In my entire 27 years of living there has not been another year that has been as equally challenging and rewarding as 2010. Aside from moving around from job to job and struggling to find creative inspiration, I have also watched as my and all of my friend’s lives have been challenged in similar fashions. The romantic DNA of 2010 has been the most tangled and complicated I’ve borne witness to. The relationships of those closest to me were all set upon by a cosmic clouding these last 12 months that has made consistent engagement and a tracking of time close to impossible. It is the general census of most of those around me that this year has been hard to re-cap in terms of things that happened outside of ourselves. While we all seem to remember where we were when shit hit the fan and where the revelations our collective and individual healing processes have brought forth started to take place, we find it harder remembering when certain movies, albums, songs, art openings, theatrical events and other artistic and/or public happenings went down. This is detrimental to creating an end of the year list that’s in any way comprehensive because unlike other years where art events serve as touchstones to my emotional life, this year that logic was reversed.
The main thing I will say in 2010′s favor is that it is by far the most present I have felt in a long while. While I don’t wish any sort of overarching hardships for me or for any of my favorite people in the universe, the timing of the events this year that resulted in a psychic domino effect beginning at the start of summer and trailing us all right up into the holidays, has fused us all closer together as a unit than I had ever formerly thought possible. In the background of our crisises and at the forefront of our celebrations, here is some of what we were listening to.
My ten most re occurring favorites of 2010 in ascending order:
After the Jump…
We here at minorprogression are long standing fans of Marissa Nadler. Since we first heard her music some four or five years ago we have been entranced and transformed. With every album and every performance that we’ve seen our love grows deeper and her skills reach further. Last year’s “Little Hells” is still in constant rotation and we often find ourselves returning to her older albums, surprising ourselves with how many lyrics we know and how many memories her music conjures.
I know this month everyones attention is on another female singer-songwriter with ethereal qualities, but while Joanna Newsom gathers lots of press for her quirks and classically orchestrated flights of fancy, Nadler’s work still somehow hovers just under the radar. This is not to say that she hasn’t had more than a fair share of positive and even glowing press, but rather, that Nadler’s music is more haunted, more intimate and in some ways, much harder to place than Joanna Newsom’s. Where Miss Newsom’s music can be viewed as pretentious or overly precious by some, Nadlers songs all possess a solid unswerving backbone, suggesting subtle and sometimes frightening wholes that are only sometimes revealed. I find this quality makes Nadler’s often harder to shrug off. While I by no means wish to make light of Miss Newsom’s newest album “Have One On Me” which is unquestionably wonderful, I don’t think that any of our readers are unaware of it’s existence. Marissa Nadler on the other hand has been a love of our lives for too long now for us not to share her with our readers and if by some chance this is your introduction to her, you are very lucky indeed.
A few months ago we saw Miss Nadler play in Brooklyn and she was generous enough to give me her email. Now my dear readers, we have an exclusive interview with her and if I may say so myself, it’s one of the best that we’ve had the pleasure of putting up. Marissa answers all of my questions fully, thoughtfully and generously. We are honored to be sharing her responses with all of you.
Akiine is simply adorable. I’m serious – just look at her. On my ever expanding quest to find hidden musical gems on the internet, I struck diamonds, rupees and emeralds with this one. Not only did she seem really happy to do an interview, but she gave me a wealth of responses so huge it could maybe have it’s own Dewey decimal. Living in the countryside of Sweden, she is pretty removed from any sort of ‘scene,’ which really shows when you listen to her music. It’s cuteness is immediately appealing, but doesn’t seem disingenuous… she seems like she’s the kind of person who’s light-hearted personality leaves them pretty vulnerable to the cynics of the world. Continue reading