Best of 2006

It’s that time of year again, when popular demand (one nagging e-mail from some bloke in Chile) dictates that I reveal my favourite albums of 2006. Innovations this time round include links to Wikipedia (just click on the artist names), and high-tech, lo-fi, broadband-friendly audio streams showcasing personal favourites from each album. Enjoy. Or otherwise.

Arctic Monkeys - Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not 20.
Arctic Monkeys
Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not

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The Hold Steady - Boys & Girls In America 19.
The Hold Steady
Boys & Girls In America

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Chris Knox & The Nothing 18.
Chris Knox & The Nothing
Chris Knox & The Nothing

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Beirut 17.
Beirut
Gulag Orkestar

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Midlake 16.
Midlake
The Trials of Van Occupanther

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Yo La Tengo 15.
Yo La Tengo
I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass

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Yo La Tengo 14.
Joanna Newsom
Ys

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Tropicalia 13.
Various Artists
Tropicalia: A Brasilian Revolution In Sound

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Sufjan Stevens 12.
Sufjan Stevens
The Avalanche

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Bruce Springsteen 11.
Bruce Springsteen
We Shall Overcome – The Seeger Sessions

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Ray Lamintagne 10.
Ray Lamontagne
Till the Sun Turns Black

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Ali Farka Toure 9.
Ali Farka Toure
Savane

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Raconteurs 8.
Raconteurs
Broken Boy Soldiers

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Ghostface Killah 7.
Ghostface Killah
Fishscale

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Flaming Lips 6.
Flaming Lips
At War With The Mystics

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Sparklehorse 5.
Sparklehorse
Dreamt for Light Years in the Belly of a Mountain

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Juana Molina 4.
Juana Molina
Son

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Lily Allen 3.
Lily Allen
Alright, Still

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Dr Octagon 2.
Dr. Octagon
The Return of Dr. Octagon

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Lila Downs 1.
Lila Downs
Entre Copa Y Copa

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Previously:
Best of 2005
Best of 2004
Best of 2003
Best of 2002
Best of 2001
Best of 2000

9 Comments

  1. nice list. however, i’ll be the first one to deride you for not including a favourite album of mine. in this case it’s mogwai. but i only say that cause i’m a massive fanboy and have nothing better to do than slating people for not adding them to their top twenty albums of 2006. now where did i put my stanley knife to carve their names into my skin?

  2. I will, at this point, say: “Yay! Yay for Sparklehorse!”

  3. A big “yay” for Juana Molina, Ali Farka Toure and Beirut.

    A big “huh?” for the Flaming Lips. (Gave it yet another go this week. Still a nope from me.)

    And I really must, must give a listen to Joanna Newsom, Hold Steady, Midlake and the new Yo La Tengo.

  4. Haven’t heard any of ‘em. Barely heard _about_ them.
    Tom Waits 4evah! :D

  5. Interesting list Frase- that Yo La is way good from a patchy band and I’d put the Monkeys higher (it’s ageing well). Ghostface Killah passed me by, largely because of the crappy sleeve I think, and I know nowt about Lila Downs.
    Personally I just love that Brightblack Morning Light album, even if they are hippies that live in a tent (but only in the summer. When it gets chilly they move in to a drum over a garage). I just admire people who think ‘now, can the horn section come in at 7 minutes fifty seconds?’. I mean, did they forget they were there? Or did they turn up late?
    Best singles?- The View ‘Wasted Little DJs’, Jarvis Cocker’s ‘Running The World’ and Hot Chip ‘Boy From School’ for me.

  6. Thanks, Fraser.
    Happy new year!

  7. Good lord, we actually have an album in common on our ‘best of year’ list , but again you have a desperate lack of real ball breaking head pounding earth shaking gut busting heavy metal.

    1) Black Holes & Revelations – Muse
    All the self restraint of Pink Floyd on an unlimited budget.

    2) Gypsy Punk Underdog World Strike – Gogol Bordello
    Paaaarty!

    3) Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not – Arctic Monkeys
    Britain’s best punk band ?

    4) Costello Music – The Fratellis
    The very essence of infectious pop-rock.

    5) Blood Mountain – Mastodon
    The kings of sludge metal give it some woaaaaargh!

    6) Birthing The Giant – Cancer Bats
    Its like a gonzo cross of Black Sabbath and Lynyrd Skynyrd with a dollop of Sepultura.

    7) Valor Del Corazon – Ginger
    So it’s Wildhearts lite.

    8) A Matter Of Life And Death – Iron Maiden
    The oldest metalheads in town put out a decent album.

    9) Care In The Community – Babar Luck
    Brit Asian new wave indy folk punk whatever.

    10) Liberation Transmission – Lostprophets
    The boyos hit the big time.

  8. Good call on the Chris Knox album. Not many in the UK I would guess.

  9. Cool stuff hope Airs latest appears in your 2007 edition