Spillyear 2009

I chose this week’s year by picking a CD out of the rack with my eyes closed. It was Good News by Withered Hand, an artist I wouldn’t have heard of if it weren’t for you good people. The year was 2009.

This was also the first year I got involved with the Festive ‘Spill, which has introduced me to more new music over the last few years than anything else. Spookily, I posted one of my picks from that year, “Anna” by Taken By Trees, over on Facebook where Ali has been talking about Sufi music.

I’m cheating by killing two birds with one stone in the above video. But plenty more good music from 2009…

Listen to the playlist here

Add your top 3 here


72 thoughts on “Spillyear 2009

  1. My top 3 (2 of them discovered here):

    The Dirty Projectors – Stillness Is The Move
    jj – From Africa to Malaga
    Frida Hyvonen – My Cousin (because I’ve posted “Dirty Dancing” and various other tracks from this album plenty of times already)

  2. Yes, when you pick a Spill year for the Spillyear, it does beg the question as to whether we all just rehash our Festive Spill picks for that year. Mine were:
    1. Soulsavers – Some Misunderstanding.
    2. Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit – No Choice In the Matter.
    3. OneEskimO – Kandi

    which, to be honest, still stands as a perfectly valid DsD Top Three.

    So I think, to try to be a little bit “interesting”, I’ll take you up on the line about all you good good people, [See what we did there? Oh please yerselves!] and offer a triumvirate of tunes that I owe entirely to you lot.

    Francis Cabrel – La Corrida
    Now there’s a thing! I thought I owed this to Maki, but some shoddy research throws up the unremembered blogname caracol as the nominator in 2009’s RR Songs In French.
    Jazzkantine – Highway To Hell
    Possibly my all-time favourite AC/DC cover version. I’m sorry, but I can’t remember or find who to credit for giving me this as an antidote to the Ed Kuepper version that I really hated when the subject cropped up.
    Bigelf – Money, It’s Pure Evil
    I love our DropBox! And our now-distant resident techie, tincanman, should take a bow. As well as all the computer work he beavers away at, he dropped a HUGE folder in the ‘Box in 2009 of music from that year’s SxSW festival. I have profited beyond measure in the last five years from that selection. This tune from rockers Bigelf probably just steals the top step on the folder’s most-played podium from Oh Susanna‘s Greyhound Bus and Deep Dark Woods‘ All The Money I Had Is Gone.

    • I think that i might be responsible for thesuggestion of that AC/DC-cover, don’t know if you have checked some od their other metal covers, they are all excellent…

    • My Festive ‘Spill picks, FWIW:

      3. Taken By Trees – Anna
      2. The Decemberists – Sleepless
      1. Andrew Bird – The Giant of Illinois

    • I cannot remember if I even sent any Festive Spill tracks in 2009. I am pretty sure that if I did they weren’t things that I had actually bought, just things I liked.

  3. I don’t think I sent any hot picks of the year to the Festive Spill in 2009. Whether I was too lazy, too technically incompetent or just didn’t like anything enough I’m not sure.

  4. Paranoid Visions – Fritzl’s Basement
    A live version as the studio version has never appeared on youtube, but definitely my favourite song of 2009.

    Self Abuse – Celebrity Death Squad
    Shane’s old housemate again

    Runnin’ Riot – Bold As Brass
    The late great Colin Riot.

    Very close run with –
    FUK – Asbo Kid
    The Restarts – Never
    English Dogs – Mutiny

  5. A surprisingly upbeat selection from me:

    Black Eyed Peas – I’ve Got a Feeling
    The Heavy – How You Like Me Now
    Mumford and Sons – Little Lion Man

    It was the year of my 50th birthday and I remember doing what was (probably) my first ‘Spill post, “Approaching 50 with fridge magnets”. Young Munday was 7 – seems like such, such a long time ago. Since then the fridge has been changed and the fridge magnets have been pruned, though I did buy two new ones, Dali’s “Aphrodite of Cnidus” and “The Scream” by Edvard Munch, when I visited the National Museum of Scotland for the Munch exhibition a year or two ago. Now that certainly wasn’t upbeat, in fact he had such an awful time of it that it made me feel better and thankful for what I have! There is also an owl, from Kos (a gift); a drawing of the Leeds skyline from my office window; two fairies; two penguins; two cats; a badger; a butterfly, a crab; the Isle of Wight ferry; a lifeboat; a beach hut and a honey jar/racing car. I need to get a life.

