As a quick precursor to the Best of the 00s list I'm currently editing, here's my Top 5 albums of 2009.
Not a stellar year compared to 2007 or 2008, but there's certainly been a few stand outs.
John Frusciante - The Empyrean
He didn't tell us he'd left the Chili Peppers, but Frusciante's latest solo album certainly upped the anti on 2004's marathon of low-key releases, blending epic guitars, a stellar guest list and a near-perfect cover of Tim Buckley's Song To The Siren.
Pink Mountaintops - Outside Love
The Black Mountain side-project took it's own place in the spot light, with a solid album - made twice as good by the outstanding supporting tour.
Lightning Dust - Infinite Light
Amber Webber was missed on the aforementioned Pink Mountaintops tour, but luckily that's because she was polishing up her own project. Taking the promise of their debut, Lightning Dust moved forward with grand strides on this haunting ethereal masterpiece.
Wilco - Wilco (The Album)
The old favourites pulled virtually no surprises out with this one, just another handful of great rock songs with mind-blowing musicianship - and again backed it all up with one of the gigs of the year.
Flight of the Conchords - I Told You I Was Freaky
One great album seemed like a fluke, but the soundtrack to season two expanded the comedy duos surprising knack for blending piss-take and homage in an accomplished way, laced with fits and giggles. I'm in love with a sexy lady, with an eye that's lazy.