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Nolte

Arts & Culture review of 2009

while i understand 2009 is not quite finished yet (8 and a half hours at start of posting), i feel it should be done now. i'm sorry but i don't think anything groundbreaking will happen in the next 8 and a half hours.

Music - Recorded
This was a fine year for music recordings, we had new albums from David Byrne & Brian Eno, Franz Ferdinand, Rokysopp, The Fiery Furnaces,  Brendan Benson, Shakira, Air, Mars Volta, Grizzly Bear, Sufijan Stevens, Animal Collective (according to fox news, a dance act), Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Flaming Lips

On the less well known front, there were new albums from Hidden Cameras, Cass McCombs, Malcolm Middleton, Múm, Mew, Susanna & The Magical Orchestra, King Creosote, Mocky, Phoenix and One for the Team

Side projects that were impressive was God help the Girl, Jonsi & Alex (featuring Jonsi of Sigur Ros and his partner), Dead Weathers (Alison Mosshart of the Kills and Jack White), Duckworth Lewis Method (Neil Hannon of Divine Comedy), Fever Ray (the woman from The Knife), Karen O & The Kids (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) and also British Sea Power album for the soundtrack of the 1930's film Man of Aran

Debut releases came from Florence & The Machine, Michacu & The Shapes, Twinkranes, Valerie Francis, Cate Le Bon and Choir of Young Believers.

Overall it was a very good for music in general and it bodes well for future years. People who have been prophesising death of music, keep doing it, if you make the same prediction every year, you'll eventually be right but that'll when it's the apocalypse.

The one dissapointing thing though with music is that i've noticed albums getting shorter. this is a real shame. Shakira's "She Wolf" album for example (named after a word on page 26 of the faber & faber edition of Finnegans Wake" by James Joyce. check it out. that's a fact you will get nowhere else, probably because it's a hot chocolate induced hallucination but anyway) is about 32 minutes long and one song is on it twice. it's still wonderful

my top 5 albums of the year were:

1: God Help the Girl - God Help the Girl
2: The Fiery Furnaces - I'm Going Away
3: David Byrne & Brian Eno - Everything that will happen will happen today
4: Duckworth Lewis Method - Duckworth Lewis Method
5: Jonsi & Alex - Riceboy Sleeps
6: Hidden Cameras - Origin Orphan
7: Franz Ferdinand - Ullysees [another Joyce inspired title]
8: Rokysopp - Junior
9: Micachu & The Shapes - Jewelry
10: Florence & The Machine - Lungs

There were also good singles from 2 new irish bands, Talulah does the Hula and Sleep Thieves.

also note on a musical note, finnegans wake also gave the world the term "hip hop" i believe although yet again hot chocolate induced hallucination could be at fault.

Music - Live
first real year i've gone to gigs and alot of them.
The highlights were Jamie Lidell, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Mew and The Mars Volta

Films
I saw about 20 films in the cinema this year which is impressive as in 2008 i only saw 7 and in 2006, 1, in 2005, 1, in 2007, 1, from 1997 - 2003, nil.

my cinematic highlight of the year has to be the directorial debut of Duncan Jones in Moon. This was a fantastic film. other cinematic highlights were In The Loop, Mesrine, Broken Embraces Vicky Christina Barcelona, A Serious Man, Syndedoche New York, Slumdog Millionaire and Doubt.

Television
We had a fantastic second series of Damages. this is a really underappreciated show and deserves more viewers.

I also got into this year, The Big Bang Theory, 30 Rock and Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (i know it's been cancelled) and The Thick of It (the recent 3rd season has been fantastic. i had caught up earlier in the year by dvd. god bless the inventor of the dvd.

Modern Family has hit alot of the right buttons and plus, it's given Ed O'Neill some employment which is a big plus. Peep Show returned for a 6th season which was good

We also had 2 more additions to the Futurama films with "Bender's game" and "into the big green yonder". we also had news of futurama returning for a 5th season which is great

Dissapointingly, we had not had a new season of the boondocks but i am informed one is in production and we can look forward to it.

the simpsons have improved

**** seth mcfarlane, the boondocks and futurama is where animation is at.

I'm sure i'm forgetting some things here

Books
Books is tougher to review for the year as you know, when it comes tto book, it's, for me anyway, less on the year they are released. I think "a day and a night and a day" by glen duncan and "let the great world spin" by colum mccann were the only books released this year that i read this year. I'm one year behind on Philip Roth's, this is due to a fear on hardback books of his after i had got "everyman" in 2005 on hardback and for me, it was dissapointing but "indignation" seems to have put an end to it as i bought the hard back version of that (it was the same price as the paperback.)

