Troubled Diva’s Best Albums of 2001

1 ryan adams – gold
call it trad dad retro rock if you must, and sure it’s derivative as hell, but – like oasis in their glory days – ryan’s happy to wear his influences on his sleeve, and he transcends them magnificently.

2 charlatans – wonderland
their best yet – classic rawk swagger, in which timmy discovers falsetto and drops the angst.

3 super furry animals – rings around the world
vastly ambitious, endlessly inventive, never a dull moment: a “pet sounds” for the new millennium.

4 dolly parton – little sparrow
abandoning the nashville rhinestones, getting back to her bluegrass roots, and revealing her true vocal talent.

5 spacek – curvatia
moody mix of d’angelo style funk with downbeat electronica, which takes a few listens before worming its way into your skull – perfect weekend morning music (but be warned: it needs a decent hi-fi to avoid sounding muddy).

6 basement jaxx – rooty
more consistent than “remedy”, though maybe lacking its highlights – a whole heap of eclectic fun in a crisis year for dance.

7 whiskeytown – pneumonia
the “other” ryan adams album this year (though “heartbreaker” would have been album of the year if it hadn’t been released in 2000).

8 alicia keys – songs in a minor
took a long time to get into this one, but it’s the classiest soul collection of the year, from “a major new talent” (hopefully).

9 pulp – we love life
their third album in a row which accurately mirrors my current state of mind – is jarvis telepathic or what?

10 leonard cohen – ten new songs
simple language (and fewer jokes), but the songs are as complex as ever; allegedly his “dance album”!

11 herbert – bodily functions
if cherry red records had ever released jazzy deep house, it might have sounded like this – wet tuesday afternoon music which you can still twitch to.

12 daft punk – discovery
an album which I returned to at the end of the year, only to discover it sounded fresher than ever.

13 radiohead – amnesiac
“kid a” did it better, but this will do fine for now (I’m biased) – only could we have some more songs next time, please?

14 röyksopp – melody a.m.
in a sudden glut of chillout cds, this one stood out as having noticeably more rhythms, guts and ideas – my prediction for 2002’s slow burning word of mouth hit (like goldfrapp in 2001).

15 gotan project – la revancha del tango
accordion-led tango meets slinky electronica – dinner party cd of the year!

16 r.e.m. – reveal
I preferred them when they were being leftfield, but you can’t argue with accessible, commercial tunes like these.

17 missy elliott – miss e addictive
can’t believe this is only #17, but it’s been an unusually strong year for albums – top 10 in any other year.

18 india.arie – acoustic soul
creamy classic soul with an acoustic leaning, like the lady says.

19 turin brakes – the optimist
on paper, everything I hate (travis meets del amitri meets crowded house), but somehow, it really works.

20 white stripes – white blood cells
great for when you’re doing the washing up late at night, pissed.

21 sunshine anderson – your woman
22 bjork – vespertine
23 playgroup – playgroup
24 avalanches – since i left you
25 mercury rev – all is dream

Delayed but played:
ryan adams – heartbreaker
lemon jelly – lemon
goldfrapp – felt mountain
slaid cleaves – broke down

Troubled Diva’s Best Singles of 2001

1 missy elliott – get ur freak on
2 kylie minogue – can’t get you out of my head
3 dandy warhols – bohemian like you
4 the ones – flawless
5 india.arie – video
6 charlatans – a man needs to be told
7 squarepusher – my red hot car (girl)
8 sunshine anderson – heard it all before
9 pulp – the trees / sunrise
10 ryan adams – new york, new york
11 andrew wk – party hard
12 new order – crystal
13 s club 7 – don’t stop movin’
14 daft punk – digital love
15 basement jaxx – romeo
16 ben folds – rockin the suburbs
17 photek feat robert owens – mine to give
18 destiny’s child – bootylicious
19 alicia keys – fallin’
20 aaliyah feat timbaland – we need a resolution
21 avalanches – since i left you
22 outkast – ms. jackson
23 roger sanchez – another chance
24 felix da housecat – silver screen shower scene
25 5ive – let’s dance
26 ben & jason – the wild things
27 super furry animals – (drawing) rings around the world
28 groove armada – my friend
29 super furry animals – juxtapozed with u
30 jakatta – american dream
31 jon cutler feat e-man – it’s yours
32 basement jaxx – where’s your head at
33 destiny’s child – survivor
34 ash – shining light
35 britney spears – i’m a slave 4u
36 radiohead – knives out
37 ash – burn baby burn
38 r.e.m. – imitation of life
39 charlatans – love is the key
40 pj harvey – this is love

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