittorrent. Love that show so much.