  6. Pearl Jam – Just breathe
    not that much into PJ, but this is just a beautiful song

    the Thermals – Mow we can see
    some fine powerpop never did harm anybody

    Dave Rawlings Machine – Method acting / Cortez the Killer
    fascinating “double cover by mr. Gillian Welch

    • All new to me. Thermals were a lot of fun, and I loved Dave Rawlings, which I wasn’t aware of – love his guitar playing (and the next best thing to having Gillian Welch singing lead vocals is having Gillian Welch sing backing vocals.

  7. Something from Peej & Parish’s A Woman A Man Walked By, something from the Bobbies’ (Dylan and Hunter) Together Through Life, and something from somewhere else…. tbc.

    • So that will be:

      PJ Harvey & John Parish – Black Hearted Love
      Bob Dylan – Beyond Here Lies Nothin’
      Something – Somewhere Else…no, I can’t in all honesty bring another to mind. 2009 was a sour year personally (various things turned to various shades of shit) and I probably spent plenty of time wrapped in my Dead comfort(able) blanket.

  8. A retro-styled triple play for ’09

    1) Gin Wigmore – Don’t Stop – Quirky retro-styled pop with a stubborn earworminess.

    2) Ben Lee – I Love Pop Music – Critics savaged this album, but the dire environmental warnings set over one of the catchiest bubblegum melodies this side of the Archies just sticks with me.

    3) Jim Brickman feat. Adam Crossley – Beautiful World (We’re All Here) – Just a lovely pop song with a Pet Sounds feel

  9. Hmm, missed a week (but it was early 70’s so not much to add anyway)

    Festive picks (I think)

    Mountain Goats – Surrounded
    Built To Spill – Things Fall Apart
    Trail Of Dead – Insatiable Two

    Revisionist history (although picks still hold up well, for me).

    Lily Allen – The Fear
    Santigold – Your Voice
    Jah Wobble – Get Carter [Brumby Mix]

  10. Three for the pot:

    Tinawiren – Imidiwan
    Florence and the Machine – Dog Days
    The Arctic Monkeys – Crying Lightning

    By chance, I put the Arctic Monkeys on the car stereo this morning. I reckon they should be asked to do the song for the next Bond movie. They have a wonderful feel of menace about them.

  11. Weird! This almost defeated me.

    My spreadsheet informs me that although I bought quite a few albums in 2009, only three of them were actually released in that year. The rest were old things.

    These were Animal Collective‘s Merriweather Post Pavilion, which I only played a few times because I couldn’t get into it at the time, To Terrapin: Hartford ’77 by The Grateful Dead and the first album the The xx, which was called xx.

    It will be tricky picking three tracks, unless I break my self-imposed rule about live albums. However, I did get Dinosaur Jr‘s Farm as a Christmas present, so I will have to take a track from that.

    The xx – Shelter
    Animal Collective – In The Flowers
    Dinosaur Jr – Ocean in the Way

  12. Avett Brothers – I And Love And You
    Antony & the Johnsons – Another World
    Editors – Papillon
    Had The XX and Lily Allen (who I didn’t get at all at the time) shortlisted, so was very happy to see them upthread!

    Leaving out Sean Rowe, Alela Diane, Guy Clark and Cass McCombs was difficult, but they’ll have other years. Levon Helm, sadly, will not. 2009 was the year of his last album, Electric Dirt, and this farewell song tells us he could feel the cancer coming for him:

  13. I’m pretty sure I had Neko Case’s This Tornado Loves You and Japandroids’ Young Hearts Spark Fire in my three faves. I can’t remember the last track I chose but I’ll go for Washed Out’s Feel It All Around. Should have something from Hyperdub as well I’ll go for King Midas Sound with Lost.

    Let’s see: A shimmering pop tune with female vocals and a storyline, loud&fast wild rock, a dreamy-shoegazey-slowtempo-lush tune and a song somewhere between dub, pop and UK urban dance sounds. That’ll cover it for 2009.

    This was the year that I really started listening to new music again. It seemed like there another new band/label/sound to explore almost every day.

  14. I think I only bought 2 albums in 2009 but they were both marvelous so

    1) Education part 2 – The Metros
    2) More Stars Than There Are In Heaven – YLT
    3) Nothing To Hide – YLT

  15. I can’t quite remember what my festive picks were, but I suspect that Bat for Lashes “Moon and Moon” would have featured as well as Vetiver “The Rolling Sea” and Ulterior’s “Sister Speed”.

