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The Best of 2002

Wildhearts - Riff After Riff After Motherf***ing Riff. [Site]

One day I found a track called Brain Sugar by a band with an even cooler name: Silver Ginger 5. I couldn't find another track by them for over a year. Then I find out it's a side project by a genius named Ginger, and he's got this band called The Wildhearts.
[sound of dam bursting]
Ever wonder what it would be like to wake up and your friends are like, "You mean you never heard of The Beatles? Well this one's called Sgt. Pepper and they have more albums too!" Replace Beatles with Kiss, Ween, Zeppelin, it don't matter. Then you spend two years in a candy store. I wanna hear the world scream "Where's My Elvis!" Right here baby. Whoever gives Ginger a U.S./Can. distribution deal will have all the toys. If The Wildhearts don't take the world by storm, then the terrorists have truly won. Come join the party. Pure. Rock. Candy.

The Rest

Queens of the Stone Age - Songs for the Def [Site]
I don't care how they do it, only that it never stops. Letting Dave Grohl play drums was genius and elevates a great thing to new heights. Dean Ween and Mark Lanegan too. Start to finish, their best.

2 Many DJ's - As Heard on Radio Soulwax, Pt. 2. [Site]
In the fall of 1990 a Spanish exchange student named Marco got kicked out of his school for allegedly stealing the school's new stereo.There were no witnesses, no proof, and the accusation deeply offended his Spanish pride. He came to the U of S to hang out with his bud, another exchange student who's mysterious personality and unkempt hair earned him the nickname "Trukbom." One night we got wrecked and moved two stereos into the same room. I asked where they found such a cool little sound system, Marco grinned. Then on one we cranked Front 242's Never Stop EP and on the other, Pink Floyd's The Wall. This disk is even cooler.

Archive - You All Look the Same to Me.
After the fall of 1990, Pink Floyd just sounds weak by itself. Maybe they'd age better if it wasn't for the self-indulgent guitar wanking. Archive fills the void. Great sounds.

Rush - Vapor Trails. [Site]
Neil is back. Rush is back.

Moistboyz - III.
A massive contribution to heavy.

Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot.
On everyone's hard drives in '01 and packaged and released in '02. Great, great music. When Jeff Tweedy gets older and more bitter he could be the next Steve Earle.

Avril Lavigne - Let Go.
The best pop song that made the radio is by a chick from Napanee, Ontario.

Foo Fighters - One By One.
The Foo Fighters got better kung-fu while sleep-walking than most bands on speed.

- Compilations and Live -

Ween - Live At Stubb's.
Two discs of wonder and legend. Plus a third with 38 minutes of LMLYP.

Iron Maiden - Rock In Rio.
Hell yeah.


Gary Lucas and Jeff Buckley: Songs to No One 1991-1992.
Four completely brilliant tracks, some of the best unfinished music ever put to tape. Important for the bluesier side of Buckley's tragically arrested development. Harem Man. Song to No One. She Is Free. Satisfied Mind.

Plus SEVEN TRACKS OF FILLER. Should have been an EP. Considering the duplicitous crap Jeff's Mom padded "Sketches" with, I guess we can be thankful she didn't stretch this out to the price of a double album. Since she obviously doesn't give a damn what Jeff woulda thought (to quote, "I guess I'll deal with that when I see him next."), buy a bootleg or download this instead and send ten bucks to Gary Lucas. Mary, get a clue.

Clinic - Walking With Thee.
The Most Intense Live Band in the World unleashed some great, terribly overproduced songs. Works as well as backing the White Stripes with the Boston Pops. Hope their Peel Sessions are released someday to reveal the intensity Walking With Thee (then The Nuns) has when unlacquered. Maybe the sacrifice pays off and builds the fan base.

Breeders - Title TK.
Like the Buckley release, this shoulda been an EP. Or maybe a single. Anything with some bonus tracks not found on the album.

Notes to Self

Shalabi Effect [Site] [Review]
Groovy trance from Montreal that made a few lists. Who are these guys?

Steve Earle - Jerusalem
The one artist Ginger (see Wildhearts) would like most to work with. I feel like I'm a decade behind on Steve.

The Streets - Original Pirate Material
Wow, it's true. Never heard anything quite like it.

Happy New Year

There you have it. Happy Holidays and stuff!

- Eli Robillard, January 2003


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