Kevin Falahee   PoOPlist 2006


PoOp 2006 Massive Highs & Crushing Lows


25) Destroyer-Rubies
24) Yo La Tengo- I Am Not Afraid Of You And I Will Beat Your Ass
23) TV on the Radio- Return to Cookie Mountain
22) Liars- Drum’s Not Dead
21) Graham Coxon- Love Travels at Illegal Speeds
20) Silversun Pickups- Carnavas
19) Pink Mountaintops- Axis of Evol
18) Sonic Youth- Rather Ripped
17) The Thermals- The Body, The Blood, The Machine
16) Band of Horses- Everything All The Time
15) Robert Pollard- Normal Happiness
14) Califone-Roots and Crowns
13) Girl Talk- Night Ripper
12) Eagles of Death Metal- Death By Sexy
11) Mastodon- Blood Mountain

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10) Beirut- Gulag Orkestar - the best use of a squeeze box since Al Yankovic and the best projection of a voice that isn’t quite radio ready since Jeff Mangum. A progeny destined for seclusion before the decade’s done.

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9) Wilderness- Vessel States- PiL comparisons be damned, Lydon never fronted a tune half as good as the lot of these finely conducted odysseys between the spheres anchored by a bellowing and boisterous vocal line.

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8) Oxford Collapse- Remember the Night Parties- a homage to mid-nineties, mid-western emo where fast, loud and novice guitar work coupled with pre-pubescent yelps were as fashionable as dudes in rouge are today.

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7) The Sword- Age of Winters- easily the most talented of the neo-Sabbath, coattail riders of 2006, this Texas quartet sound more like murder than metal. In the words of Marty McFly, “heavy.”

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6) Built to Spill- You In Reverse- five years in the making and well worth the wait, Doug does everything but disappoint throughout these ten tracks that run his emotional gamut and play through the timeline of BTS’s career.

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5) Ghostface Killah- Fishscale- obligatory rap album cracking the top ten from a suburban born, white guy? Yeah, but that still does not take away from this ex-Wu-Tang member’s greatest accomplishment to date. Ghetto tested, Michael Bolton approved.

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4) Man Man- Six Demon Bag- a mile deep bag of twisted tricks and percussive pleasures rounded out by a gravel throat make for this year’s most enjoyably spastic release.

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3) The Decemberists- The Crane Wife­- the major label jump took the Decemberists away from their trademark, Victorian lit-rock and had them delve into a sea of opus and acoustic tales of warning and woe. And they have come out a better band for it.

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2) Belle & Sebastian- The Life Pursuit- once the kings (and queens) of melancholic cardigan stained, college rock B& S now turn their talents to the AM dial of your radio and blast out the type of blithe pop gems that could make Andy Kim himself blush. Rock me gently, Scotland.

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1) The Hold Steady- Boys and Girls in America- in music, bands have their “best” releases and their most “important” releases. Often times, the two worlds do no collide and fans are split when that all “important” release rolls around. Such is the case with 2006’s B&G in A. Stumbling in and out of the bar for glimpses into American life away from suburban Minneapolis, the exertion tempers the hard sought, broken bottled streets with acoustic laments and piano based requiems. The angst fueled screams of Finn are hushed by a nasal restraint, showcasing a vocal tic that can soothe even after it scares. The departure from the persona they harnessed over their previous two releases is not complete but it is enough to make the diehards roll their eyes on occasion. But when all is said and done, this is The Hold Steady’s, “important” release and over time, it could also be called their best.

The Departed - (best movie of its kind since The Usual Suspects)
Inside Man

Belle & Sebastian w/the New Pornographers- 3/3/06 @ Nokia Theatre
Ted Leo/Pharmacists- 3/5/06 @ Toads
The Hold Steady- 4/7/06 @ Warsaw
Shellac - 9/2/06 @ Europa
Mastodon & Converge- 9/8/06 @ Webster Hall
Built to Spill @ Warsaw 10/3/06
The Hold Steady- 11/24/06 @ Maxwells
Texas Is The Reason- 11/26/06 @ Irving Plaza

Massive High of 2006
Watching Endy Chavez make the greatest catch/double play of post-season history in Game 7 of the NLCS from the stands of Shea Stadium.

Crushing Low of 2006

Watching Carlos Beltran look at a called 3rd strike in the bottom of the ninth of Game 7 of the NLCS from the stands of Shea Stadium.

Sobering Fact of 2006

This was the first year I did not attend a show at the Chance in eleven years.

Kevin M. Falahee

32-44 35th St.
Astoria, NY 11106
kevin DOT falahee AT gmail DOT com