February 1, 2007

Top Picks 2006

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Best Song
Gnarls Barkley
The most recognizable song from 2006, “Crazy” ignited the summer with a sound unlike any before. Gnarls Barkley molds hip-hop and soul into this delicious, outstanding song with the most addictive hook of the year that makes us all feel a little less sane.

Runner Up:
“Steady As She Goes”
The Raconteurs
When Jack White and Brendan Benson paired up last year, most expected great things. The lesser known, but equally mesmerizing song of the year, “Steady As She Goes” is a rock-solid masterpiece — the world was not let down.

Best Album
Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not
The Arctic Monkeys
Armed with the worst band name of the past decade, the Arctic Monkeys thundered onto the scene with dynamite-spunk and ruthless-wit creating the most powerful album of the year. Unexpectedly, and effortlessly, these Monkeys made an album that is as clever as it is wild, and so, surpassing many veterans with this outstanding debut.

Biggest Surprise
Friendly Fire
Sean Lennon
With such big shoes to fill, no one expected Sean Lennon to become an artist with a unique and credible voice. With this inspired, whimsical and well-crafted album, Sean Lennon finally has come into his own. He established himself as an artist in his own right, emerging from the shadow of his father’s legend.

Most Underplayed Single
Regina Spektor
On this tightly knit and understated record, Spektor whispers and hums making a sound sweeter than honey. An instant classic for whomever listened, “Fidelity” was just one of the many unheard treasures of last year.

Brightest Future
When Zach Condon released his larger-than-life debut, Gulag Orkestar, no one could believe such a fresh and seasoned sound could come from a 22 year-old New Mexican. Intricate rhythms are layered beneath Condon’s passionate howl on this incredible debut — we want more!

Other Good Things
“Gold Lion (Nick Remix)”
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
This stellar re-mix, that is better than the original, comes from the band’s very own guitarist. A forgotten favorite that deserves more listens.

First Impressions Of Earth
The Strokes
Although less so than either two proceeding albums, First Impressions is an enjoyable record containing two of the best singles of the year: “Heart In A Cage,” and “You Only Live Once.”

FutureSex / Love Sounds
Justin Timberlake
Everybody’s favorite “boy bander,” Justin Timberlake made the jump from guilty-pleasure to credible all-star with this Timbaland produced, genre-defying album that no one is afraid to admit they love.