Filed under: Best of 2009 Albums | Tags: Actor, Album, Animal Collective, Atlas Sound, best of 2009, Bitte Orca, Cymbals Eat Guitars, Dinosaur Jr., Dirty Projectors, Embryonic, Farm, Girls, Grizzly Bear, hometowns, it's blitz!, Jay-Z, Kid Cudi, Lady GaGa, Logos, Manners, merriweather post pavilion, muse, Passion Pit, Phoenix, Port O'Brien, self-titled, St. Vincent, The Blueprint 3, The Decemberists, The Fame Monster, The Flaming Lips, the hazards of love, the man on the moon: the end of day, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, The Resistance, The Rural Alberta Advantage, threadbare, veckatimest, Why There Are Mountains, Wolfgang Amandeus Phoenix, Yeah Yeah Yeahs
So, the champagne’s out, the fireworks have stopped, the ball has dropped. The year 2009 may be long gone … But the music is still here — vibrant and waitng for masses who have yet to consume it! Naturally we want to help y’all out. Here’s 20 Watts’ list of the 20 best albums of 2009, from us to you! Enjoy!
- 20:: The Flaming Lips — Embryonic
- 19:: Atlas Sound — Logos
- 18:: Port O’Brien — Threadbare
- 17:: Girls — Album
- 16:: Muse — The Resistance
- 15:: The Decemberists — The Hazards of Love
- 14:: Cymbals Eat Guitars — Why There Are Mountains
- 13:: St. Vincent — Actor
- 12:: Lady Gaga — The Fame Monster
- 11:: The Rural Alberta Advantage — Hometowns
- 10:: Yeah Yeah Yeahs — It’s Blitz!
- 09:: Dinosaur Jr. — Farm
- 08:: Kid Cudi — The Man on the Moon: The End of Day
- 07:: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart — Self-Titled
- 06:: Passion Pit — Manners
- 05:: Dirty Projectors — Bitte Orca
- 04:: Phoenix — Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
- 03:: Jay-Z — The Blueprint 3
- 02:: Grizzly Bear — Veckatimest
- 01:: Animal Collective — Merriweather Post Pavilion
Love and stereo,
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: Beyonce, DJ Earworm, Editor's Picks, Justin Timberlake, Lady GaGa
PREVIEW: DJ Earworm’s website
DOWNLOAD: DJ Earworm’s “United State of Pop (Blame it on the Pop)”
The year 2010 is upon us, and it’s only proper to look back on 2009’s overplayed pop songs and videos in a masterful mashup by DJ Earworm. It leaves out way too many songs and videos, but one can’t deny how well put together this remix is, especially the video compilation. It’s simply: “wow.” Start pouring the champagne and say farewell to an outstanding year of music.
Filed under: Best of 2009 Albums | Tags: Alejandro, Bad Romance, best of 2009, Beyonce, David Bowie, Just Dance, Kanye West, Lady GaGa, Michael Jackson, Poker Face, Releases of the Week, Telephone, The fAME, The Fame Monster
Michael Jackson. David Bowie. Madonna. Kanye West. Critics and fans alike don’t typically utters the names of pop legends with moderation in mind. It’s a good thing that Lady Gaga doesn’t seem to know the meaning of the word. Last year’s The Fame may have put Gaga on the map, but this year’s follow-up The Fame Monster gave us more new material and reminded the musically-inclined populace yet again that mass-consumed songwriting can indeed be a venue for true talent.
If you really want to know why The Fame Monster is one of the best albums of the year, you hardly need to look further than the video for lead single “Bad Romance” for proof. Lady Gaga literally sets potential suitors ablaze with the over-the-top display that colors the majority of her work — but on The Fame Monster the material is all darker, and all more vindictive. Each song is either a biting critique or a forlorn lament, and Gaga’s voice bounces beautifully over the eclectic production throughout, from Darkchild, Fernando Garibay,RedOne, Ron Fair, and others.
We see an angrier side of Gaga on The Fame Monster — and perhaps a more broken, vulnerable side of her as well. Gaga’s heartbreak-torn vocals on songs like “Alejandro” or “Telephone” (featuring Beyonce) would have been out of place alongside the hedonistic abandon of “Poker Face” or “Just Dance,” but adhere thematically to every other song on the record. This makes The Fame Monster as much a concept album as its predecessor was, in no way a bad thing. In eight songs Lady Gaga’s shown us yet another side of fame and kept herself more than fresh. Let’s just hope she can keep it up.
— Eric Vilas-Boas
Filed under: Editor Picks | Tags: Editor's Picks, Lady GaGa, Singer Songwriter, Stefani Germanotta, talent show concert
PREVIEW: WATCH Stefani Germanotta at an NYU talent show
Ragging on Lady Gaga is a sport many have adopted. It seems that she can’t do anything without catching a sizable amount of grief from the media and the general public, which – to be fair – is well deserved most of the time, given her lyrics about her “bluffin’ muffin,” her crazy outfits and the mere fact that’s she’s batshit crazy. While those are all valid reasons for critique, most people fail to grasp the fact that Lady Gaga is a real world version of a superhero. Alright, don’t panic, just hear me out.