The literary highlights of the year for me were "let the great world spin" by colum mccann, " the third policeman" by flann o'brien, "man in the dark" by paul auster and "the corrections" by jonathan frantzen, "of love and other demons" by gabriel garcia marquez, "indignation" by philp roth, "a day and a night and a day" by glen duncan "the brief wondrous life of oscar wao" by Junot Diaz, "Rebecca" by Dauphne De Maurier and "labryinths" by jorge luis borges

philip roth has also predicted that in 25 years, the novel will be a minority cult. hopefully he's wrong.
the other dissapointment was the agent of gabriel garcia marquez saying he would probably not writing anymore books.

well there are now 7 hours 50 minutes left in the year, hopefully nothing proves i was too early in this predictions.
kathy

Nolte, why have you got 10 albums in your top 5 list?   Confused  Laughing  Laughing
last km

Nolte...theres a job for you on "The Southbank Show" one day soon... Wink

or "The Culture Show"

I now understand your FP metheodology.... Laughing

All the best for 2010
paperman

Nolte i would like to ask the same question as kathy, Why are there 10 albums in your top 5?

My own review would be a bit different to yours, but thats what its all about.

I must say I am shocked, appalled and deeply saddened, at one omission from your literary highlights. It angers me greatly that so many so called reviewers have refused to acknowledge one book which towers above all the others for 2009. After six agonising anguish filled years of waiting, finally finally finally after so much anticipation, the world was given..........'The Lost Symbol' by Dan Brown. Top notch stuff, And YOU omitted it, just like all the others!  Crying or Very sad
Nolte

to answer, kathy & paperman's question, i have not proclaimed an ability to count despite the word "count" being a major part of my job title.

but i did start off with the intention of creating a top 5 list and then it just wasn't sufficient for all the great releases in the year and it's just fortunate that my top 5didn't include 15 or 20

and also, i must have overlooked Dan Brown, for some reason
kathy

Following my attempt to read 'The Da Vinci Code',   I can think of a very good reason why you omitted Dan Brown Laughing
last km

I just couldnt get into it also..and I was on a 30 hour door to door flight to Alaska..with lots of "lay overs" en route... Rolling Eyes
paperman

Hmmm.... I guess I can forgive the Dan Brown omission. Smile

I have to admit I did read both the Da Vinci code and The lost symbol, both rubbish, both with terrible endings but quick easy reading, must say they helped me through a couple of night shifts. Having said that I won't be buying another Dan Brown novel.  

Off to a new years eve party now...... happy new year to ye Smile
Bartali

Nolte wrote:
to answer, kathy & paperman's question, i have not proclaimed an ability to count despite the word "count" being a major part of my job title.


Is Nolte the Count of Monte Cristo?
grrr

Bartali wrote:
Nolte wrote:
to answer, kathy & paperman's question, i have not proclaimed an ability to count despite the word "count" being a major part of my job title.


Is Nolte the Count of Monte Cristo?


Lots of my colleagues think that my job title involves the work "count" - at least I think that's what they are saying.
Bartali

Laughing  Laughing  Laughing
Nolte

Bartali wrote:
Nolte wrote:
to answer, kathy & paperman's question, i have not proclaimed an ability to count despite the word "count" being a major part of my job title.


Is Nolte the Count of Monte Cristo?


alas, no

i am an accountant Very Happy
Hommedesbois

Nolte wrote:


alas, no

i am an accountant Very Happy


I rented a flat from an accountant. He got quite upset when I asked him
how business was for the Second Oldest Profession.
Nolte

Hommedesbois wrote:
Nolte wrote:


alas, no

i am an accountant Very Happy


I rented a flat from an accountant. He got quite upset when I asked him
how business was for the Second Oldest Profession.


i think in "bicycle diaries", david byrne says about how the writen launguage came about due to accounting and the need for book keeping at the time

the book is at work for lunch time reading and i'll get the exact quotation i finish it
Bartali

The're a fair few of us counts on here Nolte.
smarauder68

I didnt see as many films this year as in year's past, but there's nothing I saw that was more entertaining than "Inglorius Basterds" -- I think its Tarantino's best effort since Pulp Fiction.

Also loved Hangover for a comedy romp.

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