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November 30, 2005 8:43 AM   Subscribe

Every year, the NME posts it's chart of the albums of the year poll - this year however they've decided to rig the results purely for commercial purposes. (List inside)
posted by gi_wrighty (72 comments total)

 
The actual published Top 50:

50 Test icicles
49 Dead Meadow
48 Ladytron
47 Sleater-Kinney
46 The Duke Spirit
45 Shout Out Louds
44 Field Music
43 Engineers
42 Sigur Ros
41 Nine Black Alps
40 Brakes
39 Vitalic
38 Autolux
37 Circulus
36 The Bravery
35 Elbow
34 Rufus Wainwright
33 We Are Scientists
32 Queens Of The Stone Age
31 Bright Eyes
30 Doves
29 Madonna
28 Absentee
27 Kate Bush
26 Super Furry Animals
25 MIA
24 Oasis
23 Hard-Fi
22 Raveonettes
21 LCD Soundsystem
20 Editors
19 Coldplay
18 Art Brut
17 The Magic Numbers
16 British Sea Power
15 Maximo Park
14 Dungen
13 The Rakes
12 Devendra Banhart
11 The Cribs
10 Gorillaz
9 Babyshambles
8 Kanye West
7 Sufjan Stevens
6 The White Stripes
5 Kaiser Chiefs
4 Antony & The Johnsons
3 Franz Ferdinand
2 Arcade Fire

1 Bloc Party
posted by gi_wrighty at 8:43 AM on November 30, 2005


Lot of crap. But damn that Bloc Party drummer is prog-crazy!
posted by The Jesse Helms at 8:47 AM on November 30, 2005


Ladytron and Sigur Ross the only ones I rate. Mind you, thanks to grgx I've been listening to Tom Waits alot recently.

The NME sucks big time - I've never liked it. Melody Maker was always far better (plus I was in it once...)
posted by 13twelve at 8:53 AM on November 30, 2005


where's Tsar?

rigged!!!!
posted by tsarfan at 9:01 AM on November 30, 2005


What kind of a list is that? Is it not clear to everyone else that the best album of the year is The Emancipation of Mimi, by Mariah Carey?
posted by billysumday at 9:03 AM on November 30, 2005


bah...
Arcade Fire should be Uno.
Bloc Party my ass. They need to be bumped off like Milli Vanilli or JFK.

ooh, was that in poor taste?
posted by blastrid at 9:04 AM on November 30, 2005


Totally subjective of course... but Sigur Ros not as good as the Bravery, Madonna, Oasis etc etc etc.... agree with jesse there.. Lot of crap.

10 - Devendra Banhart
9 - The White Stripes
8 - Bright Eyes
7 - QOTSA
6 - Super Furry Animals
5 - Sufjan Stevens
4 - Rufus Wainwright
3 - Antony & the Johnsons
2 - Arcade Fire
1 - Sigur Ros

(My top ten from that list because I'm bored and it's so so nearly home time!)
posted by twistedonion at 9:04 AM on November 30, 2005


Oasis sucks, has always sucked, and always will suck. I'll never understand what people see in those poseurs.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 9:06 AM on November 30, 2005


What the fuck is Oasis doing on that list?

They're not even music.
posted by wakko at 9:08 AM on November 30, 2005


I highly suggest the albums from Philip Sherburne's "Year's Best Techno" list...seriously, you nothing on that NME list comes close to Isolee's, Alex Smoke's, or Dj Koze's 2005 offerings. Bleep-tastic!
posted by tpl1212 at 9:11 AM on November 30, 2005


NME had become crap before they converted to a glossy magazine, now they're generic crap with the trappings of what one would expect of it.
posted by NinjaPirate at 9:16 AM on November 30, 2005


There was a new Arcade Fire album out this year? How the hell did I miss that?
posted by mr_roboto at 9:16 AM on November 30, 2005


Um, that new Madonna albulm was pretty terrible wasn't it?
posted by Artw at 9:17 AM on November 30, 2005


These lists are designed solely to make people mad, and provoke argument.

Fuck your Babyshambles--take them back to wherever you took Robbie Williams, m8s.

