Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Music: Top Albums of 2008: Number 12

The most avant-garde release to make the top 15 albums of the year list comes from Brooklyn's(by way of Chicago) brother-sister duoThe Fiery Furnaces with their epic live release Remember. In August of this year the band released a 2 CD set(and 3 disc vinyl) of live material recorded since 2005. The Fiery Furnaces live show is known for a frenetic pace and new interpretations of the band's songs. If any current band's live show demanded a release it would be The Fiery Furnaces.
The album has 51 tracks that cover the band's entire career up to this point and is split up into 6 suites:
1. Old HK
2. Waiting at the Lobby at 665 1/2 Frontage Road
3. In a House Once Owned by the Princes of Mataran
4. Drinking by the Des Plaines River
5. Black Death Bottle
6. A Special Commission of Navajo Basketball Coaches and Blonde Ladies

It's not completely chronological and some of the live tracks are cut with other live versions of the same song. There is a real precision to the way that those tracks in particular are cut together, and the average listener won't even notice the cuts on first listen. The highlights of the album are the multi-song medleys, which are delicately strung together and reinvented.

This is one of the best live releases in years.

#13- Margot and the Nuclear So and So's: Animal!/Not Animal
#14- Deerhoof: Offend Maggie
#15- Man Plus: The Hungarian Suicide Songbook

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