Top 10 Albums of 2006


Lads and ladies, I'm not gonna lie!  This entire comic was an excuse to proclaim my undying love to two albums that came out in 2006:  The Art of Distraction by Karmella's Game and Select Start's self-titled debut.  There were others that I came across and got my attention (namely, Bring It Back by Mates of State and Friendly Fire by Sean Lennon) but none of them had the staying power as the aforementioned albums.  But quite frankly, I wasn't exactly scavenging for new music last year, ergo, there goes my music critic credibility.  (Also, GP, aren't top ten lists supposedly done at the end of the year?  Short answer:  no.  Long answer:  AW, HELL NO.)

Full disclosure:  I've played with both Karmella's Game and Select Start in the very very distant past.

Anyway.  I heartily recommend you check out The Art of Distraction.  It's a very dance-y album and there's a ton of reviews out there that will attest to this, and I will add that it had somehow accomplished that elusive act of distilling happiness.  It's happiness, in a CD-shaped bottle?

Also, guys in KG:  if you guys are reading this and are ever in need of a fifth member to play guitar/keyboards/vocals:  guys, as if it's not obvious by now, I am soo there.

Speaking of defecting to another band, I recommend that you guys check out Select Start's debut album as well.  Here's my review of it:

OK, do you guys remember how disappointed you were after seeing Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within?  And then years later, after seeing The Lord of the Rings trilogy, you felt as if LotR should have been what The Spirits Within wasn't?  (No?  Dammit, just bear with me.)  Well, I'm a video game soundtrack collector, and Select Start's debut should have been what all those orchestrated video game soundtracks tried to be.  You hear it and you say to yourself, "Why have I been listening to these crappy orchestrated OSTs all these years?"

There is something in Select Start's debut that tells you that it didn't go through any of the bureaucracy that might have gone into the making of any orchestrated OST; the passion and sincerity is still intact with Select Start's renditions.  The music is alive and very intimate, as opposed to sitting from far away.  OK OK OK, so it might not help that I actually have the volume cranked up all the way to 11 (nor does the fact that I've seen an SS show personally -- literally at an arm's length away), but the fact remains:  this is a solid piece of work.

And of course before I go, some attribution:  the background pic in panel 4 was taken from kuroda of flickr.  Mad hilarious props to Boston and haircuts in the 70s.

-George Ryan