I would agree with twistedonion, especially about the Sigur Ros. What a beautiful album.
posted by First Post at 9:18 AM on November 30, 2005


I could see Kate Bush and Oasis being bumped up by editors who have championed them for a long time--do they pretend it's an honest poll tho?
posted by amberglow at 9:18 AM on November 30, 2005


I thought the name of the band was "Oasis Sucks". When people say "Oasis", they're using an affectionate nickname.

That said, is it not the usual expectation that such lists are at least to some degree rigged? Is the NME poll a matter of such high integrity that this is a significant change? Does Oasis even have an album out to pimp?

Londonist strongly suggests that Arcade Fire was #1 by the numbers. I don't object to Bloc Party but they're a notch more commercial with the dance angle. But wouldn't Arcade Fire have been a more credible choice? I mean, the AF backlash is in full swing by now.
posted by dhartung at 9:19 AM on November 30, 2005


Note that the blog-writer had side-stepped the request (in comments) to post his leaked original list. I'm not sure why he would refuse to do so.
posted by nobody at 9:20 AM on November 30, 2005


The NME is useless. They constantly print erroneous stories and shamelessly rip off online news sources without crediting them. Not to mention their breathless Next-Big-Thing pieces every time a student with a funny haircut picks up a guitar.

The last straw for me was when they gave out their Glastonbury Guide at the festival with a big pullout aerial shot poster of the festival site - which they had somehow managed to print back-to-front so that East was West and vice versa. Sloppy.

On preview: Arcade Fire backlash? Hasn't made it over the pond yet I'm guessing. We're still on our knees, with Canadian sausage still firmly in-mouth.
posted by LondonYank at 9:21 AM on November 30, 2005


paging jonmc...
posted by badger_flammable at 9:21 AM on November 30, 2005


Where is Clap Your Hands Say Yeah? Haven;t the Brits heard of them yet?
posted by mds35 at 9:23 AM on November 30, 2005


Isolee's, Alex Smoke's, or Dj Koze

Another music lover. Check out that Superpitcher mix disc, 'Today', from kompakt. You will be pleased.

And don't forget Analord, triola, deru, and bitstream.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 9:25 AM on November 30, 2005


It is a sucking assfest no matter how you arrange it.
posted by baphomet at 9:26 AM on November 30, 2005


Oasis sucks, has always sucked, and always will suck. I'll never understand what people see in those poseurs.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 12:06 PM EST on November 30 [!]


Agreed, but Arcade Fire even more. I'd say even way, way more. Perhaps even unfathomnably more.

But such things are subjective of course.
posted by juiceCake at 9:26 AM on November 30, 2005


By the way, I saw both Arcade Fire and Bloc Party live in the past few months. Arcade Fire was better live, but the Bloc Party show had hotter girls.

You decide.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 9:28 AM on November 30, 2005


The rise of Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and the power of Pitchfork and music weblogs on NPR yesterday.

I think The Hold Steady's Seperation Sunday was my most listened to cd this year.
posted by eyeballkid at 9:29 AM on November 30, 2005


If the name of the magazine isn't "Trouser Press", then I don't even read it.

I really, really miss that magazine.
posted by willmize at 9:29 AM on November 30, 2005


Ok, if this is gonna turn into a thread where we all talk about *our* #1 albums, then I just gotta get a word in for the band I have seen play some of the best shows I've ever been to in front of tragically small audiences:

Biirdie!

Best of 2005 (and the web, since you can stream their *entire* album from their homepage) beyond a shadow of a doubt!
posted by idontlikewords at 9:30 AM on November 30, 2005


Where is Clap Your Hands Say Yeah? Haven;t the Brits heard of them yet?
posted by mds35 at 9:23 AM PST on November 30 [!]


Yes. But only via listening to KEXP on the net. They're starting to get some coverage over here, though, mostly on BBC 6 Music, and have done their all-important first gig at the ULU (University of London student union) .
posted by LondonYank at 9:31 AM on November 30, 2005


By the way, I saw both Arcade Fire and Bloc Party live in the past few months. Arcade Fire was better live, but the Bloc Party show had hotter girls.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 9:28 AM PST on November 30 [!]


I've seen both this year (in London) and while Bloc Party was a surprisingly good gig, the Arcade Fire show at the Astoria was (dare I say) legendary. Top show of the year so far.
posted by LondonYank at 9:34 AM on November 30, 2005


Your favorite band sucks.
posted by cleverusername at 9:43 AM on November 30, 2005


Another music lover. Check out that Superpitcher mix disc, 'Today', from kompakt. You will be pleased.

