2006 Albums of the Year Albums
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2006 Albums of the Year

NOTES: these were my rankings at the end of 2006; opinions have changed a bit since then and I will do an updated version of this list at some point (I've already cheated a bit because my original list only ranked the top 40; the rest were all "bubbling under"). My change in opinions would be the reason a higher-rated album may show below another.

I’ve been saying all year it was a lame year for albums, but in retrospect it was a good one, especially when you think of it in terms of sheer tonnage. Nothing absolutely blew me away, but a truckload, or at least a humvee-load, of decent-to-pretty-great records came out this year.

Trends:

Most of my fave new bands of last 5 years or so put out good-to-great records that were nonetheless slight disappointments compared to the masterpieces they released just prior – Drive-By Truckers, Mastadon, ISIS, Volta, Strokes

Another great year for metal. The youth of America have woken up and realized that Nu- and Rap-metal have the substance of are thankfully in retreat. All hail the old school (maiden, celtic frost) and the really creative younger extreme metal world (ISIS, Satyricon, Cult of Luna, Agalloch, Giant Squid, Mastadon)

At different times, any of the top 7 on the list could be the #1, just as the 5 or 6 after those are pretty interchangeable, the 6 or 7 after that, and so on.

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    rated: 10
    The Hold Steady I’m frankly shocked at my #1 choice- a band on their 3rd release, I only got this like a month ago, and this is their first album that I’ve owned (I had an mp3 off the last album, liked it, but

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    The Secret Machines

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    Bob Dylan

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  5. 5


    Red Hot Chili Peppers shocker of the year – 26 Chili Peppers songs and only a few that I have to hit "skip" on. Frusciante really coming into his own, Keidis somehow rarely annoying. Classic Rock.

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    TV on the Radio whatever is in those Cookies is some good s**t

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    The Mars Volta

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    Built to Spill

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  10. 10


    Comets on Fire I’ve always dug these guys in a ‘wall of rock sound’ way, but this is a whole new level. This year’s Most Improved award.

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    The Strokes a much better album than they got credit for, or that it’s sales merited

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  14. 14


    The Raconteurs

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  15. 15


    Wolfmother EP

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    Iron Maiden since reuniting with Bruce "The Air Raid Siren" Dickenson, Maiden have continued to amaze with prolific and quality records and tours

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    Charalambides

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    Gnarls Barkley

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    Ben Harper a neglected record (probably because it was a double CD), the disc of more personal songs is excellent

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    Cat Power

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    Neil Young yes, it’s obvious that this was written and recorded in less than a week, and the "America The Beautiful" cover is atrocious – but, I’m a sucker for electric Neil, and the record has a

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    Mastodon good stuff, though for me it hasn’t quite reached the heights of the one before that was all about seeking the Sea Beast. Plus it just doesn’t seem very Metal that a Cookie Mountain turned out more

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    Celtic Frost comeback of the year

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    David Gilmour

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    Mogwai Mr Beast indeed.

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    Pearl Jam

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    The Twilight Singers

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    Pretty Little Stranger Joan Osborne love Joan and glad to see her recovering from that hackneyed soul covers album a few years back.

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    J.J. Cale, Eric Clapton best album either of these codgers have released in 15 or so years

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    Madeleine Peyroux

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    Drive-By Truckers I’d probably rank this slightly higher if their last 3 weren’t so brilliant. This one is consistently good but never outstanding

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    Tool 3 amazing songs and a lot of filler, but since it has those 3 songs + the coolest album cover of the CD era, I’ll give it some love

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    Belle & Sebastian

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    Giant Squid you can’t go wrong naming your metal band after a Sea Beast

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    Starsailor

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    The Black Angels

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    Dirty Pretty Things

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    No image


    Buffalo Killers Buffalo Killers

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    Benevento/Russo Duo

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    BT only had the chance to listen a couple times so far but he put out a 5.1 surround sound record last year that is excellent – no cheesy vocals, deep, layered electronica

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    Sound Grammar

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    Heartless Bastards

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    Lindsey Buckingham

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    Yeah Yeah Yeahs

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