Monday, January 11, 2010

The Best Band Of Twenty-Ten, Song One:

Everyone else in the world just wrapped up their Best Of lists -- best of 2009, best of the decade, best of the previous 423,000,000,000 seconds, all kinds of Best Of lists closed out 2009.

But here at The Best Of Everything, I'm not content to do what everyone else does.

If I wanted to be like everybody else, would I have briefly yesterday contemplated whether it might make sense to try to create a Peanut Butter Silk Pie Sandwich? I think not. It's that kind of creative, forward, spontaneous, pie-centric thinking that keeps this blog on the cutting edge of life and pop culture, and earns it the position of being the sole arbiter of what's The Best.

(Note: In the end, I opted against the Peanut Butter Silk Pie Sandwich, not because it's a bad idea. It's totally not a bad idea. I just couldn't decide what else to put on the sandwich with it, and anyone who's even remotely familiar with The Sandwich Laws knows that it's not a sandwich unless there's at least two things between the bread.)

Another thing that makes me the sole arbiter of The Best and leader of the Free World of Pop Culture? I'm not afraid to take chances and go ahead and start naming my best of's... for this year.

That's right. I'm naming the Best of Twenty-Ten, beginning today. I'm going to tell you right now, right up front, scarcely 264 hours into this new year, what's going to be The Best this year, beginning with today's Best,

The Best Band of Twenty-Ten.

And The Best Band Of Twenty-Ten is...

Ravenna Woods.

Ravenna Woods is a new (?) band that I only recently discovered after getting an email from a guy named Chris Cunningham. Chris alerted me to the highly-important fact that Ravenna Woods is going to be releasing their first album, Demons And Lakes, on January 23, and asked if I'd review it.

Chris, in doing so, demonstrated both impeccable taste in potential reviewers and a serious risk-taking streak, given the almost-near-certainty that I'd link his album and band with a concept like The Peanut Butter Silk Pie Sandwich, but it's too late: He's already emailed me an advance copy of the album and I'm listening to it right now, and it's seriously great.


So great that I'm naming Ravenna Woods, in advance, The Best Band of Twenty-Ten, hands down.

You'd expect that from a band that has the temerity to name, as influences, "franz kafka, boards of canada, philip k. dick, h.p. lovecraft, brett easton ellis" as Ravenna Woods does on their Myspace page. And you'd expect great things from a band that decides to describe their music as "wild animals hijacking a motorcycle with a side cart and then carving donuts in your front lawn"

They couldn't be more wrong about that latter one -- unless those wild animals could harmonize over an acoustic-but-hard-driving rhythm, with a haunting, lyrical sound that hints at there being a deeper, darker, more philosophical meaning behind the songs despite their sometimes-jaunty rhythms.

I'll delve more into the album over the next ten days or so. From now until January 23, I'll be featuring Ravenna Woods' songs on here, so you can preview the songs, and then, on the 23rd, you'll be able to buy the album. You'll want to hurry because they're only making 1,000 copies.

Here's a preview of what you'll get, over the next few weeks, and on the album. This is the band's video for Ghosts:

Click here to go to Ravenna Woods' Myspace page.

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