Best music album: Radiohead, In Rainbows
I own the packaging nerd’s ultimate wet dream, the made-to-order discbox version of this album. Unwrapping it was like christmas, birthday cake and wedding night all in one go, and then I got to listen to the music. And oh boy, what music it is. The bouncey songs really bounce around, the rocking numbers have a fantastic drive and the slow ones grab you – and squeeze.
Radiohead had a good decade, probably their best yet, but In Rainbows is by far the most solid, cohesive and and terms of quality even statement yet. Amazing, amazing music.
- King Crimson, The Power To Believe: the last KC album ever to be made, and quite possibly the best: after 35 years, that is astounding.
- Björk, Medùlla: the technical triumph is far outshadowed by the triumph of the heart on this deeply moving album.
- Iron & Wine, The Sheperd’s Dog: I have yet to hear all that Sam Beam has released, but this is his best work by miles of what I have heard. A disquieting and cohesive, but not distractingly so, narrative of a life lived in our times, utterly brilliantly done.
- Peter Gabriel, Scratch My Back: A covers album is one of the greatest musical achievements of the last decade, who knew? On my first listen this had me crying uncontrollably – not just sniffling or welling up a bit, but all out bawling.
Best movie: No Country For Old Men
Watching this was one of those times when you know you are watching one of the best movies you have ever seen. I need to see it again to be able to talk more about it, but the deeply unsettling feeling of it sat with me for weeks, dissipating slowly.
- Dancer In the Dark: “heartbreaking” does not even begin to describe it.
- Bloody Sunday: see above comment. James Nesbitt is astonishingly good.