Strictly alphabetically speaking, that is, here's what I listened to much of Jan. 1, 2000, through Dec. 15, 2009:

* Apartment -- Sparkle Bicycle (Waikiki, 2008).
Tatsuya Namai's radiant pop of the Daniel Johnston-meets-Shonen Knife variety.

* Alex Brennan -- The Last Smile of the Pied Piper (2004).
Hopefully Mr. Brennan will be duly hired to give The Beach Boys' catalog that Beatles Love treatment when the time inevitably arrives.

* Lindsey Buckingham -- Under the Skin (Reprise Records, 2006).
Once insane, always insane.

* Candypants -- Candypants (Sympathy for the Record Industry, 2000).
Ronnie Spector fronts Elvis Costello's Attractions -- and then some!

Casper and the Cookies.jpg

* Casper & the Cookies -- The Optimist's Club (Happy Happy Birthday to Me Records, 2006).
What Jason NeSmith and Kay Stanton did on their holidays in New York City.

* Cheap Trick -- Rockford (Big3 Records, 2006).
Remarkably sounding better – and louder – than ever.

* Dennis Diken and Bell Sound -- Late Music (Cryptovision Records, 2009).
The album Brian Wilson has been trying to make since at least 1986.

* Johnny Dowd -- Wire Flowers: More Songs from the Wrong Side of Memphis (Munich Records, 2003).
A sonic sequel to one of the '90s undeniably greatest albums -- and artists.

* Bob Dylan -- Modern Times (Sony/BMG, 2006).
Edges out Christmas in the Heart by a mere Santa whisker.

Electric Prunes.jpg

* Electric Prunes -- Feedback (PruneTwang, 2006).
Proving you can have your re-heated soufflé and eat it, too.

* Tom Jones -- Mr. Jones (V2 Music, 2003).
Wherein Atomic Jones meets Wyclef Jean -- by way of "Black Betty"!

* Bill Lloyd -- Back to Even (New Boss Sounds, 2004).
Fifteen more examples of most potently powerful pop, Nashville-style.

* Lolas -- Like the Sun (Jam Recordings, 2007).
Tim Boykin and his ever-bright l-o-l-a Lolas honestly do make the kind of records you still think Paul McCartney does.

* Jack Pedler -- Jack Pedler (Race Records, 2001).
This is the sound of the hardest-working drummer in Canada loading all six strings.

* The Playmates -- Sad Refrain (K.O.G.A. Records, 2002).
Forever more than happy to play The Rolling Stones against their countrywomen Puffy (AmiYumi)’s Beatles.

* Raquel’s Boys -- Music for the Girl You Love (Jam Recordings, 2004).
Just as if Bobby Fuller and those once Flamin' Groovies were never ever extinguished.

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* Jason Ringenberg -- A Day at the Farm with Farmer Jason (Yep Roc, 2003).
The definitive alternative to alternative country.

* Simply Saucer -- Cyborgs Revisited (Sonic Unyon Recording Company, 2003).
The nice, nice noise that simply continues to keep on giving.

Frank Lee Sprague -- Merseybeat (Wichita Falls Records, 2005).
Exactly as if Brian Epstein had never entered The Cavern.

* Tan Sleeve -- White Lie Castle (Cheft Worldwide, 2000).
Wherein George Harrison and even Frank Zappa receive the Burt Bacharach/Hal David by way of Todd Rundgren treatment.

* Teenage Head -- Teenage Head with Marky Ramone (Sonic Unyon Recording Company, 2008).
Canada's Ramones finally reunited with their very-long-lost brudder.

-- Musician/writer Gary Pig Gold is the co-founder of the To M'Lou Music label.


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