Yes...any mix that contains Sebastian Tellier's "La Ritournelle" is ok in my book...been meaning to pick that up.

And don't forget Analord, triola, deru, and bitstream.

These are mostly new to me...excellent...more to research...
posted by tpl1212 at 9:43 AM on November 30, 2005


Metafilter, meet Montreal hipsters and their thinly veiled disgust of the Arcade Fire duetting with Bono.
posted by dobie at 9:48 AM on November 30, 2005


They took the Wrens off!? Haven't they been ignored long enough?
posted by cyphill at 9:57 AM on November 30, 2005


I can't believe flock of seagulls didn't make the cut.
posted by srboisvert at 9:58 AM on November 30, 2005


Why is Arcade Fire even on that list? Didn't it come out last year? I'd never evern heard of them until I saw them popping up on a bunch of last year's best-of lists.
posted by corianderstem at 10:00 AM on November 30, 2005


Clap your own goddamn hands , fuckwit.
posted by sgt.serenity at 10:01 AM on November 30, 2005


/ stav
posted by sgt.serenity at 10:04 AM on November 30, 2005


Strangely enough, NME best album of 2005 ended up being from 2004. I guess the nostalgia noose has tightened even further.


I'll second the Isolée recommendation upthread. Insidiously catchy stuff well worth hearing.

My favorite three of the year are...

Birchville Cat Motel - Chi Vampires. Birchville Cat Motel is Campbell Kneale from New Zealand who has released more cassettes and CD-Rs and CDs than you'll ever find listed on one webpage. His MO is drone in all flavors. This CD is his best so far with four long tracks summarizing much of other work. There is the background ambient kind of drone and the creepy slow-build-up-of-strange-noises kind of drone, but the best track is the title track which seems to be a distillation of some of the more sullen music from the shoegazer era. (Disclaimer: I know that this CD was previously available as a CDR before 2005. Fine. I'll let NME have their 2004 #1 pick as well.)

Skream - The Blackdown Mix. A tremendous DJ mix of Skream tracks mixed by Skream that brings the dubstep genre into its own. It was originally downloadable on Blackdown's blog, but now seems to only exist floating around slsk. This is worth hunting down if you like dance music but have been waiting for something new to happen.

Busdriver - Fear of a Black Tangent. Underground hip hop at its best. This is his most accessible CD yet, although his Jello-Biafra-on-speed vocals will put off most. The first track, Reheated Pop Sensation, is sung from the perspective of a newly deceased rapper, "an award-winning dead dude with a tour pending and a celebrity love interest":

Buy my posthumous full-length
My colorfully packaged disembodied shriek
Converted to ring tones used in car ads
Sung by winged gnomes over the head of Dick Clark
Cover pages graced by the chiseled hard abs
Of this now charred slab of dead pop diva

(more here, go down to the third post)
posted by Hubajube at 10:06 AM on November 30, 2005


Blah blah music industry blah blah blah capitalist pigs blah blah manufactured pop blah blah etc.

Several months ago I bought a 5GB Carbon thinking it was more than sufficient. Then I discovered the wonders of free netlabels and archive.org.

The ratio of bad free music to good free music is no better than the ratio of bad commercial music to good commercial music... but there's no money, DRM, and shrill marketing.

I do want a bigger MP3 player now though.
posted by Foosnark at 10:09 AM on November 30, 2005


I think The Hold Steady's Seperation Sunday was my most listened to cd this year.

I'm a big Craig Finn fan, but Hold Steady's music just doesn't hold my interest for long. It pales in comparison to Lifter Puller.
posted by Hubajube at 10:18 AM on November 30, 2005


The only end-of-year list that matters is Boomkat's. Of course, they actually wait until the end of the year to release theirs.
posted by dvdgee at 10:18 AM on November 30, 2005


The Arcade Fire were better when they were the Snitches.
posted by docgonzo at 10:20 AM on November 30, 2005


eh, rigged for commercial purposes? by who? the NME is in the business of marketing already. What a shocker!

I like the Franz and Babyshambles though so there.

So when's this year's AskMe poll of users' favourite albums coming?
posted by funambulist at 10:37 AM on November 30, 2005


Why are so many people so upset about this? It is, after all, the NME's list of the top albums of the year -- it's not meant to be canon law!

