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Long arm of the list

Most years I couldn't give two hoots about the end-of-year hullabaloo, but this year, for whatever reason, I find myself strangely interested. (They make good memory jogs, if nothing else.) Maybe I'm just re-socializing myself after too much time spent sitting on the sidelines.

In any case, it was an honor to get to pen the the top-slot blurb for Pitchfork's Top 50 Albums list this year (as well as the #49 blurb—not a bad wingspan!): the Knife wins by a creepy country mile! I figured they'd place high, but number one? Dang. (I'm not half as surprised as most of the contributors to Stereogum's comments section, clearly. Warning: if you have an aversion to indie-dork snobbery, you probably want to skip clicking on that link. Then again, if your blood pressure is dangerously low, it might actually be good for you.)

I also weigh in on a few individual songs on Pitchfork's Top 100 Tracks list, where I couldn't have been more excited (or surprised) to see Radio Slave's "Deer in the Headlights" remix crack the top 100. (That song went criminally neglected this year, but I imagine we'll start hearing more of it once people hear it mixed into Jesse Rose's Body Language Vol. 3 in early 2007.)

I'm working on a proper year-end roundup; watch this space for it soon. In the meantime, check the always-reliable Tape for a killer and dizzyingly comprehensive Top 100 list, and Slate's traditional wrap-up (which I need to re-read… feeling too blurry after a redeye back from Santiago last night) for a more pop perspective. Personal to Caramanica and Rosen: Jon, you ask "Forget the genres you overlooked individually—what are we missing as a whole, and why?" Well, that's easy: the very elektronische Tanzmusik Jody mentions in his inaugural post. But you knew I'd say that! The why is the bigger, more interesting question, of course. I've got some ideas—not terribly original ones, granted—but I'd be interested to hear what you guys think. Electronic music may not be ubiquitous in the States, but given the blogosphere, it's hardly invisible either (especially with resources like Pitchfork admirably stepping up coverage in 2006); given the popular response to things like the Knife, it's also not as universally maligned as its more paranoid defenders (as I can sometimes be) often allege. So why does it lag in assessments like Slate's? What's the needed nudge?


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