God, what to do with poop 12? What an exhausting year it was. And like the old borscht-belt joke it went by so quickly. Seems like the only thing that went right
last year was in politics, where nothing goes right: We didn’t get Romney.
But we did get a few good things now that I think about it. Raitt’s ‘Slipstream’ being one of them, as is ‘King Fisher King’ by Sons of the Never Wrong.
Jimmy Cliff gave us ‘Rebirth’.
In the spring we got the rampant creativity of ‘Accelerando’ by the Vijay Iyer Trio and then along came Keith Jarrett’s archival ‘Sleeper – Belonging – Tokyo ‘79’, a two-disc hurricane featuring the European quartet of Jarrett, saxophonist Jan Garbarek, bassist Palle Danielsson, and drummer Jon Christensen.
In that same vein, I discovered the fierce trio recordings of the late, Swedish pianist Esbjörn Svensson, and as long as we’re out there on the fringe, there’s ‘Love This Giant’ the horn driven, guitar crazy collab of David Byrne & St. Vincent.
Sorry, but Bob’s ‘Tempest’ just didn’t move me to new heights and Bruce was way more on the money in Albany than ‘Wrecking Ball’ lets on. It’s still a fine disc, but if you were to deep six several of the tracks you’d have a great one.
Brad Mehldau’s ‘Ode’ and Pete Seeger’s ‘Pete Remembers Woody’ spent many days in the player.
So did ‘Best of The English Beat’ and, oh yeah, Zep’s ‘Celebration Day’.
Moonrise Kingdom. Beasts of the Southern Wild. Lincoln, and the Dark Knight . . .
Got into ‘Homeland’ too. awesome.
If it appears like I stuck to many of my tried and true inspirational sources it’s only because everything new seemed like a drone strike and I’m tired of all this triage.
Though I’m not happy to admit it, I spent most of the last, less-than-illustrious year
reacting, and not acting, or pro-acting, take your pick.