And also, it's a list of albums from this year as released in the UK -- the Arcade Fire's album wasn't released on Rough Trade until earlier this year, and as for Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, their album won't be released in the UK until the New Year. (Not that I care; I've heard their stuff and it doesn't do anything for me. I'd have the Chinese Stars over them any day.)

To make another point, there's plenty of stuff on there that I would never listen to, and some things that I abhor, but a 'lot of crap'? Objectively speaking, that's bullshit. There's at least 20 records there that'll be found on every other magazine's list.
posted by macdara at 10:43 AM on November 30, 2005


Oasis sucks, has always sucked, and always will suck.

Yes, no, yes. They fired all their bullets in the first couple of years but they're still much loved by millions so it figures. And the NME always had a soft spot for them. It's like they're playing for the national team, they cannot not cheer them.
posted by funambulist at 10:44 AM on November 30, 2005


I was nearly gagging when I heard the "Clap Your Hands" story on NPR. That band... isn't... very... good... (Then again all opinions on music are purely subjective).

It made me wretch almost as much as the story about Myspace/Hawthorne Heights in Wired that obviously had no idea how underground music works. Maybe Myspace could have been credited for the band's success if they weren't already on one of the largest indie labels.
posted by drezdn at 10:44 AM on November 30, 2005


All that being said, the 'vote-rigging' doesn't surprise me. I recall that a major music chain in the UK used to allow its staff to pick CDs to rack up in their recommendations section, but quietly dropped that practice a few years ago in favour of record company payola. Without telling anyone, of course.
posted by macdara at 10:47 AM on November 30, 2005


To answer all the think-about-it-for-a-sec questions: The Arcade Fire CD was released in the UK in the spring of 2005.
posted by Marquis at 11:03 AM on November 30, 2005


Seriously, how relevant is the NME these days? Who cares?
posted by gsb at 11:10 AM on November 30, 2005


I think the Arcade Fire was the result of the Atari Teenage Riot.
posted by ab'd al'Hazred at 11:12 AM on November 30, 2005


Thanks for the Arcade Fire release date clarification. I have no indie hipster cred, apparently.

Of course, I'm a die-hard U2 fan, and that alone would be basis for handing in my laminated Indie Hipster ID card, if I had one. Which I don't. Thank god.
posted by corianderstem at 11:33 AM on November 30, 2005


ab'd wins
posted by jimmy at 12:26 PM on November 30, 2005


My only experience with NME is through their website. But judging from its content, I wouldn't expect much in the way of professional journalism in the magazine.

I was a little suprised to see Goldfrapp's Supernature not on the list. A great album, and I thought it made a splash in the UK. I did like the listed new releases from Ladytron, Antony & The Johnsons, and Sigur Ros though.

The Sigur Ros album is especially wonderful. Can't wait to see them in February.
posted by kryptondog at 12:58 PM on November 30, 2005


I was nearly gagging when I heard the "Clap Your Hands" story on NPR. That band... isn't... very... good...

Yeah, I noticed that too.

(Then again all opinions on music are purely subjective).

No, they really weren't that good.

*puts iPod back on, dials-up James McMurtry*
posted by ZenMasterThis at 1:39 PM on November 30, 2005


Album of the year
posted by MikeMc at 1:46 PM on November 30, 2005


ab'd wins

He certainly does. But who is he?
posted by srboisvert at 1:54 PM on November 30, 2005


I'm a big Craig Finn fan, but Hold Steady's music just doesn't hold my interest for long. It pales in comparison to Lifter Puller.

I can totally understand that. I happen to really love the music, but I do recognize that it's standard bar rock fare.
posted by eyeballkid at 1:57 PM on November 30, 2005


I agree that Bloc Party is the best commercial album I've heard all year. The first song is brilliant; you actually feel in the room, I love it. The best in the other category is Why?'s double pounding output of the Sanddollars EP and the Elephant Eyelash full length.

Arcade Fire is also wonderful. I'm in a different place in my life right now but if I were 17 to 22 years old I'd think they were like gold from heaven, but their lyrics sort of rub young (not bad, just young) to my 31 year ears and I stopped listening after a week. Probably my losss, though. First spin of the disc was a pure emotional hoot, however. But with all good things, it's good to hear where they're coming from and to that a healthy long weekend with Neutral Milk Hotel's Aeroplane Over the Sea will cure all debate that ails.

