Something Like Sound

Tag: Animal Collective

A Statistical Survey of the Best Albums of 2009

by on Jan.13, 2010, under "Best of" Lists

It’s officially 2010! That means that we can all take a few moments to judge the art and culture that 2009 wrought. Most people come up with lists based on personal feelings, record fidelity, or any number or other random factors. Here at Something Like Sound I’ve decided to take a slightly more objective and analytical approach. Rather than compiling my own list of “the best albums of 2009″ I decided to perform a statistical survey on what other people thought.

A few notes about the statistical methods employed here:

  • The sample size was 35 lists, gathering mostly from local sources (such as Westword, Reverb, etc.). 35 is an important number in statistics because it is the lower threshold for large-sample stats. In all statistics more samples = better results. If I had time to do every list out there my certainty would go way up (but there’s simply not time for it).
  • Ranking vs. Points: Most other surveys of this type use a linear scale where a rank of 1 correlates to a point value of 10, rank 2 with 9 points and so forth. This is fine and dandy, but does not give terribly distinct results. Therefore, I used a point/rank scale based on an exponential curve. The steep, immediate drop-off of this curve provided results that were slightly more interesting. (See the graph of Rank Vs. Points below, with information on the resulting coefficient of correlation).

  • Most lists focused on “college rock” or “indie” records (read Westword’s description of the ambiguous genre here). So results are slanted toward such records. Sorry, there aren’t any heavy metal or country records on there.
  • To find more “best of 2009″ lists go to Largehearted Boy, they’ve got an excellent and comprehensive collection of lists from around the world.

Without further ado, THE LIST!

  1. Phoenix – Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
  2. Animal Collective – Merriweather Post Pavillion
  3. Grizzly Bear – Veckatimest
  4. Dirty Projectors – Bitte Orca
  5. Yeah Yeah Yeahs – It’s Blitz
  6. Neko Case – Middle Cyclone
  7. The Avett Brothers – I And Love And You
  8. The xx – xx
  9. The Flaming Lips – Embryonic
  10. Girls – Album

… and now some graphs!

Clustered Results

Clustered Results

Stacked Results

Stacked Results

To download an Excel file containing all raw data and graphs, click here.

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Looking Forward To Warmer Times

by on Mar.05, 2009, under Blogs

Edit: I changed the permalink and removed the links in this article because of the ridiculous amounts of spam we were receiving.

Here in Colorado (and in most places), we’ve got a saying, “March comes in like a lion and leaves like a lamb.” Perhaps 2009 didn’t get the memo, because we’re five days into March and it’s balmy and beautiful in the Mile-High City. But, this is a blog about music, not the weather (do they have such things?). Either way, the recent warm weather got me thinking about the spring / summer music season, and I thought I’d hilight some shows and events that should be recognized.

March 17 (St. Patrick’s Day!): Akron/Family & Young Coyotes at the Oriental: What better way to celebrate St. Pattie’s day than with some great tunes. In what will likely be an explosion of indie-folk-experimental sound, Akron/Family will take the stage after the crowd gets warmed up on Denver’s own Young Coyotes.

March 24: The Academy Is… at the Hi-Dive: I remember seeing The Academy Is… a few years ago at Warped Tour, and they were on top of their game then. I haven’t kept up with the group since then, but it’s nice to see them playing and acoustic set at the Hi-Dive. Also featured: This Providence.

April 3: Flobots at the CSM E-Days Festival: The loudest, most rambunctious thing we do at Mines, the E-Days show this year will be unlike any we’ve seen before. For the first time in recent memory, hip-hop will be the predominant sound eminating from Steinhauer Field House. Also featured: Filthy T

April 8: Dredg at the Marquis (Downtown): As a group that is constantly updating and experimenting with their sound, Dredg has found a special place in my music library. Their 2005 album Catch Without Arms is still one of my favorites.

April 24: The Gaslight Anthem at the Gothic: If Bruce Springsteen and Black Flag had a baby, it would be the Gaslight Anthem. Recently in Denver opening for the Rise Against / Thrice / Alkaline Trio tour, the Gaslight Anthem has kept busy playing late-night television gigs and touring.

May 12: Manchester Orchestra at the Marquis (Downtown): There are very few bands who inspire me the way Manchester Orchestra does. Lead singer Andy Hull’s lyrics are deep and intensely delivered. After seeing M.O. open for mewithoutYou a couple years ago, I’m excited to see them again. This time around they should be playing material from their soon-to-be-released album Mean Everything To Nothing.

May 16: Flight of the Conchords & Iron and Wine at Red Rocks: New Zealand’s premier acoustic-guitar weilding comedy duo, Flight of the Conchords have made their mark on American television and music. Constantly playing with different genres, the Conchords will likely put on one of the best shows in the 2009 Red Rocks schedule. Also playing: Iron & Wine, possibly one of the best, most beautiful sounding bands on the indie scene.

June 2: Animal Collective at the Boulder Theater (Boulder): Critics have been kind to Animal Collective’s  neweset release Merriweather Post Pavillion, calling it “the greatest album of the year.” Although their brand of experimental-electro-pop might not sit well with lovers of more traditional music genres, Animal Collective will surely put on an amazing show.

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