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This was a big year for me as far as music goes. I continued my passionate love for Fiona's music and this year she did a tour with Nickel Creek (which I have a whole quality set for) and she did a duet with Christope Duley's (ex-lover) brother.

Anyway, aside from Fi, I discovered My Brightest Diamond which was such an experience.

10. Rachel Ries - Without A Bird
She calls her music "Prairied Sing/City Folk" while I call it an intimate damn good time. She has sophisticated yet vintage lyrics and music that will for sure impress your ears. Perfect for hot chocolate and watching snow fall (bummer for you warm state inhabitants).

favorite track:
Hands to Water

9.  Andrew Bird - Armchair Apocrypha
I feel like such a fool to have completely missed Andrews 10 year career, but I feel like I have atoned for my sins for loving Armchair Apocrypha faithfully. I love how he uses nature and birds in his music, it adds such serenity and peacefulness to his album.

favorite track:

8. Marla Hansen - Wedding Day
These Sufjan Stevens ladies are really in an element all their own. First Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond) then St Vincent and now Marla Hansen. Sufjan has an eye for talent. Marla Hansen is the epitome of gentleness of folk music.

favorite track:
All Clear

7.  Kate Tucker & The Sons of Sweden - s/t
Melodic Indie is how I would describe Kate Tuckers album with The Sons of Sweden. "Tucker sings stories of loves, lost hours, inevitable ends, and broken towers." More than just a girl with her guitar. There's so much to love about her album.

favorite track:
Everything Went Down

6. Beatbeat Whisper
Beatbeat Whisper is brother and sister Ayla and Davyd Nereo. Both have lovely vocals, amazing writing talents and both know how to use their guitars.

favorite track:
Little Window

5. Patrick Watson - Close to Paradise
Even though this one was released in 2006, it was released late (September) and it recieved the majority of it's attention this year. Patrick has such a dream aura to his music and his vocals, it is the most perfect lullaby music.

favorite track: Luscious Life

4. Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Go
I'm not sure when Bon Iver originally released this one, it did receive much acclaim this year, and being re- released early next. Some say he's incredibly alike Sam Beam, I say differently. He has more harmony and his vocals are more throaty and have more to it than Sam's whispery love making he does to your ear.

favorite track:
Skinny Love

3. PJ Harvey - White Chalk
This album is unlike Miss Polly Jean for it's content and yet so like her in the way she rewrites the definition of herself. Regardless of what other people might think, I think PJ gave us one hell of a delicious treat.

favorite track:
When Under Ether

2. Emily Jane White - Dark Undercoat
Hearing her for the first time, it is almost impossible to not think of Cat Power, but Emily holds her own in her music. When listening to the whole album through, it is impossible to tell when one song ends and one begins, but still clear when she's telling a new story.

favorite track:
Wild Tigers I Have Known

1. My Brightest Diamond - Bring me the Workhorse
True, this was released early 2006, this is the one album I have fallen head over heals comptely in love and the end to this madness is no where insight. I have fallen in love with the landscape of dragonflies, horses, magic, wood nymphs and self liberation and I am in no hurry to leave.

favorite tracks:
We Were Sparkling - I adore the the fragility and imagery she creates with this one, "chandelier bobbles and empty bottles of wine, watch the light, shine through. I'm afraid to forget you."

Gone Away - I love the progression and thought she put into this song, the naive loyalty at the beginning and the bitterness and realization at the end. "Get me out, get me off, for this is a ride going nowhere but somewhere that I despise. Going nowhere to end up with a tearful, I don't want to go on wit these pieces of paper that you left behind."

- I wish we could all liberate ourselves and go for a walk and never return. Living in complete seclusion appeals to me incredibly some days. "I got tired of sneaky societies and combat boots".

Dragonfly - There is something so mysterious about this song, and if you don't pay careful attention, you will miss the un-layering Shara does in this song.

Something of an End - It is a wonder to me how seamlessly Shara can go from her gentle vocals to her throaty ones. This song is also mystery, about letting something/someone go, mixed in with Shara's references to magic and divinity. "Then the Earth started shaking, and yeah it's crazy. Heaven and hell come crashing down."




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