By LA Weekly
By Henry Rollins
By Weekly Photographers
By Shea Serrano
By Nate "Igor" Smith
By Dan Weiss
By Erica E. Phillips
By Kai Flanders
12. Guilty Pleasures: Braindonor, Love Peace & Fuck(Impresario) (Stooges, Ash Ra Tempel, Groundhogs, Kiss); Spirit Caravan, Elusive Truth(Tolotta) (Sabbath, Blue Cheer); Actual Tigers, Gravelled & Green (Nettwerk America) (Paul Simon); The Strokes, Is This It?(RCA) (Wire, Velvets); BRMC, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club (Virgin) (The Jesus and Mary Chain, glam); Charlatans UK, Wonderland (MCA) (Curtis Mayfield, Stones circa ’78); New Order, Get Ready(Reprise) (New Order); the Watt-Perkins-di Stefano Stooges cover band Hellride; Acid Mothers Temple (Grateful Dead, Hawkwind).
11. Gospel Brunch: Shellac serving Krispy Kreme donuts to the audience prior to its Sunday, January 28, 11 a.m. show at the Knitting Factory.
10. Songwriting of the First Order: Rufus Wainwright, Poses(DreamWorks); Eleni Mandell, Thrill(Space Baby); Pulp, We Love Life (Island) (note: produced by Scott Walker!); Black Box Recorder, The Facts of Life(Jet Set); Momus, Folktronic (Le Grand Magistery).
9. What the ?!?: The Centimeters, Lifetime Achievement Awards(Space Baby); Neil Hagerty, Neil Michael Hagerty(Drag City); The All-New Adventures of Rock ’N’ Roll’s Royal Trux comic book; Aphex Twin, Drukqs(London/Sire); Sparklehorse and Tom Waits’ "Dog Door" (Capitol/EMI); Björk, "Pagan Poetry" video; Thighpaulsandra, I, Thighpaulsandra(Eskaton UK); The Residents’ greatest-bizarrities revue at UCLA Royce Hall, May 25.
7. Beauty: Beachwood Sparks, Once We Were Trees(Sub Pop); Mercury Rev, All Is Dream(V2); Acetone, York Blvd.(Vapor); M. Gira/D. Matz, What We Did (Young God); John Zorn, In the Mirror of Maya Deren(Tzadik); Frank Bretschneider, Curve(Mille Plateaux); alva.noto, Transform(EFA); Richard Ashcroft live, alone, at the Knitting Factory, February 4.
6. Older People: Prince at the Palladium, May 4; John Paul Jones at the Universal Amphitheater, November 15, reclaiming Led Zeppelin songs ("When the Levee Breaks," "Black Dog") with some biting slide-guitar work; J Mascis & the Fog covering Stooges tunes with guitarist Ron Ashetonat the Troubadour, April 26; Adrian Sherwood’s dub party at Spaceland, August 29; King Crimson laying waste to Tool at the Wiltern, August 14; Paul McCartney, Driving Rain— sweet, melodic comfort food for the ears.
5. Younger People: Starsailor (fey Tim Buckley folk-rock sung by a baby-faced 21-year-old with ridiculous pipes); bawdy rocker Peaches wowing the pansexual crowds at Spaceland (May 11) and at the Knitting Factory (August 11); Sigur Ros’ audacious U.S. live debut, midday next to the Rave Tent at Coachella, April 28; Mos Def’s Black Jack Jackson project (featuring Dr. Know and Bernie Worrell) live at Coachella; The Fire Show’s Above the Volcano of Flowers(Perishable); AWOL One and Daddy Kev, Souldoubt(Meanstreet).
4. Swedish people: The Hives, Veni Vedi Vicious (Burning Heart); The Soundtrack of Our Lives’ entire catalog (Hidden Agenda).
2. Albums That Should Survive the Test of Time: The White Stripes, White Blood Cells (Sympathy for the Record Industry); Boredoms, Vision Creation Newsun(WEA Japan); Dungeon Family, Even in Darkness(Arista).
1. Spiritualizedat the Wiltern, November 13: an absolutely staggering two-and-a-half-hour set performed by the 13-piece band plus a six-person local gospel choir. Opened with a gigantic 20-minute version of "Cop Shoot Cop." Everything arranged to post-Spector bombasm. Tasteful lights, expertly mixed sound and fantastic ensemble and individual playing; Doggen’s harmonica (gorgeous) and guitar work (subtle, ripping, arching) especially stood out. Covers of Spacemen 3 classics "Take Me to the Other Side" and "Walking With Jesus." Etc. The most amazing, purely rapturous show I’ve ever been lucky enough to witness — any performer, anywhere, anytime.John Payne’s 20 Superior Discs Aphex Twin, Drukqs (London-Sire) Björk, Vespertine (Elektra) Brujeria, Mextremist Hits (Kool Arrow) Holger Czukay, Linear City (www.dignose.com) Dungeon Family, Even in Darkness (Arista) Electric Company, Greatest Hits (Tigerbeat6) M. Gira/D. Matz, What We Did (Young God) Neil Hagerty, Neil Michael Hagerty (Drag City) Khan, No Comprendo (Matador) Doctor L., Tony Allen et al., Psyco on da Bus (Comet/Platform) Ingram Marshall, Kingdom Come (Nonesuch) Mouse on Mars, Idiology (Thrill Jockey) Bill Neely, Texas Law & Justice (Arhoolie) Phthalocyanine, Zacks (Phthalo) Plaid, Double Figure (Warp) Iggy Pop, Beat Em Up (Virgin) Azalia Snail, Brazen Arrows (Dark Beloved Cloud) Sun Ra & His Intergalactic Arkestra, It Is Forbidden (Total Energy) June Tabor, Rosa Mundi (Green Linnett) Toby Dammit, Top Dollar (Omplatten)