Pitchfork year end lists gets a 7.8

I was going to try and get to this yesterday, but got tied up doing lots of other things. Pitchfork Media has, for good or bad, the single most important music publication in the last ten years. They have a large staff and they review and listen to more music than anyone could possibly imagine, but with their assumed status as reverend taste maker they also tend to do more Pitchfork back-patting than necessary.

What I mean, is that often times, there reviews are not so much a critique on the album, but more of a posturing attitude. There’s way too much “look how smart we are” or “look at how funny, contrived, incediary, and just plain mean” type of writing from the site.

But like I said, it’s both good and bad. They’ve exposed more excellent albums, videos, singles and bands over the past decade while MTV and Rolling Stone have slept at the wheel.

The two lists that music lovers anticipate in December are Pitchfork’s “Top 100 Singles” and “Top 50 Albums” lists. They generate controversy and discussion, essential for any list worth it’s weight. Many times you read both lists and have to scratch your head because you’ve only heard of half the bands mentioned. Like I said, they listen to a lot of music and when their staff is focussed and on point, there’s no one better in the business.

On both lists, I feel as though they’ve done the best job they’ve ever done in an especially difficult and bountinous year of music. And just so you know you can download all of their 100 songs in a tidy zipped file over at Stereogum. We’ve provided the top 20 on both lists after the jump, but if you’re curious then head on over to the P4k.


20. Radiohead – “All I Need”
19. The Field – “A Paw in My Face”
18. Chromatics – “In My City”
17. Burial – “Archangel”
16. Feist – “1 2 3 4”
15. Jens Lekman – “A Postcard to Nina”
14. Caribou – “Melody Day”
13. Of Montreal – “The Past is a Grotesque Animal”
12. Spoon – “You Got Yr. Cherry Bomb”
11. Grinderman – “No Pussy Blues”
10. Jay-Z “Ignorant Shit”
9. Animal Collective – “Fireworks”
8. Justice- “D.A.N.C.E.”
7. LCD Soundsystem – “Someone Great”
6. UGK (ft. OutKast) – “Int’l Players Anthem (I Choose You)”
5. Rihanna – “Umbrella”
4. M.I.A. – “Paper Planes”
3. Panda Bear – “Bros”
2. Battles – “Atlas”
1. LCD Soundsystem- “All My Friends”

Top 20 Albums:

20. Liars – “Liars”
19. Feist – “The Reminder”
18. Kanye West – “Graduation”
17. The National – “Boxer”
16. Lil Wayne – “Da Drought 3”
15. Justice – “†”
14. Deerhunter – “Cryptograms/Fluorescent Grey EP”
13. Jay-Z – “American Gangster”
12. No Age – “Weirdo Rippers”
11. Jens Lekman – “Night Falls Over Kortedala”
10. Burial – “Untrue”
9. The Field – “From Here We Go Sublime”
8. Battles – “Mirrored”
7. Spoon – “Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga”
6. Animal Collective – “Strawberry Jam”
5. Of Montreal – “Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?”
4. Radiohead – “In Rainbows”
3. M.I.A. – “Kala”
2. LCD Soundsystem – “Sound of Silver”
1. Panda Bear – “Person Pitch”

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  • James Furbush December 19, 2007, 9:44 am

    Dale you know what’s crazy? After checking over their list the one album I was really curious about was Nick Cave’s “Grinderman.” Because one I do love Nick Cave and didn’t realize he came out with a new album… a lot of stuff on Pitchfork is stuff most people have to search out to find and wouldn’t necessarily listen to because it’s like fingernails on chaulk boards, but also some great stuff would otherwise go unnoticed if it weren’t for them.

    The one thing I don’t like is that, music is more than anything about a personal connection, which I think P4k go to great pains to stamp out… “If you don’t listen to this album you’re not awesome” is a terrible mentality to have…

  • Dale December 19, 2007, 9:11 am

    These people make me realize how far out of touch with music I am these days. I know exactly one song on the 20 singles list, No Pussy Blues, and that’s because I’m a big fan of Nick Cave, and Grinderman is an amazing album.

    Aside from that, I get the feeling that these are mostly indie internet-age bands; the type that no one would ever have heard of if not for the likes of YouTube. Not that there’s anything wrong with that per se, but how deep of a connoisseur do I have to be for this list to be relevant?