When she’s on stage at the VMAs, wearing her red face-mask-body-suit-dress (what the hell is that?), and talking about God and the gays, she’s the character we’ve all grown to appreciate (Poker Face was stuck in your head for a solid hour once, don’t lie), but when she goes home and puts on her PJs, she turns into her version of Clark Kent: Stefani Germanotta.
I was recently shown Lady Gaga in her non-Lady Gaga form, and was pleasantly surprised, not because of the songs (they’re..meh), but because of the secret identity we so seldom get to see.
— Isabel Alcantara, Photo Editor
Filed under: Editor Picks | Tags: Bob Dylan, Cate Blanchett, Editor's Picks, Evan Rachel Wood, Keira Knightley, Lady GaGa, Marilyn Manson, Natalie Portman, Sienna Miller
PREVIEW: Cate Blanchett’s Bob Dylan Performance in I’m Not There.
Let’s face it, it’s only a matter of time until there’s a Lady Gaga movie, seeing as she already owns the face of pop music. The dilemma however is finding an actress who could accurately portray the enigma that is Lady Gaga.
The actress needs to be young, sexy, strut with serious attitude, and has to be a little weird. It crossed my mind several times that maybe the only person who fits the role is herself, but ever since 50 Cent’s Get Rich or Die Tryin’ (2005), I learned it’s not fun watching celebrities play themselves. Even some of the best actresses in the world would see the challenge of becoming Lady Gaga, and that’s why making a list of candidates was so damn hard.
Ever since her tour-de-force performance in Thirteen (2003), Wood has secretly solidified herself as one of the most talented young actresses out there today. Not only does Wood have the talent to pull off the role, she’s also pretty weird–she dated Marilyn Manson, for crying out loud! They also semi-look alike, and I’m not going to knock Wood or any other actress for not having Lady Gaga’s honker–that’s what good makeup is for. And sex appeal? Check.
Sienna Miller is another talented actress who too often doesn’t receive her due. Not only is Miller talented as hell, like when she played Edie Sedgewick in Factory Girl (2006), but she also evokes sex and attitude. Rachel McAdams is talented too, but she doesn’t have the personality to pull off Lady Gaga—that’s the difference.
Natalie Portman is probably too cute to play Lady Gaga but her body of work shows versatility, like Alice in Closer (2004) and Evey in V for Vendetta (2005). Also, if you ever saw her role in Hotel Chevalier (2007), Wes Anderson’s short film, you know how bold and sexy she can be.
Ever since the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, I’ve lost complete respect for this woman. However, she has similar facial features and best of all–she’s English. And we all know how much Lady Gaga likes pretending she’s English.
I know this is a stretch since Blanchett is a good 20 years older than Gaga, but in my mind, if you can play Bob Dylan like she did in I’m Not There (2007), you can play anyone. She got robbed at the Oscars, in my opinion, and with enough CGI, she could look like a 23-year old. She’s quite possibly one of the best actresses of our time, so it’s wrong to leave her out of the conversation.
What are your thoughts? DEBATE!
— Jett Wells, Assistant Multimedia Editor
Filed under: Releases of the Week | Tags: Gucci Mane, Kanye West, Lady GaGa, Releases of the Week, Seinfeld, Wale
PREVIEW: VISIT Wale’s MySpace
WE GIVE IT: 15/20 Watts
With an entire mixtape inspired by Seinfeld, and his own brand of not-quite-conventional hip-hop, DC-based rapper Wale already made a splash even before releasing his first studio album. Leaning heavily on soul, jazz and funk samples, along with a bevy of pop-culture references, one would assume Attention Deficit to be one of the year’s most interesting and unique hip-hop releases. Unfortunately, however, this does not come to be. Continue reading
Filed under: 20 Watts Radio | Tags: 20 Watts Radio, Audiocandy, Avi Buffalo, Big Boi, Biggie Smalls, Blakroc, CFCF, Delirium, Devo, Devon James, Echo and the Bunnymen, Gang of Four, Golden Shoulders, Grand Salvo, Joy Division, Julian Casablancas, Kid Sister, Lady GaGa, Lymbyc System, M.I.A., Mirrors, Mouth's Cradle, O Morning Records, Pants Yell!, Passion Pit, Phantogram, post-punk, Radio, Raekwon, Sarah Aument, SixteenSixteen, Sleigh Bells, Talking Heads, The Cure, The Fall, The Great Collide, THe Jesus and Mary Chain, The National, The Raincoats, the swimmers, The Tundra Toes, Weezer, WERW, Yeasayer
Eric, Jett and Caitlin were in the studio from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. last night, playing new releases, editors’ picks, local favorites AND a solid hour of post-punk for all you lucky listeners. Here’s what we played last night: new tracks are in bold, local artists are italicized.
Don’t forget to tune in to 20 Watts’ Audiocandy+ shows on Wednesday and Thursday from 9-11 p.m.!