    I could well stick with those, but I have come around to David Sylvian’s Manafon since then and that would be boring so
    1.”Small Metal Gods” by Sylvian
    2.”Running” by IAMX
    3. “Foot of the Mountain” by A-ha

    are my new choices.

  16. That’s odd, I just came back to claim a Bat for Lashes song before anyone else did. Could be almost any from Two Suns, especially Two Planets or Siren Song but I think I would have to go for:

    Bat for Lashes – Daniel

    Now for the other two songs. I’m still thinking…………

    • Have you heard Natasha’s new album with Toy? Under the moniker Sexwitch it’s on Spotify and quite experimental. I love a couple of tracks off it, especially Kassidat el Haka which is based on a Morroco and translates as the poem is the truth.

  17. Wow, lotta albums released, but not much that was really up my alley. I have the feeling that this was a black hole year for me, i have no recollection of anything from that year, or what i was doing.

    Decemberists – The Rake’s Song

    Pete Doherty – Last of the English Roses (also I Am the Rain and A Little Death Behind the Eyes)

    The Oh Sees – Meat Step Lively

    honorable mention –

    Death Cab for Cutie – Chasing Cars – couldn’t get away from it.

    • Erm.. Death Cab released Narrow Stairs in ’08; Snow Patrol’s – Chasing Cars was from ’06 (although if someone played it at you for 3 years, can understand getting sick of it, or anything else)

      • Yeah, i did realize that after the fact. It was Snow Patrol’s Chasing Cars that was everywhere. But apparently a very different year. Those maudlin sort of bands do kind of get mixed up in my head. Can’t even remember what the maudlin Death Cab tune that was everywhere at the time was. If i was hearing it in ’09 it was probably all over the radio, even if it was released in ’08.

  18. Can’t remember what I chose for the Festive Spill, but number one must have been something from the masterpiece that was “Primary Colours” by the Horrors….

    The Horrors – I Only Think of You
    Robedoor – People of the Book
    Sunn O))) – Aghartha

  19. wasn’t around here or RR in 2009. quite a good year from what I remember of it.

    interrupted – the twilight sad
    sea within a sea – the horrors
    gila – beach house

    growing old is getting old – silversun pickups
    bluish – animal collective
    kettering – the antlers
    ultimate satisfaction – bear in heaven
    zero – yeah yeah yeahs
    sit down by the fire – the veils
    march of the atheists – piano magic
    sleepless – the decemberists (I overplayed it so my missus hates this song now!)

      • thanks mate, never properly thought about it as just couldn’t fully commit the time and effort at present. some recent weeks have looked horrendous volume wise. though it would be fun to see the reaction to 13 goth tracks regardless of the subject…..not that I would do that 🙂

      • 23 goth songs. To make it easy you need really tight parameters like RRSA Songs Sung by Musicians with Spiky Hair, Dressed in Black with Leather Jackets, Studded Bands and Belts.

      • Noticed your absence last week. Thought it would’ve been a perfect saneshane subject. I hardly suggested anything apart from the first decent thoughts I had and a Finnish obscurity that nailed macho self-destruction.

      • the parameters are more the issue for posters than the guru. for instance – a subject about ‘Dancing in the moonlight’
        Possibles list: Dancing – bauhaus; who killed Mr moonlight – bauhaus
        Rejected: dancing in the moonlight – toploader

      • It was an excellent subject – but I didn’t have time to narrow down from my fav 70 tracks on the theme.
        The UK government decided that the planet doesn’t matter so renewable energy isn’t deemed important enough for help – this means feed in tariffs will be cut to almost nothing from yesterday. They’ll pay over the top prices to the French owned, badly designed (unworkable as yet) nuclear power plants being built. And push as much into fracking and fossil.
        This meant that I had to rush a tiny solar set into my recycled car tyre tiles on the roof before the prices rocket as they destroy the industry…. (I weighed up the questions about their manufacture against their use).
        We made it – it looks beautiful – and the sun has been shining so we’ve changed our habits to use the power.

