2006 in music: #1 album

Saturdays / That Was Just A Dream / A Dream

I figured that since I already listed a maxi-single as part of my top ten albums list, why not continue to cheat a bit? OK, so Bright Like Neon Love was released back in 2004. Big deal. More important in end of the year lists are those albums which you heard and were simply blown away by. And this album didn’t just blow me away, it kicked my ass, rolled me in carpet, set me on fire, and threw me off a cliff.

There are very few moments in my life where I can look back and find albums where every single song enthralled me, kept my fingers far from the “next” button, and left me playing and overplaying the tracks to sweet oblivion, where even the oblivion couldn’t dream of getting tired of the songs. I can count these albums on maybe one hand with hide’s BEST Psychommunity and Ayumi’s Duty coming to mind immediately. When I heard a song off of the album Bright Like Neon Love, whose name sums up the collection far better than any album name I’ve come across, “A Dream,” (actually the last track on the album, but it was a random download), I wasn’t impressed right away. It was kind of a slow electronic buzz with a catchy rhythm, repeating lyrics, and maybe a speck of glitter for flourish in the synth department, but the more I played the song, the more I found myself drowning in the sea of electronic, neon fish. The rest of the album did not disappoint.

The combination “That Was Just A Dream” and “Zap Zap” are incredible. When that violinesque melody comes in for the bridge section on the former, I almost had to press Stop so I could catch my breath and allow time for my brain’s nerve endings to grasp the sheer brilliance of whatever it is they just heard. Over and over again I played the song, everywhere and anytime; in my car, on my iRiver, right before bed, before class started, while studying, while writing, I couldn’t get enough of it for weeks and weeks. “Saturdays,” with its Daft Punk bassline and catchy as all heck melody that grabs you by the shoulders and demands you get up and dance, the simple lyrics that keep it to a minimum but convey so many feelings, thoughts, and emotions in their minimalism, the eerie electric guitar vibe in “The Twilight” and every single other song that simply boggles my mind to this day, so much so that for the first few weeks I heard it, I didn’t even want to share the album with anyone for fear they would tell me they didn’t like it or weren’t impressed, or worse, “Turn that crap off” (so if you don’t like this album, do me a favor and don’t say a word because you will break my heart).

So no, Bright Like Neon Love was not released in 2006, but if I had to pick an album that changed this year in my life, it would be this album right here. From start to finish, this short journey through the synthscape comprised on the disc, where time could possibly, literally, stand still for a moment beyond the between at the point of almost and where words pretty much cease their function so that I have to stop talking about it right now, before I detract from the incredible music that it is… That is how much I love this album.

Buy Bright Like Neon Love

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