New Music Report: The Decade’s Best Under-the-Radar Albums

December 23rd, 2009 by Rolling Stone Leave a reply »

Rolling Stone announced our 100 Best Albums of the decade this month, and our readers picked their own list. Now it’s Christian Hoard’s turn: the RS editor and host of our New Music Report’s “Christian Rock” looks back at the 2000s and selects three albums from his personal decade list you won’t find on any of our other countdowns.

First up, 2001’s Satellite Rides by the Old 97’s, a Dallas band who turn out crafty pop-rock songs rooted in the Byrds and old AM radio hits. Frontman Rhett Miller sings about the vagaries of love earnestly and intelligently on this turning-point LP, and on “Rollerskate Skinny” he offers the thesis “I believe in love, but it don’t believe in me.”

Next up is 2003’s Later That Day by Lyrics Born, a Japanese-American MC from Berkeley, California whose solo debut wanted nothing to do with mainstream hip-hop. Day is rooted in ’70s funk and has a party vibe as Lyrics Born raps about everything from bad relationships to tearing up the dance floor. He keeps it playful on the disc, at one point rhyming “Santana” with Santa, panda, my grandma and Dalai Lama.

Hoard also spotlights 2007’s Nu Med by Balkan Beat Box, a New York band led by a pair of Israeli-born rockers with roots in Gogol Bordello. Their excellent album has hip-hop beats and rhymes, but also major doses of Klezmer, dub and Middle Eastern styles.

Check out more of Rolling Stone’s All-Time Greats.

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Article Source: Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily

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