Year In Review: 2008

I suppose today is a good day to do this as we all say goodbye to 2008 tonight, so here is my best/worst of 2008.  Enjoy!

Best Live Show:

Without a doubt the best live show I saw this year was at the 3rd annual Virgin Mobile Festival.  The Foo Fighters put on one of the best live concerts I have ever seen.  Their stage presence was like none other as they shared the fun they had with the huge crowd that gathered to see them.

Runners up:

-Radiohead at Blossom
-Filter at the Hard Rock Cafe Cleveland
-NIN at the Virgin Mobile Festival
-Against Me! at the Warped Tour
-The Briggs at the Warped Tour

Worst Live Show:

I have to say the worst live show I saw (or didn’t see since we waited 45 minutes for him to take stage) was none other than Lil’ Wayne at the 3rd annual Virgin Mobile Tour.  As much as I wanted to see him perform live for years now, his neglect for other bands pissed me off.  After his entourage galloped across the stage for 45 minutes the young rap star took stage.  I already had enough and left, missing the performance.  The thing that ticked me off the most about Lil’ Wayne’s delay in performing was that he kept playing over his alotted time and took up some of the Black Key’s time, a band I really wanted to see more of.  The Black Keys had to end their show early all because Lil’ Wayne felt it necessary to disregard others.

Runners up:

-Any emo/scenester band that played the Warped Tour 2008

Best New Albums:

Tom Gabel – Heart Burns – The Against Me! lead singer’s first solo release is a hit to my ears.  This CD proves Tom Gabel has a long career in front of him to look forward to.

3OH!3 – Want – After seeing them live at the Warped Tour this summer I picked up the album and was immediately hooked with the crunk punk.

Tim Barry – Manchester – The lead man of Avail put forth an amazing release.  I loved the folksy personal rock he dishes out on his 3rd release.

Jenny Lewis – Acid Tongue – From start to finish, I am in love with this CD.

The Black Keys – Attack & Release – Blues rock at it’s finest thanks to a very important duo of musicians.

Ninja Gun – Restless Rubes – Folky punky goodness.  I love these guys.

Enter Shikari – Take To The Skies – I was drawn to this CD from the uniqueness of the techno meets hardcore genre bash.

She & Him – Volume One – Very classic album featuring the very beautiful sounding (and looking) actress Zooey Deschanel.

Gaslight Anthem – The 59′ Sound – Great New Jersey band that imitates what Bruce Springsteen might sound like if he were younger these days.  I can listen to this CD over and over and not grow tired of it.

Albums I Was Not As Impressed With As I Thought I Would Be:

Metallica – Death Magnetic

Guns N Roses – Chinese Democracy

Portishead – Third

Gnarls Barkley – The Odd Couple

Still Scratching My Head At:

Vampire Weekend – S/T – Still not sure if I like these guys…

Worst New Album:

Gavin Rossdale – WANDERlust

Best Movie:

The Dark Knight (enough said)

Runners up:

-Pineapple Express
-Son Of Rambow


Worst Movie:

Strange Wilderness – Honestly from a Happy Madison film I expected more.  I think I laughed once.

Runners Up:

-The Love Guru (can you say Austin Powers w/ a beard? Justin Timberlake was humorous though…)
-Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (I expected more from this movie, way more)

Memorable Events Of 2008:

I hit up the 3rd annual Virgin Mobile tour once again with my pals Matt and Adam.  I am proud to say it was my third time being there, and both my friend’s second.  This year we stayed in a pimp hotel with free breakfast and free internet (no ghetto hotels for us this year).  Adding to the three of us was T.J. of Viva La Mainstream.  We all had a great time spite my GPS taking us for a tour in the projects of Baltimore.  You can read about my adventures of that event HERE.

My friends Sam & Ryann tired the knot which lead to a wedding reception full of friends.  It was nice to get to see some folk who I have not seen in a while.

I met Derek Hess, a Cleveland artist, twice as he was promoting his book with Kent Smith called Please God Save Us.  I have been a huge fan of Derek Hess since I was a kid and was psyched to finally meet him.  I owe the opportunity to Matt over at Addicted To Vinyl.

Even if the Browns sucked this year I was at that Monday night game where they spanked the Giants.  I went with my brother and I must say that was a game I was glad I witnessed.  The energy that night from all the fans added to the excitement of the Browns kicking ass.

I got to explore NYC with my wife and good friends Morgan, Molly, and Megan.  We need to go back to explore more but I must say I will never forget that trip.  I even have an Ol’ Dirty Bastard Cupcake tattoo as a permanent souvenir.

While in the midst of the NYC trip my wife and I decided to put down the bottle.  Since the end of March my wife and I have been alcohol free.  We feel great and are happy with our decision.

In October my wife and I met up again with the wonderful Morgan for an incredible adventure in her hometown of Austin and then to San Francisco.  Great times in both cities with memories that will last a lifetime.  I met new friends too in both cities all who shared some pretty awesome moments with.

And of course, I started this site!  Thank you to all who drop by to read what I post.  It means a lot to me to hear all the positive feedback.  Starting this site has introduced me to some really cool bloggers out there as well.

Saying Goodbye In 2008:

RIP Grandpa Paul – A wonderful person who will be missed dearly passed just before J-Day.  Thank you all for your kind words during that difficult time.

Saying Hello In 2008:

We adopted Zeus, an abused Boston Terrier in April.  He is the newest and most loving member of our family.  Don’t worry, Sweet Lou is still the coolest dog in the world, but Zeus is a close 2nd!

Looking Forward To In 2009:

The Watchman

9 (Tim Burton movie)

The Cleveland Browns 2009 Season (I am a die-hard fan for life you know…)

The 4th Annual Virgin Mobile Festival

The 2009 Van’s Warped Tour

I was looking forward to the Musink Festival featuring Social Distortion and Motorhead w/ tattoo artist superstar Kat Von D but recently learned that it was canceled due to the crap economy…  That would have been a sick show.

New Releases In 2009 I Look Forward To:


Lil’ John (no, I am not kidding, it may be one of the more entertaining releases of 2009)

Third Eye Blind

Avett Brothers

The Postal Service

Nate Ruess (from the Format)

Andrew Bird

Well that about sums it up for me.  I am sure I have missed a lot but I did this without much thought and very quickly.  If there is someone or something I missed let me know!

I would love to hear about your best/worst of 2008.  Maybe you agree with me or disagree.  Perhaps you know of an album I should have checked out and missed.

Happy New Years to you all!  Have a safe evening and I will see you in 2009!!!

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