The 10 Best Albums According to Jonathan Dean
For those of you who had your head under a rock the whole year, and didn't listen to any new music, fear not! I've got your back! Just print this out, go to your favorite discount megastore, and buy everything on this list! Seriously, you can't go wrong with anything here, and I've tried to include something from every possible genre, and for every taste. Without further ado, here is the list:
10 Marilyn Manson, "Eat Me, Drink Me"
The highly anticipated new album by "the Godfather of Goth" arrived on shelves this past year, and boy was it worth the wait! For those who aren't acquainted with the darker side of life, Marilyn Manson invented a genre called "gothic rock," which took its influence from bands like the Eurythmics and added a dark, Tim Burton-esque edge that won over a huge audience of people who felt like they never quite "fit in." The genre has ended up spawning a whole subculture, influencing many movements in fashion, hair, and at least a few school shootings! While this was not his best album, Manson is in fine form here, delivering a suite of songs that really display his deep emotions of pain, anger, sadness and indigestion, with his impressive vocal ability and great ear for edgy rock music. Many Christians and family values groups have expressed concern in the past over the content of Manson's albums and performances, but they just don't understand the deep pain and anguish and darkness experienced by intelligent artsy types like Marilyn Manson. Inside the frightening, larger-than-life exterior of rock star Marilyn Manson is just a scared, shivering, pimply, emaciated teenager who collects lunchboxes, compulsively masturbates to photos of David Bowie, and regularly gets his ass kicked by handsome, well-built, less socially awkward athletes destined for leadership positions in government and industry. Actually, when I put it that way, it makes me not like this anymore. Oh, well. Decide for yourself!
9 Celine Dion and Anne Geddes, "Miracle: A Celebration of New Life"
I must admit to loving it when two great artists come together and create something even better than the sum of its parts. Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney. David Bowie and Bing Crosby. Santana and Rob Thomas. Michael Jordan and Marvin the Martian. Add to this list two titans of 21st century art: Celine Dion, the French-Canadian diva who sang the classic hit song "Titanic," and Anne Geddes, the bestselling photographer who does those really cute books full of little naked babies inside heads of cabbage and stuff! This album has tiny little fingers and supple skin! The CD smells like a newborn baby! It celebrates the joys of motherhood! Just buy it, stupid!
8 John Digweed, "Transitions: Volume 3"
The new cutting edge sound of "electronica" was what everyone was talking about this year. Electronic music contains no guitars, and sometimes not even any lyrics. Instead, all of the sounds are made from various computer software programs and synthesizers. Many times, this music is created for the purposes of dancing, so there is a very loud and prominent beat that you can really grab a pair of glow sticks and "rave" to. Many people think electronic music is boring and repetitive and has zero soul (and I must admit that I used to feel like this as well), but this Digweed guy really puts the "excitement" back in electronica. Or rather, he puts "excitement" into electronica where it wasn't before. Which I guess would make something like elecexcitementronica, or something like that. I actually don't think this Digweed guy even really makes the music. I think he actually just plays records or something. I don't know. I know this guy who works at the local Guitar Center who regularly does herbal ecstasy and he claims that this is good. To be honest, I haven't listened to it. When he first told me about it, I thought it had something to do with pot. Like, this guy "digs weed" so much that he changed his name to "Digweed." Actually, that might be true. I should look it up or something.
7 Obama Girl, "I Got a Crush on Obama"
This was definitely the year of YouTube stardom, but this girl really took it to the next level, beating out even Tay "Chocolate Rain" Zonday and those two talented actresses from "Two Girls, One Cup": writing a heartfelt and beautiful song professing her grown-up puppy love for Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, the most exciting and inspiring African-American presidential candidate since Bobby Kennedy! You have to admit he's sexy, right? And don't you think he would just make the best and cutest pwesident ever? Buy this CD and help end the war in Iraq! Wasn't Timbaland involved in this somehow? I should do better research.
6 Steve Vai, "Sound Theories"
If you're like me, you love a great guitarist. And Steve Vai is possibly the greatest guitarist making music today! He can shred with the best of 'em, and he can also play "Flight of the Bumblebee" with both his hands tied behind his back while immersed in a water tank. "Sound Theories" is his best album to date, showing off his incredible mastery of music, which apparently involves a phosphorescent musical staff filled with random notes being turned into a vapor and shoved into his quivering ear-hole! This album is like the musical essence of a soul patch! It's even better than Dream Theater! Don't think it's possible? Prepare to be wrong: dead wrong.
5 "The String Quartet Tribute to Tori Amos: Volume 2"
Even better than the first volume, this CD is the second volume chamber music tribute to the career of Tori Amos to end all second volume chamber music tributes to the career of Tori Amos! You really don't deserve to call yourself a music fan until you've heard cellos, violins and violas doing a cover version of Tori Amos' baby grand piano cover version of a totally unexpected pop/rock favorite that you totally would never expect her to cover! I used to think that chicks like Tori were just all about man-hating and weird obscure poetry about being raped by ghosts, and then I realized that she is really just a modern-day Joan Baez, but without the antiwar message and the guitar skills, and with lots of songs about being raped by ghosts. Why Can't Tori Read? Because she's too busy choosing which totally unexpected song she's going to do a cover of next!
4 "Let's Hear It For the Boy: Volume 7"
I know a lot of people have a problem with gay people, and think what they do is a sin, but personally, I think it's not our job to judge: that's God's job. Let Him send them to hell after they die. And besides, what's wrong with a couple of totally hot, muscular, clean-shaven a