Friday, January 01, 2010

Year In Review: Top Songs, Albums & Concerts Of 2009

It's time for my annual list of songs and albums that rocked my iPod this year! But before that, let's take a quick look at the year in music. In short, the three words that can be used to sum up this year are: "dance", "feel-good" and "female".

This year saw the rise of female electro dance pop, with the emergence of Lady Gaga, La Roux, Pixie Lott, Little Boots and other female powerhouses like Katy Perry, Lily Allen, Leona Lewis, Britney and Beyonce continuing to dominate the airwaves.

Even the non-solo females got in the act - Black Eyed Peas produced an album of dancefloor fillers, and David Guetta assembled an all-star cast to round up his most mainstream party album. Legends like Madonna and Janet also adopted a more contemporary sound - straight out dance tunes with catchy melodies.

While dance flourished, rock took a step back from the limelight. U2's No Line On The Horizon came and quickly disappeared with barely a whimper (even though it has been chosen as Rolling Stone magazine's album and single of the year). Green Day's magnificent follow-up to American Idiot was also critically-lauded but quickly forgotten.

While it's true Lady Gaga is just about everyone's artist of the year, it's somewhat surprising none of her songs made it to my list. I've watched her in concert and her performance on the VMAs, and my conclusion is: she's trying too hard. Gotta learn from Maddy, it's an acquired skill to be "edgy" and "controversial" without appearing to do so.

I've always liked Kanye West, but what he did on the VMAs was just not classy. While it's true Beyonce probably has one of the best videos ever, it's still not gentlemanly to take the moment away from Miss Fearless, which she thoroughly deserved. The VMAs were never about the best videos anyway, it's a popularity contest (just think of how TLC's Waterfalls beat MJ/Janet'sScream for Best Video in 1995).

Speaking of the VMAs, this year's edition is probably the best in about 8 years. Of course, a large part of it was because of MJ's passing, which resulted in the world premiere of the This Is Ittrailer, the Queen of Pop paying tribute to the King of Pop with a lengthy but moving speech, an excellent dance tribute (the only blemish was the dancer who couldn't go all the way down to 45 degrees for the Smooth Criminal lean), and most of all, little sister Janet ruling the stage with a fierce and angry performance of Scream. She even got to dance "with" Michael as he was digitally erased from the video. This has got to be the best MJ performance ever, and ironically, it does not feature him in it. And Beyonce put on a helluva performance too.

2009 will forever be remembered as the year that MJ died. But as the outpouring of love that followed showed, the man might have left us physically, but his legacy and music lives forever. I feel happy that he is getting the recognition he deserves now, and more people are exposed to his genius rather than his eccentricities. In a way, I feel vindicated too, that my friends finally understand my obsession over him. And I'm happy to say I've been a fan for 15 years now.

So This Is It, the final curtain call. Here's my list of favourite songs and albums of 2009.

TOP 25 SONGS OF 2009

1. I Gotta Feeling - Black Eyed Peas
2. When Love Takes Over - David Guetta featuring Kelly Rowland
3. Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It) - Beyonce
4. Thinking Of You - Katy Perry
5. Shattered - O.A.R.
6. Fuck You - Lily Allen
7. I Will Be - Leona Lewis
8. ¡Viva La Gloria! - Green Day
9. Lost - Katy Perry
10. The Climb - Miley Cyrus
11. Halo - Beyonce
12. Boom Boom Pow - Black Eyed Peas
13. Rock That Body - Black Eyed Peas
14. Sexy Bitch - David Guetta featuring Akon
15. Haven't Met You Yet - Michael Buble
16. Already Gone - Kelly Clarkson
17. You Belong With Me - Taylor Swift
18. Elephants - Rachael Yamagata
19. Chasing Pirates - Norah Jones
20. Second Chance - Shinedown
21. Brick By Boring Brick - Paramore
22. Celebration - Madonna
23. Why I Am - Dave Matthews Band
24. Million Dollar Bill - Whitney Houston
25. Make Me - Janet Jackson

Honourable Mention
This Is It - Michael Jackson


1. 21st Century Breakdown - Green Day
2. One Love - David Guetta
3. It's Not Me, It's You - Lily Allen
4. The Resistance - Muse
5. I Am...Sasha Fierce - Beyonce

Honourable Mentions
Big Whiskey And The GrooGrux King - Dave Matthews Band
Elephants...Teeth Sinking Into Heart - Rachael Yamagata
(500) Days Of Summer - OST


1. Coldplay - Singapore Indoor Stadium
2. Green Day - O2 Arena, London
3. Jason Mraz - Singapore Indoor Stadium
4. Rachael Yamagata - Esplanade Concert Hall
5. Craig David - ZIRCA

Other concerts I caught this year
- Kaiser Chiefs
- Nine Inch Nails
- Oasis
- The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus
- Michael Learns To Rock
- Guy Manoukian
- Earth, Wind & Fire
- Linkin Park (Macau)
- Lady Gaga (Macau)


Post a Comment

<< Home