        I could re-cycle some of last weeks into this and do a double Discovery/(wo)man:

        Look For The Woman Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip
        Travelling Woman Bat For Lashes
        Ramblin’ (Wo)man Cat Power
        Moon Woman II Elvis Perkins
        Tourist Woman Cass McCombs
        Sexiest Man In Jamaica Mint Royale
        Man From Mars Cibelle
        A Black Man in Space (Sax Mix) Son Of Raw

      • Ha! That discounts everything before ’76 except for maybe The Stooges and er… Judas Priest. I don’t see anything wrong with that.

        Probably not going to be very dance music friendly, unless saneshane nominates some Spiral Tribe and Miss Kitten and the Hacker. Michael Franti could rap. Pairubu has Asian artists to recommend. angryirishpunk knows an emo track or two. And then there’s the goth, metal, drone, punk, post-punk, shoegaze…


      • I played a pool match Thursday, a past time open to anyone but indulged in mainly by bald middle aged men (like me) or flashy tattooed youths. away match at pub, adorned with England flags and soft rock blaring from the juke box. I always have a look and usually end up with punk, maybe damned, stranglers. same this time only I also found Louise by Xymox sat there on its own. I enjoyed the blank stares and puzzled looks almost as much as the song itself.

      • Beautiful tune.

        You know, it doesn’t take much to lead people to the darker side.

        I deejayed last night after a band so bad it almost cleared the pub. One of the six left in the place came up and asked for classic rock; his mate wanted Brit-pop; the bar owner: metal; the barwoman: country/Corrs stuff.

        The only person who didn’t ask for music was a bloke in an Elakelaiset jacket. So when I played their humppa cover of Billy Idol’s Dancing With Myself he went crazy, doing the humppa around the bar. Then his mates joined in. They requested a drinking song; I played The Pogues’ Wild Rover, put on some Finnish rock’n’roll. Suddenly the place was rocking and they were requesting some stuff well off the beaten track, drinks were being downed quicker and the owner was happy. Then I played some of my own faves.

    • @ vanwolf: I thought I wouldn’t guru again but I was walking through the Finnish wilds (picking mushrooms) and thought of the perfect narrow topic that could still make a good list. It’s possibly goth/post-punk-friendly..

      @ shane: The nuclear power plant that the French have been helping to build just up the road has provided me with lots of work and hearing about the work has provided me with more than a few nightmares. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olkiluoto_Nuclear_Power_Plant But this is all you need:

      According to Financial Times in December 2014 construction of unit 3 has descended into farce as it is currently expected to open nine years late and several billions of euros over budget.

      I guess the possibility for something to be several billions over budget means there’s a palatial home or two to be skimmed off the top.

      Good luck with the solar power. Keep us updated on it! get that artee bloke to provide some images.Ace list!

  20. Yeah Yeah Yeahs released It’s Blitz! – now my favourite album by them. Why? because it has all the influence of my growing up sandwiched into its grooves – there’s pumping house style build in Hysteric – there’s dance pop indie crossover – there’s 80’s sounding drums (I love them – the sound just has a hard wire to my soul – sorry Chris) Brilliant, Brilliant album.

    Withered Hand – released Good News and it is just the most perfectly cracked singer songwriter album to MY taste – this time the lyrical content was interesting to my life and I loved the haphazard nature of the tracks.

    Kottarashky released Opa Hey! – a fantastic mishmash of cut up beats and world wide sounds.

    Katie (Austra) Stelmanis released Join Us – that gets more and more plays as the years pass.

    Jimi Tenor / Tony Allen camped in a studio for a couple of weeks with a large amount of booze and produced ‘Inspiration Information 4’ that constantly brings joy even if it’s not perfect.

    The Indelicates – American Demo produced some overachieving lyrical ideas – that know their history of indie perfectly ‘The Last Significant Statement To Be Made In Rock ‘n Roll’ kind of give you an idea of their aspirations.

    De Rosa/ Decoration/ The Dø/ Elvis Perkins In Dearland/ Emily Wells/ Fanfarlo/ Geniuser/ Art Brut/ Ballboy/ Bat For Lashes/ Bike for Three!/ Brakes/ Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip/ The Mummers/ 3rd Line Butterfly

    wow to pick just three tracks – how?

    • Great year: YeahsX3, Tenor&Allen, Indelicates, BfL, Kottarashky, 3rdLB, The Dø, etc, mixing up the past and cultures and making something new; for those of us who want to be surprised and still find great tunes . . . it’s a bloody great era to be alive in. And thanks to all this digital flow and repackaging, remastering and releasing of of previously unavailable material it’s great if you just want to re-evaluate or explore the past.

