Ed’s Music Picks for 2008 (where did the year go?)

It is hard to believe that it is Decem­ber already almost Jan­u­ary. It is even hard­er to believe that I had to scrape sleet off my wind­shield today last week in the mid­dle of Texas.

This year saw some big changes:
1. I now live in TX.
2. I now have a reg­u­lar job. I am not self employed so I have to wear pants and talk to peo­ple.
3. I ditched that hor­ri­ble razr. iPhone, baby!
4. I bought a house.

OK, enough chitchat. On to the music… my favorites from this past year in no par­tic­u­lar order:


santogoldFor a new artist it must be great to be select­ed as sound­track to a beer com­mer­cial. Unbe­liev­able amounts of expo­sure can be a dou­ble-edged sword, though. Per­son­al­ly, I had no faith that any­one that every­one is talk­ing about could be any good. Hap­pi­ly, San­to­gold deliv­ers beyond my ini­tial sounds-like-M.I.A impres­sion. Good stuff.

L.E.S. Artistes


Flying Lotus — Los Angeles

flyinglotusThis artist is habit form­ing. Anoth­er case where my ini­tial hes­i­ta­tion was unfound­ed (see San­to­gold). My first impres­sion of Fly­Lo was that he was just a J Dil­la imi­ta­tor. Clipped and fil­tered snares/hand claps and loose­ly off-time kicks def­i­nite­ly nod to that Detroit sound but here they are wed­ded to a hazy sta­t­ic-filled atmos­phere which ele­vates the whole bump­ing shuf­fling thing.

Rober­ta Flack (feat. Dol­ly)

Auntie’s Lock/Infinitum (feat. Lau­ra Dar­ling­ton)

The Bug — London Zoo

londonzooAfter a few killer sin­gles on Hyper­dub, The Bug released a full length on Nin­ja Tune that expand­ed on the mutant dance­hall and grime styles that have been his trade­mark since 2003’s Pres­sure. High­lights are too numer­ous to list but includes Jah War, which made my list last year. Check out the sam­ples.

Skeng feat. Kil­la P & Flow­dan

Mur­der We feat. Ricky Rank­ing

Skream — Skreamizm Vol: 4

skreamizm2The steady stream of anthems keeps com­ing from this guy. He’s already on Vol­ume 5. I’m look­ing for­ward to fol­low­ing his career if he keeps up this qual­i­ty. I always down­load his sets from the rinse.fm pod­cast, too.


Wob­ble That Gut

Honorable mentions

Some note­wor­thy lis­ten­ing mate­r­i­al that doesn’t fall into the “new in 2008” cat­e­go­ry. Mp3 blogs, pod­casts, etc.

dj /rupture on WFMU — one of my favorite DJs on my all-time favorite radio sta­tion WFMU.

Glob­al Groove — So much incred­i­ble music shared on this site. I am espe­cial­ly grate­ful for being turned on to ear­ly 80s Con­golese music like Pame­lo Mounk’a.

A Clos­et of Curiosi­ties — Out of print avant garde and mod­ern clas­si­cal albums. Min­i­mal­ism, ear­ly elec­tron­ics, elec­troa­coustic, as well as inter­na­tion­al selec­tions of inter­est to fans of said styles.

Awe­some Tapes from Africa — Cas­sette tapes from Africa that are awe­some.

Music from the Third Floor — Bol­ly­wood sound­tracks from the 60s and 70s, ripped from vinyl. Art­work usu­al­ly includ­ed.

Mag­ic of Juju — From Indi­an clas­si­cal LPs to LaM­onte Young to Jamaican 7-inch sin­gles. This is a trea­sure trove of great music.

If you are actu­al­ly inter­est­ed in what I lis­tened to besides just 2008 releas­es you can check my Last.fm charts for the last 12 months.

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