Best party album of the year is Quintron's newest.
posted by Peter H at 3:22 PM on November 30, 2005


Bloc Party wins the list because it's very exciting, energizing music. It feels like it represents something other than itself. I'd have put LCD SoundSystem much closer to number one, though.

And, politely, fuck off Numbers 6, 10, 19 and 24.
posted by Peter H at 3:25 PM on November 30, 2005


Hubajube -

birchville cat motel, skream and busdriver for albums of the year? although cold herds travel would be my pick off chi vampires, i'm not going to split hairs.

hell yeah and duly seconded.
posted by soi-disant at 5:13 PM on November 30, 2005


I remember the nme giving the stone roses first album 6 out of 10......
posted by sgt.serenity at 11:22 PM on November 30, 2005


You have to read the update to the Londonist post and the comments, it's hilarious, people are bringing up Watergate and the issue of protecting sources!

Some people take their pop music far too seriously.
posted by funambulist at 12:40 AM on December 1, 2005


Why are so many people so upset about this? It is, after all, the NME's list of the top albums of the year -- it's not meant to be canon law!
posted by macdara at 10:43 AM PST on November 30 [!]


Because they're claiming it to be a poll of all their hacks' favorite albums, when in fact they've manipulated the results to suit the whim of the editor. Therefore, not a poll. Therefore, they're telling porkie pies.
posted by LondonYank at 1:39 AM on December 1, 2005


I remember the nme giving the stone roses first album 6 out of 10......

Yeah, seems unreasonably generous to me too.
posted by bifter at 2:26 AM on December 1, 2005


As any music lover will know, end-of-year polls are important

For this music lover, they're really not. Not at all.

And yeah, you're stick to death of them now, but Bloc Party still wins in my book.

But damn that Bloc Party drummer is prog-crazy!

And he looks like he's about 15. He was the only good part of the live show.
posted by mrgrimm at 4:58 PM on December 1, 2005


This thread is so disheartening.
posted by ghastlyfop at 6:22 PM on December 1, 2005


LondonYank: but we're talking about a music magazine, not the Amnesty report. They're not in the business of accuracy in the public interest. They write about music to create hype and help sell records. The editors see to that. (not to be confused with The Editors, the band...)

There is nothing remarkable, unusual or objectionable in the editors editing the results of poll taken among their own staff. It's not even a poll as such. Just the opinions of the staff, and whose job is it to present them to the public?

Maybe if they'd had an actual poll among readers and altered the results, that would be a bit different.

But here, the outrage is just so misplaced. You don't even have the NME writers complaining. And maybe it's the mighty bloggers in search of truth that are telling porkie pies, or at the very least, making a mountain out of a molehill.
posted by funambulist at 1:54 AM on December 2, 2005


And yeah I don't share that belief in the holy importance of end of year polls either. They're just a bit of fun. But then I'm not into pursuing the indie holy grail and very much like a lot of "commercial" music (as if there was a distinction, once it's on the market, how is it not "commercial"?).
posted by funambulist at 2:02 AM on December 2, 2005


Londonist has taken the post down now - looks like lawyers got involved...
posted by blag at 8:13 AM on December 2, 2005


Follow up article in The Guardian explaining why it was pulled from Londonist.
posted by gi_wrighty at 4:27 AM on December 5, 2005


I got the arcade fire , bloc party and clap your hands albums due to this thread , both the arcade fire and clap your hands albums are great with the arcade fire album being really outstanding , bloc party are ok but thats about it , theres not much variation going on with them and theyre pretty muscular and taut but in the way of a super flyweight rather than anything else and no one can be arsed watching those kinds of boxing matches , everyone turns out for the heavyweights.
So the Arcade Fire wins the sonic cathedral of sound vote.
posted by sgt.serenity at 11:23 AM on December 6, 2005


What kind of a list is that? Is it not clear to everyone else that the best album of the year is The Emancipation of Mimi, by Mariah Carey?

Too prescient, billysumday. Too damn prescient.

Also, any list without Wolf Parade is no "best of 2005" list.
posted by mrgrimm at 1:01 PM on December 9, 2005


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