2009. Grizzly Bear releases a sweet collection of songs in an album called Veckatimest. Then their heads explode. With wonderfully crafted compositions of thoughtful melodies, and powerful harmonies, this record kicks you in the face, but very tenderly and lovingly.
Then, these songs popped up all over TV, and everyone in bands got jealous.
2010. Girl Talk releases All Day as a free download. The legitimacy of the mashup as a true form of songwriting is proven by Gregg Gillis. He is the master of transforming the familiar into new creations of ridiculously fun insanity.
And even after the novelty wears off, Ludacris rapping over Black Sabbath is still badass.
2011. Bradford Cox releases Parallax, his third solo album as Atlas Sound. With stripped down songwriting and a crooning yet sometimes goofy live performance, Cox makes us all as sad and lonely as he is.
And he plays shows in his pyjamas.
2012. Dirty Projectors teach some guy how to play air guitar. Then they record an amazing record and call it Swing Lo Magellan. Incredible virtuosic guitars, unbelievable vocal harmonies, and sweet, sweet melodies.
And every time this happens I headbang uncontrollably.
2012. Psy releases his music video for Gangnam Style. Never before has an artist so foreign been able to make such a huge impact with one crazy music video. And this video is definitely crazy. Also great.
This is the Platonic Ideal of a viral sensation.
2010. Kanye West releases My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. It is released with five album covers, each of which are from a series paintings by George Condo. The album itself is an extravagant mix of pop and hip-hop with lush instrumentation, and even some prog samples. It was incredibly successful both in the charts and as an incredible piece of music history.
Also, look at how many people worked on this album. It is a lot.
2009. The final season of Flight of the Conchords airs on HBO. Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement confuse everyone by being hilarious comedians, yet actually writing great songs at the same time. Even the snobbiest musicians can’t deny the great melodies and lyrics in these tunes.
Guys, can you please make some more episodes and also be my friends?
2008. Deerhoof releases Offend Maggie, and guitarist Ed Rodriguez joins the band. Prior to releasing Fresh Born, the first single of this album, Deerhoof released the song’s sheet music. Then everyone recorded their own versions of the song and felt really bad about themselves when Deerhoof released their far superior version. Uh, that’s how I felt anyways…
2007. Les Savy Fav releases Let’s Stay Friends. Not only does Les Savy Fav treat you to sweaty, powerful performances with plenty of partial nudity and plenty of beard, they also treat you to some of the finest songs ever written.
And if you’re lucky, Tim Harrington will love you right in your face.