      Here’s the Italo House Disco that Washed Out turned into a feeling for a new era… And which Madonna used for her first three albums or so.

      • Ace… prefer the music to the vocal stylings – but ace none the less.
        Apart from the Yeahsx3 – I ended up listening to Fever Ray all day and that was a perfect update of the dark teenage records I’d listen to, again updated for the era.
        Found Sin Fang Bous and Tune-Yards hard to listen to – maybe because my head is in constant mild stress state at the moment – but I did listen to them loads back then.

      • Stress is a simple running out of money/time (because of the typical British weather) – not enough time to earn money with proper payed work etc. while doing the extension build – not an unknowable mental one – so however much I feel that it’s going to cause a heart attack, I can rationalise it.

        Fever Ray is great, nice goth vocal stylings from Karin Dreijer Andersson (I ((is there a short form of Duck Duck Go’ed?) DDGed that… as I’d never get the letters of her name in the correct place.

  21. Right, I think I’ve finally decided. For some reason I thought I hardly owned any music from 2009 . Certainly almost nothing from the Rate Your Music lists.

    Bat for Lashes – Daniel
    The Unthanks – The Testimony of Patience Kershaw
    Mary Coughlan – Bad

    Yes, I think that’s probably it.

    • It’s only just occurred to me that I could have nominated that Mary Coughlan one for R/R songs about being a (wo)man. Oh blimey, and the Unthanks one too.
      No more – that way madness lies………….

    • Oh no, I didn’t check whether the Unthanks had released anything in 2009 and I do have that album, so would probably have picked something from it, one probably Living By The Water.but I didn’t think of it so, rather unoriginally, I picked Lady Gaga as my third choice. Anyway Donds for the Unthanks!

  22. If somebody could give my apologies for this week’s RR I’d be grateful.

    It seems one snarky comment against a clickbait post in another section was enough to get my account flagged for “Persistant history of trolling and abuse”, and I’m on moderated status with every comment needing moderator approval. This means anything I nominate in RR won’t be seen until tomorrow morning.

    May be time to bow out of commenting on the graun altogether now. Already vowed never to comment on anything outside of the music section ever again.

    • Ha!

      I was on premod on CiF for a week a while ago, because I suggested that the world would be a better place if a particularly vile UKIP supporter’s parents had never met.

  23. I went back and looked at my own blog’s end-of-year list, and at the time I listed the following:

    Breathing Space – Below the Radar
    Panic Room – Satellite
    Muse – The Resistance

    I think I’d stand by that as the top 3, though IQ’s Frequency might replace Muse. The Panic Room album shipped to fans who pre-ordered towards the end of the year, then had a retail release early in 2010, so you can argue whether or not it belongs in 2009 or 2010.

    The whole list is still online here.

  24. Like Fuel, I think it must have been around this time that I really started listening to a lot of new music outside jazz, RR having worked its spell… The tracks that come immediately to mind:

    Fever Ray: loved this to bits, difficult to pick a single track but I think it has to be Keep The Streets Empty For Me

    Florence and the Machine: Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up): of its moment, as I’ve scarcely listened to the album since, and haven’t been terribly impressed by anything else she’s done, but this was a great single.

    Fuck Buttons: Olympians: takes me back to being taken back to my old Tangerine Dream records…

    And I’ve only just been struck by the fact that I appear to have spent my whole time in the ‘F’ section of the record shop…

    • I like that Florence song too, but I was amused by this Viz top tip:

      “CREATE your own Florence & The Machine album by locking an owl in a wind chime shop.”

      That Fever Ray song was another fine Festive ‘Spill discovery.

  25. It seems that in 2009 I wasn’t buying many albums and some favourite artists didn’t release anything in that year. But two albums do stand out for me, both of the folky kind – Show of Hands, Arrogance Ignorance and Greed, and a revived Steeleye Span with Cogs Wheels and Lovers. Other than that…I’ll let Lady Gaga take the third place as I do really like this song! Rather than the title track of AIG, good as it is, I’ve picked one which tells a moving story, which begins at the time of WWII.

    Show of Hands – The Vale
    Steeleye Span – Two Constant Lovers
    Lady Gaga – Bad Romance

    • Just noticed Severin’s post and realise that the Unthanks’ album, Here’s the Tender Coming was released in 2009. Had I thought of it I’d have picked something from there rather than Lady Gaga….but too late now!

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