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Best Music CDs of 2008

The Best Rock & Pop CDs of 2008

Home  »  Music  »  Best of 2008  »  Rock & Pop
For Emma, Forever Ago (CD) ~ Bon Iver (Artist) Cover Art
For Emma, Forever Ago (CD)
Bon Iver

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With warmly recorded acoustic guitars and double-tracked vocals, "For Emma" sounds like vintage Elliot Smith playing in the Pink Mountaintops. Vernon's voice - alone worth the sticker price - is captivating and multifaceted, as it morphs from wavering falsettos to gospel emotings sometimes within a single phrase.
Vampire Weekend (CD) ~ Vampire Weekend (Artist) Cover Art
Vampire Weekend (CD)
Vampire Weekend
Xl Recordings

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Anybody who thought the seemingly bottomless well of musical breakouts from New York would have dried up by winter 2008 got a shock from the rapturous reception given this impressive debut.
Modern Guilt (CD) ~ Beck (Artist) Cover Art
Modern Guilt (CD)
Interscope Records

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A stripped-down collaboration with Brian "Danger Mouse" Burton of Gnarls Barkley fame, "Modern Guilt" is rooted in 1960s pop, from the British Invasion vibe of the bouncy "Gamma Ray" to the woozy psychedelia of "Chemtrails." One of Beck's most daring releases to date!
The Evangelist (CD) ~ Robert Forster (Artist) Cover Art
The Evangelist (CD)
Robert Forster
Yep Roc Records

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Essentially a musical memorial to Robert Forster's former Go-Betweens compadre, Grant McLennan, "The Evangelist" is a stirring work of mature indie songcraft. With three tracks co-written by McLennan, penned just before he died, and the last Go-Betweens rhythm section (Glenn Thompson and Adele Pickvance) providing the backbeat, Forster's first solo outing in 11 years is thoroughly haunted by the past.
Dear Science (CD) ~ TV On The Radio (Artist) Cover Art
Dear Science (CD)
TV on the Radio

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Sometimes an album stands out as something different, but topical. TV on the Radio never cease to impress with their unique musical style, yet on "Dear Science "they totally capture the feel of what good indie pop should be. They take some interesting chances on "Dear Science," but hit all the right beats that will keep you moving, with handclaps galore!
Mudcrutch (CD) ~ Mudcruth (Artist) Cover Art
Mudcrutch (CD)

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Mudcrutch originally formed in 1971 by Tom Petty, but he's waited until now to record its debut album. Classic rock that has stood the test of time!
Fleet Foxes (CD) ~ Fleet Foxes (Artist) Cover Art
Fleet Foxes (CD)
Fleet Foxes
Sub Pop

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One of the finest indie releases of 2008, Fleet Foxes casts an undeniably enchanting spell. While singer/guitarist Robin Pecknold's warm, resonant voice clearly brings to mind My Morning Jacket's Jim James, his tight vocal harmonies with other members of the Seattle-based band evoke vintage Beach Boys more than anything else!
19 (CD) ~ Adele Cover Art
19 (CD)

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British singer-songwriter Adele's full-length debut makes good on the hype surrounding this talented young artist. "19" features 12 lush tracks that showcase Adele's achingly beautiful voice and her skill at turning a phrase, not to mention startlingly honest songs and smart, carefully balanced arrangements. Fans of Feist, Norah Jones, and Amy Winehouse should sit up and listen!
The Bootleg Series, Vol. 8: Tell Tale Signs - Rare and Unrelease ... Cover Art
Tell Tale Signs: Rare and Unreleased, 1989-2006 (The Bootleg Series, Vol. 8 ) (CD)
Bob Dylan

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Absolute ear candy for any rock, pop or folk fan, this eigth volume from Bob Dylan's prestigous "Bootleg Series" is an amazing collection of rare Dylan recordings. Worthy of our top spot this year because the content is so impeccable and, whether you consider yourself a Dylan fan or not, you cannot disregard the importance of this collection.
Only By The Night (CD) ~ Kings Of Leon (Artist) Cover Art
Only by the Night (CD)
Kings of Leon

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"Only By The Night" could be mistaken for avant-indie cult heroes the Liars on a Southern vacation, as post-punk angularity, distorto-funk bass lines, and clattering percussion are processed through what sounds like the world's biggest fuzzbox. The most mature album today by one of Rock n' Roll's most exciting acts!
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