With Super Bowl XXXIX set to take place this weekend without the Pittsburgh Steelers — the incredible team that won 15 consecutive games leading up to one really, really big loss — it’s fair to say that I’ve got disappointment on my mind.
Looking back on 2004, there was a good deal of Ben Roethlisberger-like pleasant surprises in the music world. Mission of Burma’s second ascendance to the top of the punk world comes to mind. And while Brian Wilson’s long-awaited Smile may have finally come to fruition, the Steelers’ fifth Super Bowl victory did not. Letdowns like the AFC Championship game are always imminent.
My most disappointing album of 2004 was Q and Not U’s Power, their second album this decade. At times, I’ve been known to bestow silly titles upon the band like “My Favorite Band That’s Currently Making Music,” so one can imagine how high my expectations were. To the band’s credit, they continually shift their sound, never content to repeat successful tricks of the past. Their second album, Different Damage, exemplified this credo well. No Kill No Beep Beep, their moronically titled debut, was a terrific blast of new-millennium post-punk but offered little in terms of coherence. Different Damage was much more an album than a collection of songs, to use a clich