You know, I had a jotted out a customary LIST for you - some of my favorite albums of the year. (The Seer by Swans... Lonerism by Tame Impala... Love This Giant by David Byrne & St. Vincent... Sun by Cat Power... R.A.P. Music by Killer Mike... even a re-issue of legendary Krautrockers CAN, with their quintessential Tago Mago).
Then I realized: lists are insufferable! Ultimately aggravating proceedings, really. I mean, fun...also; and often potentially helpful for those in need of matching their appeal to the myriad titles, styles and genres available...(...ahem, at your local library!)
Plus - just look at all those "Year-End-Lists" populating every other culture-blog and hipster site across the internet. We're already inclined towards anxiety this time of year, we don't need another blogger or columnist reminding us about all the awesomely, cutting-edge, life-changing modern-masterpieces we missed out on while trying to just keep our ducks in a row.
I made a list of everything I'm upset over missing out on... And hopefully this list is helpful, in some way to you... in that: maybe you missed these, too?
The Black Count by Tom Reiss
The Three Musketeers was my favorite book, as a ninth grader...surpassed, soon after, when in tenth grade I read The Count of Monte Cristo. The Dumas-dork of my inner-child would be geeked to glean this historical investigation / personal profile of General Alex Dumas - the real-life inspiration for his son's swashbuckling literary epics.
Why Does The World Exist by Jim Holt
What a question? "Science cannot answer the deepest questions," so said Allan Sandage, the ostensible father of modern astronomy. "As soon as you ask why there is something instead of nothing, you have gone beyond science." Man... if the potential for a good brain-boggling isn't enough, how about that subtitle: -"...an Existential Detective Story."
Downton Abbey - Season 2 - BBC America
DVD -TV -D
Everybody won't stop talking about it... The romance, the ornate, historically accurate set pieces, the hats... Look at all those characters on the cover!! I barely found time to finish this Patch post...How am I gonna keep track of all these various Brits, their ranks, their post-Edwardian temperaments, who's in love with who, who hates who..... Likely outcome? I'll just re-watch Arrested Development when I find the time... Ah well.
The Fault In Our Stars - by John Green
YA - GREEN
It'll be a movie soon enough anyways, right? Jeez... everyone on staff here at FPL loved it (and was subsequently devastated by it). Being a teenager in love is melodramatic enough...but these star-crossed lovers meet in a cancer support group. If esteemed publications like The Atlantic magazine (and the New York Times, for that matter) are to be believed, this is not your average Kleenex-clutcher... able to be blithe whilst breaking your heart. In any case, it's sure as hell gotta be better than the perfunctory vampire or wizardy whoppers out there these days.
Likely outcome? I'll re-watch Perks of Being a Wallflower when it comes out on DVD, sometime in January...
Channel Orange -by Frank Ocean (R&B)
CD - OCEAN, FRANK
I'm always self-conscious of swimming with the crowd. Everyone else is already singing the praises for this staggering album; link to any music site's "Top-lists" and you'll see it, likely near the top. Well... Thankfully, with just a week left in 2012, I finally found some time to sit down and swoon to this impressive blend of atmospheric R&B, spacey soul nocturnes and cruising hip-hop-chopped into shimmering funk jams. You could almost dance if you didn't want to make sure to hear his heavy wording, with a voice both resolute and frail, a crackily croon that holds attention with lyrics altogether irreverent, audacious and refreshingly honest.
So even on a list where I'm railing against all that other stuff that people won't shut up about - I can't shut up about this, either...sorry. Just glad I got to this one, if still missing the boat on all the others...
Ferndale Patch thanks Jeff Milo at the Ferndale Public Library for contributing to Patch! Check back soon for more ideas from library staff. Are you looking for recommendations on something specific? Email firstname.lastname@example.org, and we'll pass on your questions to the library.